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Results 1 to 9 of 9
  1. #1

    Join Date
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    Default Brhino's 300g megatank, Part 2


    5 Not allowed!
    In August of 2012, I purchased a used 300 gallon acrylic tank. I worked on it for several months before being ready to stock it with fish. I detailed the construction of the tank and life of the fish in it here:
    http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/aqua...ad.php?t=96224

    Unfortunately, in those days I used photobucket as an image host. Late last year, photobucket started charging a fee ($400 a year!) to allow images stored there to be embedded on external sites such as aquatic community. As a result, my old thread now has broken images for the first 130 or so pages. Fixing that would require days of work and mod-level thread editing permissions. So in lieu of that, I am starting a new thread. This will also be a good place to reintroduce the tank to people who may not have been around when I used to document it.


    The tank is 300 gallons - 8' long, 24" front-to-back, 30" tall. It lives on the concrete slab in the unfinished basement of my house. It sits on a stand I designed and built out of lumber and plywood. I intend to paint the front of the stand, buy cabinet doors, and design and build a canopy, but it's not something I've gotten around to. Lighting is run of the mill florescent shop lights suspended above the tank. The sump is a 75 gallon glass tank. The filtration is something I designed and built myself. The white boxes are sterilite storage drawers, with holes drilled in the drawers to allow water to flow down them to fuction as a trickle filter. They are fed from the overflow at the top of the tank. The return pump sits in the middle of the sump and pushes the water back up to a series of undergravel jets. I relied heavily on advice from forum members Cliff and Crispy for design assistance.

    The background is from a company called Universal Rocks. It is a large sheet of flexible rubber material, textured and colored to look like natural rock. Hardscape consists of gravel, rock, and driftwood.

    You can see most of the occupants of the tank in the above photo, but I'll go into more detail on them in my next post.
    300 gallon mega tank: sailfin pleco, clown loaches, silver dollars, roseline sharks, congo tetras, new world cichlids
    125 gallon office tank: Africian cichlids, synodontis catfih
    75 gallon community tank: bolivian rams, black skirt tetras, dwarf neon rainbowfish, corys, harlequin rasboras, otos, bristlenose and bulldog plecos, assassin snails, various shrimp
    60 gallon goldfish tank: fancy goldfish

  2. #2

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    Southeast Texas
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    Troop and Military Support - Amber Alert - Bladder Cancer - Endometriosis - Equality - Liver Cancer - Liver Disease - Missing Children - POW/MIA - Spina Bifida - Suicide - steeler58   Breast Cancer - Birth Parents - steeler58   Cancer - Epilepsy - Foster Care - Gynecological Cancer - Rett Syndrome - aquariumlover10   Cancer - Epilepsy - Foster Care - Gynecological Cancer - Rett Syndrome - gronlaura   Breast Cancer - Birth Parents - SeaLady   

    Default


    2 Not allowed!
    There's that big ole' beautiful tank we've been missing
    10 Gallon Beginner Tank... Journal
    40 Gallon Breeder: ... Journal
    29 Gallon: ... Journal

    If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went - Will Rogers

  3. #3

    Join Date
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    Cancer - Epilepsy - Foster Care - Gynecological Cancer - Rett Syndrome - Brhino   

    Default


    3 Not allowed!
    My stocking plan for this tank was a bit unusual. The two species I knew I wanted for sure were clown loaches and an oscar. Given that oscars are large and predatory and loaches are slow growing, it's not a sure thing to work out. But I did what research I could, and decided that if I purchased the schooling fish first and gave them some time to grow, I would have good odds of success when adding the oscar and other cichlids later. So, after two years (!) of working on the tank and the stand and the plumbing, I added the following schooling species:


    Clown loaches. My experience has been that clown loaches bought at the smallest size normally found in stores have 50% odds or worse of surviving the first few months. Larger, somewhat more expensive fish have never given me any issues. I've had this school of 12 for about 3 years without losses, including surviving an ich outbreak. All 12 are at least partially visible in this photo, which is a rare and fun occurrence.


    The next schooling species that I have kept with absolutely no problems are silver dollars. There are actual several species of silver dollar, and I have a mix. The largest ones are plain silver. The spotted ones have never obtained the massive size of the plain ones.


    Roseline barbs were thought to be a bit risky as the larger fishes might think of them as fish sticks, but they have also done well. I have seen a strange phenomenon in a couple of them where, over the course of weeks, all their color except for the red will fade out and then return. It doesn't seem to effect their health any though.


