New setup - advice please
I've been reading your archives on rec.aquaria.freshwater.plants for
awhile and I'm pretty impressed with your chat line. I've got a cool
chiclid tank with oscars and red devils and some plastic plants but I
want to do a killer real plant tank.
OK, here's the deal. I bought a 75 gallon tank and all the stuff to
set it up. I've been getting ideas from your postings and I think
I've got the right setup. Any questions or comments?
Tank: 75 gallon, 48"x18"x18" glass
Lights: 4 40 watt flourescent (2 cool white, 2 vitalights)
DIY hood suspended 8" over the water.
Filters: 2 Emperor Power Filters with dual biowheels (I want good bacterial
growth and the waterfalls will make good water movements)
Heater: 2 100 watt Visitherms
I've been reading all your postings and I think I have a great idea
for the substrate. I mixed up one gallon of vermiculite, one gallon
of top soil from the forest and one gallon of red modeling clay.
These were all mixed in a bucket then mixed with 35 pounds of gravel
for the bottom layer. The other layers are 60 pounds of regular
gravel. I was going to do the undergravel heating coil route for
circulation but that Greg Booth keeps saying it doesn't help so what's
the whole point? I've got a better idea. Before I added the gravel, I
put in a undergravel plate but I'm not using it as a FILTER!
What I'm doing is to put one of those RUGF penguin powerheads
with a sponge filter on one uplift tube and blow water down it. I
left the other uplift tube open so the water will go down the one
tube, move across the bottom of the substrate under the plate and go
up the other tube. This way, the plant roots can get to the nutirents
in the water and the substrate can still be low oxygen. Has anyone
tried this yet?
CO2: Yeast/coke bottle. I put the airline into the down tube so
the CO2 gets to mix with water under the plate. The roots should
like this too.
Fertilizers: I'm going to mix up some PMDD as soon as I find all the
stuff. This should be all I need along with CO2, right?
Water: My water is pretty good here. 300 pmm hardness and pH 7.7
right out of the tap. With that high of pH, I don't think I'll
need to add buffering to it.
Plants: I don't know the names yet but I'm learning. I got a lot of
ones that should be fast growing at first. Mostly bunches.
Fish: Just algae eaters to start with. I can only get chinese algae
eaters locally and some black mollies to start but they are doing OK.
The tank has been going for 3 weeks now and I have a question. The
plants aren't bubbling yet. What is wrong? I've got the recommended
2.1 watts per gallon! Also the water has a cloudy look and the
biowheels aren't clearing it up yet. And there is some fuzzy white
stuff growing in the gravel. Is this some other kind of algae? The
fish don't eat it very much.
Thanks for any help. I really respect you guys opinion.
WaterDevil ^..^ / "A little suffering is good for the soul"
(__)/ - Kirk, "The Corbomite Maneuver", stardate