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My 180gal planted tank


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hey all. This is from my other post in another forum but i have been trying to get my images onto photobucket, but now i have it working so im starting one here.


i finally have my 180 gallon tank up and running. Since i have had fish tanks i have wanted the biggest tank i can and for it to be fully planted, this why i save a alot of money and got my 180 gallon tank with all the gear to make it a planted tank. This is only the beginning of it and this is m journal so you can enjoy the highs and lows of it, and before i even got water into the tank there was a lot of lows lol.

The other idea of this tank is to breed dwarf cichlids. Mainly rams and apistos. Im going to try and breed peppermint bristlenoses aswell.

Tank specs.

72 x 24 x 24 standard custom made tank with centre weir incase i want to go saltwater later on. 10 mm thick glass. Made by Wetpets and onlyme cool.gif


I have two fluval 404s with peat fibre in them


2 x 150 watt aquamedic oceanlights with 10000K rating

2 x 36 watt planted tubes 6500K rating (but arent installed yet)

Soon to get some computer fans to put into my hood for cooling


I have a pressurized system with the milwaukee regulator, bubble counter, needle value and electric solenoid, which runs into the aquamedic reactor 1000 which is inline with the filters .I also have the sms122 ph controller unit.

UVC unit

Pondmaster 36 watt UVC unit connected in line with the filters.


I uses 8 bags of JBL's Aqua basics. I was going to get Eco complete from the States but it would of cost me about $500 AUD just for gravel and the LFS had this on special so i went for it instead, just had to get some extra bags of standard gravel to go on top.


8 bunches of Ludwigia

5 bunches of Wisteria

2 pots of Echin cant remember the rest of its name

4 bunches of Blue stricta

4 Bunches of Zosterfolia

2 Bunches of Ambulia

2 Bunches of violet

2 Amazon Swords

And so bits of driftwood with Anubias nana on it.

I have got these casue most of them go big and bushie so then i can work in front of them with other plants.

But one bad thing about the plants is that they came with snail eggs in them and i didnt know until today when i found about 20 tiny snails around the tank, but they will make nice food for the peppermints when they come.

Week 1


End view

Im trying to get some better pictures but its a bit hard with a big tank and a very small bedroom that have. Im going to get some SAE and some ottos so start to eat some of the algae that has started to grow and im going to sydney on the 24th of this month to get the peppermints in sydney and might try the LFS down there for some dwarfs


The UVC unit blow up today. The seal around the top came off and water was able to get into the light part ( quatza sleeve i think its called) but is on warrenty so they are getiing me a new one in, just puts back when im going to add some fish. I was going to get some SAE and ottos on the weekend


my cleaner crew

2 very tiny bristlenose

2 suckermouth catfish

2 Flying foxes

im getting the new uv unit on tuesday and i might get some more fish to put in to speed up the algae eating. So ill post a pictures then, but the plants have grow so much, im loving the start besides the problems


They sent out the uvc unit but no globe so that should be here on friday so ill update on the weekend i hope

Week 2

Bed view


Globe still isnt here,so i rang and they said they have sent it maybe a hold up so hopefully anyday. While the over filter is out the tank has started to cloudy up a bit but wont take long to be clear again and it wouldnt be as bad if i didnt clean all the left over algae on the glass. I left one patch for my new peppermints im getting on friday, cant wait

The SMS122 controller is finally up and running and its great, dont even have to do a thing . I have had to set the pH on 7.25 casue in my other tank my older male (about 10cm) was picking on the new young female (about 5cm) i got about 3 months ago and her boyfriend about the same size of his female mate, was trying to help out so i moved them into the planted tank until my dad upgrades from a 75 to a 180, just has to wait for some extra money to come in he reckons. So they are in the 187 and loving it, dont think they wanna leave but i got some bad news.