    The last schooling species is the only one that has given me much trouble. Including Congo tetras with an oscar and other cichlids was something I knew was going to be hit-or-miss. It hasn't been a disaster, but I do seem to lose one every couple months or so. Mostly it does not seem to be predation, although I have had one or two disappear when I've been gone for a few days. I am undecided if I am going to continue to buy another half dozen once a year or so to maintain their numbers, or try something else. Also, look at the water marks on the outside of the tank in this photo. Ugh. I've gotten out of the habit of photographing the tank, which means I've gotten out of the habit of keeping it in photography quality shape.
    300 gallon mega tank: sailfin pleco, clown loaches, silver dollars, roseline sharks, congo tetras, new world cichlids
    125 gallon office tank: Africian cichlids, synodontis catfih
    75 gallon community tank: bolivian rams, black skirt tetras, dwarf neon rainbowfish, corys, harlequin rasboras, otos, bristlenose and bulldog plecos, assassin snails, various shrimp
    60 gallon goldfish tank: fancy goldfish

  4. #4

    Join Date
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    Cancer - Epilepsy - Foster Care - Gynecological Cancer - Rett Syndrome - Brhino   

    Default


    2 Not allowed!
    With help from forum members, I came up with a list of seven different central/south american cichlids to add. They've all been in the tank for a couple years now, starting at juvenile sizes.


    The oscar was, along with the clown loaches, the main goal of the tank. I bought this one when it was very small without knowing what its adult coloration would be. I might have preferred the "tiger" pattern rather than the solid red, but I've got no plans to replace him. He's had a couple health scares over the years including a bout of Hole In The Head, but so far he's pulled through every time. He's the biggest cichlid in the tank but he's also very laid back.


    Next largest is a chocolate cichlid. He and the oscar used to spar now and then but they seem to have settled down recently. He's another pretty laid back fish.


    Gold severum has always been a challenge to photograph clearly. His pale yellow color is hard to focus on.


    Salvini cichlid spends most of his time in caves but does come out to say hi now and then.


    The electric blue arcara is actually a replacement fish. The original never grew very large, and eventually seemed to be permanently afraid of his larger cousins and started hiding all the time and never eating. I removed him from the tank and replaced him with a larger arcara, who has not had that issue. I still have the first one in another tank.


    The nicaraguan cichlid I got turned out to be female. She eventually decided she needed a burrow and now is in charge of aquascaping. You may notice in the first picture how uneven the gravel is on the left side of the tank. That's all on her. I could smooth all that out but she'd have it dug out again overnight.


    The convict cichlid is her boyfriend. He will help her dig sometimes and chase other fish away from her caves. They've been doing this for months, and for the first time a couple days ago I spotted eggs in one of their caves. They were gone the next day though - I suspect the clown loaches got in there and ate them. I don't know if that's the first time they've ever spawned, or just the first time I've seen the eggs.
    300 gallon mega tank: sailfin pleco, clown loaches, silver dollars, roseline sharks, congo tetras, new world cichlids
    125 gallon office tank: Africian cichlids, synodontis catfih
    75 gallon community tank: bolivian rams, black skirt tetras, dwarf neon rainbowfish, corys, harlequin rasboras, otos, bristlenose and bulldog plecos, assassin snails, various shrimp
    60 gallon goldfish tank: fancy goldfish

  5. #5

    Join Date
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    Default


    2 Not allowed!
    The Roseline Barbs and Salvine Cichlid are your most colorful of them all, aside from the Clown Loaches. The gold Severem, I suspect, is actually a richer gold color, but lighting in photography can sometimes wash colors out a bit. Looks like you've done a lot of DIY -- I'll bet it has saved you many, many $$$$$$.

    Do you eventually plan to add any plants, once you get sufficient lighting?

    That is one HUGE tank! Bet you're having a lot of fun with it.
    20 gal. high: planted; 5 white cloud minnows, 4 golden White Clouds, several RCS, 2 blue shrimp, 5 Amano shrimp, several snails; Azoo air. 65 gal: planted; 6 rosy barbs, 6 yellow glofish, 3 red glofish, 3 zebra danios, 5 white cloud minnows, 3 dojo loaches, 6 crimson spot rainbow fish, 12 large Amano Shrimp, several snails; AC110.

