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"Il Caridino" by Alberto Sosa



Introduction and Background

My name is Alberto Sosa. I am 53 years old and live in Sevilla, Spain.

I have been a fan of aquascaping and planted tanks since 1963, when I was 8 years old. I shared this passion with my father. Everything was wonderful during this time, as we had to hand-craft through our own work all the accesories needed to make a functional tank.

As time passed, I got interested in plant cultivation and the proper growth of plants. I had a lot of difficulties in acquiring equipment and finding different types of aquatic plants. In 1974, I made significant progress in my planted tanks with the addition of CO2. I had the collaboration and support of my brother, Francisco M., who is a Biologist and a doctor in Biochemistry. He encouraged me to use CO2, the 'miracle gas'. The first device used to produce CO2 was handmade and I use CaCO3 + HCL(diluted) to produce the gas. The success was spectacular and we later moved to the use of a fire extinguisher and pressurized CO2 bottles. It was a time when I was looking for different light sources for the aquarium and argilo-humic substrates to further help in the growth of plant.

In the 80's, I started to be interested in aquascaping and the planted tanks of Strasbourg through a very scientific magazine called Aquarama. In it, I found great teachers such as Jackes Tetón, Stanislav Frank, Arend van den Nieuwenhuizen, Karel Rataj, Herbert Axelrod, etc.

With the arrival of the Internet, I had the opportunity to meet people like Ruben Caro and Jose Manuel Oliva(Tetrax) through national forums. We have become great friends. Both of them have been in the Tank of the Month here at APC. We and 3 other aquarists founded CAE (Colectivo AquaDiseño Español), whose focus is to share with the Spanish and international community the beauty of the aquascapes in our country.



Setup

"Il Caridino" was done with the idea of creating a healthy environment for the shrimp. From the start, I knew that moss would be the main focus in the middle and front of the aquarium layout.



The progressive maturation of the aquarium was done with the help of fast growing plants that later were removed and substituted with the ones in the final version of the layout.









I really love planted aquariums that achieve harmony by means of their form and tones creating a scenery of my liking. I did not have any model to conceive the layout in my aquarium.

I have tried to achieve the effect of depth by doing two big blocks of Hemianthus micranthemoides, leaving the center more open to achieve a focal point and enhance the perspective of the layout.



Tank Specifications

Tank installation date: June 2007
Tank size: 62x30x35 cm (65 liters) - 24½"x12"x14" (17 Gallons)
Lighting: 4x18w T8 (2 685 + 2 965). 10 hours per day.
CO2: pressurized external exchanger. design staff (2 b/s)
Substrate: Akadama covered with gravel quartz
Filtration: Eheim 2215 (Foamex - Eheim Ehfisubstratpro - perlon wool)
Conductivity: 300 µS / cm; GH = 9º; KH = 4.5 º

Flora and Fauna

Flora: Hemianthus micranthemoides; Ludwigia brevipes; Taxiphyllum barbieri; Cryptocoryne sp.

1.- Hemianthus micranthemoides; 2.- Ludwigia brevipes; 3.- Taxiphyllum barbieri; 4.- Cryptocoryne sp.

Fauna: Nannostomus marginatus; Hyphessobrycon amandae; Otocinclus affinis; Caridina cf cantonensis; Neocaridina heteropoda.







Maintenance

Water changes: 100% water changed "trickle down".
Fertilization: 3 mg/l NO3 (KNO3); 0.7 mg/l PO4 (KPO4H2); 3.6 mg/l K (K2SO4); 0,05 mg/l Fe (SO4Fe + EDTA) on a daily basis.
Trimming: Regular trimming of stem plants, removal of old leaves to Cryptocorynes and special care in maintaining a moss.

The change of water "drop by drop" is very relaxing while I maintain my planted tank.
Nutrient addition to the aquarium is done by gravity through a time controlled container with the daily dosage. I use a container for N,P, and K, and a different one for iron chelate.

Challenges

My principal interest is to achieve longevity in my aquariums with the most health posible. It is as important to achieve an attractive layout as it is to maintan the health of the aquarium during the longest period of time posible.

Healthy water, healthy plants, healthy fauna, for as prolonged a period as possible.



Final Thoughts
I want to thank APC and especially hooha for being selected for the tank of the month in March. It has been very satisfying to join this forum, a leader in the world of planted aquariums.

Alberto Sosa.

(editor's note - thanks to milalic for his assistance with translation - hooha).
 

