Monday 7 January 2013

13 Litre Nano Tank

This is my first nano tank... its actually just meant as a temporary tank to hold fishes and shrimps while my larger "showcase" tank was undergoing the few weeks of growing a carpet of Hemianthus Callitrichoides via dry start method (DSM).

Turned out to be a rather nice and simple desktop nano tank... so i'll probably just keep it that way. :)

Here are the tank stats:

Tank Size: 30cm x 24cm x 18cm (High Clarity / Low Iron Glass)

Substrate: ADA Aqua Soil New Amazonia (Powder Type)

Filter System: Eden 501 + Eheim Single Tap + 10mm ANS Lily Pipe Set + gUSH Stainless Steel Mesh Guard (13mm version but using o-rings as intake pipe adapters)

Filter Media: Seachem Matrix + Bio Sponge

Temperature: 27-28 °C

Lighting: Up Aqua Z-Series Pro LED Z-10 (30cm)

Light Duration: 6-8 hours

Co2: None

Fertilizer: None

Fan/Chiller: None

Water Change Regimen: 20% Weekly

Water Parameters:
Tested using API Freshwater Master Test Kit
pH = 6.6
Ammonia = 0 ppm
Nitrite = 0 ppm
Nitrate = 5-10 ppm

Fissidens Splachnobryoide

Danio Tinwini 
Danio Margaritatus
Otocinclus Affinis
Neocaridina Heteropoda var. Fire Red

Hikari Micro Pellets 
Hikari Micro Wafers
Hikari Algae Wafers
Hikari Shrimp Cuisine 
Blanched Zucchini & Green Peas

This tank has been running for around 3 months now, its fully cycled and requires very low maintenance.

Shrimps are breeding rapidly, dozens of small shrimplets regularly spotted grazing amongst the fissiden leaves and the fishes don't bother them.

Very little algae seems to be appearing, i guess they are regularly cleaned up by the hardworking Otocinclus Affinis before they can take hold, so i actually increase the lighting duration periodically to help encourage more natural algae growth to feed them (blanched vegetables and algae wafers supplement their diet, but i still want them to hone their algae eating skills).

The Up Aqua Z-Series Pro light is bright and very efficient (the 30cm version only draws 10.7 watts), this light set has 2-3 times more LEDs than most other similar systems i've seen so far, which results in much better light coverage. It has a very slim casing too, so it matches the tank aesthetically and i can still access the tank easily to do basic maintenance without needing to move the light set.

So far, i can see the Fissidens Splachnobryoide growing and spreading further on the bogwood, so this LED light set seems to be quite effective for that type of moss.

Special credit goes to jamesneo at the Aquatic Quotient forum, he was the one who created the fissidens on bogwood structure and it fit perfectly as the main centerpiece of this nano tank.  

Danio Margaritatus look great but are incredibly shy fishes (i've read that they are very shy fish, but i never believed how skittish they really were until i got them), i added them as one of the first tank inhabitants but hardly saw them as they prefer to mill about at the bottom area of the tank. If they detect even the slightest movement outside of the tank, the little chaps will quickly hide behind or under the bogwood.

I figured having "dither" fishes of similar size might help, so i added in a group of Danio Tinwini. These fishes look very cool (like miniature leopards with their mix of spotted patterns on top of iridescent gold scales) and are very sociable. In addition, they naturally school around the middle and top levels of the tank.

It worked! The shy Danio Margaritatus immediately joined in to school with them too. :)

The bogwood cave... looks empty, but whenever i shine a torch into it to check, there are always shimp or fish hiding there, at one point during one of the monthly tank maintenance activities, i found almost a dozen fishes all huddled inside that small cave space!

Overall, i'm quite happy with this nano tank. :)