Fishbeast's first Iwagumi

Discussion in 'Journals' started by FishBeast, 10 Jan 2014.

  1. FishBeast

    FishBeast Member

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    am going all out this time round and making my own substrate and using very strong light. The plan is to cap with some old Amazonia 2 and do a dry start with light set to 3000 lux. I will lower it to 2000 when I eventually add water.

    Thread on how I made my substrate can be found here:
    Started making substrate. Opinions please. | UK Aquatic Plant Society

    Once I am confident that the water is safe I will be adding Iriatherina werneri Threadfin Rainbows which I will be attempting to breed in a 1000 ltr tank out the back of my house and Blackmore river Caridina (northern territory 2)
    _MG_0027-2-2-3_zps0213980b.jpg


    Caridina_sp_BMR_04_zps7386b514.jpg

    Aquarium Specifications:
    Aquarium: 182x45x60cm
    Lighting: 2x130w 6400 CFL grow lights.
    Filtration:
    CO2:
    Fertilisation:
    Hardscape: Sand stone
    Substrate: DIY capped with ADA Amazonia 2
    Plants: Hemianthus Callitrichoides, Pogostemon Helferi, Fissidens Fontanus
    Livestock:
     
  2. FishBeast

    FishBeast Member

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    I have capped with Amazonia 2 now and I am finding that because of the steep angle of the substrate from front to back that it looks a bit dry at the back.

    Because this will be a dry start tank, I am wondering how you guys found growing emersed with such a steep incline on the substrate? How did it compare from foreground to background growing HC in?

    _MG_0076-2_zpseccdfc48.jpg
     
  3. aliclarke86

    aliclarke86 Member

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  4. FishBeast

    FishBeast Member

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    Everything is going well so far. My HC has been planted and on day 3 it is already creeping.
    _MG_0100_zps9300df32.jpg

    My Iriatherina Wermeri breeding tank is off to a good start. The freshwater plankton are starting to grow via a pond fertilization schedule used in the ponds where I bought my breeding stock from and the fish are spawning.
    _MG_0081_zpse241e738.jpg

    and the eggs from one of the spawning mops.
    _MG_0095_zps1fe1bdd6.jpg
     
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  5. FishBeast

    FishBeast Member

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    I added the Phoenix moss today and I am finding that the sandstone hardscape is absorbing alot of water which is drying out the moss on it. I had no idea that it would be so absorbent. Anyways, I have the missus on spray duty regularly to make sure that the moss does not dry out too much.

    I am spraying everything with worm pee which I have found moss goes nuts over in the past. So far so good. Everything is comming together well. As the tank progresses my aim is to be at the point where there is no real risk of rotting organic matter and algae blooms when I add water. By having a lengthy dry start I want my substrate to have the time to develop a abundant live bacteria colony which will fall into the next step (filling with water).

    By the time I am ready to fill with water I want to have a very large stock of shrimp breeding. I will likely start the tank by doing very large water changes for a while whilst getting my c02 stable. Then I will introduce shrimp progressively, monitoring the nitrification process (before and after adding shrimp) and use this as a guide as to how fast I can add my shrimp.

    From my past experiences I am far better at growing algae then I am at growing anything else. This time I am going all out and going against most recommended ways to do a planted tank whilst using everything I have learned in combating algae. The goal being to find ways to make having a large planted tank cheaper and taking "charge" of my tank as a whole and not being totally reliant on expensive products. This is my first step.
     
  6. FishBeast

    FishBeast Member

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    A quick update guys. I have had some fungi trouble which I believe is due to having too much water inside the tank and misting every day. Where the water level was above the substrate the HC has melted. I decreased the water level to below the substrate and stopped misting.

    I have phoenix moss on the rocks and I was concerned that if I did not keep the humidity very high they would dry out and die. I guess we will soon see.

    On a positive note. My Threadfins are hatching! At any given time there are between 5-10 visible on the surface.:thumbup:
    _MG_0143_zpsf66225b5.jpg
     
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  7. FishBeast

    FishBeast Member

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    It has been one month now since the planting and things have been a bit up and down. I had some trouble with some fungus which is under control now. It was too humid in the tank.
    _MG_0202_zps81b665a6.jpg
    DAY 1
    1_zps1cef4a2b.jpg

    WEEK 4
    2_zpsce2c7588.jpg

    As you can see in the foreground that the excess water led to a green slime outbreak which looks very similar to BGA which also killed most of the HC around it. It also appears as though the HC on the left is not growing as well as the HC on the right. I am pretty sure that the grow light on the right works better than the one in the left.

    The Fissidens Fontanus is holding on well. It died back in a few spots which have been dryer than the rest of the tank.(NOT PICTURED)

    _MG_0211_zpsf20682a7.jpg

    On a more positive note the Iriatherina Werneri breeding tank is going very well with many many fishes to see and the largest ones are swimming around in a school.
    _MG_0199_zpsb5f5d1cb.jpg
     

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  8. aliclarke86

    aliclarke86 Member

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    Bummer about the slime mate but looking good so far. Chin up and keep it growing :)

    Sent from my GT-I9505G using Tapatalk
     
  9. Lindy

    Lindy Forum Moderator Staff Member

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    Great that you can breed such a beautiful little fish
     
  10. FishBeast

    FishBeast Member

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    Yes, the slime is a nasty reminder to not get too excited about humidity LOL. It does not appear to be leaving any time soon. But is not spreading which is a relief.

    Thanks for your kind words. I am very excited about this scape coming together in time.

