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Looking for a critic!


davito92
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I'm just looking for someone to give me an opinion of the tank. I want things like how to improve asthetics, what fish can be added, or should be removed, plants I could add, etc. I have one 4ft tank, lightly planted, with a range of fish. It houses gouramis, many types of tetra, angel fish, some rosy barbs, some bristle nose's, clown loaches, guppies, and a few other types of fish I can't remember the names of.

The Tank

Randoms018.jpg

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It depends what your aim is Dave. And also what your personal aesthetic is. That tank is a good example of what can be done with artificial plants and plastic decor. It's not to my personal taste however. I prefer a natural look or something inspired by nature, although I recognise that simply using natural materials doesn't necessarily mean your tank is going to mimic nature. It's perfectly possible to create something totally artificial using live plants and real wood and rocks. Have a browse at this gallery and see if any of these tanks take your fancy.

http://www.adaaust.com.au/gallery/gallery.htm.

But be warned that planted tanks such as these can be expensive and create a huge swag of problems and can be extremely high maintenance.

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Uh... The tank actually has no plastic plants... the 2 large ornaments are fibreglass, and they are the only not organic ornament in there... But I do agree with a natural looking planted tank, which is an aim for me. Unfortunatly, my local pet store lacks the variety to start a strongly themed tank, so anything like that is outta the question. But the owners are happy to get some more uncommon items in, so if there is anything someone can recommend me getting, I may be able to get it.

Thanks for the reply's so far.

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Lol, :yes: that's ok. I'm not particually fond of the ship and the rocky thing. I plan to slowly change it into a densly planted tank, using a combo of online bought plants, some from my pet store, and trimmings of the fast growing plants already in the tank. If anyone has suggestions to make my plan easier, or improve on it, go ahead!

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Some of those plants aren't true aquatic plants ie able to grow submersed for long periods or all of the time. The aluminium, plant particularly but I'm not sure about those rush-like ones either. They might be ok but not sure. Of course the plants were even less aquatic when I thought they were plastic. :yes:

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Isnt it funny how different we all are .. Some noticed the ship , I didnt even see the ship as the plants were my focus point.

Any way Dave I dont think your going to find a critic here this time because you have done a great job on the tank as is.

Its a bit hard to improve on a already good thing , as they say if it aint broke dont fix it ..just keep adding plants as you go as youve already planned .

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Thanks for all the advice, and praise. I'm still thinking about planting the tank densly, so if anyone has suggestions on what plants will go well in there, and grow at a noticable rate, don't be shy. I'm looking for fine furn-ish plants, I was thinking about java moss along some of the base, what do you guys think?

Plus any plants that will allow guppy fry survive. I recently had a female give birth in a "breeding net" that didn't go to well. The fry could fit through the mesh keeping the males away from the female. I'm sure shes pregnant again, and I want to see if the fry grow to look decent, but most importantly, they need to survive. I plan to take out the angel fish and put them in a fish bowl for a few days until the fry are too big to eat, as they gobbled up the fry last time, but I also want some plants that might give the fry some refuge from other hungry fish until the pet store orders in some guppy breeders.

Edited by Fishy_Dave
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G'day Fishy_Dave,

The tank looks nice. I am a fellow Lithgow-ite. Maybe we could swap a few plants etc. I have some good-uns that I have order from several places and I always have some spare cuttings etc. Send me a message (by clicking on my name) and we can talk details.

I assume you know there are two fish shops in Lithgow (Simdra on the main street and the "One up near The Warehouse") I prefer the one up near the warehouse - still not heaps of variety but very nice to deal with and they keep their tanks clean and their fish healthy.

As for the plants you have, the aluminium plant is not a true acuatic plant and will grow for a while before dying off. The Japanese rush is also not a true acuatic and will do the same thing. I have seen both of these plants sold at both of our pet shops. I find it extremely annoying that they sell these non-aquatic plants (and many others). ;) Not to mention selling plants that require special conditions like CO2 additions. They should at least tell you before selling them to you. (Descends gracefully from his soapbox).

As for your guppy, she is definitely still pregnant. One fertilisation will last a female for many drops plus if there are males and females together, the males will be making sure that she is preggas. They are persistent boys. I would not take out the angel fish unless you have another proper tank. They will not do well in a bowl and the guppy fry will be eaten by the parents anyway. I have guppy fry in my tank and some of them manage to survive by hiding in the plants.

Talk to you soon,

Phil.

Edited by Phil Cook
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Hey Phil Cook,

I don' really consider the pet store in main street a pet store, as the guy there has... um... a weird kinda shop. I don't really trust that place, as last time I brought neon's there, the water was contaiminated, and I lost a clown loach and some guppies, so yea...

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I recon some different coloured foliage, maybe some reds and bronze plants would add an interesting touch.

But I'd be pleased as it is, I've had to use mostly artificial plants for my tank because my bloody buenos aries tetras and silver dollars tear the living daylights out of everything except java fern! They are pretty fish though :dontknow: , can't have your cake and eat it too I suppose!

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Ack! Now we have two yowies! ;) We need a Mountains/Sydney get-together or fish crawl, you guys in? ;)

I think that tank looks pretty impressive myself, I was very impressed when I opened the thread! Gorgeous green!

First up, what are the tank specs? I'm all for aesthetics, but I also love a low maintenance hassle-free tank.

What lights are over the tank (brand/model or wattage/K)?

What filter are you running?

What temperature is the tank kept at?

Are you wanting foolproof low maintenance or fiddly and fantastic?

If you are going for a natural look, you might want to ditch the background. As printed backgrounds go, it is pretty good, and sometimes they work really well. Often though, they make the overall look less spectacular because the real plants blend with the washed out printed ones or worse, don't blend and look really out of place. My personal favourite for this style is back, but blue and a blue/black graduation would also look spiffy.

I'd say you could get away with the pirate ship, but the rock decoration behind the anubias on driftwood looks very out of place. By itself it could work, but when they are in the same scape, they don't do each other any favours. I'd probably stick with the wood myself, especially if you have bristlenose. They love it ;) Maybe try and find a root section with a stump to give the tank some overall structure (set up this 'hardscape' first and work your planting around it). Your best bet is St George in Bexley or South Windsor Fish Hatchery.

At the moment, you have a symmetrical thing going on there. Generally speaking, nature is not symmetrical. I like the taller plants framing the tank, but I'd sweep the ones on the filter intake side around towards the back a bit further , probably about 1/4 or 1/3 the way down the tank. I'm a fan of planting in drifts, so that sort of 'clearing in a reed bed' look is something I really like. On top of switching over to aquatics (try www.aquagreen.com.au for plants, but beware of snails) I'd also limit your plant choices. That is a big tank, but ferny plants are 'busy' and even though you could get away with it, 5 plant species in bunches and drifts and offset single plants is going to looks oodles more natural than 14 different species jostling for attention.

It really does depend on where you want to go with it :betta:

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Thanks for the advice. I'll post more details about the tank when I get home (at mums atm). I am really in for the natural planted tank, but I plan to get a finer, dark gravel first, then I will replant with new plants sooner or later. I'm not to fond of the fake ornaments in there, the rocky one looks extremely outta place, and the ship... not to bad, but not for my taste. I've started putting my own money into it, instead of Dad's so I can do what I want with it.

For the specks I know about: Aqua nova 1200 canister filter, 4 foot tank (about 250l), temp around... 25-28 (changed it when I lost my bettas) and for lights, I know there crap, I want to get something better, but I can't justify spending $60+ on a light bulb. Its fluorescent, not sure of wattage

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