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Hi-tech planted tank population options
January 24, 2013
12:13 am
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idinur
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January 24, 2013
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Hi!

 

first of wanted to say that the knowledge base over here is amazingly professional and truly inspired me. 

Secondly, please forgive me if I won't be able to fully express myself, as English is not my native language. 

and at last, I have some questions regarding the future population I'm planning for my future hi-tech planted tank! 

I really want to have the ability to populate a planted hi-tech tank with one or couple species of gobies. I've noticed that a lot of the gobies species requires a highly circulated water conditions and the presence of Algea. Now I'm worried that the never ending war with algea on this type of aquarium and the need of CO2 use may not allow me to populate this kind of tank with it. What would you say regarding that?

and generally speaking, what would you guys recommend me as a population for this kind of a tank? I'm aiming forwards a 6.5-6.7 pH level, relatively soft water, and 1:5-8 water circulation. I would really like to populate this future tank with Gobies, Badis, Killifishs, Loaches and blue-eye rainbows.  is it possible? Partly possible? Please advice!

 

thanks in advanced,

Itamar. 

January 24, 2013
8:05 am
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Matt
Málaga, Spain
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Hi and welcome to the forum, and thanks for the kind words!

I think there are a number of gobies you could keep in that set up. Is there anything particualr you have in mind?

Cake or death?
January 24, 2013
8:56 am
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idinur
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Hi Matt,

 

thank you for your quick reponse, 

 

I was thinking about the following: 

Desert Goby and/or Sicyopus zosterophorus and/or Rainbow Stiphodon, Stiphodon percnopterygionus or a peacock goby. 

 

I think that I just have a problem integrating the set up with the population.. Meaning, if lower grading the plants damends for low-tech set up would have allow me to grow a wider range of fish species then maybe that can be a good call?

 

Itamar.

January 24, 2013
10:30 am
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Rüdiger
Brunswick / Germany
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Hi Itamar,

as you are still in the planning phase for that aquarium, I'd like to give you a few hints, which might help you to decide on the way you eventually want to go.

First, as you have suggested in your last post, the "high tech" in a high tech tank is solely beneficial to the plants. Commonly kept freshwater fishes generally don't need any high tech, unless you want to include a good filter or motor pump into that category. On the contrary, some of it can even be detrimental. So the first basic decision would be, do you want to put emphasis on keeping plants or fish?

CO² dosing and a strong water movement don't go hand in hand as the stronger current will drive out the gas, which you have just introduced. And the price tag attached to technical CO² dosing should be a bit too high for that waste.

Most "demanding plants", those actually needing a high tech set-up, don't do all that well when plummeted around by a strong current.

From the fish species you suggested in your first post, only gobies and loaches will appreciate a strong current and for some of them even an 8x water turnover is not really sufficient. Killies and blue eyes would do best with almost no water movement at all whereas the Badis will thrive in a moderate flow.

So my suggestions are:

If you want to stick to that high tech set-up, reduce the water turnover to about 3x tank volume per hour and go with killies or blue eyes or even Badis (there are of course plenty other species to choose from, I kept to your whish-list above). For "gobies", the peacock gudgeon is a good choice too as would be Allomorgunda nesolepis.

The other option, if you really want Stiphodon and/or Sicyopus spp. is to rethink the design of the set-up. Depending on size of the tank, I'd get the water turnover to from about 10x up to 20x with the aid of an additional powerhead, stick to only the hardiest plants if any, and then preferably some that can be attached to the substrate rather than planted into the ground.

As for algae, the days of battle will be over and you'll have to embrace them. Not all of them mind you. You'd want something looking similar to the first photo below and not like in the other two. From my experience, the species in question don't make use of those filamentous algae at all (here I speak under correction) but really love the "Aufwuchs" as seen in pic. 1.

I hope that helps a bit.

Regards

R.

P.S. It would be nice if you could tell us a bit more about the intended size (measurements) of the aquarium and how exactly the "high tech" set-up is planned.

 

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If you must insist on living in a box ...... at least do your thinking outside.
January 24, 2013
11:31 am
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Matt
Málaga, Spain
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As Rudi has so comprehensively described, your choice of fishes will be crucial in terms of determining how the tank is set up, hence my original question.

If you want a fully-planted set-up I'd agree that peacock gudgeon (they're not gobies, but eleotrids) would be the best choice. Stream-dwelling species tend to require a specialised set-up as per Rudi's answer.

As for algae, if you wanted to keep algae-eating gobies without growing algae, there are some options available but not tried any of them myself. Some people make home-made foods bound with gelatin, or grow algae on rocks outside the main aquarium and rotate them frequently. Think there are one or two products available too but not too sure about those.

Finally, regarding algal type, the green hair algae in Rudi's last two pics is consumed by Rhinogobius spp. (or at  least, mine do it) but apparently not by those with a grazing lifestyle (Stiphodon, Sicyopus).

Cake or death?
January 24, 2013
10:52 pm
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idinur
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Rudi and Matt,

 

Thank you very much for your advice. I think that I'll stick to the hi-tech set up and will try to apply growing the grazing fish perhaps in a different tank if ill get the chance. 