    This is the first time I have successfully been able to breed them so it is very exciting. It seems to come down to giving them green, warm water and a lot of sunlight. :thumbup:


    My Pogostemon Helferi has been delayed for many weeks due to a heat wave which destroyed my suppliers stock. Literally 2 days after I bought them :rage:. They are not yet available and I don't know what else would look good in a Iwagumi that would compliment the HC without growing through it and getting messy, like hair grass. Well with a little luck I will not have to be waiting a great deal longer. The temperature here literally got up to 48 degrees, and that is not in farenheit.
     
  11. aliclarke86

    aliclarke86 Member

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    Is this going to be housing just the threadfins?

    Sent from my GT-I9505G using Tapatalk
     
  12. FishBeast

    FishBeast Member

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    It will eventually be about 200 Threadfins and a ton of shrimp.

    I bought 37 shrimp which are from that same region as the Threadfins. I put them in the same breeding tank. This is what they look like.
    Caridina_serratirostris_01_zpsab7528fd.jpg

    The one that I have pictured on the first page are not available at the moment as my supplier lost their breeding stock. They will collect some more as soon as possible but for the moment there are a lot of crocodiles in the water so I chose the next best one that they had. They are very small at the moment and I don't think that I will have a population big enough when I need them at the time I flood the tank so I have another unorthodox plan.

    In the breeding tank I am putting a lot of organic and inorganic fertiliser in it which stimulates algae and micro organism growth but when I was not looking a local rogue frog laid a heap of eggs in the tank. When I saw all of the baby tadpoles cruising around in there I didn't have the heart to remove them and it is just as well. I have now discovered that the masses of green algae which completely covered all 4 walls of the tank have been totally devoured by a handful of tadpoles in only a few days. I literally cannot keep up trying to grow more algae.

    There will be a lot of organic material in the actual non breeding tank when I fill with water. There will be leaves of HC in rotting in there and the rocks which have organic stuff on them not evolved for under water living will decay as well. There are also thousands of microscopic bugs in there which may end up rotting away as well. I see a huge potential for algae growth soon after flooding and at this stage I intend to add some of my unlikely friends (the tadpoles) from the moment I fill it. Obviously when they sprout their back legs I will put them back into the breeding tank. LOL I am a man of unorthodox methods, and I love it.

    Cheers!
     

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  13. FishBeast

    FishBeast Member

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    Since it has been over a month since the last update I thought I had better tell of the progress so far.
    The breeding tank is still going very well with many many fish in there. I will need a few hundred because I intend to have most of the 200 or so Threadfins to be males. The shrimp are going extremely well and have a lot of colour and are carrying berries.
    On a sadder note the HC seems to be growing very slowly. Probably not so slow as to be very concerned but since this is the first time I have successfully grown it I just expected it to grow faster.
    Here is a before photo.
    _MG_0221_zps3996dcd0.jpg

    And here is a after 20 days photo.
    _MG_0287_zpsf8f3c125.jpg

    I have also been having trouble with the leaves (more so on the left hand side of the tank which is also the slowest to grow) turning yellow and then rotting away to a dark brown/black colour which can be seen in the top left of both before and after photos.. Because this began to happen after I let the tank "dry" out a bit to get rid of the fungus outbreak, I put it down to the humidity being too low and began to mist once of twice a day depending on whether the water level at the front of the tank was getting high enough to rot the HC away under it.

    I am not sure if it is working yet, I think it may be but because it is such a slow process of rotting I need more time to be sure. I could really use some advice from experienced emersed growers. This tank is now about 2 1/2 months old now and at this rate it will take 2 years to grow in.

    By the way, how much humidity is too much? It is currently sitting at 80%

    Cheers!
     
    Last edited: 18 Mar 2014
  14. Lindy

    Lindy Forum Moderator Staff Member

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    I can't wait to see a bunch of tadpoles as a clean up crew! Those shrimp are very interesting looking...
     
  15. FishBeast

    FishBeast Member

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    There are not a lot of tadpoles in the breeding tank now but I should be able to find at least a few I'd say. Another funny note though... There are millions of bugs living inside the emersed tank at the moment which does not concern me a lot because they would be encouraging a healthy beneficial bacteria colony and breaking down organic matter. But because I am having trouble with the HC and I need to eliminate the possibility that they may have something to do with it I retrieved a baby frog from the breeding tank and put him in the emersed tank.

    Go your hardest son! :joyful:
     
  16. FishBeast

    FishBeast Member

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    Another update. Not a lot to report but a few photos anyway. The threadfins are continuing to breed very well and are too many to count now. I estimate at least 50-60. :clap: The shrimp are 7 weeks in and are still carrying berries so I can only assume that they are breeding, time will tell. I am also breeding a large colony of snails too.

    _MG_0325-2_zps57f5f4ba.jpg
    The yellowing o the HC seems to be stopping (fingers crossed) and new die-back is not evident. Because of the slow growth I am now aggressively trimming any bit that I can from the vertical growth on the right hand side of the tank and re-planting them in single stems everywhere.

    I am really not very sure whether the HC growth is slow or whether it is purely because this is a large tank that makes it appear to be. I suppose that the trouble that I have had with the yellowing leaves and die-back does not help.

    _MG_0326-2_zpsa3db4637.jpg
    Please excuse the blacks, I overdid it a bit during editing.

    _MG_0329-2_zps90cb377a.jpg

    _MG_0331-2_zps7b074a9c.jpg

    _MG_0330_zps0e3cfbcb.jpg
    Yes they are CO2 bottles in the background.
     
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  17. Edvet

    Edvet Forum Moderator Staff Member

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    This will going to look impressive!
    No stemplants planned?
     
  18. FishBeast

    FishBeast Member

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    I would love to put Pogostemon Helferi in but it is unavailable here so I have been considering using Heteranthera zosterifolia (Stargrass) instead and keep it low.

    For the long term, once I am tired of the Iwagumi I will convert this tank into one with a lot of background and midground plants. First things first, I have to succeed with this layout first. :nailbiting:
     

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