Aquarium size and algae?

Discussion in 'General Planted Tank Discussions' started by Glenda Steel, 13 Apr 2018.

  1. Glenda Steel

    Glenda Steel Member

    Messages:
    155
    Location:
    Lincolnshire England
    Firstly I apologise if I've posted in the wrong area, I can't seem to find a section on Aquariums (i.e. the actual glass tank).

    We're thinking of purchasing a second tank and I've been looking at various sizes of nano tanks (up to 55l). Can anyone tell me if the smaller nano tanks (ie the 15l Flex Mini Scape set or the Dennerle 30l nano cube) are harder work at keeping algae at bay as opposed to a larger 55l Dennerel Scapers tank please? I am thinking of making it my first Co2 injection tank (with the Tropica co2 system nano) and would love to try a simple, beginners Iwagumi.
     
  2. MattW

    MattW Member

    Messages:
    56
    Location:
    Surrey, United Kingdom
    Hi there,

    There are a few factors which would effect this and therefore it's hard to say. One thing to note about the flexi mini scape set is the light is significantly powerful when compared to tank size - so often people report a bloom in algae especially when trying to initially balance the tank. This isn't a huge issue since you mentioned you're intending to use CO2 injection and there are a good few scapes demonstrating great usage and balance of this tank.

    One of the bonuses of nano tanks is the maintenance time, as you could guess doing a 50%+ water change on a 15L tank is much faster than doing a 50%+ water change on a 100L tank, given it's faster many people actually opt to perform multiple 50% water changes throughout the week instead of the standard 1 a week schedule - this helps some way in controlling waste organics in the tank.
     
    Glenda Steel likes this.
  3. Glenda Steel

    Glenda Steel Member

    Messages:
    155
    Location:
    Lincolnshire England
    Hi MattW

    Good point! Also thinking in the long term, how would a smaller 15l tank cope if maintenance is not performed if say we are away a 2 week holiday? I was planning on it being a shrimp tank which I believe is a little lighter on the waste.

    do you have any links, I'm looking for inspiration and also want to 'get it right' this time, our first tank is a Fluval Edge (the tall 46l) which is a nightmare for cleaning! Coupled with my mistakes on hard landscape and substrate, I spend at least 2 hours a week on maintenance just to keep the algae at bay! I am planning on a re-scape soon and intend using the new tank as a hold tank which is why I'm leaning towards the larger nanos but have asked advice on this link: https://www.ukaps.org/forum/threads/advice-on-temporary-homing-fish-inverts.52735/
     
  4. Edvet

    Edvet Forum Moderator Staff Member

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    4,684
    Location:
    Lelystad, Netherlands
  5. tam

    tam Member

    Messages:
    871
    I think that's the pay-off, a bigger volume of water is easier to keep stable, but a small tank is definitely quicker to do a change on. If you've got a 10L tank, swap out one jug of water and that's a 20% water change sorted. Shrimps are a light bioload so help a lot as they make less waste than fish.
     
    Glenda Steel likes this.
  6. alto

    alto Member

    Messages:
    4,144
    Tropica Inspiration page can easily be set to display Aquaria < 50l
    you'll see some JSM & other tanks

    I'm not sure I agree that smaller tanks are inherently less stable than larger tanks - less forgiving of mistakes perhaps in some sense (ie don't over stock or add livestock too soon, not much water volume to dilute ammonia or nitrites etc) but also easy & cheap to scape & change

    I've the 2nd generation Mini Flex LED & have never found it too "powerful" - I always add fast growing stem plants upon startup, also plant heavily from the first, it's fine with/without CO2 BUT I have soft tap water (with notable dissolved CO2), I fertilize minimally after using Tropica's Aquarium Soil Powder as substrate
    Algae becomes a nuisance after phenomenal neglect (months without water change other than top ups)

    Rather than just tank size, consider what fish etc you'd like to keep in this second tank, also some dimensions are much easier to scape than others
    The Dennerle Scapers tanks are popular but I dislike rounded edges as they contribute significant distortion (not a bowfront fan for same reason)


    When leaving a small tank like this, feed well for a couple weeks prior, changing water more frequently, then give a good clean 1-2 days before, then leave it - do not allow anyone inexperienced to feed fish in this small tank
    (I found that even setting out premeasured food was no good, as helpful friend decided I must've made a mistake & fed MUCH more ... disaster)


    I'm a great fan of Tropica's Nano CO2 kits, they work very well on smaller tanks & last a reasonable amount of time
    BUT you ether need to shut off CO2 nightly or set lower bubble rate (while away or as usual method)

    Evaporation is more of an issue for smaller tanks, so make sure to have a glass cover to use while away
    (OK full disclosure I've forgotten & tank lost more than half water volume - all survived just fine - though I'm sure it did no favour for the heater longevity)
    Heater is important in these smaller tanks, use the least wattage you can find - 25watt Eheim etc will still allow adjustable temp dial, many smaller heaters have preset temp with no adjustment possible & are designed to heat X degrees above ambient (I've seen a surprising # of Aqueon heaters smoke out - even in larger tanks - so that's put me off the all-plastic aquarium heaters, this was also an issue with (expensive) Cobalt heaters)
     
