Hello to everybody from Chennai, India.
I am new to aquascaping... its the first hobby I've had in my adult life. A couple of months ago, I bummed some 'contrasoil' from a friend, put it in a 18 x 12 x 12 tank, and added one sagittaria and and some hygrophila difformis, 8 neon tetras, and a dozen amano shrimps. To my surprise, they are all thriving, and I'm actually regular with water changes... Now I want to move on to the next level.
Chennai is a particularly hot city... we see temperatures of 40 degrees centigrade (104F) for several hours a day, from March through August. November through February we are doing 26C-32C (79F to 89F). I do not want to, and possibly cannot afford to buy a chiller and co2 system.
The attached images illustrate my idea. The plants will be in the substrate in the 6" balcony at the back of the tank. I'm thinking crypts at this time, but thats a decision which can wait. Below it will be a dry scape, some small schooling fish, some red cherry shrimp and maybe a couple of otos. The following are my reasons for this setup:
* cement tank will keep water cooler.
* because its a riparium, plants can get their co2 supply from the atmosphere - no need for a co2 system.
* water volume will be about 25 gallons, so water changes become manageable. I use expensive, packaged water because the tap water here is highly unreliable.
* reduced/no algae problems because of emersed plants - low maintenance.
I intend to keep it in my bedroom and turn the aquarium light on at night, when the room will be air conditioned. During the day, I'll pull the dark curtains in, and leave the fan on. Hopefully this should minimize the heat issues.
So, before I proceed to specific questions - is there anything fundamentally wrong with my idea? Have I overlooked some critical problem area?
Thanks in advance...