Major Tank Re-Work

Nicolas Rodriguez

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Hey there guys! Well, i have been doing a lot of research lately, and have decided that after the loss of most of my fish ( **** ammonia, how the **** did i know you couldn't add 20 fish to a tank in a 4 month span) I am going to re-do my 45 gallon as a SA Cichlid tank.

The first step? New substrate, this is probably more for me than the fish, but i honestly am not liking my gravel anymore, and i am going to be switching it out for sand this weekend, i will be detailing the process on Sunday, and keeping you guys up to date, so if anyone else ever wants to do something similar, you will know how.

Step Two? I'm going to be turning the tank from plastic plants to live plants! I went through Hundreds of pictures of Cichlid tanks and learned 3 things, Cichlids look AWESOME, sand+Live Plants+ Rocks= A very beautiful, natural looking tank, and finally Most sunken castles and plastic plants fail. I wont be doing this bit of work until i have read up more on low light plants, and maybe come into a bit more money but i think this will really look beautiful.
Step 3? Well, i think the third thing i will be doing is replacing the Roman Collasium, and ugly orange and white rock i have in my tank, with natural rocks that i find outside, i may be doing this at the same time i add the plants, but i want to keep it separate from the actual plants step.

Step 4? Well the SA Cichlids of course, i will be doing this VERY slowly, i am NOT going to stock this tank too quickly, as it will probably result in the death of all the new fish, as for what fish? Well most likely just 2-3 Dwarf Rams, im not sure on Bolivian or German blue, I'm going for color in the tank, and from what i have seen Rams are the most colorful SA cichlids there are.

Now i will be doing before and after pictures for this whole process, starting with some pics on Sunday with before and after of the sand, and i will also be getting a black aquarium background somewhere during that process, it will really make the colors of the fish pop out more. and help hide the heater and filter intake, which are both black.

Well that's all for now, i will be keeping you all up to date, and i hope that you will enjoy tagging along on this little journey with me.
 

Amanda

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I'm going through the exact same process.
lol, we can trade notes.
Except I'm going with angels, parrots, and silver dollars.
I'm going to be trying my hand at low light plants also, a little nervous to be perfectly honest.
But we'll both see how it turns out!
 

Drew 43920

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Do you know why...........

Hey there guys! Well, i have been doing a lot of research lately, and have decided that after the loss of most of my fish ( **** ammonia, how the **** did i know you couldn't add 20 fish to a tank in a 4 month span)
Do you know why ? I was planing on adding 12 fish in a 1 month span ?
 
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Nicolas Rodriguez

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Well it depends, my tank was brand new, and i added a good 20-24 fish in 4 months, which didn't give it good enough time to set up a strong group of bacteria..
 
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Nicolas Rodriguez

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I'm going through the exact same process.
lol, we can trade notes.
Except I'm going with angels, parrots, and silver dollars.
I'm going to be trying my hand at low light plants also, a little nervous to be perfectly honest.
But we'll both see how it turns out!
That's Awesome!
I just found a major flaw in my plan though, i checked the wattage on my light when i did a water change just now and its only 17 Watts * Face palms* So i will have to purchase a new light bulb. I dident buy this tank, it was my uncles so i wasn't sure about the light wattage until now, hopefully it wont set me back TOO much money.
 
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Nicolas Rodriguez

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OK, so i went to plant geek.com and found a solution, low light plants can be grown from .5-1.5 Wpg without difficulty, they will just grow very slowly so if i add another 20 Watt Bulb to my tank i will have about .8 Wpg, which is acceptable and will hopefully work
 

Amanda

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Yep, plantgeeks.com has become my bible.
I'm thinking of going with amazon swords, java fern for right now.
I'm thinking of Vals, but I'm not sure if I have enough lighting for that.
 
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Nicolas Rodriguez

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Im not really that sure what i want yet, i know i want a few things that will grow tall so i can cover my heater in the back of the tank, but im also going to be adding rocks so i wont have all that many plants, then again, plants growing in between rocks might look nice.
 

Amanda

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Java fern is an easy plant to grow ON the rocks, if that's a look that you'd be interested in.
 

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I'd recommend going for a better lighting thing than that... I had 1 wpg and I still was able to kill java moss (supposedly one of the least light needing plants..)

Also, I might be careful that the cichlids could uproot or shred some of your plants...
Do you know what type of cichlid you are going to get?
 
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Nicolas Rodriguez

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Well i have 3 angels in there already, and i was thinking of addin 2-3 Dwarf Rams ( as far as i know they are ok with plants) and Maybe later down the road a discus.
 
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Nicolas Rodriguez

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Lol, thankfully im not planning on getting java moss i honestly think its fairly ugly but that's just my opinion
 
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Nicolas Rodriguez

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Hmm, i guess ill take a look, i dont think im going to use alot of plants, just some here and there to add variety, i could always just use rocks to cover the heater
 

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its just that it is a heck of a lot easier to plant most stuff with better wpgs. Java moss was just an example because its supposed to be really hardy and low light..
 
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Nicolas Rodriguez

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yeah, im trying to fing high wattage 24 in lights, there arent many i can find, if i cang get like 60 watts in there i would be happy
 

Drew 43920

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Java Ferns on driftwood

Im not really that sure what i want yet, i know i want a few things that will grow tall so i can cover my heater in the back of the tank, but im also going to be adding rocks so i wont have all that many plants, then again, plants growing in between rocks might look nice.
I like Java Ferns on driftwood, good PH. Easy to move for vacuuming. Some fish like to nibble on wood.
 
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