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Matt's 64 Litre Tank

Author Topic: Matt's 64 litre tank  (Read 18428 times)

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Offline Matt

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Matt's 64 litre tank
« on: March 20, 2016, 09:51:43 PM »
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Thought I'd post a few images of my set up for all to see...

See my signature for current stocking

Offline fcmf

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #1 on: March 20, 2016, 10:00:23 PM »
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Thanks for sharing. Really lovely! Sparkling gourami is indeed stunning and rams are so attractive.

Offline Littlefish

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #2 on: March 20, 2016, 10:16:39 PM »
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Great photos of a great tank.
 :cheers:

Offline Anne

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #3 on: March 20, 2016, 10:35:43 PM »
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Love the decor and the fish look great.

In my imaginary tank (no space for anymore) I have always wanted sparkling gouramis, do yours croak?

Offline Matt

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #4 on: March 21, 2016, 06:28:18 AM »
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Thanks everyone   ;D

I know there are others on here that have heard sparkling gourami croak, but mine are in the living room and so I've never heard them, what with the other noises in the room.  I don't believe it is a hugely loud sound nor is it especially distinctive from what Google can tell me.  Sue's experiences are:

Quote
I had them several years ago. I did hear them croaking - more a sort of football rattle sound. I could just about hear it from the other end of the room if it was quiet.
See more at: http://www.thinkfish.co.uk/forums/welcome-to-our-tropical-fish-forum-please-read/introduce-yourself!/msg21775/#msg21775

[Moderator fcmf has altered typo 'sparkling glutamine' to 'sparkling gourami'  :) fcmf, 9:03am, 21/03/16]

Offline Extreme_One

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #5 on: March 21, 2016, 07:39:10 AM »
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Looking good  :cheers:

Offline Fiona

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #6 on: March 21, 2016, 03:42:31 PM »
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A beautiful tank, thank you for sharing  :)

Offline Matt

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #7 on: October 08, 2016, 10:00:51 PM »
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Didn't exactly want to make a new topic for this so apologies for using an old one...

Quick update, I've received plants from both Sue and Paddy recently.  Thank you both so much for this, I really must remember to return the favour when I have something worth offering!

The Hornwort and Hygrophila seem to be rejuvenating after their journeys.  I initially struggled with the Hornwort. Having planted it, it was loosing a lot of needles but I then tried it floating and I believe that the extra light made available to it has allowed it to fair much better. I now have half floating and another half weighted down with lead but resting on top of a rock and wood structure to bring it closer to the light to see how it gets on.  The sparkling gourami like having floating plants to play with,  previous attempts to have pennywort floating were appreciated but others in the tank were too hungry apparently to let this survive, Pistia Stratiotes struggles with my filter flow too so this is looking to be a good alternative.

The Hygrophila has only just been put in the tank today,  it did not appreciate being put in a dark box and thrown around by the postman at all despite Paddys excellent shipping package.  I had it in a bowl on the window sill for a few days with a crumbled root tab a couple of flakes of food and 1 drop of liquid carbon each day.  Happily, things seem to be going well, 2 of 4 'sprigs' have got new and or healthy looking growth and these are the ones I added to the tank earlier. I'm hoping the proper environment will now encourage them to grow well.  I will put some tank water into the bowl tomorrow to encourage the remaining sprigs and see how both sets get on but I'm remaining quite hopeful for them both.

I do hope I can keep these gifts alive, my track record is not in my favour...

Offline Littlefish

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #8 on: October 08, 2016, 10:13:50 PM »
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Best of luck with the plants and it's good to hear that the fish are appreciating them.  :cheers:

Offline Cod_only_knows

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #9 on: October 09, 2016, 08:23:14 AM »
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Nice looking tanks! I wouldn't worry too much about the Hygrophila, the stuff is pretty indestructible. I'd wager you'll be chopping it down within the month!

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Offline Paddyc

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #10 on: October 09, 2016, 09:17:15 AM »
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Oh no, it really didn't travel well, did it! I'm sorry it arrived looking like this. I deliberately gave you the healthiest looking sprigs to give them the best chance of surviving the trip...

