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Resources for making Livebearer Biotopes?

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#1 MrBabyBrine


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Posted 14 October 2010 - 08:24 PM

I'm looking for resources I can find on creating a Biotope for livebeareres in my 20 gallon tank.

I've spent a little time on the internet looking for information although I haven't come up much quality resources.

On these forums I found a book 'Mexican biotope' talked about highly but I also read it doesn't have much depth on how to make a 'Biotope' although I've read in the posts it does give someone that does already know how to make a Biotope great referances through pictures and basic information which allows an experienced biotope hobbyist to recreate a biotope from that region. Or at least that is my relative understanding after reading all the posts. The fact it cost like 80 US $ is kind of stopping me from buying it immediately which is why I don't have any quality resources on the subject.

#2 Oldman


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Posted 15 October 2010 - 01:57 AM

Howdy there MrBabyBrine. The whole point to the biotope setup is to try to emulate the real biotope for your fish. If you happen to have fish that live in high elevation Mexican creeks that are narrow with high flow rates and cool nearly pure water, you would set up a tank with a high flow filter that creates lots of water current in the tank. You would also avoid heating the tank and would fill it with a mix of RO water and tap water to get the low mineral content of the natural environment. What you really need to do is interpret what you read about a real biotope and try your best to present the fish with something as close to the same as you can.
I have a copy of that book about Mexican biotopes and find it is quite descriptive but it is not a DIY guide. It was never meant to be that.
When it comes to creating a realistic biotope, most of the work is not done by reading how someone else has done it, it is researching for yourself and recreating the environment for your fish, as closely as your research allows.
Many very nice arrangements can be made by the average hobbyist using only what they find in ready reference materials but I would not consider them a true biotope tank. It is more typical of the way I set up a single species tank. I research the general needs of the new fish and set up a tank that will satisfy those needs rather than worry what plant or rock the fish would encounter in their natural habitat. In a true biotope tank, you need to be much more particular than I am about things like specific plant species and rock types.

#3 MrBabyBrine


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Posted 15 October 2010 - 02:30 AM

Very Interesting. I appreciate the reply.

I would be interested in understanding what you (Oldman) would call a true Biotope tank?

I also want to point out that I most likely not interested in making a true biotope tank if it requires me picking plants from the actual biotope the fish live in. Although a more authentic recreation of the area and conditions would be much more preferred.

I guess I will have to research more in depth about the fish as well as the habitat.

I intend to post again soon.

#4 Melody


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Posted 17 October 2010 - 04:47 AM

The best online resource for biotope aquaria that I've encountered, is this one. Good luck!

#5 MrBabyBrine


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Posted 19 October 2010 - 12:22 AM

Thanks Melody.

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