Lake Bung Khong Long, Bueng Kan province, Thailand

_ place in Biotope Aquarium Design Contest 2019

Volume: 54 L
Dimensions: 60x30x30 cm
List of fishes: Betta smaragdina
List of plants: Phalaris arundinacea, Festuca arundinacea
Description of decorations: River stones and sand, wood and twigs, dry leaves and grasses.
Description of equipment: The aquarium is without filtration, the fluorescent lamp 18W.
Water parameters: Water is clear, pH 6.4, GH4, KH3, temperature 25°C.
Additional info: Wetland plants set in quartz sand hold the function of filtration in the aquarium. I change the water approximately every 3 weeks, or earlier if necessary. I change the leaves at the bottom according to their disintegration rate. Algae do not grow because plants consume excess nutrients and harmful substances. Emeralds spawn regularly. I use only rainwater.

INFORMATION ABOUT BIOTOPE

Description of the area surrounding the biotope: Lake Bung Khong is located in Bueng Kan Province, the newest province of Thailand, has an average altitude of 365 m. The lake is located south of Bueng Khog and was created to irrigate the surrounding fields and increase biodiversity. Around the lake are surrounded by many smaller reservoirs in which farmers grow water lilies, in smaller fields of rice and other crops. Banana trees grow around. The wetlands of the lake are an important stopover for migrating birds and also a breeding ground for fish. The habitat of Betta are wetlands with shallow water, richly overgrown with grass. Due to the tropical climate zone, the temperature differences between winter and summer are minimal. In January the average temperature was 26°C and in July 31°C.

Description of the underwater landscape of the biotope: The height of the water column is about 20cm. The water is clear, with a slight tint of tea. Bottom with a large amount of sediment from dead plants and leaves. Water conditions can change rapidly during the monsoon season. Substrates can vary from leaf to mud, sand, or deep sediment.

Description of the parameters of the habitat: The water temperature depends on the season and ranges from 24°C to 28°C. pH 6-7, average conductivity 250 and is dependent on the amount of precipitation. GH 6, KH 4.

List of fishes and invertebrates occurring in the nature biotope: Boraras micros, Betta splendens, Brachygobius sp., Odontobutis aurarmus, Kryptopterus bicirrhis, Rasbosama spilocerca, Pao leiurus, Clupeichthys aesarnensis.

List of plants found in the nature biotope: Nymphaea lotus, Hydrilla verticallata, Blyxa echunosperma, Salvinia cucullata, Eleocharis dulcis, Lepirania articulata, Ceratophyllum dermersum, Nelumbo nucifera.

Threats to the ecology: Currently, the population of Betta smaragdina is declining. It is threatened by the degradation of wetlands, growing agriculture, pollution of their habitats and also its capture, for export to other countries. Where it becomes a favorite aquarium fish.

Sources of information:
http://thajsko.com/pruvodce/provincie/buengkan/buengkan.htm
https://smp.ibcbettas.org/species/smaragdina.html
https://ostrava.educanet.cz/www/zemepis/vyuka/sexta/jihovychodni_asie_thajsko.htm
https://www.researchgate.net/publication/328999335_Discovery_of_wild_populations_of_Betta_smaragdina_Ladiges_1972_Teleostei_Osphronemidae_in_a_western_province_of_Thailand
https://www.seriouslyfish.com/species/betta-smaragdina/
https://www.iucnredlist.org/species/180827/1666967#geographic-range

Comments of the members of the jury of Biotope Aquarium Design Contest 2019