  6. #6

    Join Date
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    Cancer - Epilepsy - Foster Care - Gynecological Cancer - Rett Syndrome - Brhino   

    Default


    2 Not allowed!


    The first fish into the tank, the longest fish, and overall boss, is the Sailfin Pleco. He doesn't raise the sail unless he's making a point, but it's spectacular when he does. Most of the time he barely moves, but when he gets irritated his thrashes his tail and everyone else scatters.


    The black pipe seen here is part of the undergravel jet system. It's supposed to be buried under the substrate but the nicaraguan dug it out. She dug out underneath the rock to the left and laid her eggs there. After they disappeared she allowed the rocks to fill back in. The white thing on the far left of the photo is one of the jets of the undergravel system...


    When I build up the tank, I coated these PVC jets in black silicone and sprinkled gravel into them. This made them nearly invisible against the rest of the substrate. It was a good idea, but the clown loaches have taken to chewing the silicone off of the PVC. They don't eat it, they just seem to enjoy pulling it away and leaving it to drift around the bottom of the tank.
    300 gallon mega tank: sailfin pleco, clown loaches, silver dollars, roseline sharks, congo tetras, new world cichlids
    125 gallon office tank: Africian cichlids, synodontis catfih
    75 gallon community tank: bolivian rams, black skirt tetras, dwarf neon rainbowfish, corys, harlequin rasboras, otos, bristlenose and bulldog plecos, assassin snails, various shrimp
    60 gallon goldfish tank: fancy goldfish

  7. #7

    Join Date
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    Happy Birthday Bud. Cheers! - Strider199   Merry Xmas! Ill drink to that! - Sandz   Happy New Year! - jeffs99dime   Birthday Beer. - gadget228   Sending healing vibes to your Oscar - Silbar   
    Cancer - Epilepsy - Foster Care - Gynecological Cancer - Rett Syndrome - Brhino   

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by mermaidwannabe View Post
    The gold Severem, I suspect, is actually a richer gold color, but lighting in photography can sometimes wash colors out a bit.
    I think the color comes through all right - he is in fact a very pale yellow. It's just hard to get him in focus.

    Quote Originally Posted by mermaidwannabe View Post
    Do you eventually plan to add any plants, once you get sufficient lighting?
    Silver dollars are notorious plant eaters. They've been exposed to a few plants in quarantine when I was first adding them, and I did try some floating plants in this tank. So far they've shredded everything they've encountered. So... no plans for plants.
    300 gallon mega tank: sailfin pleco, clown loaches, silver dollars, roseline sharks, congo tetras, new world cichlids
    125 gallon office tank: Africian cichlids, synodontis catfih
    75 gallon community tank: bolivian rams, black skirt tetras, dwarf neon rainbowfish, corys, harlequin rasboras, otos, bristlenose and bulldog plecos, assassin snails, various shrimp
    60 gallon goldfish tank: fancy goldfish

  8. #8

    Join Date
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    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    It's really nice brhino :) Nice to catch up on your fish too. Your EB acara is huge! Maybe it's their regular adult size?
    GiVe Me sHrEd TiLL i'M dEaD
    -Kat

  9. #9

    Join Date
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    Happy Birthday Bud. Cheers! - Strider199   Merry Xmas! Ill drink to that! - Sandz   Happy New Year! - jeffs99dime   Birthday Beer. - gadget228   Sending healing vibes to your Oscar - Silbar   
    Cancer - Epilepsy - Foster Care - Gynecological Cancer - Rett Syndrome - Brhino   

    Default


    1 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by angelcraze2 View Post
    Your EB acara is huge! Maybe it's their regular adult size?
    I think maybe so. I've heard that Electric Blues stay a little smaller than the non line bred ones.

    Honestly nobody really looks to be growing very much in the tank these days, they're all just kind of staying the same. There's always been a huge disparity in the size of the loaches that I thought would close up over time but it's stayed that way. I guess the biggest fish get the most food and keep themselves the biggest.
    300 gallon mega tank: sailfin pleco, clown loaches, silver dollars, roseline sharks, congo tetras, new world cichlids
    125 gallon office tank: Africian cichlids, synodontis catfih
    75 gallon community tank: bolivian rams, black skirt tetras, dwarf neon rainbowfish, corys, harlequin rasboras, otos, bristlenose and bulldog plecos, assassin snails, various shrimp
    60 gallon goldfish tank: fancy goldfish

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