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34-37 High (30x12x22)

Discussion in 'Welcome: Introduce Yourself & Learn More About TFF' started by TeenerFish, Apr 2, 2017.

  1. TeenerFish

    TeenerFish New Member

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    Hello, so glad to be part of the forum! Wanting to start my tank again (specs in my title). I will have good filocation (Fluval 305, sml Aqua Tech or Whisper HOT filter if needed, Penguin Power Head Sponge filter, C02 system), will do plants and substrate (not a fan of UGF), and will probably change from Florescent to LED, and of course weekly water change and vaccume.
    My question since it'seems been 10 yrs since I've had a tank.......I tend to overstock since I have good filtration.....can I have the following fish:
    5 Zebra Danios
    6 Glowlight Tetras
    7 Neon Tetras
    Dwarf Cory Cats (how many?)
    Otto a (how many?)
    Some Ghost Shrimp

    Thanks for the advice!
     
  2. fluttermoth

    fluttermoth The current Mrs Treguard ;)
    Staff Member Moderator Global Moderator

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    Hi there :)

    Before we discuss stocking, could I clarify a couple of things, please?

    Is the tank 12" from back to front and 22" tall, or the other way round (I can't imagine it is, but I thought I'd better check!)

    Do you know the pH and hardness of your water?

    Overfiltering doesn't really mean you can increase stocking levels; you still have the same amount of waste, nitrate, hormones etc, being produced, and those things are the basis of deciding proper stocking levels :)
     
  3. TeenerFish

    TeenerFish New Member

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    Yes 12 inches front to back, 22 high. My tap water will med-soft. I would like some of each of the species/types listed so can downsize their numbers a bit. Thanks for your advice! Much appreciated
     
  4. Byron

    Byron Member

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    Do you have a number for "med-soft"? It is important to pin this down more precisely given some of your intended fish species.

    As for down-sizing numbers of a species, this is not in the best interests of the fish, and given the initial numbers in post #1 you cannot downsize without causing serious stress to the fish within the species. They need more, not fewer. Shoaling fish live in groups of hundreds, and this need is programmed into their DNA as an "expectation." To deny it means the fish will be frustrated, stressed, in weakened health and condition, and generally live a shorter than normal lifespan. Minimum numbers like six are often mentioned when people ask, but this is not something one should strive for, having the minimum in order to have more species. The fish will not win.

    The other thing to keep in mind is the whole environment. Even with fish of the same relative size, you can have more of species "A" than of species "B" in the same tank, factoring in their environmental needs and if these are provided for. Water parameters, the aquascape (substrate type, wood, rock, decor, plants), water flow (separate from filtration though usually related to the filter), filtration, water changes, foods and feeding, numbers of the species, and the combination of species. All of these factor into the equation when considering how many fish a given tank can hold. So it is much more than mere body size. Not providing for the environmental needs of a fish will mean a greater impact on the biological system.

    Examples from the fish mentioned in post #1. If you want cories, smooth and darkish sand should be your substrate. If one of the dwarf species, sand must be your substrate. A minimum of five or six of the cory species, but with the "dwarf" species it must be higher, I would suggest 9-12 minimum. And more than 5-6 of the average-sized species will mean healthier cories if they are chosen. Given the tank substrate surface area, I would aim for 15-20 of the "dwarf" species, or if the larger species (around 2 inches) 9-12. With the latter you can mix species, but if "dwarf" they should be the same at those numbers.

    I would hold off on otos until the tank is more established biologically, after a couple months is better. And if there is some common algae (otos will not eat "problem" algae species). These fish are wild caught, and frequently almost starved when you buy them. With natural algae in the tank, they will settle and learn to feed from sinking prepared foods like veggie rounds.

    The neons and glowlights are quiet fish, meaning not active swimmers; danios are just the opposite. Generally these do not do well together (active and sedate species) but here you should be OK, except for tank dimensions (I'll come back to this). The danios will remain in the upper level, the two tetras in the lower half. But I would up the numbers, tetras maybe 8-10 of the individual species.

    Now the danios...these being active swimmers should have more room. SF recommends at least a 3-foot (90 cm) tank. I would consider other fish for the upper level, species that are more suited to the tank dimensions--taller tanks suit sedate fish while longer tanks suit active fish, generally. There are many options, but I would want to pin down the GH first, as some of these will be wild caught.

    Hope this helps. And, welcome to TFF.:hi:

    Byron.
     
  5. TeenerFish

    TeenerFish New Member

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    Thanks so much for your expertise! Yes, I would always add Otto a last if I had them. Let me know what plants would be good also. I would like to grow some tall ones for the back to hide most tubing, etc. Some low growing into the front? Can I have part sand and other material for the plant roots? Maybe I can say no to the Danios and then up the 2 Tetra species. As well, instead of Dwarf Cory's....more 2" sized of 2 compatible kinds? I will see if I have any test strips for the hardness and get back with you. Thanks again!
     
