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Thread: Planted Betta Tank, 5 Gallon
06-15-2013, 01:07 AM #1
Planted Betta Tank, 5 Gallon
Okay, going to compile information here on this project. :) It's my restart into aquarium-keeping.
Tank: Aqueon Mini Bow 5 Gallon. Has a built-in Aqueon Quiet Flow Filter, and a spot in the hood for a 15 watt (incandescent) bulb.
Heater: Tetra H10 Submersible Heater. I also have a ZooMed digital thermometer to make sure the heater isn't on the fritz.
Substrate: Eco Complete Planted, in black. I don't actually have this in my pretty paws just yet, but I ordered it last night. I also have some aquarium gravel that I can tie rhizome plants to.
Decor: A dark blue porcelain pot I made back in college, that will double as a cave for the betta to hide in.
What I currently need to get: A new bulb, since the flourescent I used last time is now no longer working. I also need a new water test kit, because most of the bottles in mine expired (whoops). Some silicone, to attach things together with. New filter media for the filter. Something to tie rhizomes down until they attach to their spots. Ammonia, to cycle the tank and keep it cycled. I'm having trouble finding it, though. Probably ten thousand other things that I can't think of. lol
And now on to the future inhabitants:
Plants. I'm planning on getting some Anubias (nana, maybe broadleaf if I can find it), Java Fern (if I can find it, I'm not sure I can around here!), and some Crypts (mostly C. wendtii). I also want to add some quick-growing stem plants for N-control. The stores around here should have Anacharis, Water Wisteria, and a kind of Ludwigia. Now, I have a bit of concern about all three of them. From what I've read, I'll be maxing out the Anacharis' temp-tolerances. Water Wisteria is supposed to be too big for my tank, and Ludwigia is supposed to need more light than I'll have.
Livestock. Since it's a betta tank, obviously I'll be getting one of those. :) I also hope to have ramshorns and MTS in it.
Now, I've cleaned everyhting I already have. I couldn't get off all of the stuck-on algae. I'll have to hope the snails take care of that, or try to find something that will scrub acrylic while the tank is full, and try again after the tank has been filled a while. The surge protector I was going to use apparently no longer works. :( And I have no idea if the nearby outlet works either. Bah. Will have to figure this out, and I need to get a grounded-to-not adapter to be able to use my timer. Ah well.
So that's where things stand as of today.
06-15-2013, 11:38 AM #2
For the "Stuck on" Algae, try spraying 3% hydrogen peroxide on it, letting it sit, and then rinsing well. This has always worked for me to clean old tanks with really welded on Algae. "Old" algae won't really entice snails, and if the tanks been dry a while, may not be safe to consume.
Keep a watch on that heater. I've had those before, and if its not the adjustable one, its notorious for only keeping the tank at 75 degrees in cooler weather, which is much too low for a Betta.2 10 gallon tanks, 1 20 gallon tank, 1 Fluval Edge, 1 29 gallon tank, and one backyard pond.
06-15-2013, 11:59 AM #3
How long do you let the peroxide sit? And a lot of these algae spots are tiiny, which makes it even harder. :/ And did you scrub at all with the peroxide?
Yes, it's one of the non-adjustable ones. I'll definitely keep an eye on it, and I should have time before it becomes a problem (it'll likely remain off once summer really kicks in here, the house gets really hot!). I got this one at the time because it was the only one that maintained a certain temp and didn't feel like it cost an arm and a leg to get. What brands do you suggest, if I end up needing to replace it?
06-15-2013, 12:07 PM #4
I've always had the best success with using vinegar to get off old algae and even calcium / hard water deposits off glass and plastic. You can completely soak a paper towel in pure vinegar and then place this on top of the spot. Let it sit there all day (re-soak in vinegar if it starts to dry out) and then the algae spots should just wipe away.If you take your time to do the research FIRST, you can successfully set-up and keep ANY type of aquarium with ease.
"Not using a quarantine tank is like playing Russian roulette. Nobody wins the game, some people just get to play longer than others." - Anthony Calfo
Fishless Cycle Cycling with Fish Marine Aquarium Info [URL="http://saltwater.aquaticcommunity.com/"]
06-15-2013, 12:13 PM #5
I've already tried vinegar... It helped some, but not incredibly. Though I didn't just soak it. Part of the problem is the tank shape... It's rather awkward to leave laying around on its side so that the the paper towels don't fall off.
06-18-2013, 04:02 AM #6
Whoo! My Eco Complete finally showed up on the tracking website. It's estimated to arrive Wednesday. :)
Still trying to clean the tank itself. Tried the peroxide, didn't work. Letting it soak with vinegar-soaked paper towels now.
I've also drawn up a quick sketch of my current planting idea. It is totally NOT to scale. lol The black line off to the left is marking off where the filter sits over the tank.
Also note, the pot will be at an angle, the opening pointing towards the diamond of crypts.
Last edited by Flyby Stardancer; 06-18-2013 at 04:04 AM.
06-25-2013, 06:23 AM #7
So my crypts are getting a bit melty on me. Still not as bad as I feared yet, not with how badly tangled together the roots had been.
Tweaking the heater to try to get the temp where I want it.
And why does water feel cooler, even when it's higher than the surrounding air temp?
06-27-2013, 01:11 AM #8
Oh yes. I'm going to have to find some way of cooling the tank when the real summer heatwaves hit. It's already getting up to about as high as I'm comfortable with the tank going. lol (Roughly 84-85 degrees.)
And I got a package of plants today, from a friend! :D We're not really sure what they are, other than stems that can be either rooted or floating. She tend to float them, I'm rooting them in the substrate.
The tank as it stands now:
A close up of the new plants:
I don't have tweezers or anything like that to plant them, so I had to use my fingers... which was really messy and half-hazard. lol But they're in! And hopefully they'll stay down and root properly.
06-27-2013, 04:37 AM #9
Aaaaand I had added ammonia to bring it up to 1ppm, officially starting to cycle the tank. :D Took four drops. Will check in a couple days. Hopefully the new plants will do their job and suck up ammonia. I expect they'll start slow (like the bacteria and everything else) since they're so small.
06-29-2013, 07:18 AM #10
Okay, I don't want to start a new journal for the QT, so I'll just stick it in here. LOL I'm not completely happy with where I have it sitting, but it'll do for now. I have it filled up and starting to cycle.
It's simply furnished, the heater is a Hydor Mini-heater. It heats the water up to 5 degrees above ambient temperature, rather than to any set temp. While that won't be enough come winter, it's just fine for now when I'm struggling to keep the planted tank from getting too hot during the day. And since there's absolutely zero things living in it, I don't need to worry about temps at all at this point.