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SurWrathful's 20-gal Long Journal

3495 Views 14 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  Paul Higashikawa
Ok, after long time's decisions plus hesitations I finally decided to start a journal of my latest set up. It's a 20-gal long that I used to house my 6 turtles. The tank is still in development but with friends' encouragements I figured why not post some pictures. The tank is not done, but here I will keep on posting new pictures to share with you all.

***Everything I use in this tank comes from what I took from other tanks or what I already have but never had the place to put them in. This is why the plants look rather old with leaves deteriorating. I also just realized it is super tough to take a 20-gal long pictures; had to mess with zooming in and out and still I could not get a complete shot without also including the surroundings :evil: Since this is still a fairly 'young' tank, I therefore did not bother putting down the specs because there are still items I have yet to add. For instance, I will not add CO2 until week 2, nor will I have have any filtration until that same time. So far, the only inhabitants are some snails and 6-8 cherry shrimps. I will be adding wood shrimps this week, as well as blue tetras next week. The 'picture' is yet incomplete. To be continued.....

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I would put the filtration in place as soon as possible. The tank needs to "cycle" that is get a working population of bacteria. This take time. An old way is to put fishfood in there, as if you were feeding fish. The food degrades and puts the bacteria to work, which start to multiply.
Start with small amounts but feed daily. Degraded food will also produce NO3 wich is plantfood.
Can you tell me about the turtles? Are these turtles that stay small? Are they fully aquatic? (I thought turtles need a dry area?)?
Ed, thanks for the advice. Actually, this tank uses even the water that has already been cycled :D The tank has been sitting in my garage for quite some time, and was already filled with some plants and snails. I saved about 1/3 of the water from there, plus the substrate had accumulated lots of mulm and debris from leftover foods.

Piscesgirl, this is supposed to be about the shrimps and the plants, LOL :eek:
Anyhow, the turtles are now somewhat larger. I say that because I don't feed them as much as I should've, or they would've reached at least 10 inches by now like my friends'. I've had them for about 2 years now, starting as yearlings. They are two of each; red-eared sliders, Mississippi maps, and (this I am not totally certain) penninsula cooters. Now they live in a Rubbermaid rectangular container that is approx 35-gal, with the largest being the sliders(one of which is a boy; MY boy :) ) Even he is only about 4 inches in shell length. Since they are all still somewhat small, I have two basking areas for them; a basking slide and a basking island.

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Thanks for the info, SurWrath :)

Ok, about the shrimp.... :p
Piscesgirl, just wanna say that I have been reading and re-reading your posts on cherries both from AB and from petshrimp. I learned so much. Now I got around 6+/-some babies, however, I really only see 4 most of the time. As well, I know many people don't advocate feeding shrimps foods that contain copper or dosing ferts that have them. I dilute the ferts I use so maybe that will be ok; if the shrimps are still alive two weeks from now, that is :? I will try feeding with yams, too. If you have any updated suggestions or any advice, please feel free to share'em here; I really do appreciate it!

Some tentative specs of the tank:

-1X65W Coralife 6500K(+1X20W NO Eclipse daylight....tell me if this is necessary)
-CO2 via DIY injection through glass diffuser(not yet)
-Plants already in the tank:X-mas moss, Riccia, Monosolenium tenerum, leopard sword, Tropica parvulus sword(I think; leaves too small to tell), Alternanthera spp, R.wallichi(struggling single stem), A.nana 'gold', Mayaca, Java fern narrow-leaf
-Plants I'm still waiting for from friends:R.macrandra, R.magenta, plus whatever my sister can bring back to me from Taiwan;P

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Thanks SurWrath, I appreciate knowing that you read my posts -- I stopped posting on that one site due to a personality, but I tried to PM help to a few. Which ferts do you use? Most people report no problems with ferts, but I would caution you to use ones at least with the smaller dosages of copper in them -- and I'm sure that it will be fine. I just feel more comfortable not using them, but that doesn't mean I may not try eventually.

Now, I've seen many advocate feeding of spinach -- but I read somewhere to avoid feeding spinach to reptiles? (I think it was iguanas?) because it inhibits calcium -- I wonder if this would be the same with invertibrates? I wouldn't feed a lot of it at least.

Do you use iodide/iodine? Actually you may not even need to because many ferts actually do have it in there.

And, of course, I like Indian Almond leaves, but by no means is it necessary.

My fav food is Nutrafin Max Spirulina Tablets, because they are 100% vegie. I smash them up a bit so they don't have to fight for the food. I'm thinking of buying some Naturose because I'm pretty sure that will enhance coloration (similar to the Yams).
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Great info, Piscesgirl! I just got back from outside. So dead tired, but happy at the same time. Ran errands most of the day with my sister for her stuff, but also got to get some wood shrimps at the end. I managed to get 4 because they are so expensive at $8.00 per shrimp. The LFS gave me $4.00 off total so it was ok.....Now they're floating inside the bag. This completes my 2nd wanted item for this new tank. The final missing piece of puzzle is the 'light eye' tetra, which the store ran out today. They are rather slender, if not more so than the neons or cardinals and have this iridiscent blue. Very suitable fish for small tanks like mine.

More of the tank's recent pix:

Two of its inhabitants:

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So did you get any male shrimp? I notice that my population is probably 3:1 in favor of females...sorta like guppy broods. :)

I just gave a friend a dozen and trying to include some males was a challenge. But they're in there somewhere since there's always an egg-carrying female around.
I hope so. According to petshrimp, male cherry shrimps are more pale in color as opposed to females, which are more intense. Now I am not sure since they are all so red after I fed them a combination of scraps of: V-8, tomato, green bell pepper, and pear :p Everyone appears to be very happy, even the wood shrimps. I am gonna post pictures tonight in the same thread:p Just charging batteries now; stupid camera batteries died on me><!


Here we go:
The Three Amigoes filtering V8 and other debris

Here! Here! Me! Me!

Happy Grazing(see the chewed up tomato and pear?!)

The tank after some pruning and hair-cutting
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you need to get rechargable batteries. get an energizer set at walmart for $26 and it will save you $$ in the long run.

didn't know you guys used this site too :)
hey paul...get in touch with me whenever you can. u'r pm box is full.
Nice tank man! Are we ever going to sse you in one of our meetings?
Best regrds,
Luis Navarro
Hi, thanks Luiz. As some may know, I was away in Sweden and when I came back APC changed its face, quite literally;) So I was lost for a while, trying to navigate through the new changes while searching for the old threads such as the Plant Finder and the Chat Room(BTW, if anyone has any clue what happened to these or what has been going on in this forum for that matter, please drop some lines in this thread).

Also, please let me know what is going on with the Houston club as I didn't receive any notice of meetings or whatsoever. Please inform me about that if you have time, my friend.

Lastly, the tank is in shambles; actually all my tanks are in shambles now due to water evaporation and overgrowth of plants. I will have to do some major clean-up this week. I look forward to reading more constructive criticisms from you and others here at APC. Thank you all!

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