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December '10

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12_Planted_Tank_1.jpg (86kb)

December '10 - Phelipe Tamburus's 112 L Community Aquarium. (Brazil)

Here's a very nice planted cardinal tank put together by a young aquarist who's been keeping fish since early childhood, always eager to experiment and learn things, whether it's the easy way or the hard way. :-)

Owner:Phelipe Tamburus, 20, from Ribeirão Preto (Brazil), 12 years of fishkeeping.
Setup:July 2008.
Dimensions:70x40x40 cm.
Volume: 112 L (nominal), 100 L (effective).
Filtration:Tetra Whisper 40 + Millenium 1000.
Lighting:140 W Fluorescents and Compacts, Sylvania Daylight and Grolux; 10 hours a day.
Heating:100 W Atman.
Substrate:Construction sand, treated humus and Sera Floredepot.
Decoration:A few rocks.
Others:Dymax timer.
Water:Temp 28°C, pH 7.0, KH 4.
Maintenance: Water changes 20% a week, pruning once a month, no additives.
Fauna: 15 cardinal tetras.
Flora: Hemianthus callitrichoides 'Cuba', Eleocharis parvula, Vesicularia dubyana, Rotala sp. 'Nanjenshan', Hemianthus micranthemoides, Ludwigia arcuata, Cryptocoryne undulata.
Comments:I've always been in love with aquariums. My first one was a major community, it had a little of everything! With passing years I found that fishkeeping is an art, including styles, artists and admirers.

This tank's setup was one transformation after another. In the beginning I had planned an island layout but it wasn't easy, I just couldn't get a nice simmetry. Frustrated with my incapacity, I decided to keep it simple: small plants up front, medium plants in the middle and large plants in the back. I started with a pot of Hemianthus callitrichoides 'Cuba', about which the shopkeeper had said it was extremely difficult to cultivate. Even so I took it and planted it with a dentist's tweezer (which I recommend to all aquarists) it was simpler than I'd imagined. Over the days I notived that it was stretching vertically; since I didn't have the knowledge I have nowadays, I just went and pruned it. After 15 days the same thing happened again! One day at school, I was attending a Botanics class and the topic of the day was phototropism. As the professor started explaining I figured out what was going on. I got home and found a way to add two compact fluorescent bulbs over the 'Cubas'. Another 15 days and the result was incredible, now they spread horizontally.

After the 'Cuba' problem was solved, another one came up: thread algae infestation. I came here to this website's forum and found a solution: a UV filter. Just one problem: commercial UV filters were too expensive! I found a topic in the Do It Yourself forum, that's what I was looking for. I called my grandfather, my dad and my brother, we started building the filter together and amazingly me succeeded. O put it in at night, and the next day my mom woke me up saying that my tank was on fire! I ran as fast as I could, when I got there the filter reactor had short-circuited because the lamp cracked and it burned most of the wiring.

If you'd like to submit an aquarium for Tank of the Month, just contact me.

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Photos taken by Phelipe Tamburus and displayed here with his permission.

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