Stan's freshwater 240 gallon extravaganza. Trials and tribulations of a sunlit aquarium

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Stan510

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They are their for the duration. I might go for more of the White Roseline barbs. Others no,just wait their turn. But-Roselines are not the hardy fish I thought they were. Caveat on them.
The Bozys? One I swear,I think has reached an even 6". Could it one day be 7 or 8? Never heard of that..but 6" is rare.
But If I could have seen the future I would have gone for more Clown Loaches as opposed to the three I have. Group of them look great. I also wish I had gotten some albino Giant Danio's. They were super common,now I never see them.
The tank is more and more an ecosystem with less and less fish though. Algae is way down,filter running fine.
 
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Stan510

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One more thing that's new to me. I have not replaced any fish that have passed or added any new fish. The smaller bioload shows to me. The filter goes longer between cleanings and water quality just goes up incrementally as less fish and less food goes in. Ironic that the fish in there are fed all they can eat too.
 
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Stan510

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What keeps things fresh for you AND the fish? New driftwood, Cuttings from my Alternanthera rosaefolia rooted in a more open and closer to the front glass spot. All against conventional planted tank "rules". I want to see the red in dead center..along with the original off to the right group. Besides,stem plants are always bordering death in non Co2 aquariums. Better to take the best cuttings and give them a new start in their own space.
I know that I can get L. palustris to grow in low tech also...but the Rainbow fish eat it. Same for most of the colorful or fine leaved water plants..they are food. Its ok, I'm at peace with what does grow and grows very well.
 
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Stan510

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After near four years of sunlit aquarium? I have yet to fully conquer algae. Its still BBA,BGA in dots and in hidden areas- that get sun from the window. I've reduced it as a problem by a huge amount compared to year one. Now,when has it looked best ? Winter. So that tells me low tech plants will be smothered in a sunny aquarium in out long cloudless summers. Basically what you might have to do is use curtains to do the equivalent of a white washed greenhouse pane. But I argue that when the sun and my low tech aquariums lights are in balance? It's a natural beauty.
I've taken two cuttings of Alternanthera and planted those much closer to the front glass in the middle of the tank. The pump moves them enough to see the purple undersides. Thats two clumps- SMALL clumps going. Its now the only red leafed plant in the aquarium. Roseline barbs eat plants just to let you know.
I feel like I could have much more plant variety and the high tech look. Rainbows don't care about looks if it tastes good. Same for Rosy's now.
 
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Remember that article about keeping fishes mental health up by occasional re-arranging or adding new obstacles? I moved my potted C. balansae from the right to the left and created an "Island of plants" with the balansae having sort of a mountain peak bending in the flow of the aquariums pump. The Island makes for an open center and more light ( gotta watch if its too much now) and more room for the fish.
I also added "Godzilla" Buce and its looking good in a dark foliage. My first ever try with a Buce. When the day comes it blooms- THEN a happy photo.
A photo of now and a photo of before.
 

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Wills

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Wow this is looking amazing! I love your Rainbows so much, I want a school of Bosemani but sometimes I wobble and think of going for something else but seeing yours get me back on track lol.
 
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Thanks!

I would tell anybody- stick to one favorite species. It's more peaceful and easy on the eyes.

The Syngonium has rooted into the sands..its not just trailing roots..it's part of the ecosystem.
 

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Thanks!

I would tell anybody- stick to one favorite species. It's more peaceful and easy on the eyes.

The Syngonium has rooted into the sands..its not just trailing roots..it's part of the ecosystem.
That was my next question! Is that what the bit emerged plant is? I have a mini monsterra on mine but would love to try a few different species.

Wills
 
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Monstera would work,but it's much slower and takes up space. Try Monstera adansonii...its better being dwarf. Almost any viney house plant would work.
 

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Monstera would work,but it's much slower and takes up space. Try Monstera adansonii...its better being dwarf. Almost any viney house plant would work.
It is doing ok and definitely having an impact on my nitrate levels but not perfect yet. It took quite a long time to really send good roots out and some of it failed but one branch has done really well. I'm trying to look into some other plants to use but want a bit of variety. Really interesting side of the hobby IMO.
 
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What am I showing you ask? I have self learned that Hygrophila salicifolia 'narrow leaf' can be grown as an epiphyte. In this case a few shoots are mixed in with Bolbitis that itself is attached to wood and rocks and those totally covered. The combo of the narrow waving and light green Hygro with the dark Bolbitis is a nice look. Something like Ikebana.
 

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Wills

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That looks really good! I always like mixes of long leaves plants with different textures like valis and crinium.

Wills
 
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Just to report that Sword Plant Ozelot has grown a leaf larger than all the others and I don't know how tall they can get. Exact same for "Marble Queen" .Its story is it hadn't grown much in the near 3 years I've had it, The adding of iron in excess of what I used to add has changed it. Also,moving that big Crypt balansae to the left center has created more light. That's a good thing. Dimmest parts of the aquarium grow Anubias 'nana' best. More light and its overcome by algae. Low Tech has its own rules.
Amazing that since last February that but for one 20% water change,all else has just been top-off. That's it. Clearing the filter and new carbon once a month keeps it clean. It ALL started with one day in early Feb or even before,the wife said "Why are you draining out so much water (my usual 40% a week) and I thought, "Yeah,why not skip a week?" When the plants looked greener by the 6th day..I went with it. Still wenting!
 
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An update on the Syngonium. Like with no water changes? I no longer prune the vine. I just wrap it around itself. Does it like iron? Like a tortilla loves avocado! Adding iron makes a huge difference in growth.
More update on an aquarium on the aquarium tomorrow..
 

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Todays Ozelot growth photo. How big can they get? It already is the largest Sword i've ever grown. Its a great centerpiece no doubt about that. Lots of iron and lighting will do this to an Ozelot red. So big I accidently cut out of the picture the tip of the leaf!
 

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