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Interview with Dave Chow


Interview with Dave Chow


Dave Chow - NA Party 2007


AquaExperience has interviewed Dave Chow, twice "Best in Show" in AGA Contest (2007 and 2008) and winner in IAPLC 2007 .... one of the greatest contemporary aquascaper in the world...

Fotogallery Interview with Dave Chow


1. Hi Mr. Dave Chow, would you tell us something about you? (where you live, what's your job, ...)

Hi! My name is Dave Chow who is from Hong Kong, China. I am 45 years old and I running a aquatic plant shop in Hong Kong with my wife. Basically, our shop is selling aquatic plants, aquarium products and provide aquascaping services etc.

2. When and how you started to be interested in aquariums?

It is about 13 years ago since I buy a set of aquarium tank for my new home.

3. How many aquariums are you managing right now? Which kind of layouts do you make use of?

I am handling about 30 to 40 aquariums right now and usually no limit of layouts but mostly my clients likes mountain scene.

4. Which kind of soil do you prefer in your aquariums?

It is no doubt that is ADA Amazonia soil I will use in my aquariums!

5. Have you ever used the heat cable under the gravel? Do you think it might be useful?

Yes, I have an experience for using heat cable under gravel. In my opinion that is useful for some circumstance and I will not use it in my tanks which for competition because the wire is hard ti hidden when photo taking LOL !

6. How do you manage the liquid fertilization? Do you prefer industrial or self-made products?

I am using mainly ADA and Seachem products because I find that they are useful and had significant effect.

7. How do you manage water changes (percentage, frequency and water preparation)?

I used to 50% water change weekly and will not had water preparation. I am using de-chlorinator during water change and adding nitrifying bacteria after water change.

8. Do you recommend CO2 injection only during the daylight or 24h a day?

Usually I recommend CO2 injection only during daylight is OK.

9. Do you use the oxygenator during the night?

Some aquariums I will use air pump at night especially fish population is dense and prevent oil film.

10. How do you manage the filtration in your aquariums? Only mechanical or biological too? Which filter materials?

Usually I am using ceramic rings for biological filtration and white foam for mechanical filtration. For new set up tank, I suggest to use active carbon, de-phosphate and de-nitrate filter media also.

11. Is it important the water circulation in aquariums? Use additional aquarium pumps?

The circulation in the aquarium is so important! Usually I will not use additional pumps but will observe the outflow and inflow of the circulation and make sure that the current will run through the tank.

12. Do you often test your water parameters? Which are the most important parameters to monitor? Which parameters do you usually keep in your tanks (pH, KH, ...)?

It is not my often practice but I am only concern the NO3 level in the aquarium tank because it's the  root of trouble if NO3 is high.

13. In your opinion, does it make sense to recreate the same conditions (including chemical parameters) of the original fish's biotope? Do you think aquariums have to be treated as artificial systems or some kind of natural ones?

It is hard to tell because different people had their personal interest. If they do it happy than do it!

14. In new set up, when you introduce the first animals?

I will only introduce Amano shrimps as the first animals in new set up planted tank.

15. What do you think about Zen philosophy, Iwagumi and landscape layouts in aquariums? Don't you think an aquarium should represent a real aquascape?

It is also hard to tell because Zen philosophy is Zen philosophy, Iwagumi is Iwagumi and landscape is landscape, the aquascapers had his own interest to make the works they like, so it's good to see many different kind of layouts in different competition. This is true for creativity so that aquascaping can turn to true art!

16. You have taken part in some aquascaping contest. What do you think about them? Do you think they can condition commercial choices of aquascapers?

Nowadays many and many aquascaping contest are running by different country, i like to see this happen because it means this hobby is getting popular than ever. I think it will provide a chance for hobbyist and professional aquascaper to show off  and is good to all!

17. Can you tell us some aquascapers you like the most?

Yes, I like many aquascapers' work such as Masashi Ono from Japan, all CAU members etc.

18. Apart of aquascaping, do you have any other hobby?

I like to drawing, jogging, hiking and plant keeping.

19. Have your web site or blog?

You can find me on "Aqua Art 水木林森" on Facebook and also "www.aquaart.com.hk"

20. Any new ideas for the 2012?

Yes! Many new ideas coming! Just wait and see!

Well, Dave, the interview is ended. The Aquaexperience.it staff thanks you for the time you have dedicated to us.

The most famous creations of Dave Chow...

"Nature, endure forever"

- 2nd place AGA Contest 2005 category "Extra Large"
- ranking 32 IAPLC 2005

Layout by: Dave Chow



"Ashy range"

- 1st place AGA Contest 2007 categoria "Large"
- Best in Show AGA Contest 2007
- Winner IAPLC 2007

Layout by: Dave Chow



"Fairy Valley"

- 2nd place AGA 2007 category "Medium"
- ranking 123 IAPLC 2007

Layout by: Dave Chow



"Walong Canyon"

- 1st place AGA Contest 2008 category "Extra Large"
- ranking 52 IAPLC 2008

Layout by: Dave Chow



"Files the Dragon"

- 1st place AGA Contest 2008 category "Extra Large"
- Best in Show AGA Contest 2008
- ranking 49 IAPLC 2008

Layout by: Dave Chow



"Gate of Grace"

- ranking 36 IAPLC 2009

Layout by: Dave Chow



"Towering Peaks"

- 3rd place AGA Contest 2009 category "Large"
- ranking 6 IAPLC 2009

Layout by: Dave Chow



"Lofty spirit"

- ranking 18 IAPLC 2010

Layout by: Dave Chow




- ranking 7 IAPLC 2011

Layout by: Dave Chow

Questions: Andrea Perotti
Translations: Andrea Perotti and Taro


Lo staff di AquaExperience ricorda che i contenuti degli articoli e delle schede presenti in questo sito sono frutto di esperienze personali e pertanto spesso non ripercorribili con medesimi risultati in altre sedi e in altri acquari. Ciò che funziona perfettamente in un acquario potrebbe non funzionare per nulla in un altro. Lo staff di AquaExperience e gli autori del materiale in esso presentato non potranno quindi in alcun modo essere considerati responsabili per eventuali danni a persone, cose o animali derivanti dall'applicazione dei contenuti di tale materiale.