Amazon Biotope in the Works
I've recently re-set up my old aquarium that I had to take down after my mum killed off all my fish when I left for college. The tank set-up including filter and heater are about 7yr old and still in perfect working order other than my filter sounds very choppy and loud :(. So, I'm in the process of setting up my dream tank of an Amazon biotope. Now when I say biotope I'm looking to make a superficially generalized biotope, meaning I want all plants and fish to be from the Amazon, but they don't have to actually be from to same section of the Amazon as I know there are different plants and fish that grow in different areas of the Amazon river.
*36 gal SeaClear acrylic aquarium
*Aquaclear 110 filter
*heater (can't remember the brand)
I set-up the substrate so that the plant food substrate went from the back to middle of the tank, which was then covered by sand. It was awesome looking when I first set it up, but due to the cory's digging around the bigger particles of the plant food have made their way up. You can still only see sand looking directly from the front, so it works. I got the naturals sand.
1 Rubber Lip Pleco
12 Cardinal Tetras
6 Golden Pencil Fish
3 Bronze Corys
2 Wild Type Angelfish
*Giant Amazon Sword
*Narrow Leaf Java
*Dwarf Hair Grass
*java moss on driftwood
*SeaChem Acid Buffer
*API pH down
*API Amazon Extract (not blackwater extract)
Because I'm aiming to create a biotope I've done my best at replicating the water condition to be soft and acidic with a pH of 6 and a kh of 71.6. This is not an easy achievement due to my tap water. The tap water where I live is god awful city water, it has chlorine, the kh is off the charts (when I used the API liquid test, I used 16 drops in the test tube of water and it NEVER went yellow). So I use a mix of dechlorinated tap water with RO water that I get from a fellow aquarium fan. The tap water is then additionally treated with Seachem Acid buffer, which supposedly also softens the water by particulating the minerals in the tap water and makes them precipitate out, which then gets sucked up by my filter. The tap and RO water are set to the proper pH before being added to my tank. A water change seems to take FOREVER, it takes at least 4 hours while I wait for all the chemicals to settle to be sure that my tank won't have any water swings. Of course the reason for the RO+tap mix is to keep some minerals in the water to keep it buffered enough so the pH doesn't suffer any bad swings and stress. All in all it is a pain to regulate a soft water tank where I live. I also keep peat in my filter, that was more to make a blackwater effect, but it hasn't worked yet :/
Last edited by FreakyFishie; 01-29-2013 at 07:59 PM.