Cories for my 20 gallon

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May 26, 2018
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I have a 20 gallon heavily planted aquarium with 4 dwarf frogs, 2 male guppies, 1 male betta, 2 amano shrimp, and 3 nerite snails. I don't have the water all the way to the top so the frogs don't have to swim so high to get air so it's more like a 17 gallon lol. I have been looking high and low for either dwarf or pygmy cories but I can't find them anywhere and today the girl at the lfs claims they are very hard to find and suggested panda cories (which they also didn't have hah). So I was wondering... do you think cories that grow to 2-2.5 inches would be suitable in my tank or should I wait to get some pygmy or dwarf ones? I think they are all adorable so I'm not picky, I just want what is best for the fish.

You have/will have some problems here.

Cories do not appreciate too warm water, and some species are fussier than others. The three "dwarf" species all need cooler water (around 75-76F/24C) is max, and they need sand substrate [no mention is made of the substrate material but sand is crucial for the dwarf species in particular]. Panda cories also need cooler water, and some flow; they come from mountain streams in Peru. No warmer than same teemp mentioned, but some flow from the filter is needed.

All of that will conflict with the Betta that needs warm water and no flow. Combining guppies and Betta is not advisable long-term, as the guppies frequently decide to nip the Betta's fins. You may not be seeing this now, but it may occur nonetheless so you need to be vigilant and may have to remove either.

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