But as cod says, the consolation is that it is extremely hardy and it will sprout again at pretty much every junction of leaves... So if the old leaves don't rejuvenate, you'll quickly grow fresh new leaves and be able to chop away the old stuff. Especially because you seem to be very switched on to how to care for the plants. Might I suggest you plant it in the tank asap? The fish waste and excess food will help and it is an excellent nitrate eater.

Looking forward to seeing how you get on with it. Apologies again that it didn't arrive as green as it left  :(

Offline Matt

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #11 on: October 09, 2016, 09:44:13 AM »
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Paddy please dont apologise,  if it wasn't for your efforts I'm sure that I would have recieved a brown rotting sludge rather than something which is already sprouting as you indicated (see top 'sprig' in the bowl). I'm going to give the remaining bits some tank water now. They are yet to show any signs of rejuvination - as soon as they do they will get put in the tank and old vegetation taken off. I just don't want them to a) rot in the tank and b) they would more than likely get eaten like the pennywort if I dont give them a fighting chance...

For fans I hitchikers guide to the galaxy... I'm sure there are a couple of ravenous planteaterbeasts in my tank... otherwise known as rams...

Update: one of the two remaining 'sprigs' has some healthy looking growth on top this morning so might get put in the tank later with its lower leaves removed, it will look a little like a pom pom but it might get some new growth along the stem if I'm lucky like the health piece in the tank now.

Offline Paddyc

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #12 on: October 09, 2016, 10:24:12 AM »
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That sounds better then, I have confidence you'll get good results with it but as you say it might not look the best to begin with.

The cultivation session I did to collect your stuff has already made a big difference to my tank. Much less sparse looking in the bottom half and the replanted sprigs have wasted no time in gaining an extra inch or two in height in just over a week.

I think the Seachem Flourish i have started using is already doing a good job as the new growth is much greener looking.

Offline Matt

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #13 on: October 09, 2016, 10:33:09 AM »
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I keep considering flohrish (or other cheaper alternatives) then deciding that I am best picking plants that just grow without it and the liquid carbon I bought to get something which is more sustainable... I hate to think how much heating 140 litres of water will cost me when I upgrade my tank so running costs such as this need to be kept minimal to my eyes... then again I am known for being a bit tight...

Offline Littlefish

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #14 on: October 09, 2016, 10:45:41 AM »
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All my set ups are low tech and all plants do without CO2 or regular additional fertiliser. Regular trimming and replanting of the pieces for certain plants have certainly made them very economical. It's always nice to set up a tank and have enough plants to make an instant impact, although sometimes a bit of patience and perhaps just a little fertiliser can make a spectacular display.
Your tank is looking quite awesome and I should imagine that your fish are loving it.  :)

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #15 on: December 10, 2016, 10:01:51 PM »
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Christmas is coming early to the 64litre  :isay: (doddery Santa emoji)

I have new Spider wood soaking currently and new led lights on the way.   :D

This is the first real step I'm taking towards the eventual upgrade of the tank to a 140 litre aquaoak.  Nothing will be rushed along the journey though and I've certainly got no plans to actually upgrade any time soon so no-one need get too excited!

I do have a well researched plan of what I want the upgraded tank to look like and so the 2 pieces of wood are destined for the upgrade tank.  They will replace one of the chunky pieces of wood in my current tank giving more water volume for me now (ie better water quality/space for more fish possibly...) and will be arranged alongside an existing piece in what will essentially be a more compact version of the arrangement in the new tank.

The lighting is to try and get my current plants growing - hopefully I am right that my current cheap underpowered led lighting is currently the limiting factor to plant growth.  With this new lighting i hope I can keep what i have now alive and grow them bigger for use in the new tank.  Any plants purchased for the new tank can them be established in my current tank first too, or that's the plan anyway!  As I write this I also think I may have come up with a cunning plan to reuse this lighting in the new tank... I'll investigate this in the morning!

At some point next year I hope to be able to change my current gravel substrate to sand too. Again this is the plan for the new tank because I want to keep corys.  I want to be able to move as much beneficial bacteria over to the new tank as possible to avoid what I can in terms of any fish in cycling that will have to be done so again this will be a tactical move (I get the feeling a few pygmy corys might make their way into my current tank though!).

