Oh wow. This was very well though out and answered ALL of my questions. Thanks.Hi, everybody.
@DwarfCichlidLvr - that's a lot of questions...
One at a time
First, about the tank itself - interior measurements are 200cm long by 90cm wide (approx. 78.7" by 35.4"). Height to the rim is 70cm (27.6"), but overflow is 3.5cm below (1.4"). An 'official' volume will be close to 1200 liters, or 316 US Gallons. Plus another ca. 170 l in the sump (45G).
I have a beananimal/safe&silent 3-pipes overflow with two Eheim return pumps rated at 900 litres/hour (900x2/3.79=475G/h). The sump has vertical sponges and filter wool and 8 large bags of Sera Siporax sintered glass biological filter medium. 3 Eheim/jager 300W heaters @25, 26 and 27°C (77, 79 and 81°f). Presently only the last one sometimes heats a little, the other two only kick in during winter (in good conscience I only need two, room temp rarely goes below 17° (62f), but I'd rather be safe than sorry, so I have three heaters...).
I also have a UV-C bulb stuck between two baffles in the sump, directly into the water - runs on a timer six hours every night. Never had any problems with ick or other parasites - apparently 'does the trick'...
The tank is made of double 10mm glass (in US, glass thickness is in 16th of inches, that will be 6/16 of an inch, I think...) in the bottom pane, double 8mm glass (1/3 of inch) in the side (long) panels and single 10mm glass in the end panels. While finishing the setup of the lighting fixture, some months back, my clumsyness dropped a wrench that broke one of the transverse glass stabilizers which loosened the lateral glass - one (the interior glass) shattered. No leaks but a good shock seeing the glass bulging!!
Since that, I only have the tank filled halfways to reduce water weight and pressure. One return pump is in the sump, the other in the tank...
With the tank only half full it's almost overcrowded, but it's heavily planted with many hideyholes, caves and interruptions in line of sight. Still there is some 'open water', enough for the emperors to swim around in figure eight in a shoal... The many fry also tells me there must be many places to hide and grow.
I also have one of my female A. nijsseni's defending a batch of fry. Very, very small fry - now, after a couple of weeks, they are the size of small tetra fry...
In my previous post I also forgot to mention I also have a group of ca. 20 diamond tetras (Moenkhausia pittieri). I say "ca." because some are juveniles (locally spawned) and it's hard to count the small fry - there are probably around 30 in total, but the fry doesn't group with the adults/juveniles...
Personally i prefer the 'palmeri' emperors to the 'kerri', because of the pointed tail and the iridescent eyes, bought the 'kerri's' by accident. In the tank they mix, and shoal together. Nice to see the big males showing off.
I only have two adult bristlenose plecos, about 8cm (3"). Not very large and one has a few small bristles. Some months back a lot of very tiny BN's started to appear in the tank and in the sump. I got two out of the sump and into other smaller tanks ("plant nursery" and paludarium), one is still in the large tank, but still small...
It wasn't my intention to buy more fish until I had fixed the shattered glass, hence the lonely rummynose... But when they called me from LFS about the Mesonautas, I couldn't refuse!
I said it's almost overcrowded, because, although it is too many fish for the water volume, water parameters are fine, nitrates below 20, often below 10, so with a 30% waterchange every 6 to 8 weeks, the chemistry is fine. I add tap water in winter and spring (more water in the local catchments and less chlorine) - in summer and autumn I use RO/DI.
The many fry of diamond and emperor tetras and now also the apistos, leads me to believe the ecological balance (i.e. fish density) in the aquarium is good. Might be a little more crowded that I'd wish for, but not more than it affects the stress levels and the fry have ample hiding spots and good water quality.
Sorry for the long post, but as I said, it was a lot of questions. I hope I answered all of them. Tomorrow I'll try to get a pic of the emperors. It isn't easy; they look nice, but are very hard to photograph - never wait, never stop moving...
I didn't realize that the tank was so big. You should definitely be fine.
You filtration sounds great too and I have jagers myself.
That could be a problem. So it has about 160 gallons in it?
Oh wow. Ive always wanted to breed tetras (well I'd prefer to have them breed on me but whatever )
Congrats on all the fry. Pics are mandatory! lol
Cool! I almost got those.
It was a battle form me between those two and at the very end kerri won. Rachel O'Leary sold me on them.
Ok, well in a tank that large there shouldn't be an issue with bioload.
Well it isnt too bad IMO. I bet that it looks amazing though!!!
Well if fish are breeding i always say that they must be happy.