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Dragon Island

MrClockOff

Member
Joined
20 Aug 2020
Messages
260
Location
Bournemouth
Hi all,



After watching tons of aquascaping videos, following inspirational fellows like MD, George Farmer, Green Aqua etc and keeping successfully-ish high energy planted aquarium for two years finally I convinced myself to try another scape. This time I’m confident enough to accompany it with my first ever journal.



So I’m going to scape:

  • Oase Styleline 175 fish tank
  • filtered by Oase BioMaster 850 Thermo
  • It will have CO2 supplied through Vidao CO2 external reactor connected to filter outlet and CO2 Art Pro regulator with 1.5kg bottle
  • Original CO2 Art needle valve will be replaced with Dakota high precision needle valve
  • Ferts will be auto dosed with Jecod DP-3 auto dosing pump
  • EI ferts regime
  • Illuminated with Superfish Slim LED 74 connected to Nicrew Single Channel Pro controller


Scape style

  • island


Hardscape:

  • dragon stone ?? kg (forgot to weight before starting the scape..)
  • spider wood 1 large, 1 medium and 1 small roots + few little root cuttings


Substrate:

  • Tropica aquasoil about 4-5 litres
  • Mix of Unipack Maui sand fine 4kg with Unipac aquarium silver sand 4kg with Aqua-Substrate gravel 3-4mm 2kg


I’m planning to reuse some plants from my current tank which is going down:

  • Cryptocoryne wendii green
  • Ludwigia palustris
  • Lubelia Cardinalis wavy
  • Java moss
  • Anubias petite
  • Anubias coin
  • Bucephalandra pygmaea wavy green
  • Bucephalandra kedagang
  • Bacopa monnieri


New plants:

  • Salvinia auriculata
  • Hydrocotyle tripartita
  • Hygrophila pinnatifida
  • Christmas moss


Fauna for now is going to be from old tank

  • 13 neon tetra
  • 5 black neon
  • 1 SAE
  • 4 amano shrimps
  • X number of red cherry shrimps


So far the hardscape is done and I’m happy with it:)



I hope you will enjoy my journey



Cheers
 

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Ady34

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27 Jul 2011
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4,989
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Co. Durham
Nice start, will look forward to seeing it planted up.
Ady.
 

MrClockOff

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Thread starter
Joined
20 Aug 2020
Messages
260
Location
Bournemouth
Not sure how to keep up with updating this but

on 22nd of October, 2021 I finally got time to plant and flood my Dragon Island. Everything went very well. Half of the plants were reused and another half was a brand new batch. Unfortunately Salvinia DOA and all vent into bin.. I thought I could safe it but it was just getting worser every day. Probably the 1-2 Grow pot was damaged in transit or it was stored incorrectly despite it came from very respectful shop. Filled with RO/Tap 50/50 water. Auto-dosing ferts from day one using APF and their suggested recipe. CO2 is being injected from day one too. Light at 50% intensity 7 hours a day. Daily 50% water changes for the first week (RO/Tap 50/50).

Next day the water started getting cloudy and the day after next day the spider wood roots started to develop white slimy coat. Using electric tooth brush I brushed every root and unfortunately one of three glued roots together separated. Everything was glued using cigarette filters and super glue but I guess the slimy thing just weakened the connection. I was so angry as I thought the hardscape composition was so nice and tidy and now I have to attach it back and pay attention I'm not glueing anything else. After an hour or so it finally attached it and it looking even better. Not sure is it because of wet roots or too much glue but it was curing longer than expected. Also I've accidentally left white stain on the wood which I'm going to mask with moss later.. Ha, and I ended up with each finger glued on both hands.. 🤯

After forth water change the water started to clear up and I'm getting less slime on the wood. For some reason the reused plants are performing worser than brand new from 1-2 grow pots.. The reused plants are getting covered with thin blackish/brownish algae looking layer and new plants are starting showing signs of life. I've got first brand new leafs on Marsilea Hirsuta!

Still tweaking the CO2 rate and timing but today I finally have achieved 1 PH unit drop by lights on and it's looking stable throughout the day so 🤞🏻
 

MrClockOff

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Thread starter
Joined
20 Aug 2020
Messages
260
Location
Bournemouth
First week update

Not much changed visually but after a close look it seems like all plants are showing first sings of new growth.

One of the cryptocoryne parva melted completely and I have removed all leafs but left the roots in the substrate hoping for recovery.

The wood is still showing sings of white slime here and there but now the diatoms are the real king. Brushing them of with electric toothbrush just before each water change.

First time cleaned the pre-filter

I’m switching to water changes every second day this week.

I’ve installed tiny powerhead on the back wall at the top left corner as this area looked like it had flow issues. I think it’s much better now but I’ll be looking for something black with similar specs and size so it blends better with the black background.

In the middle of the last week I have tested the water for curiosity and got this results:

Ammonia 0.5 ppm
Nitrite 0.5 ppm
Nitrate 20.0 ppm
Phosphate 0.5
GH 6
KH 4
TDS 144

But last night
Ammonia 0.0 ppm
Nitrite 0.0 ppm

Is this possible that filter has cycled in one week? The only bacteria I have transferred from old mature fish tank was attached to reused plants. Was that enough?
Is it safe to introduce cleanup crew like shrimps this early?