  6. TeenerFish

    TeenerFish New Member

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    P/S maybe some Cherry Barbs? Compatibility? A bit more sensitive to the water? Could I make it work? Still have to get the water hardness for you of course.
     
  7. TeenerFish

    TeenerFish New Member

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    Ok, I found some test strips....

    Used tap water.....

    PH is 6.8
    Alkalinity is 80 KH
    Hardness is 150 GH

    Hope this helps. Oh, and if not having dwarf corys then I would rather not have sand. Thoughts on Pandas? I know I will have to find "very" smooth, smaller pebbles. I want it to look natural as well.

    Thanks again!
     
  8. Byron

    Byron Member

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    Those numbers help, aqnd are not at all bad. The GH (150 ppm equates to 8 dGH) will allow you a fairly wide choice in fish, just avoid species that need harder water, like all livebearers.

    Plant substrates usually cost a fortune and do nothing, I've tried some. Now, that doesn't mean there may not be some out there that do, but this is only one aspect of plant requirements and a minor one at that. Lighting is your most important aspect, so you will need to tell us the details on what you have. Different plant species have different light needs, and with those go the nutrients. Once we know the lighting, we can then consider suitable plants, and then determine what, if any, fertilizers will help. If you don't get the light and nutrients balanced for the plants, you will have problem algae.

    A word on substrate...if you are having any cories, you really should go with sand. It is just not fair to the cories. They have an inherent need to sift the substrate through their mouths as they look for bits of food, then discharge the substrate through the gill slits. Only sand (or mud, but no one wants that in an aquarium) allow this. Fish come first, or should. I have play sand in all 8 tanks now, and no issues. I had fine gravel for many, many years and wish I'd changed to sand before I did.

    Byron.
     
  9. TeenerFish

    TeenerFish New Member

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    Marineland Florescent hood that came with the the tank 10 years ago. I can upgrade if nec. Will my plants grow in sand? Nix on the UGG due to sand? Thanks!
     
  10. TeenerFish

    TeenerFish New Member

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    P/S What other species are bottom dwellers besides Cory's that may not need sand? Also, can I have sand and gravel in different parts of the tank? Just curious on both. Looking for a good balance that is good to the fish but not too difficult to maintain. Thasks again! Thoughts on the UGF with the reverse flow peguin?
     
  11. Byron

    Byron Member

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    Marineland Florescent hood that came with the the tank 10 years ago. I can upgrade if nec.

    Can you tell me how many tubes, the length of the tubes, and are they T8 or T5? New tubes may be all you would need, this info will likely tell us.

    Will my plants grow in sand? Nix on the UGG due to sand?
    Also, can I have sand and gravel in different parts of the tank? Just curious on both. Looking for a good balance that is good to the fish but not too difficult to maintain. Thasks again! Thoughts on the UGF with the reverse flow peguin?

    Yes, all plants that are rooted in the substrate will grow very well with sand. And yes, no under-gravel filtration with sand. I don't consider this especially good with plants anyway, plus the other issues, but I also admit readily that for decades we all used this (I'm old enough to have had this when it was pretty much the only filter).

    Mixing types of substrate is not usually a good idea. First, it looks un-natural in so small a space (the tank) and draws attention to the space being small and "cut up." There is also the issue of mixing, as they will due to normal water movement. Water also has to move through the substrate, cooler water drawn down, then heated by the bacterial decomposition of organics, and warmer water rising back up. The UGF messes around with this. Not a major issue, but one best avoided.


    What other species are bottom dwellers besides Cory's that may not need sand?

    Most substrate fish are better with sand. Especially those suited to this particular tank.

    You fear of sand is perhaps not realistic. I have had sand for six years now (the first I changed over) and all tanks have had sand for two years or more. I have never done anything differently. I've never had issues or problems. The fish love it, it is difficult to describe how one knows this, but it is obvious. It is also the most realistic and natural substrate (mud would be authentic too, but not practical).

    A photo of my 70g may illustrate some of this. Sand substrate, lots of wood, plants, dual T8 fluorescent tubes, No CO2, plant additives are substrate tabs (1 next to each of the larger swords) and comprehensive liquid once a week.
     

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  12. TeenerFish

    TeenerFish New Member

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    Very nice! Thanks for the pic. Not afraid of of sand as long as I vaccume, assuming sand is vaccumed. My last substrate was gravel, sand, GA clay? Been a long time so hard to recall. So, u just use washed play sand? What does my perfect tank look like or have, based on what you know about what I have? I would lover to know. I probably won'the set up for some time yet but wanted to be more educated this time around. I too am old enough to have the UGG and not a fan. Light is 1 tube that would have came with a standard Marineland hood for my size tank from Petsmart in 2006. I will still look and let you know as soon as able. You have been teriffic!
     