Everything Is still in a pre-blueprint stage (my past experience had thought me to make a wide research prior filling the water), but I'm aiming towards a cubical tank (80cmX80cm base or so) with a center drift wood. The inspiration is river curve I've once saw. 

The high-tech set up is planned to use fertilized soil and white sand (well grinded quartz?) on the tank margins, X5 (as suggested) filter along with a quarantine (may also be a samp?), CO2 controlled by a pH controller with an external reactor and adequate light. Summers over here can get pretty hot, so a temperature controller connected to a heater and a cooler and probably several other features I can't think of at the moment.

Couple last questions regarding fish spp. if I got you guys right, could the following collection work: desert goby, peacock goby, blue-eye rainbows and  Dario/Badis? All loaches will need a strong filtration? 

P.s, going over the knowledge base I saw this species: 

Aphanius mento (HECKEL, 1843)

which is endemic to several springs in the northern part of my country :) so I thought I should share this

January 25, 2013
11:01 am
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Rüdiger
Brunswick / Germany
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Hi Itamar,

a few rhings I'd still like to address. Let's look at the technical side first.

1. I really like the idea of a square tank base but would not go for a cube. 80 cm tank hight would be good if you'd go for e.g. angels or discus. For the species we are looking at right now, it's just a waste of space. If you want the volume of water and can accomodate a larger square, let's say 1m x 1m rather go with that and reduce hight to 35 or 40cm. To get an idea of that, perhaps have a look at this video, which comes from this thread.

2. You must not confuese strong current with strong filtration. If you take for instance a 500 liter tank, which a 80cm cube would roughly be, and want to acheive a 15x turnover with your filter, that thing would have to be huge indeed and accordingly expensive. I don't want to go into biological efficacy of such a filter but in my experience it's best to stick with a 3x turnover capacity of the filter and add a powerhead if you need a stronger current. But then again, as we already discussed, that would be counter productive for your intended set-up.

As far as fish species are concerned:

1. I do understand that you really like and want some goby in that tank but I would not recommend the desert goby (Chlamydogobius eremius). You talk about a pH of 6.5 and "relatively" soft water. Even though the feller in question is a real survivalist as far as water conditions are concerned, I take it that the species fares much better at pH above 7.5 and the water rather on the hard side.

The main problem with gobies and loaches alike ist that they need high levels of dissolved oxygen in the water. You are, with your "high tech" set-up, aiming towards the other end of the stick, i.e. high levels of dissolved CO².

Do you see that those two, the requirements of these fish spp. versus the conditions you want to emulate, do not go hand in hand??

2. The other species you mention should go well together. Perhaps you want to take a look at one of the smaller rainbow fishes (Melanotaenia spp.) too, as they would, together with blue eyes and peacock gudgeon, make a nice community indeed.

Regards

R.

If you must insist on living in a box ...... at least do your thinking outside.
January 25, 2013
11:24 am
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Matt
Málaga, Spain
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idinur said 
Aphanius mento (HECKEL, 1843)

which is endemic to several springs in the northern part of my country :) so I thought I should share this

Where do you live idinur?

Cake or death?
January 25, 2013
1:54 pm
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idinur
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Hi Rudi,

 

Again, many thanks for your detailed explanations. I knew I'll have a hard time explaining my self though. The cube shape does refer to the base solely, I'm thinking of a lower height, around 45cm. Now regarding the water current, I understand that I wont be able to get sufficient CO2 dissolving in the water, so wont populate this kind of tank with gobies with these needs (high levels of dissolved oxygen in the water).

I'll need to give the set-up a second thought and see if I can get an almost same impressive plants results also with a low-tech set-up (or at least ones that will hit my level of expectations) this way I may also include the Desert goby as an option (higher pH and KH/GH levels) along with all of the above (Peacock godgeon and blue-eyes)?

 

I'll give up the Algea grazers anyway for now. 

 

Hi Matt,

 

I live in Tel-Aviv, Israel. 

 

That sp. can be found next to the Dead sea and also in several springs north to the sea of Galillee. 

January 26, 2013
11:43 am
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BigTom
Edinburgh
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There's been a lot of good advice in this thread but I just wanted to pick up Rudi's point about limiting flow in a CO2 aquarium.

 

I don't run a CO2 injected tank, but I do spend a lot of time on the UKAPS planted aquarium forum and the advice from the experts there is that a huge proportion of the issues (especially algae related) that people run into with high tech planted tanks is down to poor flow and nutrient/CO2 distribution. And using too much light for the amount of CO2 they are providing.

 

You'll do better with a lot of water movement blasting CO2 bubbles around the tank. With properly positioned outlets/spraybars you can still keep a large amount of flow without having excessive surface agitation.

January 26, 2013
5:42 pm
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idinur
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January 24, 2013
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Hi Tom,

 

Many thanks for your advice. I'm spending a lot of time reading and learning about balancing all water parameters (maybe too much time considering the Neurobiology exam I need to take next FridayConfused). 

Algae was, along with Cyano bacteria, my main problem in the last tank I had, so I'm taking my time now studyinit how to avoid it. 

By the way, I saw both yours and Rudi's tanks and both really inspired me. Amazing job!

 

Itamar. 

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