Aussie 6x2x2

Ian Wieden

New Member
Feb 26, 2020
Queensland, Australia
Hey guys,
I was posting this in introductions, but it started getting too long. So i've decided to start a journal over here.

My name is Ian and i'm a firefighter from Queensland, Australia.
A few years (a wife and a baby) later, i was thrust back into the hobby.
During the latest bushfire crisis i inherited a dozen or so random rainbows from a friend who's house was threatened. So my empty 6x2x2 aquarium with external coast to coast overflow and 4x1.5x1.5 sump were filled with water and going against every rule in the book, his fish were added that day (we didnt have a choice unfortunately). It's been 3ish months and i havent lost a rainbow, so thats a plus.

But now i'm in all sorts of bother. I want this tank to be a planted tank. Right now its a bare bottom tank because we didnt have time to add substrate. So i have to try and work out how to add substrate without having to remove the livestock. I have about 20kg of play sand that i can wash and place in the tank, and i'm considering buying some ada amazonia 2 to place in a section that i want to heavily plant.

Secondly, i would love to run pressurised co2 on this system. I have a full 6kg (13lbs?) cylinder in my garage dying to be used. But i'm trying to work out how to implement it. I'm guessing an open top tank this size will require a reactor (something i'm completely unfamiliar with) and somehow implementing it into my sump/return. Also, i'm guessing i may have to seal the sump? It currently doesn't have any lids and i'm noticing 20+ rainbow fry of various sizes swimming around the filter media.

My lighting i used to use when this was a marine aquarium, a maxspect mazarra p series. I'm thinking i am going to need to replace this, or supplement it? It does have a lot of blue LED's. I'm currently experiencing a green filmy algae bloom, the guys test kits were out of date, so i have ordered a new api master kit to determine if this is part of a cycle or if i need to reduce the light cycle (currently 8ish hours plus the sunrise/sunset program).

So my goals within the next few months (6 months or less)
- Post some pics of the current starting setup (this weekend).
- Add Substrate
- Hardscape (currently a lonely little piece of driftwood)
- Implement co2 (reactor into the sump return, or whether or not i buy a canister filter and plumb it that way)
- Determine cause of current algae issue (water testing, experiment with different lighting cycles)
- Determine if i need to upgrade or supplement lighting
- Once water quality and co2 has been established, start planting some low/medium light plants.

If you have any input or suggestions, feel free to share them, its been a long while since ive had a freshwater aquarium running and although it had an impromptu disaster fueled start, i really wanna do this the right way and give these beautiful fish a great home.

Thanks for reading =)