Aquarium Update 28/10/14

There have been a raft of changes to this tank since I got it. I have drilled the bottom to install a sump, several aquascaping changes and a few new fish.

The sump I am using was the bottom tank in my previous set-up. It is a 3’x1’x1′ tank that I have partitioned about 1/5 of for the pump and an automatic top up system.  The rest of the tank is filled with the expanded clay I was using in the grow bed of my previous set-up. The automatic top up system is using a cistern float connected to my main water supply via a tap next to the sump. I have also installed an overflow from the sump into a pond outside which I plan to use as an auto water change system. The plan at this stage is to set the cistern float height so that the sump always overflows a small amount, meaning that I am doing a constant water change. Once I have ironed out the bugs in the top up system and sump I will make a post about it.

I have also changed the substrate to try and grow better plants. Previously I was just using gravel as my substrate. Now though I am trialling a dirt substrate capped with white gravel to keep it all down. The dirt comprises of clay, peat moss, sphagnum moss, pearlite, vermiculite and sand. I made enough to give me around 2″ of soil depth and covered it in around 1″ of white aquarium gravel. So far the results have not been as good as I was hoping, although I expect that it may take some time before the soil is growing plants to its full potential.

The aquascaping of the new tank has gone through several iterations with the new drift wood that came with the tank. I think I have finally settled on one that I like though. I still need to tidy a few things up, like the return piping from the pump that is still visible and the air lines to the under gravel filter. All in good time though. For now I will just enjoy what I have for a while, before pulling it all down again.

Finally, yesterday I purchased 4 small Electric Yellow Cichlids (Labidochromis caeruleus). They are tiny at the moment at around 1″ long which makes them hard to get a photo of. I managed to get one snap that wasn’t too bad which you can check out below. I also made a time lapse of my aquarium so you can see the fish zooming around at super speed!

Like any aquarium it is an ever evolving system, so keep tuned for future updates!


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