My Photography

My Photography
Off topic post, recently a bit active in photo shooting more than aquascape. The reason why I do that is to understand the nature, like Mr Takashi Amano does. So is a helpful skill to develop our aquascaping and some nature behaviour. The place I am staying has such a limited stone scape, but worth for deep in study of the formation. If you like my photography, please drop a 'LIKE' on my link. Thank you very much.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

New idea of the layout

Top view plan

For the past few days, I have the urge to rescape my tank, but without a good idea is very hard for me to start moving the drift wood & plants. The plan above is the latest idea of how to place each plants, drift wood, and stones.

Legend:

  1. SPIKY MOSS
  2. HEMIANTHUS CALLITRICHOIDES
  3. MICROSORUM PTEROPUS ‘NARROW’ (NARROW FERN LEAF)
  4. MICROSORUM PTEROPUS 'WINDELOV'
  5. ANUBIAS BARTERI var. NANA
  6. CRYPTOCORYNE UNDULATA
  7. VALLISNERIA ASIATICA var. BIWAENSIS
  8. LOBELIA CARDINALIS
  9. DRIFT WOOD
  10. NEW!! GRASS TYPE PLANT

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Recipe for DIY CO2 & equipments

I have successfully brew the CO2 since many months ago, and sharing my recipe in here.


The sequence & volume uses:
  1. I am using two numbers of 1 litre bottle(1000ml) (as shown in photo below).
  2. Ready 250ml (g) of sugar, fill it in the container.
  3. Pour in 500ml of tap water, and 250ml of boiling water (ratio 2:1).
  4. Do not shake the bottle, let the sugar sink to the bottom with lukewarm water.
  5. And now, put in 2.5ml (1/2 teaspoon) of yeast.
  6. Lastly, put in 5ml (1 teaspoon) of Soda bicarbonate.
  7. Quickly seal the cover to prevent any bacteria get in the bottle.
  8. Put it in a corner for about an hour to let the yeast fully active.

There is evidence that yeast mixtures last longer if you decrease the amount of yeast, and conversely last shorter periods if more yeast is used. Lower yeast also means less CO2 produced per minute, but produce more consistantly over time. Higher yeast levels will cause an initial higher burst of CO2 production with a gradually declining production over time. Keep this in mind while experimenting.

DIY a 1 litre 'milk' bottle is simple, punch a hole and put in a connector and air tube on top the cover and sealed the cover with hot glue gun after mixing yeast, soda and sugar. While this is probably the best method available, it can be cost prohibitive. A nice compromise is the DIY CO2 system. nowadays need to mix in between 9~12 days, and using 2 bottles to push out more bubbles to get 25~35ppm.


DIY a simple plastic container with drilling 2 holes on top the cover and put on the hose connector and air tube, sealed it with the hot glue gun. Then, that is a bubble counter. Later fill in some water to let the bubble out from the tube for counting.


Bought the CO2 reactor on 2006. It works good, diffuse Co2 in water achieve near to perfect. I like it! Even better then the conservative type. And the surface skimmer works good too, no more oil slick on the water surface.

My plants in the tank

Some of my plants already keep in the tank for about a year plus and some just few months ago. Those slow growing plants recently infected by green spot algae and black brush algae seriously. Last week I was injected more CO2 in the tank, can see some GSA really gone about 30% in a week, and add in small amount of Phosphate also helping to reduce a bit algae. I will keep an eye on the algae for a period. Tested the pH at 6.0 last week, and the Red Cherry getting more active and happy with low pH, and also keep breeding in the tank.

left: POGOSTEMON HELFERI
right: SPIKY MOSS
left: ANUBIAS BARTERI var. NANA
right: LOBELIA CARDINALIS

(not sure about it)
left: HEMIANTHUS CALLITRICHOIDES
right: (temporary unknown)

top: MICROSORUM PTEROPUS 'WINDELOV'

left: VALLISNERIA ASIATICA var. BIWAENSIS
right: CRYPTOCORYNE UNDULATA
top: MICROSORUM PTEROPUS ‘NARROW’ (NARROW FERN LEAF)

Friday, April 25, 2008

Layout - Island Style

Well, this layout has been keeping for several months, the plants growing and algae also grow together with it. Now my tank keeping few type of shrimps, 'Red Cherry' happy with the environments and making their next generation. I planned to rescape it, and afraid of disturbing the 'Red Cherry', and temporary no ideas what should I do for next.