This will leave a rock swap out and a filter to get cycled before the big move whenever that may be.

Rest assured I'll get some piccys posted when the new wood is in place.

Offline fcmf

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #16 on: December 10, 2016, 10:17:12 PM »
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Excellent - good to read of these plans which do sound exciting but I'll heed your warning not to expect anything imminently. :)

Looking forward to the step-by-step pics as developments occur - you'll need to start a new thread with the title of your new tank size :).

:cheers:

Offline Littlefish

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #17 on: December 11, 2016, 09:55:28 AM »
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Plans to upgrade a tank... I'm looking forward to regular updates and piccies.  ;D
I'll try not to be impatient.  :-[


Offline MarquisMirage

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #18 on: December 11, 2016, 11:14:50 PM »
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If it's anything like the old tank it's going to look good. :D

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #19 on: December 12, 2016, 06:35:23 AM »
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Thanks!

As of last night I was still getting a lot of colour off the wood so it looks like any rescaping will have to wait until next weekend.  The new light will probably be the first change in that case (tho my wife keeps threatening to wrap it and put it under the tree).

In other news I added some red root floater (Phyllanthus fluitans) to my tank last weekend and whilst it has lost quite a few leaves it has also grown a lot of new green ones. It came with some free snails (removed) and some free duckweed which I might add once I've seen how everything responds to the new light. I want something that will keep the sparking gourami happy but I think floating plants for them need more leaf area and less root as they are not responding in the same way to it. It is the first red plant I've had and it looks great, it has encouraged me to try other 'coloured' plants. I need to prove to myself that I can keep them alive first though  ::)

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #20 on: December 15, 2016, 07:45:13 PM »
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I still seem to be brewing wood tea every day so the wood hasn't made it anywhere near the tank yet... but my new lights arrived  :)  they are much brighter, yet would not be considered bright in comparrison to any other standard lights... I can't imagine how people face having really bright lights in the corner of a room to be honest!

I'm hopeful that they will encourage Paddyc and Sue's plant donations to do some growing at last... I can't let these plants die after they were so kindly donated... they should be pretty indestructible as plants go.

... maybe my water is just too clean for them  :raspberries

Offline Littlefish

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #21 on: December 15, 2016, 08:34:32 PM »
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Wood can take a frustratingly long time to sort itself out when soaking.  ::)
Horray for the new lights, and best wishes for lots of plant growth.  :)

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #22 on: January 01, 2017, 05:29:58 PM »
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:fishy1:  Rescape complete!  :fishy1:

Offline fcmf

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #23 on: January 01, 2017, 06:51:12 PM »
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Very nice!  :cheers:

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #24 on: January 01, 2017, 07:15:27 PM »
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Congratulations on such a fantastic rescape, it looks great.  :cheers:

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #25 on: January 02, 2017, 07:01:35 PM »
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Thanks @fcmf @Littlefish

I'm really proud of it.  I did it rather quickly trying not to stress out the fish too much.  They recovered quickly from the ordeal and I did a gravel vac today on bits of the tank I used to have plants, needless to say the water change bucket was somewhat brown... this is all removed now thankfully and I have new root tabs in place so things should also be a bit cleaner for them.

I also got my first set of test strip results... I knew my water had become harder as the water company changed our source water but it surprised me.  It was right near the top of the gbr's range. It does explain how my lone endler has survived for so long though! I'm also glad that with recent deaths in my tank, the water quality was excellent.  These were 4 days after a water change (bit random I know...) Ill do some more mid week.

Test results:
Ammonia 0
Nitrite looked like 0.5
Nitrate est 17
GH 150 ish (keen to retest as higher than expected and hard to read accurately)
KH 170 ish (keen to retest as higher than expected and hard to read accurately)
pH 7.7 ish (keen to retest as higher than expected and hard to read accurately)

Next steps will be to either: upgrade filter, switch to sand substrate around the outside (not sure if this would work but keen to have 'cycled' substrate for the new tank if I can), or to do a bit of restocking.

