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Old 10-30-2005, 09:16 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default 20g Long-Begginner Category

4-10-05
This is the first few weeks of my tank and i used gravel instead of something better because i had a price limit when i was buying stuff.



Tank Info-
Fish-2 balloon bellied mollies (don't see them in the pic cause they are on the left where the picture was cut off)
Plants-
Ludwigia repens
Giant Bacopa
Water Sprite
Java Fern
Amazon Sword
Dwarf Hairgrass
Apanogeton (dont know the excact species and dont care )
Substrate- 1.5in thick of gravel
Ferts- none yet (didnt know much about fertilizers till i asked avalon )
Heater- Tetra 10-30g heater
Filter- HOB Penguin 110
Lighting- 2-20watt CF daylight 6500k Lights of America screw in bulbs with 2 desklamps connected to the wall
Co2- Nutrafin Co2 system with ladder connected to a 2L bottle and i use my own mix for it

Last edited by balloon_fish; 10-30-2005 at 09:37 AM..
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Old 10-30-2005, 09:38 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default 4-18-05


Things have been growing slow because i haven't added any fertilizers yet but you can see the ludwigia grew a little and the new growth was bigger leaves meaning more lighting then what it was used to getting in the 40g. Also the water sprite grew a little and i got the first little plantlet and stuck it in the ground in the front. I also moved a parrot's feather over to the 20g and an apanogeton and i spread out the dwarf hairgrass so it will carpet faster. Oh and i moved all the neons over to this tank.

Last edited by balloon_fish; 10-30-2005 at 09:49 AM..
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Old 10-30-2005, 09:38 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default 5-13-05


The tank is realy starting to fill up and the water sprite has begun its take over. I also got some ancacharis form the LFS a week before and you can see some of the off shoots near the front on the left side of the Water sprite. I've also added a lot of apanogeton bulbs that i had in the 40g and i added another pack that i bought from walmart on the same day i got the Anarcharis. You can also see that the Giant bacopa leaves are really starting to grow big and i am continuing to propogating the ludwigia. And i've been adding a lot of fish to this and continuing to add more neons as i go to make a nice big school later on.

Last edited by balloon_fish; 10-30-2005 at 09:49 AM..
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Old 10-30-2005, 09:41 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default June 2005


The take over of the water sprite was completed when they finally taken half of the tank. During this picture i have already been fertilizing the tank using the EI method for about 2 to 4 weeks and the growth has been crazy. Also the bba at this time has been rollling in and out and some other algae (the worst case of bba was on the dwarf hairgrass). Since the last update i've added a little piece of plastic to the outlet of the HOB that lays on top of the water in a wall position and it stops all of the surface agitation and greatly increases the amount of co2 in the tank. I've also moved the small piece of driftwood to the tank to grow some java ferns on it as you can see in the middle of the tank with the little rubber bands on them . Oh ya and during this time i neglected the tank for 2 weeks cause i wanted to let the plants grow out, the pic above is after 1 1/2 weeks of no clipping. Heres a pic of the ludwigia repens that almost spanned the whole tank but i cut it up cause it was badly shading out some plants.

I think its time for another tank spec update-
Fish- 12 neons, 2 albino guppies (1male, 1female), 3 ottos, 1 bristlenose pleco, dont remember if i moved the balloon bellies or not yet but i do later on , and 1 black balloon bellied molly (the only baby that all 20 of my balloon bellied mollies had, guess they all became infertile after that baby was born)
Plants-
Ludwigia repens
Bacopa Carolina
Water Sprite
Dwarf Hairgrass
Hornwort
Apanogeton
Java Fern
Anarcharis
Guppy Grass
A little remaining java moss on the wood that evetualy makes it through the bad algae stage
Dosing- EI Method

Co2- Running at 25ppm no problems (yet...)

forgot to mention that i ordered some cherry shrimp from some guy in wisconsin but when they got here the bags were leaking and all the shrimp were dead But there was some guppy grass in the box and i stuck it in the tank. I e-mailed the guy and he told me he would send me replacements and i asked him if he was selling anything else and he gave me a big list so i also ordered 3 amanos, pennywort, dwarf sags, and some H. polysperma (<---best plant to start a tank with). He sent them out the next Monday via DHL and everything got here alive .

