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Nano Aquariums Nanos aquariums may be small but they can make a striking canvas for your aquascapes.

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Old 09-19-2010, 09:54 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default self sustaining mini ecosystem

hey everybody

i just found this thing while cleaning yesterday





as you can see its just an empty snowglobe. i have a really cool idea in my head to try and make a self sustaining enclosed ecosystem by adding some kind of substrate, plants and maybe some snails or, if i can get some at this time of year, some water fleas or something.
something along the lines of this :

http://www.eco-sphere.com/

what do you all think? could it be done with something so small? im looking for ideas/tips on what type of plants and animals might work best

heres an outline of my plan:

WATER: fresh rain water. its clean and naturally high in disolved oxygen

SUBSTRATE: some crushed coral or lava rocks from my planted tank. (straight from the tank it should have a good population of nice microbes) along with some sand or maybe even some soaked and leached out peat moss for extra biomass? not sure here. tips please!

PLANTS: a bit of fast growing pond weed thats good at oxygenating like hornwort or elodea

ANIMALS: snails. thats all i can think of really. they would keep the sides clean i guess. i need some ideas for this part. ive thought of getting some fairy shrimp since if found them before growing in some seasonal ponds. theyre cool but would get too big i think. and as far as water mites or water fleas, couldnt i get those from just useing some dirt from a dried up pond bed? they always seem to just magically appear so i think the eggs stay dormant until its wet, right?

anyways, thats all i can think of for now. ill get this going as soon as i do a bit more research
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Old 09-19-2010, 10:18 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: self sustaining mini ecosystem

I bet it could be done. Go for it!

There are DIY "recipies" around the internet, too, if you want to go that route.

I've had one of the smallest commercial eco-spheres for over two years now. All it gets from the outside of the glass is the EM spectrum (light, heat, radio waves, etc) plus gravity...
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Old 09-20-2010, 08:46 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: self sustaining mini ecosystem

This is brilliant! I cant wait to see what you do with it! People have the most genious nearly free ideas! lol
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Old 09-21-2010, 08:07 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: self sustaining mini ecosystem

Have a look at http://www.eco-sphere.com/ they sell stuff like that. I think plants are out of the question, you should go for some kind of algae instead. Plants grow way too slow, take up a lot of space and are hard to digest. Another problem would be getting the substrate in and planting every thing when the lid is at the bottom.
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Old 09-21-2010, 08:55 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: self sustaining mini ecosystem

These have been discussed before. I think it's fine if you don't put animals in there. It's just cruel to enclose animals with no food.



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Old 09-21-2010, 09:31 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: self sustaining mini ecosystem

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It's just cruel to enclose animals with no food.
Yeah, you have to make sure that the plant and algae growth will be sufficient to feed the shrimp for its natural lifespan.
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Old 09-21-2010, 05:05 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: self sustaining mini ecosystem

This otta be interesting. ill be following.
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Old 09-21-2010, 09:50 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: self sustaining mini ecosystem

err well theres nothing to really follow anymore.. the stupid thing shattered as i was dropping pebbles in! it was super thin. ill be looking around for a plastic one online now
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Old 09-22-2010, 09:41 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: self sustaining mini ecosystem

lol nice job :P
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Old 02-17-2014, 04:37 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Yeah, you have to make sure that the plant and algae growth will be sufficient to feed the shrimp for its natural lifespan.
Just wanted to record for posterity that my little Eco-Sphere is now over five years old. It's been completely sealed and sitting on a table in the dining room the whole time. One of the three original shrimp is still scooting around.
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