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Blackwater tank 80cm

It is a bit large, but yes, only one. I bought it already dried, from a garden decoration / floral arrangements shop.
 
They look pretty tough, but could they be chopped or sawn into pieces?
I'm sure they could, I even considered doing it at first, but then I preferred testing it before investing much time into it. A curiosity is that, different than coconuts, they are somewhat porous and permeable. I think this is something that helps with the tinting, water passes through it.

I still want to test this whole blackwater thing with the intended fishes added to the tank, but it is possible that I'll remove the sapucaia and keep it available for water changes, to try and keep the tint at a desired intensity. Apparently it could be a few months before the green neons show their faces again around here, but the tukanos could pop up at any time now.

When I get some of the originally intended fishes, I'll have to remove the rummy noses, and I have no idea how I'll do that. They are rummy noses turned to 11, they bolt around like they can teleport, especially when I give food. I'll probably have to build a trap, the fishing net won't have a chance with all the hardscape.
 
Reviewing this thread, I noticed something that was bothering me. In the pics, the tank looks much shorter than it is, and the filters in the back look huge. The camera is distorting it, especially on the frontal pics, I think it is because I need to take the pictures from a short distance since it is in a small room, and it uses some sort of wide angular lens or effect. In truth, each filter is 15cm wide and the free area between them is 50cm long, adding up to the 80cm total length.

I removed the sapucaia to keep the water color under control. I also did a water change and it cleared a bit, maybe a bit too much. I moved the sapucaia to my water change reservoir, so the fresh water will come painted. I'll do a water change tomorrow and see how that works.

The good news are that I found a fish store in the other side of town who announced tukano tetras. So after a small journey, I now have 12 tukanos. I had established that when I found the planned fishes I would remove the rummy noses, and that day has finally arrived. Removing fishes from tanks is among the most frustrating aspects of the hobby for me, and this time it wasn't any different. In any case, it is done and, after 40 minutes, the 3 rummy noses are now swimming in a large school in the main tank.

No quarantine for the tukanos, and I won't do it for the other fishes as well. I'm suspicious of my quarantine tank, and all these small fishes look particularly fragile, so I'm thinking that less moving around is for the best. And I'll take my chances with possible diseases.

The bad news is that a cyano infestation started. It is still just starting, but I'm not one to underestimate cyanos. I thought that the low light levels would stop algae from bothering me, but the cyanos are forming at the surface and on the wood closest to the light. I have once again covered the lights with the kitchen paper towel and I'll siphon as much detritus as I can. Some of the leaves deteriorated very fast... I won't be using those anymore. Floating plants won't help, the cyanos are growing on and around them.

I'm considering some sort of background for the tank. I want to add a layer of polystyrene to the back to help keep heating expenses down, but for that I first need to find a way to hide it. I've never done anything bolder than all-black backgrounds, I'll try and ask around at print shops if they have affordable options. I'm thinking some sort of degrade from black to white moving from the bottom and from the sides to the top center, forming sort of a white half ellipse. The yellow water would make the tones go brown/yellow. I like the soft degrade that formed naturally with the tank light illuminating the wall behind the tank, but I want something that hides the filters on the sides.

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After the first couple of says, the tukanos stopped swimming together and are now spread all around the tank. I decided that I won't try to count them, as that would be both pointless and stressful. And if I lose one of them, that won't push me into changing anything.

Overall things are going smoothly with this tank, except for the cyanos, which are slowly but surely growing each week. I siphon them as best as I can every week, but it is very weird to have it growing at the water surface. This week I reduced the photoperiod a bit. As winter approaches, the tank is getting some direct sunlight from the window... But I don't see much of a difference with the cyanos where there is sun and where there isn't.

Yesterday I did the water change with a small 6mm hose to delicately remove the cyanos tangled with the floating plants. It was a very slow procedure, but effective. When it was over, I checked the bucket full of brown water and there were 2 tukanos in it 🤦‍♂️ I can't believe that I fished 2 of them without even noticing, while I was completely focused on picking up cyano patches. But also can't believe they fit through the very narrow tube, I think it is a 4mm inner diameter only.
 
Hi all,
After the first couple of says, the tukanos stopped swimming together and are now spread all around the tank.
I think this is a <"fairly general finding with small blackwater Tetra spp">. They come from an environment where food is scarce and as soon as they feel secure they take up little territories, with the most dominant fish in the "best" territory.

I've found this with both Tetras and <"Pencilfish">, they only really school together when there is an external threat.
I decided that I won't try to count them, as that would be both pointless and stressful.
I think that is the best option, if you have a tank you can count them in? It will be much too open for them to feel safe. I think that their behaviour just indicates that they are happy with their environment.

cheers Darrel
 
Another weekend, another water change. Cyanos are still present, but I dare say that they are decelerating. Really annoying to siphon it from the water surface and from the floating plants. Added a few more dried leaves. Overall, the tank is looking very stable and I don't expect to have anything exciting to report any time soon. The tukanos are very curious and unafraid, which I find to be curious for such a fragile and small fish. Siphoning water is a fine balance between sucking in cyanos from the surface without breaking the siphon and keeping the fish away so that I don't siphon them instead.

I went against my best judgement and counted them this time, since they were ALL there trying to be siphoned. All 12 are still alive.

I'm thinking of adding a crypto to the tank to see how it goes.

The frogbits are multiplying quickly. They are small and the roots are starting to grow very long, but also delicate looking. Curiously, in this tank without any fertilization, the frogbit are looking great, better than on my other tanks where I fertilize. I suppose the dimmer light doesn't push the plants too hard. I was afraid that the glass lids and the high humidity would hurt them, but apparently not.

I'm working on a background. I don't have any experience with drawing, but I managed to put together a color gradient in black and white, from the sides and from the bottom, centering on the top. I will print a sample in my standard printer to see if the colors work, and if it does I'll get it printed full size at a printing shop. Hopefully that will help to hide the filter foams and make the tank overall darker.

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This little guy likes the warm sunlight on its belly
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While this little guy hangs in the shade
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I think this is a <"fairly general finding with small blackwater Tetra spp">. They come from an environment where food is scarce and as soon as they feel secure they take up little territories, with the most dominant fish in the "best" territory.
I've found this with both Tetras and <"Pencilfish">, they only really school together when there is an external threat.
I have also found this out! My Cardinals and Black Phantoms all 'dispersed' after settling in. They seem to find their spot and only come together during a disturbance.
 
Hi all,
My Cardinals and Black Phantoms all 'dispersed' after settling in.
I think it makes sense in evolutionary terms, if you aren't in imminent danger of being eaten then your best strategy is to try and maximise the amount of food you get and one way of doing that is by not "sharing".
Those Nijsseni are stunning.
I was just admiring them <"PlanetCatfish.com - Gastrodermus nijsseni (Callichthyidae) Cat-eLog">, and the Tucano Tetra <"https://www.seriouslyfish.com/species/tucanoichthys-tucano"> as well.

cheers Darrel
 
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