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Discussion Starter #1
Getting back into the hobby after a few years of being into other hobbies such as vivariums and frogs. Decided to start with a simple and small 20 gallon long tank I had sitting in my garage.

Ideally my stock list is probably going to consist of: a bunch of Corys most likely 12 ish Pygmy Corys since I heard they are more middle swimmers unlike most Corys that are bottom dwellers and also don’t eat baby shrimp. Also wondering if anyone knows where I can get them and the price range I’d be looking at. On top of the 12 Corys probably just some Painted Fire Red Cherry Shrimp.

Equipment:

Large Dual Sponge Filter
Aqueon Pro 50W Heater
Finnex Planted+ 24/7
Eco-Complete Bottom Layer
Pool Filter Sand Top Layer


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August 21st, 2018

Setup the tank with a large piece of driftwood, a cool rock and attached Weeping Moss to both the wood and the rock using cotton sewing thread. Also got some sort of free stem plant thanks to CRS Fan (Stuart) with the moss.



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August 21st, 2018

Setup the tank with a large piece of driftwood, a cool rock and attached Weeping Moss to both the wood and the rock using cotton sewing thread. Also got some sort of free stem plant thanks to CRS Fan (Stuart) with the moss.



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I would highly recommend getting some floating plants to filter the light so you don't run into algae issues. Salvinia is a good one that is easy to manage.

Best regards,

Stuart

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Yup that's a lot of light for a shallow tank. If your plan is for it to be planted, I would suggest getting as many plants in as possible asap. When I do that with my new tanks I don't go through the dreaded new tank algae issues...
 

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Yup that's a lot of light for a shallow tank. If your plan is for it to be planted, I would suggest getting as many plants in as possible asap. When I do that with my new tanks I don't go through the dreaded new tank algae issues...
Thanks and yeah gonna plant more heavy ASAP. Trying to get more plants from local members but haven't seen much. Also not running it on max using the 24/7 feature, however I might end up lowering it so I don't get an algae problem. Thanks for the advice :)

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I would highly recommend getting some floating plants to filter the light so you don't run into algae issues. Salvinia is a good one that is easy to manage.

Best regards,

Stuart

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Actually looking into floaters trying to find ones with not as long roots as I've had Amazon Frogbit before and those just touch the bottom of the tank and entangle with the substrate. Thanks for the advice noneless :)

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August 26, 2018:

Thanks to the generosity of member Kimyee finally got some plants in my tank. Planted some crypt, dwarf tiger lily, assorted mosses, pearlweed, dwarf sag, java fern, riccia and subwassertang. Also some filter media to hopefully speed up the process of cycling.



August 28, 2018:

Got some dwarf anubias species from Glen (Myaquaria) and spread it out across the driftwood as best as possible. Sadly already managed to see some hydra in my tank removed the few I saw and haven't seen anymore yet so far.



My plan at the moment is to grow out the plants for the next month while dosing 4ppm ammonia with Dr. Tim's ammonium chloride solution. Adding and breeding Malaysian Trumpets then once the cycle is complete will be looking to add around 20 Pygmy Cories.

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Good start - is the tank going to be viewed from both sides? If not, I would add a background to camo some of the hardware and a sense of security for the fish. Easy to do now before the fish arrives.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Looks great. Should start to fill in, in no time. Are those stems of Ludwigia (repens?) in back middle and back right?
I believe so a fellow member gave me a bunch of free plants and I got confused so I just threw them in.

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Good start - is the tank going to be viewed from both sides? If not, I would add a background to camo some of the hardware and a sense of security for the fish. Easy to do now before the fish arrives.
I was thinking about just taping piece of black paper to the back however I also kinda want to see the tank from the back so will figure something out

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August 18

Ended up completely changing my set up. Decided on trying to go for a blackwater/biotope set up with Cardinals and Corys of some sort. Tank is finally cycled just trying to get the parameters right to figure out the ideal pH/GH/KH and how to achieve them since the tannins lower pH. Not sure if the tank is too dark but seems pretty realistic of a natural setting.

If anyone keeps Cardinals here please do chime in and tell me some ideal parameters, as far as I'm aware they like acidic water. Not sure about temperature and GH/KH.


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If it is not too late to chime in . . .

I would place/angle the log to the right side of the tank - and not so parallel to the front and back glass panels - to help hide the equipment on the righthand side. The way the log is currently positioned reminds more of a centre piece for a table setting rather than a river/lake bed. :) Then, I would also add some tall plants in front of the equipment which is hanging in the centre. And, as "hp10BII" mentioned, cover the back glass making the view from only one side - i.e. hiding the fireplace so that the (future) fish, not the fireplace, catch the eye.

Of course, this is just a matter of personal preference.
 

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If it is not too late to chime in . . .

I would place/angle the log to the right side of the tank - and not so parallel to the front and back glass panels - to help hide the equipment on the righthand side. The way the log is currently positioned reminds more of a centre piece for a table setting rather than a river/lake bed. :) Then, I would also add some tall plants in front of the equipment which is hanging in the centre. And, as "hp10BII" mentioned, cover the back glass making the view from only one side - i.e. hiding the fireplace so that the (future) fish, not the fireplace, catch the eye.

Of course, this is just a matter of personal preference.
Thanks for the input I might cover up the back with black paper, my mom straight up said it looks bad with the background covered. Also it's nice to be able to see from the backside if I'm looking for a creature. Might end up doing that eventually though, as for the wood piece yeah it seems pretty "placed" I just put it there because it was originally a normal tank with a center focus point. Might move it not sure and I think I'll grab some Amazon Swords since I heard they do well and grow tall to cover the back. Right now there's just Tiger Lilys.

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