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River Tank...........the decor is in.

Posted By: Martin Thoene <martin.thoene@lakenheath.af.mil>
Date: Wednesday, 21 July 1999, at 3:57 a.m.

I bought a bunch of grey/black slate, plus some 6-8" pebbles at a local Garden Centre who is way cheaper than most in the area.

I split some of the slate into thinner sheets, and broke some to give myself a bunch of different sized pieces to build caves and hidey-holes. I positioned the big peples in a group in front of the powerhead outlets. this spreads the outlet flow around the pepples, and causes a low pressure area behind them which sucks in water and bubbles to create turbulance behind each pebble.

One piece of slate was about 18" long by 3.5" wide and 1" thick. I used this with some more rock-like bits to create a raised shelf at the rear, filled with gravel in which I will attempt to grow some plants. The sheets of slate were stacked to create numerous hiding places at the far end of the tank from the powerheads, where the water is somewhat calmer. I stole a nice root from my Clown tank, and placed that in a decorative way to compliment the rock layout and remove some of it's "hardness" on the eye.I also moved a bunch of small, dark grey pebbles from the Clown tank, and spread those around the base.These have some algae growth, and will introduse this into the tank.

Fast mountain streams are pretty stark, rocky places, so this tank will look different to the norm. In a way, it's sort of Mbuna rocky, but with serious flow. Plants may survive in the current, but CO2 blow-off will be severe, so I don't know how well they'll fare. I thought I might try something strong like Anubias? Any suggestions out there?

I got two cover-glasses cut to catch spray from all the popping surface bubbles. The rocks have cut down on the extreme blast of water down the tank, creating more of a tumbling action, yet still with basically a unidirectional flow.

Venturi powerheads ARE NOISY!!!!!!! Glad I decided not to site the tank in my Bedroom! I will be cranking down the actual air-flow once I get the other tank on the stand and hook it up into the air system. This will quieten the venturis somewhat.

Hooked up some lighting last night (a 36" Triton tube), now I have to make a housing for the tube to sit on the cover glass. I'll allow room for another tube too.

Now I just have to let the tank sit and mature a bit before the first fish go in.I resisted buying the 3 Gastromyzon in my LFS yesterday!

Martin.
 

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