What sort of lighting do I need?

CMachell

Hi all,

Reposting this question from another forum, hope that's okay:

Recently set up my first planted tank, Fluval Roma 240 litre. Currently stocked with 9 black ruby barbs, 4 sterbai corys, 4 sodalis corys, 2 apistogramma, 6 boesmani rainbows, 1 clown pleco, 1 silver molly (a stowaway but doing well). All fish are doing well. Currently doing 2 water changes per week of around 25% each. Planted with a range of beginner - intermediate plant species from amazon swords, crypts, water wisteria, duckweed, etc to alternathera reinicki and just planted a nymphaea rubra bulb. I've just set up co2 injection, have it steady at 30ppm throughout the day, only on during photo period of 10 hours. I'm using clay substrate with a gravel cap round the edges of the tank and using TNC complete liquid ferts and root tabs.

I know I'm probably making lots of mistakes already but would appreciate advice on whether I should get some higher lighting - my current LED light is 1950 lumens, working out at around 8lm per litre, which I understand is low (though it looks plenty bright to me!). Is it necessary to get higher lighting or will the plants be okay with this? I'm conscious of stressing the fish with high lighting but also of wasting co2 if the plants aren't able to take it up through insufficient photosynthesising. I'd love to strike the right balance if at all possible - I'd love a tank with healthy, lush plants and happy, calm fish! I've attached a photo to give a general sense of plant density. Any advice greatly appreciated, thank you!



tank-jpg.jpg
 

TClare

I have been looking into this recently as we are setting up a new large tank. From what I have read 8 lumens per litre is pretty low even for low light requiring plants. The wisteria and duckweed may be fine but probably not the other plants you mention. And the duckweed will quickly shade out what light there is. I have never used CO2 but understand that with insufficient light they won’t be able to utilize all of it (and vice versa), I think its quite a delicate balance. I am sure others with more experience will be able to give you a more definite answer. If you add more light as well as providing CO2 I think the plants themselves should provide shady spots for the fish.
 
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