I also went to the LFS and i was in there in at the right time. THey just got over 200 pieces of driftwood in, Lovin it. So i was there for about 2 hours finding the right pieces for my tank. With 12 bits and $200 later i walk out and it is now soaking in my bath tub.( dont worry it hasnt been used for about 8 years now and i cleaned it fully before i put it

Week 3


The Zosterfolia has been flowering about 150 flowers in total from the two batches of it in the tank, here is a picture


I also got some peppermint bristlenose about 2 inches long

Peppermints plus i learnt now to crop images

Week 4


Here is the picture i took on sunday an hour after everything was put back in the tank. I took everything out so i could put the wood in

Week 5 shot plus i learnt now to crop images

After every thing was ok i got these


Kinda full tank shot

In the bottom right corner is the recovery spot. It is what is left of the Ambulia after being cover over by the Zosterfolia. But i havent clear all of the bits and pieces of plants yet, bit shack

Bed Shot

and i also got some of the fish that are in there

E. Yellow

Female yellew in her spot

And the SAEs

Any comments would be great, trying to kept it updated every monday or when i have something to say

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congratulations on a nice looking tank mate clap.gif

those zosterfolia flowers look really cool and yeh, some discus would look great in there....just my opinion though bigsmile.gif

slinky thumb.gifthumb.gif

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Nice tank, nice project!

This thread makes excellent reading and I'm looking forward to more updates thumb.gif

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K just got a couple of pictures. I got some new plants aswell. Got:

Some glosso to start to fill in the front

Some Didiplis Diandra for mid ground and maybe back when i move some stuff around are it grows, casue is tiny at the moment. I also got a mini garden, well its a pices of driftwood about a foot long with heaps of anubias and cyrpts on it, really nice.

pic 1

pic 2

pic 3

pic 4

I just did my water change thats why there is water behind the glass bigsmile.gif

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hey, i have spent some money over the weekend. Visited a few LFS down sydney way and got my 2 pairs of german blue rams,( i know yellows and rams wont mix but they are fine together and the yellows are only there for a short time) and also got some ricca to try, but the yellows keep pulling it out, so ill keep trying with it. I also add my fisrt ram i ever got from my 4ft tank, he is lovin life. Glosso is going strong aswell

Blue rams thanks to BlakeyBoyR

Poor full tank

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Good work man. I love tank journal threads. We should ALL have one!

It's the most awesome thing ever on the reef forum - looking at the progress of each persons' tank, etc.

You've inspired me! I shall go home and clean up my planted (and only) tank and take some photos

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I agree with grace it great to see progress of a tank as it evolves great stuff clap.gifclap.gif . It almost make me want to give up cichlids and move to planted tanks, almost smile.gif



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www.jbl.de is the web address for JBL there is an english link top left of the page.

Just bear in mind that the JBL product is treated when it is imported here and some the nutrients may be destroyed during that process.

Also, you get the same resuts from other products available which are much easier to source.


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im back its really the 16th of june not the 24th of may lol, i have have a massive algae attack over the past 3 weeks and im still not sure now to kill it off. Thinks is green weed. Here is a picture off it, sry its not in focus here in another one with it in the other shot plants.

I took out the Ludwigia, Wisteria and Zosterfolia casue it was fully of it and put into a spare tank while ill fix the problem in the main one. I have been told a couple of ways to try and get around it:

1) increase the co2 to over 40ppm

2)shorten the lighting hours and remove

3) total blackout for 2-3 days

4) restart again lol but i will never do that. So what do you guys think will be best?

here are some other pictures aswell.

I might have my hands on a stump to go in the tank in a couple of weeks in going to try and carve it a bit so it fits over my weir in the tank. here is what is left after i pull the plants out. Full tank shot

I also got some brine shrimp eggs and the fish get a feed of them every 2nd day, here is a ram chasing after some. The yellows are still in there, becasue there new home is still currently getting completed, they have grow alot and im happy with them but they cant stay in there for my future plans, Yellow and finally my anubais nana has been flowering every couple of days, here is prob my best picture of a new bud coming out. flowerWell thats it, please help me out with this algae

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