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Hobbyist Gallery - Esben Sebastian Karlsson II

Click on the thumbnails to see the high resolution pictures

Esben Sebastian Karlsson, Denmark  e-mail:   esben@minireef.dk

I have some picture of my 720 l. AkvaStabil aquarium with Pangea background and Pangea Caves and rocks.

The dimensions are 200 cm. long, 60 cm. deep and 60 cm. high. As for maintenance, I just change 1/3 of the water once a week.

General Information

Filtration

2x4000 l. Tunze

 

 

 

Heater

Jäger

 

 

 

Lighting

4x 39 w T5

 

 

 

Substrate

White sand from Africa

 

 

 

Rocks

Pangea

 

 

 

Background

Pangea

 

 

 

Plants

Vallisneria from Lake Malawi

 

 

 

Feeding

TetraPro crips, Tetra granulat, Tetra Cichlidstiks

 

 

 

Water Parameters

Temperature: 26°

pH: 8

gH: -

kH: 10

Nitrate Level: 0

Fish List

5

Cyrtocara moorii Malope

 

 

 

5

Placidochromis phenochilus Mdoka White lips

 

 

 

5

Taeniolethrinops furcicauda Gome

 

 

 

6

Copadichromis borleyi Red Kyembela

 

 

 

2

Otopharynx sp. "silver torpedo" Mdoka

 

 

 

6

Aulonocara stuartgranti Cobue "Blue Neon"

 

 

 

MCH Verdict
 
This is a very lovely tank and a delight to look at! The modular "Effectline" cabinet and tank from Akvastabil is stylish, but looks a bit cool in my opinion. The Pangea background is barely distinguishable from real stone and the additional rocks are cleverly used in this setup. I think that it's a pity though that this tank "only" has a standard size. Especially when you consider the price of all this equipment, a much deeper tank (90-120cm) would enhance the aquascaping possibilities as the rocky modules could be placed further away from each other. This would add much more drama to this already very beautiful tank. Also a plus is that the first rate technical equipment is very carefully hidden. The Malawi hap species are very interesting and also the original Malawi Vallisneria add much to the whole view. I also love the very low hood and if I would build a new tank in the near future I'd certainly consider buying such an Akvastabil effectline hood too. A minor thing that I can think of is the fear that the Cyrtocara moorii can chase the Placidochromis (to death?) at an older age as they are both blue coloured cichlids.

My first impression when I saw these pictures was: this is the hell of a tank, carefully checked to the very extreme details (even sand and plants are reported as actually coming from Africa). Then a further inspection confirmed my first impression. The overall look is great (even if I tend to prefer wood and/or rock-made furniture around me tanks, this looks like aluminium alloy or something similar). From the technical point of view some of the very best available brands have been used to set up this tank (total amount of watt used for heating?). If I were the owner of that tank, I would have used two (separate) filter units as a further (although possibly expensive, I agree) precaution against failures. The overall (Pangea rocks could be the main reason) aquascaping, cleverly arranged, gives me the impression of an extremely natural environment that should allow fishes to thrive. The peculiar shape of rocks used helps the remarkably clear sand used to shine less under the high amount of lighting used (4 x 39 watt!!!) while at the same time it reflects the correct amount of light in the whole interior of the tank (a bit too yellowish, at least as seen in the pictures, I may add). Finally I have some concerns about possible overcrowding in the future (this is more of a forecast since the fish are now juvenile/sub-adults). I have never kept 29 haps in my main tank which is larger than this tank. This is a very nice selection of Malawi haps by the way - although they grow quite big (my dominant Cyrtocara moori passed the 30 cm mark in TL and proved himself as a "messy" fish).

This is a beautiful tank, no doubt about it. The beautiful, very well built background blends with the aquascape, faithfully recreating part of the original biotope. There is a large open space for the fish to swim which indicates that their needs were taken into account. The maintenance schedule and equipment used are ideal for this setup which reminds me of the smaller Tanganyika tanks submitted some time ago. In fact, I will repeat some of the comments I made for that tank as they are the same for this tank too: "The result is simply an aquarium that looks almost as natural as it can be. The virtual depth created by the Pangea plates is simply stunning – and very difficult to be created by any other method. I know of some hobbyists which use Styrofoam plates to emulate this but the result doesn’t even come close enough. The use of plants makes the tanks look even more natural and the fish simply enjoy their stay in those small wonders. The absolute elimination of all technical stuff from the tank adds to this illusion. In this particular aspect, it is a reference tank." In addition, this tank has plants from the original biotope which is definitely a plus. The only drawback is the fish load which is really too much for my taste. Twenty-nine haps is really too much even for a tank double that size. Apart from that, which will surely influence my rating to an extend, the tank is a true gem.

Overall rating by MCH :  89/100

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