Shrimphaus used to run at ambient temperature, which during winter is around 20 C. The bloody mary shrimp grew to adulthood and seem active enough, but they aren’t breeding and I was wondering whether them being a little under temperature might be the reason. There is also some thought that the plants might be a little healthier at a higher temperature. That being said, Shrimphaus is an open-top, high water flow aquarium with already significant weekly water evaporation so a temperature of 22 C might be a good way to take the edge off without adding too much extra water loss.
Aquael Ultra Heater 25
It’s a challenge finding a good heater small enough for a nano tank. To be unobtrusive the heater needs to go at the back, but there is limited real estate available there in the Shrimphaus. The bottom of the river run has around 16 cm of depth clearance to the bottom and only a 2 cm gap to the tank walls which rules out a lot of the smaller cylindrical form heaters.
The Aquael Ultra series are pretty nice. Solid all-around plastic waterproof construction with temperature programmable between 20 – 33 C and a listed temperature control precision of ± 0.25 C. Importantly for small spaces, the Aquael is only 9 mm thick (for the most part) and only 16 cm high. The heater comes with a reversible suction cup based support clip, but after trying a few configurations, I found it simplest to leave the clip off altogether and to just tuck the heater in under the river on the left side up against the pump. The heater fits nicely in there and is really unobtrusive so keeps the look of the tank clean. This heater has a very generous 170 cm long power cord which I appreciated.
Warm up aquarium water is pretty quick
The starting temperature in the Shrimphaus was 20.2 C when the Aquael first got installed. Setting the Aquael to 22 C got the temperature up to a stable 22.1 C after about 3 hours.
* Temperature measurements made using a SuperFish Digi Test EC-TDS tester.
Aquael heater is power-failure safe
Happily, if the Aquael Ultra Heater loses power, for example because you unplugged it during a water change (good idea!) or there was a temporary power failure, the Aquael remembers the last temperature setting applied and carries on smoothly. I was a little worried that a power failure might make it reset the temperature set-point, but seems all good there.
Fireplace Aquarium heater
The Fireplace Aquarium uses one of the more traditional cylindrical heaters – the Fluval M50.