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Starting this thread to journal my tanks.
Currently I have:

2.5 gallon, well planted with ember tetras and red cherry shrimp 

6 gallon with African dwarf frogs, a mystery snail and ember tetras with some new plants

8 gallon planted column tank in progress, current home to 1 female betta

29 gallon community tank, growing number of plants with a male betta, black neon tetras, Otto cats, a bristlenose pleco and baby guppies.

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 The column tank!


I started this tank 3 weeks ago.  It is a big ikea vase, 10” diameter (a little more at the top and less at the bottom) and 25” high, 8 gallon volume.  It has an under gravel filter and about 2.5” of black gravel substrate.

So far I’ve planted it with sagitaria subulata, tiger lotus, not sure what the taller red plant is and moneywort trimmings from my 2.5 gallon tank.  I also have a pumice floating in there with Java moss and moneywort strapped on to it - more of an experiment at this point than anything!

I ordered a piece of wood and it nearly fit, so I cut and sanded until it did.  Then boiled nearly all day, turning it over and over and changing water.  This made is swell and more sanding will be required.




Edited by CanadaAmanda
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Took a bit more time with the driftwood today and finally got it to size.  Added the plants to it and voila!  I have a full spectrum light on order but for now, it’s lit with a floor lamp as my son wanted his reading light back. 

I added a couple rock shrimp but will have to snap some photos tomorrow as I kept the lights of to keep stress low and Ms Fishy (the betta) from getting too interested, she’s a total sweetheart and the shrimp are sizeable so I don’t expect an issue.  Drip acclimated them for 45 min then netted them out without any drama which was nice after seeing how jumpy they were at the store.  I look forward to seeing where their favourite spots are for sitting in the current and catching invisible snacks.




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The shrimp (sold as rock shrimp, either mis-labelled or better known as bamboo/wood shrimp) still hadn't started feeding (fanning in the flow or picking in the gravel) by day 5 in the column tank... I moved one to my 29gal, and today he's feeding and the one in the column tank still wasn't, so I moved it over as well.

Maybe the tank was too new... I did all the things... started it by squeezing out a sponge from a well established tank, let it go for a month with plants and a snail, then fish, before adding the shrimp... but they may just need a more seasoned tank.  Or maybe the carbonate hardness needs to be higher than what I read, the column tank has lower carbonate hardness than the 29gal.  Hopefully #2 starts feeding soon too, just glad #1 is looking happy!  

So, now that I need a different clean-up crew for the column tank, I'm thinking some colourful shrimp (but not red cherry's as I already have those in another tank).

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Tried two red cherries in the column tank - they are gone and Ms Fishy (the betta) is looking quite plump and picking away at the last of a chunk with some red on the side :( so small shrimp are out... dang!  She is not getting fed for a few days, she can digest her expensive snacks and think about what she’s done. 🤪

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The 29 gallon.

Stocked with:

3 Otto cats

6 black neon tetras

8 juvenile guppies

1 male betta

1 bn pleco

2 kuhli loaches

2 bamboo shrimp


guppy grass (mixed in with large green fake plant)

java moss on driftwood

indian water fern

dwarf water onion

sagitaria subulata


crinum calimastratum





Air driven penn-plax corner filter (internal)

top fin 30 HOB with prefilter sponge





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  • 1 month later...

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