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Re: Large tank construction

>>If I understand the workings of a natural set up and if you intend
to very heavilly plant this large tank then filtration may not be
nescessary beyond the natural workings of the plants.<<

Well you are right. IF as Mr. Binkley so well put it you dont just
stuff more and more fish in there you can easily get by with no
filter! There are a lot of Aquatic Gardners that just keep a few algea
eating fish in there tanks and don't have any filters. While I love
growing aquatic plants I love the fish too. I probably could get by
with no filter actually. I have far from made up my mind what fish are
going in there but I prefer small fish over large ones. Since this
will be a focal point in the house I am think of putting in brightly
colored and fish that like to schools. I am not sure what natives
(hint hint!) fall in the catagory but will be looking into that. I
want to be very careful though. Can you imagine trying to remove fish
from a 200+ gallon planted tank? Words like impossible come to mind!
They are hard enough in a 65!

>> Perhaps your main concern then would be water movement through the
water column and substrate. <snip> I think the larger the set up the
easier it is to
maintain a natural working mini-ecosystem. <<

I agree! It is just the what ifs. Like what if I need to add a filter
later? With three sides exposed I wont have a lot of options. Also if
I were to use say a stock 200 gallon tank, it is a 3 man job just to
move one! So I am thinking that I would be better off to put in the
filter and go a bit overboard now than wishing I had latter. Also
wet/dry gives me more options to hide it and do some other neat things
when buidling the house. Like one guy gave me a great idea. Plumbing
an overflow line in the sump directly into the houses drain lines.
Also setting it up with a place to hook up a python direclty to the
drain line. No draging hoses all over the house!

>>Or simply UG with powerheads. Just a thought.<<

This I had actually thought about. However they don't go well with
good plant substrates. You did give me an idea though! Thinking about
leaving one end of the tank plant free and just bare gravel and using
a UGF there. Doing this on the far end from the filter intake/return.
This would give it some water movement and a place for fish that like
open water. Nope that wont work, no place to hook up power to power
heads! Oh well.......

Thanks for the thoughts! Thanks to everyone for your ideas too! If I
do get to do this I want to get as close to right as possible the
first time. This is not a tank I want to have to tear down and redo
very often!!

Also thanks for all the links guys. Will surf that way some tonight or
tomorrow. I knew there were some sites out there. I have seen them but
never saved them because I never thought I would need them.

Jeff <*\\><
"Consider carefully what you hear", he continued "With the measure you
use it, it will be measured to you -- and even more.  Whoever has will
be given more; whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken
from him." Mark 4:24,25
www.airnet.net/kudzu/ "Kudzu's Christian Clipart Collection"