Offline Littlefish

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #26 on: January 02, 2017, 07:36:47 PM »
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The fish look like they are enjoying the set up.
Don't forget to keep us updated on your next steps.
 :)

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #27 on: January 02, 2017, 07:41:29 PM »
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While I find the test strips accurate (and easier to read) for nitrite and nitrate, I find that they inflate the GH and KH quite considerably in comparison with liquid-based tests and my water company results (and give a lower than expected PH reading). For that reason, I wouldn't overly rely on the results for these measures. I'm assuming you have a separate test kit strip for ammonia as I'm not aware of a 6-in-1 test strip that covers ammonia as well? (JBL and Tetra have chlorine instead.)

Looking forward very much to reading how you get on with your proposed future plans.

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #28 on: January 02, 2017, 08:49:24 PM »
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Yes the ammonia is separate.  I've set up a spreadsheet to track the results I get (sad but wise I feel ::) ) so will do a couple more so I can do an average and see where I end up and let you know.

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #29 on: February 08, 2017, 11:22:05 PM »
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I'd appreciate your support should you be willing to offer it:
https://fishkeeper.co.uk/gallery/

Offline Andy The Minion

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #30 on: February 09, 2017, 04:54:20 AM »
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There you go @Matt I hope you win

Offline Littlefish

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #31 on: February 09, 2017, 07:52:47 AM »
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Done, and keeping my fingers crossed for you.

Offline MarquisMirage

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #32 on: February 09, 2017, 01:26:50 PM »
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Plus one.  Good luck.

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #33 on: February 09, 2017, 06:40:22 PM »
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Plus one too. Good luck.

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #34 on: February 10, 2017, 09:35:28 PM »
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Offline Matt

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #35 on: February 20, 2017, 10:11:11 PM »
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I've just been on and have noticed the website has been upgraded  :o. Don't know if anyone else regularly check the blog etc?

I'd appreciate your support should you be willing to offer it:
https://fishkeeper.co.uk/gallery/

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #36 on: February 20, 2017, 10:45:52 PM »
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I see everyone's tank is allegedly a 275-litre tank ie the updated website has made a fee errors. Wonder if they'll upgrade you by offering a tank of that capacity by way of a prize if you win...?  ;)

Offline MarquisMirage

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #37 on: February 20, 2017, 11:14:45 PM »
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It let me vote again.  +1  :)

Offline Matt

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #38 on: February 21, 2017, 06:34:28 AM »
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I see everyone's tank is allegedly a 275-litre tank ie the updated website has made a fee errors. Wonder if they'll upgrade you by offering a tank of that capacity by way of a prize if you win...?  ;)

I hope so!!  :fishy1:

It let me vote again.  +1  :)

:cheers: thanks!

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #39 on: May 06, 2017, 08:13:46 AM »
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Feeling slightly annoyed...  >:(

I went to my local MA recently to pick up some more dechlorinator and take a look at what fish they had in stock. I've been planning a few different additions recently, after having a few of my gang go to fishy heaven.  O:-)

Over and above anything else, what I'm after is a tank with lots of fish with different 'behaviour'. For example, gourami behaviour I would describe as gentle inquisitive playful with their little feelers... my rams are also playful but more rulers of the tank and love how they seem to hover in the water then swim then hover as they inspect their territory, always after something to eat. Then there's the shrimp and snail's... I'm sure lots of you will know what I mean. This of course creates an unusual community but one I love.

As such, having never kept corys one part of my plan was I wanted to give one of the dwarf species a go as my tank isn't huge anyways and because the smaller bioload would allow my to look into other things like neon gobys (which I had discussed ordering in specially with the MA guy).  My local MA is a new store with enthusiastic staff and a really great store in my opinion (just want to make that clear). They didn't have any dwarf corys in (though dario dario might get their own tank at some point, or dwarf puffers, or... ::)) but they did have false julii cory labelled as 3cm max.

