Written by cup
size: 20 gallon tall
substrate: fine pea gravel--in my opinion, to beneficial optimize microbial growth, this is by and far the best tank liner)
decor: driftwood, anubias sp., ruben swords
caves: made both from polished marble shingles with spacers attached to slate as a back cover, and standard slate rectangles
filtration: one self repaired HOB--tetratec, I believe, and a homemade trickle filter (5 gallon home depot bucket with pot scrubbers)...also a powerhead I got at the LFS bargain bin. I think it's a marineland.
heating: ebo jager 150 watt, set to 84 degrees F
maintenance: filters and water simultaneously cleansed once every two weeks
tankmates: apistogramma agassizii red tails (a quintuplet)--they didn't do so hot in the warm water, so I moved them out eventually. Aspidoras c-035 were utilized as bottom strata feeders--84 F was also a bit warm for them. I switched them out for sterbai and then finally to other hypan fry--66, 270, and 411. The last solution worked the best. I also had praecox and some chela spp. in their, but both were quickly rehoused. I saw the latter darting for some fry from my first batch, and I decided it was probably a bad idea. I also had a school of cardinals in there, but they were not big aficionados for the current.
These were moved to a forty long with other hypans. This setup did its work, though. They spawned more frequently in the new setup, but had, if I recall correctly, five spawns in this one.
The mainstay of their diet was 50/50 hikari bottom feeder wafers and tetramin flake ground finely for released fry. Because this tank bore more fry than the other tanks I had at the time, save the 40L for the L-66/ 333s, I fed fewer meaty foods and diet supplementation, was almost exclusively from freeze dried zucchini, spirulina wafers/flakes, and homemade tropheus shrimp mix. Salmon pellets, broad beans, and occasional "carnivore delight" (or something to that effect) frozen food mix put through the food processor were also fed.
I had three males and a female in the tank, but the intraspecific scuffling seemed to take precedence over spawning. Removing the two subordinate males helped greatly, and by the next weekend, the female was already beckoning at the male's cave. Needless to say, there was no triggering involved. I had a large hiccup in spawning a year or so into the cycle, whereupon I fed heavily for two weeks or so, and male seemed to perk up a bit. The next spawn was infertile, which was a common problem for this particular pair, and I never figured out why. They've since shaped up, and are producing healthy, albeit small (20 eggs or so) batches. Fry are raised unproblematically. Because my stripping seemed to result in fewer fertile eggs, I let the father do most of the rearing after that. He's been a fine father thus far.
fry--at least I think these are 316 fry. It was listed with my 316 folder. They kind of look like 66's.