Last edited by balloon_fish; 10-30-2005 at 09:50 AM..
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Old 10-30-2005, 09:42 AM   #5 (permalink)
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well, thought i'd share some pics of the shrimp before i move on to august and my first attempts to aquascaping the tank after 3 long months of battling algae






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Old 10-30-2005, 09:44 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default 8-5-05

Well, the algae stage was over but more problems arised. The co2 ladder became infested with ramshorn snails so i moved it from the back of the tank to the side wall so it was easier to get to and clean but it seemed that every day some kind of gunk got in the track of the bubbles and the co2 was stopped for a few hours at a time until i cleaned it or removed whatever was in the way (usualy big ramshorn snails that dont now how big their shells are and think they can fit through the holes in the ladder) Anyways, other then some frequent fuzz algae on the wall and a little bba on old dwarf sag leaves everything was growing well except the Ludwigia repens. During this time 2 of the stems were going through some sort of melt and the bottom of the stem would start turning brown then it would continue to crawl up the stem and eventually the stem became mushy and the leaves started falling off . This took the ludwigia stems slowly and every week i had to throw away 1 or 2 stems but i had a trillion of them so it took a while to wipe them out. Also a few days before i found some 25w daylight bulbs at walmart so i bought some cause it was 10wats more then what i had and it was cheap ($4 a bulb). Heres the updated pic-


Since the last update i moved the driftwood from my 40g to play around with in the 20g. I wanted to use the driftwood as a centerpiece and grow stuff on it and create a carpet with the dwarf sag but eventually the dwarf sag got a little to tall and in a 20g long i only have 10in of space to work with and dwarf sag took half of it so the carpet idea wasn't a good one. I've also added some rotala rotufundila (sp?) to the mix and you can see the Hygrophila polysperma in the left side growing in quickly.

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Old 10-30-2005, 09:46 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default 8-12-05 (Attempt #2)

This is proably the worst my tank has been looking in quite a while and after this i thought i should just stuck with the first design. In this design i wanted to do the hill design where the plants slope downwards into a carpet. I kept some of the pennywort in the left side cause i didn't wanna swtich out too many plants at once or the algae could have a chance to take over cause i still haven't fixed the co2 ladder yet. Since the last update i've been doing a lot of plant shipping and ordering. I shipped out some najas grass and other fast growing stems and i traded some people with the dwarf hairgrass i had cause i didn't like the look of it in my tank. What i got through 2 trades and one purchase was 2 marimo balls, Marsilea minuta, xmas moss, erect moss, and Ludwigia brevipes. I've also went to the lfs a few more times and i picked up one anubias nana some needleleaf ludwigia (not doing too well but i still have some) and the guy at the lfs gave me some glosso free . Heres a pic of what the tank looks like-


The reason why i have this big empty spot in the left is cause i was trying to clear a spot for the glosso and the marsilea. I was planning on using glosso but its a high light plant so i don't know if it'll workout in my tank so i'm keeping the marsilea as an alternative option. I chose the position of the wood so the wood looked like it was going to be sticking out of the hill and i attached the xmas moss onto the bigger arm and some erect onto the smaller one and the nana is in the bottom right corner of the wood and i couldnt' decide how to attach it. After trying to attach the anubias to the wood in a good position i've found that it was harder then i thought and imagined and spent an hour trying to make it look nice but it turned out badly and i couldn't keep the scape longer then a week, but i did keep the hill idea .
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Old 10-30-2005, 09:54 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default 8-26-05