One week shot
 

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dw1305

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13,964
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nr Bath
Hi all,
But last night
Ammonia 0.0 ppm
Nitrite 0.0 ppm

Is this possible that filter has cycled in one week? The only bacteria I have transferred from old mature fish tank was attached to reused plants. Was that enough?
Is it safe to introduce cleanup crew like shrimps this early?
Possibly not. I'd give it at least another week until the plants are definitely growing.

If you are a snail fan? I'd start with a hardy snail like Tadpole (Physella) or Ramshorn (Planorbella).

cheers Darrel
 

MrClockOff

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Thread starter
Joined
20 Aug 2020
Messages
260
Location
Bournemouth
Hi all,

Possibly not. I'd give it at least another week until the plants are definitely growing.

If you are a snail fan? I'd start with a hardy snail like Tadpole (Physella) or Ramshorn (Planorbella).

cheers Darrel
Hi Darrel,

thank you and yes you're right. I have checked ammonia and nitrite 2 days later and traces were present both ammonia and nitrite were at 0.25ppm.

Currently I have both Planorbella and Tadpole snails 🐌 present in the tank plus ammonia released from Tropica soil.

Will check water again in few days 👍

Cheers
Dan
 

MichaelJ

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Joined
9 Feb 2021
Messages
1,690
Location
Minnesota, USA
@MrClockOff When you introduce shrimps and a cleanup crew and/or snails in a couple of weeks or so when plants start to grow as pointed out, I would supplement with algae wafers as you probably wont have enough algae and biofilm for the livestock to munch on. You could also prime the pump immediately, while you wait, with some dried almond leaves as they seem to decay and build up biofilm quite fast. My Otocinclus, shrimps and snails love it.

Very nice scape! cant wait to see it mature :)

Cheers,
Michael
 

MrClockOff

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Thread starter
Joined
20 Aug 2020
Messages
260
Location
Bournemouth
@MrClockOff When you introduce shrimps and a cleanup crew and/or snails in a couple of weeks or so when plants start to grow as pointed out, I would supplement with algae wafers as you probably wont have enough algae and biofilm for the livestock to munch on. You could also prime the pump immediately, while you wait, with some dried almond leaves as they seem to decay and build up biofilm quite fast. My Otocinclus, shrimps and snails love it.

Very nice scape! cant wait to see it mature :)

Cheers,
Michael
Thanks Michael. To be honest I can’t wait to start introducing the clean up crew cos I have plenty of stuff to clean myself. Diatoms, white slimy fungi on the wood and some dark brown/black thin layer of algae on reused moss, anubis and bucephalandra bother me too much 🤔

All plants showing new growth especially Ludwigia palustris and Hygrophila polysperma but it’s still going slower than normal maybe because of the light running to low (50% right now).

Just in case I’ve bumped up the CO2 to get 1.3 PH drop until there is no stock ( except snails which doing just fine )

I’m tempted to try salvinia once again just need to find established and healthy plants around Bournemouth…

Cheers
 

GTomas

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Joined
18 Apr 2020
Messages
32
Location
West Yorkshire, UK
@MrClockOff don’t be bothered by diatoms and slime on the wood, it’s all part of natural cycle, at least you know you are on the right track. Slime fungi is always the most favourite treat for my shrimps every time I introduce them in the new scape, they absolutely love it.
 

MrClockOff

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20 Aug 2020
Messages
260
Location
Bournemouth
One thing I blaming myself for not doing is a dark start as I completely forgot about it. I did hardscape and then was waiting two weeks to get some free time for planting. By now I probably would have already cycled filter..
 

MrClockOff

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Thread starter
Joined
20 Aug 2020
Messages
260
Location
Bournemouth
@MrClockOff don’t be bothered by diatoms and slime on the wood, it’s all part of natural cycle, at least you know you are on the right track. Slime fungi is always the most favourite treat for my shrimps every time I introduce them in the new scape, they absolutely love it.
Thanks @GTomas. I didn’t know that shrimps love the fungi. That’s a good news 👍 I do believe snails love it too but they remove stuff as slow as they move.. 🙄
 

GTomas

Member
Joined
18 Apr 2020
Messages
32
Location
West Yorkshire, UK
Thanks @GTomas. I didn’t know that shrimps love the fungi. That’s a good news 👍 I do believe snails love it too but they remove stuff as slow as they move.. 🙄
I agree with snails, they are too random to my liking and some like digging into the soil or venturing outside the tank every now and then 😂
 

Karmicnull

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Joined
6 Sep 2020
Messages
620
Location
Cambridge
some like digging into the soil or venturing outside the tank every now and then
Yeah - my 40cm cube was colonised by suicidal pond snails and the ground around the tank gets littered with carcasses if I don't clean it regularly. I'm wondering when genetic selection will kick in and the remaining population stop spawning doomed explorer offspring.
 
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