Need advice with my current setup please...

Discussion in 'Planted Tank Equipment' started by Pikkie, Feb 12, 2009.

  1. Pikkie
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    Pikkie Algae harvester

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    Hi ASAP members.
    Yesterday i took out my big powerfilter in my 60G tank because i don't think my plants like the strong current in there, especially the plants next to the filter. And maybe I can keep more CO2 in there with less current. Do you guys think that my Canister (AquaH2O 700l/h) will cope with the filtration? I do 30% - 40% water changes weakly and it's planted!!

    Oh yes and for how long will the Bogwood I got from the LFS turn my water yellow? :eek:

    Thank you very much
    Izak
     
  2. wearsbunnyslippers
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    wearsbunnyslippers Administrator Staff Member

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    a 700l/h should be plenty on your 60g...

    the tannins that are turning your water yellow, are good for your setup, i wish my water would stay yellow, i add peat and blackwater extract for my discus and cardinals...
     
  3. manteroo
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    manteroo Algae harvester

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    Agreed WBS. I have my setup running for 5 months now with wood in and the water is still a light brown "tea" colour. It keeps the water relatively soft and I have not lost a single fish. Have Cardinals, Rummy Noses, Clown Loaches, Corys, Lemon Tetras, Bristle Noses and 1 Siamese Fighter.

    All fish very healthy and happy. It's a 600l 1.5m setup and I run 2 canister filters. The first one is an AquaOne 1200l/h mainly biological. The second is an EHEIM 1000l/h mainly mechanical.

    Don't worry about the tea colour water. It does add value.
     
  4. Dirk B
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    Dirk B Aquascaper

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    Hi Pikkie,

    Just a quick word of advice about your filters. The amount of fish actually decide how much filtration you need. I say "amount" as it literally is the weight of the fish that decides this. The more fishes by weight that you have in the tank, the more filtration you need. What is surprising is that if one starts calculating how many fish of the one species are equivalent to another it gets quite interesting. One adult discus is equivalent to 200 cardinals, for example! As a rule of thumb one should aim to filter 1 to 1.5 times the volume of the tank per hour, but it does not harm to filter the water more. Manteroo is certainly using more than enough filtration on his tank. For discus, it is definitely recommended that one aims at filteration of 1.5 times the tank volume per hour as they are so sensitive to nitrite levels that even if your test kits measure no nitrite the tiny amounts that may be present with poorer filtration may already be a source of stress to the discus.

    One comment about your tank Manteroo: you say it is getting to be a nice brown colour, but I hope that you are doing some water changes. This tea colour does not make the water soft, in order to make the water soft you have to remove dissolved substances from the water. Humic acids in the wood are responsible for the brown colour and these are beneficial for the fish though. The fish you are keeping, i.e. cardinals, rummy noses ect are all soft water fishes and are sensitive to nitrate buildup, so you must do a regular water change of a significant percentage of the water or else you will pick up health problems with your fishes.

    With regard to the "bogwood", I would like to ask you to look at the thread where we discussed wood in the aquarium a few months ago. Watch out for rotten parts of those logs as they can cause problems.

    Kind regards,

    Dirk
     
  5. manteroo
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    manteroo Algae harvester

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    Yes Prof

    I am currently doing about 50% every 3rd week. The reason why I added the 2nd canister is because of fine particle suspension I couldn't get rid of. I tried using "chelating" agents but to no avail. Numerous water changes also failed to resolve this issue.

    The problem is that my substrate, which is made up of clay balls, rose/shrub mix, Malmesbury building sand and finally river sand, is very fine. The Corys LOVE to play and dig in it. I struggled for months even with Aquaclear Powerheads with micron filters. Anyway, the addition of the EHEIM mainly with mechanical filtration media solved the problem nicely.

    My fish volumes are as follows in the 600l tank...

    40 Rummy Noses
    30 Cardinals
    5 Clown Loaches
    7 Corys - Sterbai
    2 S.Amercian Bristlenoses
    11 Lemon Tetras
    1 Siamese Fighter

    All fish in excellent health and thanks for the Nitrate sensitivity tip, will keep testing it weekly and do the necessary water changes as required.

    pH currently 6.4
    Temp = 29 - 30 Degrees
    GH = very low
    Nitrite = 0
    Nitrate = trace
     
  6. Dirk B
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    Dirk B Aquascaper

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    Hi Manteroo,

    Glad to hear you are doing water changes, they are very important.

    However, I shudder when I hear what you have added to your substrate. All of it is fine except the rose/shrub mix. Every nursery prepares it own type of this compost/soil, but this usually contains chicken manure, which is high in nitrates and contaminated with bacteria which is really bad. This stuff will constantly leach into the tank. I would advise that you do a nitrate level check to see what your nitrate levels are. I am also sure that this rose]shrub mix is contributing to the brown colour of your water.

    But your fish combination sounds excellent, all from the same biotope except the Siamese fighter. But I guess we must all keep a Siamese fighter in sympathy with Dale (Solex69).

    The best medium for corys is actually fine pool filter sand. It does not damage their bristles but it also does not cause the clouding that river sand can cause.

    Kind regards,

    Dirk
     
  7. manteroo
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    manteroo Algae harvester

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    If it gives you some sanity, I only used a small bag of Rose Shrub mix and it seems to be working. The majority of the substrate was the Malmesbury sand and the River sand.

    I planted loads of Crypts - Lucens, Willisii, Wendtii and they never melted !!!

    They all actually have lovely new shoots coming up and my Javas are also doing really well.

    I also added a few nails around the base of some of them.

    WILL CHECK NITRATES.

    P.S. I couldn't resist the Siamese. Beautiful totally orange specimen from Nick - Hartlands.
     
  8. Dirk B
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    Dirk B Aquascaper

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    Sorry for sounding a bit paranoid about the rose/shrub mix.... as long as you aware of the possible dangers that is fine and if the amount is small that is also good. I actually want to write a separate thread about growing crypts outside of the aquarium, where I use such media, but will post that later.

    On that note, I am glad to hear that your crypts are doing well. They are beautiful plants but because of this melting tendency, they are not easy to grow.

    Otherwise hope everything goes well. How about a pic?

    Kind regards,

    Dirk
     
  9. manteroo
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    manteroo Algae harvester

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    I am REALLYm STRUGGLING to take pics of my setup. I have Nikon Compact Digital but I always seem to have problems with blurred fish or loads of reflection. Don't really know how to setup the camera but have tried many different angles.

    This is a recent shot - you can seen the Crypts in the foreground... click on the pic to enlarge....

    [​IMG]


    Editted by Ryan: I just changed it so that you can see the pic without clicking on the link, we don't mind you posting full images!
     
  10. Pikkie
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    Pikkie Algae harvester

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    Manteroo if you can, try to adjust your shutter speed. Try shutter speed 1/25 or higher with iso 400. Works for me.
     
  11. Ryan
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    Ryan Green fingers

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    Hi Manteroo

    Taking photo's of tanks is really hard. Try stabilising the camera with a tripod or holding it against a table or something. If you can, get more light onto it. That's the real problem.

    Hope this helps.
    Ryan
     

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