Hello, my name is Mark Shelton, I am new to this list. Over the past few
days I've been impressed with the exceptional quality of the messages.
Currently I have many tanks fresh and marine and am presently constructing a
500 sq. ft. basement fishroom. I had a fish bedroom but was forced to vacate
due to new arrivals of the human variety (future fishroom workers or is that
wreckers ? :). We added on the house with basement under the addition so now
I can expand my operation. I plan to continue betta breeding, and will add
angels and marine clownfish and soft coral propagation to start with.
Now on to the subject. I have a 50 gal plant tank, L-shape (one of the few
that didn't leak from the early '80s). This tank has a average fish
community; angels, tetras, corys, and a flying fox, I'll be adding real SAE's.
Substrate is 3" of what was called "red flint" gravel. It is 2-3mm diameter.
There are no additions in the substrate. I discovered an interesting thing
about this gravel purely by chance when cleaning glass with a magnetic
scrubber. As I got close to the gravel, the magnet would become covered with
gravel; this gravel is loaded with iron. Filtration is a Fluval 303 in which
I used various chemical media. The consensus from this list seems to be NO
chemical media due to removal of micro nutrients, is this correct? I have no
co2 system. The homemade hood has room for 2 bulbs on each side of the "L",
2-24" and 2-36". My main question is what are the best tubes for the "generic"
plant tank? I have 1 Triton, 1 power-glo (Hagen?), and 2 cool whites, 1 on
each side (no need to comment on the latter). The tank is now dominated by
Java fern, four 1 cubic foot pieces held in place by there own weight,
obviously doing well. I would like a more balanced plant community. Also are
there any resources that have a spec listing of the newer bulbs: K degrees,
lumen, etc.? Are the tri-phos types better with plants or are the flatter
response full spec. like Vita-light? Any experience with the new Vita-light
Aquatinic bulb? Thanks for tolerating the long message,