Some history of my 33" planted tank

These photos are my early stage 2006-2007 setup of the planted tank, without any experience in the beginning, know nothing about plants, and the worst is the aquascape skill really like a crap. Keeping a healthy planted aquarium and a good biological system isn't that easy and need to spend lots of efford & time to take care of it. Here is a place that I am sharing my experience and the stuff that I am using. May not be a good method, but it can be an idea or a study case that success to growth the plants. During setup the new aquarium, the bacteria in the filter system have not fully colonized and the water body is loaded with nutrients from withering leaves. It is best to plant densely from he start to prevent algae growth. Never start with a sparse tank as you only asking for trouble.
Of course it would be best to start with all your favorite plans provided you have the available quantity to begin with. If it is of budgetary concern, you can always start off with a combination of your intended plants along with cheaper, faster growing ones as starter plants. The strategy is to have your aquascape element arranged in accordance with your intended layout. Plant only those plants you intended for your design and leave the rest of the cheap starters plant in their plastic pots. Arrange them sparingly in the aquarium to maintain the tank's equilibrium. When the planted plants begin to acclimatize and produce vigorous growth, gradually remove the pots one at a time every 2 weeks. This way, you can maintain the balance and still have the ones you prefer. Different types of aquascape call for different strategies in cultivation of aquatic plants. For instance, if you plan to use Cryptocoryne as the focus of your layout, most of the leaves will melt away as it tries to acclimatize to its new enviroment, lending it a desloate look to the aquarium until new buds start to develop again. In this case, you will have to consider the beauty of the aquarium as well as faster growing starter stem plants that require stronger lighting. After a period of time, the stem plants growth will begin to show a decline, which is relative to the decrease in lighting intensity and other factors such as acidity and water hardness. Under such conditions, it would then be ideal and practical to introduce Cryptocoryne since they do better in mature tanks

top: the last design/layout of year 2007
bottom: new design/layout of year 2008

Specification For 20" Tank

Tank size : L20" x D13" x H13"

Light system : Aqua Zonic Super Bright double tube 24W T5 lamp with 12000K brightness

Filter system : "DIA" 502 Canister filter with ADA Bio Rio, JBL Symec, JBL PhosEx plus and bamboo charcoal insides.

Substrate : JBL Floralpol, JBL AquaBasis plus
layer 2 - ADA Aqua Soil (Amazonia II)

C O 2 : DIY type, 2 x 1 litre bottle, 35~40 bubbles/min.

Airation : after lights off, approx. 11 hours.

Water : Changed 1/3 tank water Once a week, dosing Stress Zyme(benificial bacteria).

Fertilizer : ADA Brighty K, Seachem Flourish Trace & Excel


Old Tank Specification:

Tank size : L33" x D15" x H16" custom made clear glass tank (8mm thick)7425 cubic inch, 32.1 gallons, 121.6 litres (based on H15" water)

Light system : Normal light with electronic ballast
32W 8000K NEC circline light x 3nos.
22W 6200K Philips circline light x 2 nos.
9W Red Aqua PL double tube x 2nos.
a total of 158W = 1.3W/litre = 4.9W/gallon

Filter system : "DIA" 502 Canister filter with ADA Bio Rio, JBL Symec, JBL PhosEx plus and bamboo charcoal insides.

Substrate : JBL Floralpol, JBL AquaBasis plus
layer 2 - ADA Aqua Soil (Amazonia)
layer 3 - size of 5mm pebble stones (front)

C O 2 : DIY type, 2 x 1 litre bottle, 35~40 bubbles/min.

Airation : after lights off, approx. 11 hours.

Water : Changed 1/3 tank water twice a week, dosing Stress Zyme(benificial bacteria).

Fertilizer : JBL Ferropol, ADA Brighty K, JBL the 7+13 balls, PMDD - KNO3, KH2PO4, K2CO3, CaCl2 & MgSO4.