#90: 76L Aquatic Garden
Gary Lange, Florissant MO USA | E-mail: gwlange at stlnet.com
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Awards and Judge Comments

I really like this tank because it shows what a lovely arrangement can be made in a fairly small tank with just a few species of relatively easy to grow plants. The fish and plants are all in vibrant good health.

Karen Randall

Aquascape Details

Tank Size
61 x 30 x 41 cm (24 x 12 x 16 in)
Volume
76L (20 gallons)
Background
Black contact paper
Lighting
20-watt fluorescent, somtimes supplanted with an extra 20 watts for a week
Filtration
ATI Hydro sponge
Additional Information
This tank is all about an easy to maintain planted tank that provides a comfort zone for fishes being photographed. Rainbowfishes pose especially well when kept in well planted tanks with a covered back and sides. By using simple, low light requiring plants I am able to produce a tank that keeps the subjects comfortable and showing their "personality" for the camera. Fine and narrow leafed plants are much easier to use in fish photography as many of the shadows from the flash are diffused by it. Larger leafed plants can produce some harsh shadows that can run an otherwise quality shot. The windelov makes an ideal background plant for close-up shots and adds its own natural beauty to the tank. Often the rainbows will use it for their spawning runs, which again shows how comfortable they can be in a "photo tank". The Bolbitis in the right hand corner hides the ATI sponge filter, which is normally running during fish shoots. It completely hides the sponge so it can also be used as a good background plant if the action swings over to the right hand side of the tank. Simple weekly 40-50% water changes keep the plants healthy and the photographic subjects happy too. There are always 3-6 fish that inhabit this tank to keep the plants happy. Except for the occasional Bolbitis trim and some Crypt pruning the plants require little maintenance.
Plants
Microsorum pteropus "Windelov", Bolbitis heudeloti, Cryptocoryne species, Anubias barteri
Fish/Animals
Melanotaenia boesemani "Boeseman's Rainbowfish"
Melanotaenia inornata, variety "Flat Rock Creek"
Materials
Dark red flint gravel and an 8" piece of driftwood