River Iput, under the overhanging bush, sandy shallows, Surazh, Russia

72nd place in Biotope Aquarium Design Contest 2017

russian_federation Russia. Yuri Vozhegov

Volume: 280 L
Dimensions: 112x50x53 cm
List of fishes: Alburnoides bipunctatus, Gobio gobio, Cobitis taenia, Squalius cephalus, Viviparus viviparus
List of plants: Ceratophyllum
Description of decorations: Substrate, driftwood and willow roots are collected in the river Iput. Fish and the hornwort also.
Description of equipment: Two internal filters FAN-3 with medium sponges. General capacity is 1400 l/h. LED spotlights 2 х 20W and 2 х 50W, 6500К.
Water parameters: Temperature 15-25°C, рН 7.0-7.5, GН 10-20 depending on the season.

Description of the area surrounding the biotope: The Iput River starts west of Nedved village in Klimovichi District, Mogilev Region. Refers to the Dnieper river basin, which in turn refers to the Black Sea basin. The area of the Iput river basin is 10,900 km2. The total length is 437 km. It flows in Mogilev (Belarus), Smolensk, Bryansk (Russia), Gomel (Belarus) regions. In the middle reaches, in the region of Sourazh, the bottom is sandy silted, unstable, forming rolling reefs and islands. A typical meandering, flat, small river of the central zone of Russia. The coasts are both gently sloping, sandy, and precipitous, covered in places with sedge, reeds and shrubs. The ichthyofauna is represented by the usual species of fish of temperate latitudes: pike, perch, pikeperch, catfish, carp, loach, etc.

Description of the underwater landscape of the biotope: A part of the river in the place of transition of the sandy beach to the precipitous shore. With a willow bush hanging over it. The current is slow. Dense branches with underwater roots and thickets of hornwort. On the bottom there is sand of different fractions with a deposit of large particles of silt and pieces of driftwood. There are small stones and pieces of loam. This is one of the usual biotopes of the Iput river.

Description of the parameters of the habitat: The water is transparent. Especially from August to March. The average water temperature in June to August is approaching 22-25°C. The highest water temperature in the river is measured in July (maximum 28°C). The average water temperature ranges from 1.4° C in December to 23°C in July. The hardness of water ranged from 0.8 meq/liter in the spring to 5.7 meq/liter in winter. pH 7.5-8.0.

List of fishes: Perca fluviatilis, Esox lucius, Squalius cephalus, Alburnoides bipunctatus, Cobitis taenia, Gobio gobio, Leuciscus leuciscus, Aspius aspius, Rutilus rutilus, Leuciscus idus, Lampetra planeri.
Spongilla lacustris, Vermidea, Viviparus viviparus, Planorbis, Unio.

List of plants: Ceratophyllum, Hydrocharis morsus-ranae.

Threats to the ecology: To my delight, the Iput River is one of the cleanest rivers in the region. This is the place of pilgrimage of underwater hunters of all nearby regions. Since the transparency of water is many times better than in the nearest rivers: Desna, Sudost, Besed, Sozh, etc. But the level of water in recent years has decreased due to a decrease in the snow cover in winter, as a consequence – due to the lack of a spring flood and because of several dry years. But the water is clean, you can drink it, and it is nice.

Sources of information: https://studwood.ru/817713/ekologiya/rezultaty_gidrohimicheskogo_analizahttps://studfiles.net/preview/6453727/https://studfiles.net/preview/6453732/page:2/; But the most important source of information is my eyes. I grew up on this river, I have been engaged in underwater hunting for 28 years and know my river very well.

Comments of the members of the jury of Biotope Aquarium Design Contest 2017

The composition is much too simple for taking part in a biotope aquarium contest. There are some interesting details on the bottom, but the rest of the tank is almost totally empty (except water, of course). I know it might be imitating just the open water above the bottom, but such environment could probably be shown in a more aesthetic way. Also, I’m not sure if this tank is not too small for all these fishes.

Piotr Kierzkowski (Poland)

I did not like this work. Conditionally it can be taken as a biotope, but it has only basic aquarium features: soil, fish and water. I do not see design at all.

Yuriy Yancher (Ukraine)