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  7. alto

    alto Member

    Messages:
    4,144
    Try a dry start :)
     
  8. Glenda Steel

    Glenda Steel Member

    Messages:
    155
    Location:
    Lincolnshire England
    We are the hardest area in the UK for tap water sitting at 324ppm but I am considering using the ADA soil system if it's a small tank. As far as inhabitants I was going to keep this as a shrimp tank (including my favourite cleaners the Amanos).
    I agree Alto it's the one thing that I really don't like about these tanks. After your recommendation I am now considering the ADA tanks. One issue that I do need is a glass cover top panel as we have a cat fixated by drinking any water around (including old tank water after the water changes!!!!)! I would like this to be a good long term investment so want to make sure it's the right size and quality. Factor in the need to use it as a holding tank for a few days as it becomes a huge decision!
    I'm not sure my abilities are even up to a normal start let alone a dry start aren't there issues with fungus etc?
     
  9. Glenda Steel

    Glenda Steel Member

    Messages:
    155
    Location:
    Lincolnshire England
  10. Glenda Steel

    Glenda Steel Member

    Messages:
    155
    Location:
    Lincolnshire England
    This is the kit I was thinking of but I am still nervous of the whole pressurised co2 idea.
    I presume with shrimp they will have plenty to graze on even if left without food for 2 weeks and no I wouldn't trust anyone with my tanks!!!
    I was considering an external heater (one that fits into the filter) to allow more room in the tank - perhaps an Oase Biomaster Thermo 250? We have a Oase filter in the pond and have been very impressed particularly with the telephone tech' back-up.
     
  11. alto

    alto Member

    Messages:
    4,144
    Only concern I have with external filters is the (always) generous heater wattage, though

    Eheim guidelines (which I follow as I mostly own Eheim heaters) recommend 150watt for 200 - 300 litre aquarium

    Of course this just means you need a bigger tank :D

    Note it's a rare event for a heater to FAIL
    Looking at the OASE website, it seems possible to (easily) replace the heater in their thermo filter line, you might check whether a smaller heater is possible for use with smaller aquaria (external dimension for their heater series is consistent, only length changes)
     
  12. alto

    alto Member

    Messages:
    4,144
    It's likely worth your while going to a shop such as Aquarium Gardens (sponsor here & you might meet George Farmer doing tank maintenance ;)) that is able to go through various tanks & filters & CO2 etc with you
    (they have several display tanks so should be easy enough to look at all the parts)

    Important aspect of the Tropica (& similar) kit is checking the O-ring is in place before screwing in the new cyclinder
    I had an early kit which lacked this warning label & of course the O-ring had fallen out, screwed in new cyclinder & freezing gas/liquid spewed out, fortunately I'd a towel at hand so no burns
    The O-ring should be a tight fit & this is an unlikely event - shop (& Tropica) replaced the cyclinder & (too loose) O-ring
     
  13. alto

    alto Member

    Messages:
    4,144
    ADA tanks include stainless steel clips to be used with a suitable glass cover (sold separately) which covers most of the tank, leaving access for filter tubing etc

    Some manufacturers include similar options (most sell clips & covers separately (if at all) check for stock before buying a tank)

    ADA garden mats are also a worthwhile investment as they are a dense (closed cell) anti-vibration foam - any rimless tank should be used with a quality mat (some manufacturers include mats that are akin to cardboard :eek:)
     
  14. Glenda Steel

    Glenda Steel Member

    Messages:
    155
    Location:
    Lincolnshire England
    I'll do that Alto thanks. As for the bigger tank, I now have my heart set on a nano!
    that's defiantly on my to do next list and having just watched their (@Aquarium Gardens) showroom video I'm now reconsidering the Scapers tank! Getting all of the new equipment/hardscape materials and plants at one go would make sense!
     
    Last edited: 15 Apr 2018
  15. alto

    alto Member

    Messages:
    4,144
    I've a couple of ADA 30cm cube tanks (thought I'd like to do a triptych someday) but find they aren't the easiest to aquascape - good practise size perhaps
    It's also not the nicest dimensions for fish (which tend to swim lengths rather than circles ... well they do that too, just long ovals in the longer tanks)

    I've an ADA 45P which I like much more

    I look at ADA 60P journals here & elsewhere & wish I had this tank too :oops: :oops: :oops:
    Tanks such as the Aquascaper 600 & TMC 60 are lovely but much more of a commitment when scaping & caring for
    The 60P (dimensions) fits the Golden Rules described by Amano perfectly

    Read through Green Pekoe Pond - it will make you fall in love with the 45P :D

    The Scapers tank looks grand in photos but I suspect the curved glass distortion will be much more apparent in real life
    - obviously some people either don't notice (obsess :rolleyes:) or like this effect very well ;)

    That poor CPD deserves companions so he's calling dibs on the new tank (which must include a suitable plant thicket)
     
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