To cut a long story short I got three, thinking I might come back another time and get a couple more further down the line to boost numbers if they worked out ok in the tank. What I have since found out is that they grow to at least 5cm :yikes:.  Far bigger than anything else in the tank and putting me mildly overstocked. Fortunately my water quality (since I started growing Sue's Hornwort like 3 inches a week by dosing micronutrients, I think the Hygrophila might be getting going at last now too Paddyc) has been superb, perfect in fact for every test so I think Ill be OK on that front. But its certainly put a hold to my plans for other species increasing their numbers...

They are fantastic characters and I love their sail like dorsal fins as they jiggle around on the bottom, going for the occasional surf across the glass ;D and I've never felt comfortable with the thought of taking fish back to the store (why would you by something and put it through all the stress of being moved when you know you don't want it long term) so they are here to stay.  :fishy1:

So rather than feel annoyed by my plans being ruined I've decided to try and come up with a new plan for my community which will also translate into a larger setup whenever I decide the time is right to get myself that aquaoak  :afro

Might even try and tweak the tank layout a bit later to give some more floor space, and plan for a sandy area, maybe an external filter to create some more room...  :o

Keep you updated  :cheers:

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #40 on: May 06, 2017, 11:41:56 AM »
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Ooops, that's a slightly unfortunate incident regarding fish size information. I'm with you as far as being reluctant to return any fish to a shop, and very glad to hear that you like the character of your new fish, even though they have caused your other fish plans to go on hold for a while.
I hope that the adorable behaviour of your cories makes up for the inconvenience of the situation.  :fishy1:

Offline MarquisMirage

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #41 on: May 06, 2017, 06:21:49 PM »
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I don't get why people would return fish to shop either unless it's because of a tank disaster or having to move house without the tanks,  Part of the fun of the hobby is watching the fish grow up (usually, hehe).

Offline Matt

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #42 on: September 16, 2017, 09:25:37 PM »
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Thought it was probably time for a quick update...

I have added sponge to the filter recently; previously I just had loose filter media. Now I have loose media on the bottom and sponge on top. I was hoping for an improvement in water clarity and whilst I'm not sure I've achieved this, there is now more room for beneficial bacteria and I've eliminated any risk of a fish being able to jump into the filter and getting hurt so it's here to stay.

Not a huge amount of change in the tank layout.  A few smaller pebbles removed to create more 'grazing' area for the cories. And the plants are now all growing really well.  Amazon swords really took off so they've been relegated to the back of the tank and the hornwort has been thinned out and brought forward.  Floating plants might not last...will have to see.

I'm on a weekly dose of micronutrients and upgraded lighting with a siesta period.  Weekly 20% water changes. Mix of micropellets, flake, sinking pellets, bloodworm (and the occasional piece of algae wafer) fed daily.  Burst of airstone to clear protein scum on the surface every few days.

I'm hatching a plan to convert the filter to a external with the heater in it using a Tupperware container (tall one for spaghetti), but for the photo below I just removed it from the tank temporarily.

...anyway photo below!

Offline Matt

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #43 on: September 17, 2017, 07:51:50 AM »
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A couple more photos...

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #44 on: September 17, 2017, 03:50:02 PM »
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Your tanks & fish are all looking great. Well done.  :cheers:

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #45 on: September 17, 2017, 04:20:18 PM »
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tanks

Littlefish assuming that having 27 tanks is normal...

 :rotfl:

Offline MarquisMirage

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #46 on: September 17, 2017, 06:59:15 PM »
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Great pics @Matt .  Lovely looking tank(s) and quality photography.

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #47 on: September 17, 2017, 07:57:08 PM »
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tanks

Littlefish assuming that having 27 tanks is normal...

 :rotfl:

Of course it is.  ;D

Offline Matt

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #48 on: October 02, 2017, 11:46:36 PM »
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I decided to have another go at this, so as before, any support you would be able to offer me would be much appreciated :)

I'm fairly confident the tank has improved dramatically since February when I first changed the scape... hope you agree!

https://fishkeeper.co.uk/gallery/

I'd appreciate your support should you be willing to offer it:
https://fishkeeper.co.uk/gallery/

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Re: Matt's 64 litre tank
« Reply #49 on: October 03, 2017, 08:27:50 AM »
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I think it looks great.  8)

Top 3 in the gallery, well done.  :cheers:

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