I finally finished all my summer homework (4 days before school started ) and had all friday to think over the new layout. I looked at two articles on aquascaping and i've found they were pretty helpful. Then i went to some guys in the chatroom about the wood i had and some questions on focal points that i had. After about 2 to 3 hours of doing this i finally drew a little image in my brain of how i wanted it and how i was going to be placing everything. Since the last update I added the following plants- Parrots feather, Anubias nana 'petite', another Anubias nana, a nice handful of baby tears (already had some but they are slow growing, especially when you're waiting for them to grow to use), Sunset hygro, some crypts (wendtii and beckettii). I might be getting rid of the red crypt (forgot which one it was) cause it takes away from the focal point but i'll probably move the green crypt to the back where the taller dwarf sags are when it gets bigger. Since the last update i have also fixed my co2 problem (and hopefully it'll stay that way). What i did was get rid of the co2 ladder and made a powerhead reactor. After i added the powerhead in most of the plants have been pearling on a daily basis and hopefully this will continue. While i was clipping the plants and sticking them into the new layout i didnt have any room for the hornwort and pennywort so i got rid of it and stuck it into the 40g which seems to be packed with whatever i didnt want in the 20g :/. Heres a pic of my pregnant cherry shrimp dragging her babies along.

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Old 10-30-2005, 09:55 AM   #9 (permalink)
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full tank view


right side of tank


glosso taken from top of tank

Right now the right side in my opinion is pretty much set, all it really needs to do is grow in and fill in any empty spots but it still looks a bit busy cause of all the dwarf sag in front of the wood so i might switch it outwith some more nana or nana petites later or some pygmy chains. As for the left side, i'm waiting for the glosso to grow in now, its doubled in amount since i got it but at first i didnt stick it into the ground correctly (didn't clip into individual plantlets) and i used some small tweezers but i got some 10in ones that work out pretty well and i replanted them after i snipped the longer chains. I am also gonna move the red crypt later cause it takes away from the focal point on the nana's and the rest of the right side.

Tank Specs-
Lighting- 2 desklamps with 2- 25w daylight 6500k Lights of America lights
Co2- 1- 2L bottle and a 1L bottle that came with the Nutrafin system connected to a DIY Powerhead Reactor
Inhabitants- 5 Amanos, roughly 12 cherrys, 14 ghost shrimp, lots of ramshorn snails, 1 Mystery snail
Plants-
Parrots feather
Giant Bacopa
Baby Tears
Sunset Hygro
Green Hygro
Ludwigia Brevipes
Ludwigia Needleleaf
Wisteria
Dwarf Sag.
Spoontip Sag.
Echinodorus tenellus 'micro'
Amazon Sword
Anubias nana
Anubias nana 'petite'
Crypt. wendtii
Crypt. beckettii
Glosso
Marsilea
Christmas Moss
Erect Moss
Java Moss
Fertilizers- Green Light Stump Remover (KNO3 4x week), Fleet Enima (PO4, 4x week), Flourish (Micronutrients 3x week)
Substrate- %50 Gravel, %50 Schultz Aquatic Soil
Filter- Penguin 110

more pics-

Ludwigia Brevipes


Parrot's Feather


another full tank shot


and another pic with no rim
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Old 10-30-2005, 09:58 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default 8-28-05

Small Update-
Lately there has been a lot of brown algae in the tank so i moved an Oto into the tank yesterday but i am gonna plan to move maybe 3 more from the 40g into the 20g and they will most likely live in the 20g for now on cause i've found that once i took them out the following week brown algae started growing on the glass only. I intended for the 20g to be a shrimp only tank but a few otos won't hurt and plus they dont eat baby shrimp so that is a plus Also since the last post i recieved some mini moss and some taiwain moss and might see if i can stick that into the tank soon. The other moss that i have like the xmas moss are showing some nice new growth even though it is hard to see its growing Also the java ferns are growing at a pretty nice rate and all the anubias have shot out at least one new leaf since a week ago. The giant bacopa is growing nicely and doing what i intended for it to do which is grow out of the water. I wanted it to do that so the hill look doesn't just stop at the surface of the water but instead I wanted plants to be growing out of the water making the hill taller. Another good sign that i have noticed in this past week is most of the baby tears has stopped growing upwards at about 2in tall and they are growing sideways which is a good sign cause that means enough lighting
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