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Nano 15ltr scape


18 Jan 2016
Hi - first nano scape. 15ltr Flexi-mini set up. This is it unplanted (apart from a random crypt i got free with some tweezers at Pets at Home!).

Now planted up:
Pogostemon Helferi
Hydrocotyle tripartita Japan
Juncus Repens
Rotala Rotundifolia
Microsorum 'mini'
Cryptocoryne Balansae
Cryptocoryne ?
Willow moss
Christmas moss

1 week in and have added 6 cherry shrimp and 3 very small cherry barb (who may end up in my bigger tank when they grow larger).


Currently lights on 5 hours a day, co2 on/off 1 hour before. Lights are 'tinfoiled' to reduce intensity just now. Using Co2Art easy EI Macro & Micro. Substrate is the dutch/german? stuff you get from Maidenhead Aquatics. Filtration is from small internal with spray bar, a lot of flow.

So far so good.
Mmm, i now have no Cherry Barbs - they've all committed suicide by jumping out of the tank in the space of 24 hours. Found some small desiccated bodies on the kitchen floor.

There's no cover on the tank, i should probably be looking to have the water a bit lower than right to the brim.

RIP fellas.
We're almost 4 weeks into this tank now and it seems to be going relatively well.

Lights are now on full power, 6 hrs a day, Co2 on 1.5hrs ahead, off 1 hr ahead. Dosing 1.2mm macro on Mon/Wed/Fri/Sun and 1.2mm micro on Tues/Thurs. Saturday is water change day, 50%

A few minor issues however:
  • Quite a bit of surface film. Not sure how to remove?
  • Snails, must have been on some of the plants. Have had to keep on top on them and squish them before they get bigger, would have been over run. Also have found small 2mm worm type thing, black, looks slightly like a tadpole/mosquito larvae?
  • C02. Bubble rate was 1.4 per sec when i started, it had dropped to 0.8 per sec by tonight. Had to open the valve slightly. Is that normal for it to drop of its own accord over time? I assume yes as the pressure in the bottle drops, but want to check i'm not missing something.
  • The Pogostemon Helferi is taking it's time getting going, but may be being swamped by the Hydrocotyle tripartita Japan.
  • The Hydrocotyle tripartita Japan is a little bit peely wally looking in places, some yellowing of the edges. Not terrible and it's growing quite well, but would like it to be a bit zingier. Any thoughts?
  • There was some cyanobacteria on the moss, i spot treated it with Gluteraladehyde. It worked, but i nuked a fair wee section of moss too. Doh.
  • Small Cherry Barbs suicided out of the tank. The Cherry Shrimp are doing well though, growing and moulting.
  • The crypt at the back hasn't really taken hold yet, its stopped melting but not much new growth. The tiny Crypt Balansae i transplanted from my other tank are growing slowly in a fairly dark and poorly circulated back corner.
  • I've tied moss onto the rock in a place that is completely shaded. It's growing, but very very slowly.
Other than that, no disasters so far. Fingers crossed.

I'm not much of a photographer...

My Odessa Barbs all jumped to their deaths, even with the water surface an inch from the top. I was told to ensure there was ambient light over night, but they still jumped. Lost 5 within a couple of weeks, only stopped when I put a plexiglass cover on. It seems Barbs like to jump and are very capable at doing so.
I've only kept Odessa's in lidded Juwel tanks so no issues with finding them on the floor. I did find one in the filter though!

Not had any jumping issues with my cherry barbs. One thing I have noticed (and has been responsible for a few fish deaths in the past) is that the flow forms a crest right at the front of the tank and it would take almost no effort for any fish to be up and over the side at that point and onto the floor.
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Quick update.

A probable mistake....

Gave the Rotala a fairly brutal trim, down to about 2 inches of stem - i think this has then destabilised things by removing quite a high proportion of the biomass from such a small tank, and induced a bit of an algae attack. Not excessive so far, but Staghorn has appeared on the Juncus Repens, some thread algae appearing randomly and a bit of greenspot on the hardscape.

In response i've increased the length of time the Co2 is running (now from 10am to 9pm), kept the lighting period the same (5pm - 10pm) but have reduced the intensity by approx 40% (i'm just covering some LEDs). Worth noting the tank is on the windowsill of a small east facing window.

I've also put a small amount of activated carbon back in the filter - slightly confused on this front as I've read in some places you should remove it, and then in others that its necessary if you are dosing EI???

Interested to hear view on whether i should continue dosing as i have been from day 1 (ie standard EI) or should I maybe try increasing (2x EI)?

What i probably shouldn't do is mess around with 4 parameters at the same time... patience is not one of my virtues.
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Things seemed to be sorting themselves out, then... the light goes on the blink, literally. It now just flashes on and off. Will be going back to the shop!
In the meantime we have the attractive solution of balancing a spare light on the top. We'll see how that affects growth/algae etc...
Things seemed to be sorting themselves out, then... the light goes on the blink, literally. It now just flashes on and off. Will be going back to the shop!
In the meantime we have the attractive solution of balancing a spare light on the top. We'll see how that affects growth/algae etc...
View attachment 81257

That looks solid, I'm jealous; had my eye on getting one of these little tanks for ages!
Great little scape! Sorry to hear about the light issues - I was looking at getting one of these tanks and the sleek light was one of the most attractive features - hope you get it sorted.
These lights have been around a fair bit & very few complaints (some observations that intensity was lower than expected - manufacturer has responded with a new higher intensity model revealed late 2015 - perhaps your kit has the new model?) so I expect your replacement light will be fine - hopefully your shop will just swap one out from an instock kit.

Tank is looking good :) well done on the management!