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High fish/ low plant load


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I'm purchasing a 75 gallon.  My goal is to have a high load of fish (4 angels, 8 red eyed tetras, 6 rainbows, 2 rams, 2 sailfins, plus various bottom feeders).  I would like to add a moderate amount of plants using a low tech approach (maybe 2 ASwords, 3 Java Ferns, some floaters and some Anubias and some Vals).  Everyone says plant heavy but that's not my goal, again it's fish first and some plants.  I'd also like to do water changes every 2 weeks.  I used to have tanks (fish only) that I did only 10-15% water changes once/month and fish were fine. 

Is this even doable?  If not I'm going 100% fish and no plants.  Thanks!

Edited by svachon9
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The aquarium you want sounds a bit like mine (though your definition of a high fish count may be different than mine), but it is doable.  I attached a picture of the 75 gallon aquarium, which you can see does have some plants, but it's definitely not a jungle.  I also attached a calendar showing my water changes and fertilizer usage for last month.  

Fish wise, I have the following in the aquarium: 1 Denson barb, 2 angel fish, 1 bristle nose pleco, 1 clown pleco, 2 otos, 3 siamese algee eaters, 4 cories, 4 glow fish (white skirted tetras), 3 black skirted tetras, 4 salt and pepper platies, 1 Buenos Aires tetra, and 1 mystery snail (because who doesn't like mystery snails).

Filtration wise I have a fluval 306 canister filter and a fluval C4 HOB on it.  Media wise I use a dual layer floss media inplace of the course sponges on the canister filter.  The filters also have 2 pounds of biohome media in it to help with the biological filtration.  

Water change wise, I typically change the water when the nitrates get up to 50-ish.  Though sometimes I end up changing water when I have time to do so, even if it's a bit early, because I know there is no way I'll have time to change the water when I ideally should, but by changing it early it buys me a little extra time.

In the past on my 29 gallon I would put a bag of purigen in the Fluval C4 HOB filter to keep the nitrates down a bit if I was finding I was having to do a lot of water changes, but that was also back when I had all silk plants in the aquarium.  Since I changed over to the 75 gallon with a few plants in it I haven't had to use the purigen and the water changes haven't been too bad.

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Screenshot_20231010_071114_My Calendar.jpg

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On 10/13/2023 at 9:43 AM, svachon9 said:

Thanks!  That is very helpful.  Several questions come to mind. 

Why Easy Green and Equilibrium?

Do you dose the recommended amount or less? 

Are your lights at full intensity and for how long are they on?

For a filter, do you think a TidalWave 110 is enough?

@svachon9 I started using the Equilibrium mainly for the mystery snails.  The utility sink I get my aquarium water from is on soft water.  The Equilibrium helps the snails to maintain healthy shells.  The added benefit is that the plants seem to like it also.  Dosing wise, I probably use about a tablespoon and a half to 2 tablespoons for the 75 gallon aquarium total.  As of the easy green and easy iron, I dose those per instructions.  For the Seachem Potasium, I dose that at double what is listed on the bottle.  

I use to run my 29 gallon aquarium at a higher fish per gallon ratio than I have my 75 gallon at.  On that aquarium the nitrates tended to run higher, so I would dose easy green once a week and then every 2 or 3 days I would dose it with Potasium to keep the Java Ferns happy.  

As of lights, I use a Finnex planted 24/7 CRV light.  I find the finnex light to give off better light (color wise) vs the Fluval planted 3.0.  The 3.0 has a way better interface and control, but I prefer the light quality of the finnex.  It's a bit hard to say how bright I have it set.  It starts to come on at 10 am and slowly ramps up to full red leds with a couple clicks of white by noon.  It then slowly ramps up to probably 80-90% power on the white and holds 100% on the red by 3 pm.  It then holds near that till 6 pm when it will slowly start to decline back down and start getting a little more blue in hue.  By 9pm it really starts to dim and by 11 pm is substantially dimmer and more blueish.  It turns off a bit after midnight.

If I would ever replace my Fluval C4 I would probably get a TidalWave filter.  Unfortunately I haven't used one yet though, so I can't really say first hand how it would work, but it certainly seems like a good option out there.

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