This is my first new tank if quite a while, and I am still very much a novice. If you are expecting some sort of Guru Journal I'm afraid this will be nowhere near your expectations
The purpose of this journal is to keep track of this tank's progress and to hopefully get some advice from experienced hobbyists. The actual tank stuff starts now hope you enjoy!
1) I started off by taking preliminary tests of my water far in advance so that I could create a plan if there was any ammonia or the ph was too high.
However, all seemed decently well. I did a little bit of research and I believe the Gh and Kh are around average. If they get too high I thought I might add some mosquito fern, because they have been added to water waste plants to decrease harsh metals in the water. I think that would work, but I might just be overreacting and everything could be fine.
2) I then bought a 10-gallon tank and planned out how I would integrate the filter. Youtube helped so much, and this project would be near impossible without it. I decided to designate around 1/5th(2 gallons) at the back of the tank for the filter and to block that into three sections. The water would enter the first section through an overflow and pass through a sponge to remove any debris. It would then enter the second section through holes in the bottom of the first wall and would pass through some cement hollow ovals. It would then enter the last section through holes in the top of the second wall, and be pushed out with a pump. I can put the betta's heater and any chemical media in this section as well. After that, I purchased the materials I needed; 2 black PVC sheets I will cut down for the partitions and base of the filter, a large sponge block, the ceramic/cement ovals, and a small pump.
I also purchased some organic dirt composted from food scraps. It is comprised of wood chunks and dirt chunks that you can't separate. I've seen videos where they use similarly chunky soil, but if anyone has an opinion on it I would love to hear it
3) Now I wait for my Amazon packages to get here! Hopefully, next update will have more pictures!