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Re: March 2009 Tank of the Month - Alberto Sosa

fishes and flora-superest!
this tank is very beautyful!
But jungle at picture 3 is very good too!
 

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Re: March 2009 Tank of the Month - Alberto Sosa

Hello

I would like to thank to APC in a special way the received reward, for being named Il Caridino like march month tank in APC, and very especially at Hooha by the text translation.

Regards
Alberto Sosa
 

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Re: March 2009 Tank of the Month - Alberto Sosa

Hi Alberto Sosa,

You did a very nice job on your aquarium. I especially like the repetition of plant species and the placement of your "reds". Thank you for sharing it with us!
 

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Re: March 2009 Tank of the Month - Alberto Sosa

Congratulations Alberto,
It's a very healthy tank. :clap2::clap2::clap2:
 

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Re: March 2009 Tank of the Month - Alberto Sosa

Can you go into some detail about your Arigilo-humic substrate? I know that an argillic soil horizion is a accumulation of clay, and i know what humis is. Is this a clay and humus soil you dig from the earth?
 

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Re: March 2009 Tank of the Month - Alberto Sosa

Can you go into some detail about your Arigilo-humic substrate? I know that an argillic soil horizion is a accumulation of clay, and i know what humis is. Is this a clay and humus soil you dig from the earth?
Hello Shanesmith

Thanks for your comments.

In "Il Caridino" he Akadama used as a source of clay. In other setups I use clay and peat Sphagnum field with excellent results.

Regards
Alberto Sosa

Sorry for my English
 

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Re: March 2009 Tank of the Month - Alberto Sosa

Hello Suenh

I am very grateful for your comments.

Regards
Alberto
 

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Re: March 2009 Tank of the Month - Alberto Sosa

Congrats Alberto. It's been a pleasure setting this up with you. I'm particularly impressed with the depth and texture created in your aquascape using only four types of plants.
 

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Re: March 2009 Tank of the Month - Alberto Sosa

Dear Efren

I am very pleased to represent APC this month.

Thank you for your words

Regards
Alberto
 

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Re: March 2009 Tank of the Month - Alberto Sosa

Felicitaciones!
Hola Pedro.

Permíteme que me comunique contigo en lengua hispana.

Te quiero dar las gracias de una forma muy especial por la traducción de los textos.

Estar aquí en APC y además haber sido elegido para representar el acuario del mes de Marzo, es todo un orgullo para mí que nunca olvidaré.

Un fuerte abrazo
Alberto

P.D. ¿Pedro, crees que mis mensajes en inglés se entienden?. Mi inglés es pésimo.
 

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Re: March 2009 Tank of the Month - Alberto Sosa

Hola Pedro.

Permíteme que me comunique contigo en lengua hispana.

Te quiero dar las gracias de una forma muy especial por la traducción de los textos.

Estar aquí en APC y además haber sido elegido para representar el acuario del mes de Marzo, es todo un orgullo para mí que nunca olvidaré.

Un fuerte abrazo
Alberto

P.D. ¿Pedro, crees que mis mensajes en inglés se entienden?. Mi inglés es pésimo.
Alberto,

Fue un placer traducir el texto. Me gusto muchisimo lo que escribistes y el acuario. Tus mensajes en ingles estan bien. Si crees que alguno de ellos causa confusion me dejas saber y te ayudo. Me gusta ver la participacion de gente de España ya que vi unos cuantos acuarios plantados muy buenos. Asi que si alguno necesita una ayuda para escribir algo o hacerse entender mejor, no duden en enviarme un PM (mensaje).

Saludos,
Pedro
 

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Re: March 2009 Tank of the Month - Alberto Sosa

Alberto,

Fue un placer traducir el texto. Me gusto muchisimo lo que escribistes y el acuario. Tus mensajes en ingles estan bien. Si crees que alguno de ellos causa confusion me dejas saber y te ayudo. Me gusta ver la participacion de gente de España ya que vi unos cuantos acuarios plantados muy buenos. Asi que si alguno necesita una ayuda para escribir algo o hacerse entender mejor, no duden en enviarme un PM (mensaje).

Saludos,
Pedro
Dear friend Pedro

Thank you very much for the aid provided, and your desire to cooperate in the future.

Regards
Alberto
 

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Re: March 2009 Tank of the Month - Alberto Sosa

Beautiful tank. Thanks for sharing it with us.

-Dave
 
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