  13. Byron

    Byron Member

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    Very nice! Thanks for the pic. Not afraid of of sand as long as I vaccume, assuming sand is vaccumed. My last substrate was gravel, sand, GA clay? Been a long time so hard to recall. So, u just use washed play sand?

    I use Quikrete Play Sand, available at Home Depot and Lowe's in Canada and USA. I believe there is a buff-coloured one and the dark grey I have, either depending where you live in NA. I like the dark grey. It looks lighter under water and tank lighting. In some tanks I don't touch it, in others I run the Python water changer over the top. I never really dig into it; plant roots and Malaysian Livebearing Snails keep it clean, while areas under wood or rock are anaerobic and should be.

    Light is 1 tube that would have came with a standard Marineland hood for my size tank from Petsmart in 2006. I will still look and let you know as soon as able.

    This will be tricky, one tube over a deeper tank, if T8; T5 is a bit better. New lighting is one option, or you could go for a more authentic blackwater look. By this, I mean lots of wood and branches but few or no substrate-rooted plants, and floating plants to do your main plant filtration. Or you could use low-light plants like Java Fern and Anubias, attached to some of the wood. This is actually very effective in taller tanks, and with fish from such habitats quite lovely. I've started out with this plan a couple times, but oddly enough a few plants I just stick in decide to make a go of it, and I end up with a planted tank (maybe sparsely) after all.

    The first photo below is my 33g, replicating a Sri Lankan stream (home of the Black Ruby Barbs fish) which has Java Fern on the wood, floating Water Sprite, and dried oak leaves over the sand. This didn't last long, as the barbs suddenly to my surprise began to eat the leaves and they were gone within a couple days. I replace them weekly, but they don't last long.

    The second photo is my 40g Amazon flooded forest, intended to be branches and no plants, but here again the plants I stuck in to cycle decided to stay. The substrate today, less than a year after this phjoto, is completely and thickly covered with the chain sword. I have no cories in here, so I let it go, but one of these days I intend thinning it out, and replacing the branches as they are now broken apart a bit, which happens as they age under water.

    The third photo is the former Amazon blackwater, before I moved the fish into the new 40g. This 29g has the same footprint as your tank which is taller.
     

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  14. TeenerFish

    TeenerFish New Member

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    Beautiful! The 29 is striking! Yeah my 1 bulb says 120Vac/60 Hz/20w. I will probably get a new hood/lite. I have been out of the loop for so long....not sure I'very ever seen 2 rubes. Maybe I should get LED?

    So assuming I do sand you say I can plant in the sand. So cool. I guess I falsely assumed I had to have soil . Would you say I could do 8 Glowlight, 8 Neon, 6 Cory's (not dwarf)? How should I introduce? Can plant, let grow, then fish?
     
  15. Byron

    Byron Member

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    Let's get to specifics on the light. My 29g is the same footprint, but your 37 is taller. I have one 24-inch T8 tube over the 29g, and this just manages low light plants and the swords. I do have floating plants too which reduce the light getting down in the tank. The swords are managing but struggling a bit. I use a Life-Glo tube over these tanks (I have two of them, 29g) as this is a stronger intensity light. You could try this. Forget stem plants as they need more light; generally, fast-growing plants need more intense light and more nutrients in balance. Floaters are fast growing but they are up under the light so they tend to manage better.

    With the Life-Glo T8 tube, you could manage Java Ferns, Anubias, Java Moss, probably chain swords, maybe crypts. You could use lots of branches to fill in the space. And floating plants. If you find this doesn't work, you can consider new lighting. I have had bad luck with LED, having tried four or five different units and all of them went back to the store. So I won't suggest LED lighting units as I have no experience with the units that do work, and some of them certainly do. Many are minimal in the red wavelength, as this is the prime driver of photosynthesis, hence the poor plant growth under the cheaper/poorer LEDs.

    Aside from Flourish Tabs for the larger sword plants, plain sand is all I have. Of course organics occur, and this is essential, as it is the prime source of CO2. Which is one reason not to dig around in the substrate much. Even Diana Walstad, who promotes soil substrate planted tanks, has admitted that after one year, a sand-only substrate will have the same nutritive value as soil. It is because of the buildup of organics. The only real benefit of soil is the initial level of CO2.

    Fish. Eight glowlights and neons are fine. I would up the cories to 8-9. These fish are all lower-level, so you should look at species for the upper levels. You could have two, three, probably more species in similar numbers. We can assume they would all be smallish, and less active, so less impact on the biological system.

    If you plant the tank, even if just floating plants, and they get going, you can add the fish slowly (a species at a time, it is always better to add the entire group of a species) and forget about "cycling." We can go into this more later.

    Byron.
     

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