NANFA-- 135 gal. Freshwater Tank

Bruce Stallsmith (
Sat, 31 Jan 2004 12:39:52 -0500

I have a general query for the list, as kind of a spinoff to our recent
threads on parasites and all. I've come into possession of a 135 gal. tank
that was used as a coral reef tank. I'm setting it up as a Sipsey Fork of
the Black Warrior River (N.W. AL) theme tank (burrhead, blacktail and
silverstripe shiners, stonerollers, redspot darters,...). The tank is a
really nice Oceanic Systems design, with corner uplift and overflow sleeves,
and a sump tank that fits underneath in the cabinet. But I don't really want
to use the sump, because it would interfere with my hopes to replicate river
flow (it's a 6 ft. tank, the flow possibilities are many). I have 3-4 inches
of medium coarse "builders sand" on the bottom, 120 pounds all told, that I
spent much of last weekend washing out. And I have some serious reef-system
lighting fixtures.

So, my plan is to use a Marineland H.O.T. Magnum filter (250 gal/hr) as the
primary filration, aeration and circulation device, with no sump. I've
started to plant the tank too, before introducing fish. My question is
whether anyone has experience running a large system with such a filtration
system. I hope to get the live sand thang going, too, although of course
that'll take time to get established.

I've never had a tank larger than 55 gal. so this is a learning experience
for me. I've been working in the 2.5 -- 15 gal. tank range over the past
several years.

Livestock-wise, I really wanted to keep some tuskaloosa darters, Eth.
douglasi. But they're listed as S2, Imperiled, because they have such a
small native range in the upper Black Warrior and Cahaba systems. Those of
you who went on the Sipsey Fork trip at last June's NANFA convention know
that tuskaloosa's are locally abundant in that system, but where we saw them
is pretty much groundzero for their range. Oh well...

--Bruce Stallsmith
Huntsville, AL, US of A
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