Tankmate suggestions. New to TFF and (kind of) new to the hobby.

Hyr

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This is good news, I also felt like this was spiraling out of control for a minute. I really didnt want to get into that. I am just trying to do whats best for my fish. If the Melini will be ok with these parameters then id gladly keep them in there, I know they have them at the LFS and ill be able to get more to raise the pop, Id really like to bring the numbers up to 6 each of the Julii and the Melini.
Although @Byron thinks otherwise, I really think you should move the Melini's out. It's greatly limiting what parameters you can even have, which you have yet to state. For all I know, you may have to move half the tank to a new tank. Please post the parameters, then we'll talk further. What I was saying is that the Melini's greatly limit the wide range of parameters to a single mg/l.
 

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I think it must just be the brand I have because there are many different sizes of grains in the sand bed, the really fine grit is the problem. I can see it in suspension for a bit after it gets kicked up. My filter intake is only a few inches from the top of the tank as i moved it as high as it would go to keep it from sucking in the sand when I realized I had problems. It didnt help. The pool filter sand Is not white, its a tan, perhaps a little darker than the play sand I used to have, and the grit is very uniform. I think its going to work out great.

Sounds good.
 

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This is good news, I also felt like this was spiraling out of control for a minute. I really didnt want to get into that. I am just trying to do whats best for my fish. If the Melini will be ok with these parameters then id gladly keep them in there, I know they have them at the LFS and ill be able to get more to raise the pop, Id really like to bring the numbers up to 6 each of the Julii and the Melini.

I'm not understanding the issue with Corydoras melini. We previously ascertained the GH of your source water is 112 ppm (= 6 dGH), and that is soft water. The pH is higher than I would like, but seems stable, and it may lower which is in the right direction. There is nothing wrong here for Corydoras melini. Soft water, with a stable pH that is not excessive, should not pose a problem.
 
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Although @Byron thinks otherwise, I really think you should move the Melini's out. It's greatly limiting what parameters you can even have, which you have yet to state. For all I know, you may have to move half the tank to a new tank. Please post the parameters, then we'll talk further. What I was saying is that the Melini's greatly limit the wide range of parameters to a single mg/l.

I think i may have missed something, what parameters are you looking for? I thought I had gotten everything we needed (Total hardness of 112ppm, carbonate hardness of 89ppm, and a pH of 7.8 at the treatment plant but my aquarium water tested at 7.6 at the LFS)
 

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I think i may have missed something, what parameters are you looking for? I thought I had gotten everything we needed (Total hardness of 112ppm, carbonate hardness of 89ppm, and a pH of 7.8 at the treatment plant but my aquarium water tested at 7.6 at the LFS)

I think Hyr missed this post back a ways, that's all. He can confirm.:)
 

Hyr

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I think Hyr missed this post back a ways, that's all. He can confirm.:)
Oh. I apologize. I for some reason never got the notification for that post..Hmm..weird. Anyway; my bad.

Currently it's really early in the morning (I can't sleep), but I'll be sure to actually use those parameters to respond and conclude on what you should most likely want to do.
 
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Oh. I apologize. I for some reason never got the notification for that post..Hmm..weird. Anyway; my bad.

Currently it's really early in the morning (I can't sleep), but I'll be sure to actually use those parameters to respond and conclude on what you should most likely want to do.

Lol, oh ok. I thought maybe I had to wrangle up some more info, and I have already called the local treatment plant 3 times in the last few days.
 
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Ok I feel much better about my tank now. You guys have been great help and I appreciate your advice and the time you've all been taking to help me out. The Loaches and Tetras have been removed.
I will start bringing the numbers up on the Corys and the Rosy Barbs when I have a chance and as they become available with a goal of 6 each of the Cory species (total 12) and perhaps 7-8 Rosy Barbs, this will be the final pop of the 55g along with the Bristlenose and the Bolivian Ram.

I have decided to just keep the Melinis in the tank for now but with the correct group size, with the acceptance that the pH is probably a little high for them but quite a few people that keep them are suggesting that as long as its stable and not outrageously high then they should be OK with it.

Now that being said, will that be fully stocked for a 55 gallon tank, or do I have room to add a few fish in the future?
Like another Bolivian Ram or 2( I seem to be reading that they like company), or perhaps a pair of Kribensis?
Please don't crucify me if this is a bad idea, I know I am probably approaching the limit for this tank but I just really like the dwarf Cichlids and am still feeling the empty space my Electric Blue Acara left.

I also mentioned that I wanted to make this a planted tank and wanted to add some Java Fern or Java Moss or some type of Anubias. Do these sound like good choices or is there something better suited for my population?

Thanks again
 

Hyr

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I'm not going to directly quote your post, as it generally confuses me and makes my response unorganized.
Besides this:
Total hardness of 112ppm, carbonate hardness of 89ppm, and a pH of 7.8

So, I am going to compile every issue and finally, what I think you should do with your tank. I do suggest you take my advice however. It is a pain in the butt, but you should be able to do this.

What can live inside your tank, with your current parameters:
  • Corydoras Julii, although a bit high pH for them.
  • Rosy Barb, perfect for them.
  • Bristlenose Plecostomous, although pH a bit high for them.
  • Bolivian Ram, although pH a bit high for them.
What can't live in your tank:
  • Melini's Corydora, pH way to high for them, hardness to high for them.

Your temperature should be: 70 degrees to 75 degrees.
Bolivian Ram likes hotter temperatures, however, at 80 degrees.
So I'd keep the temperature at 75 degrees.

The rest of the fish are fine. But, I recommend that you remove Melini's Corydora. Just because they're "ok" doesn't mean that they're "good." Would you rather live an "ok," life or a "good," life? That being said, I can guarantee that if you keep them in there, they will have a shortened lifespan.

Conclusion:
  • Return Corydoras Melini or get R/O or Distilled water and manually get it to the right pH/gH/kH.
  • Get 5 more Corydoras Julii.
  • Get 6 more Corydoras Panda.
  • Get 5 more Rosy barbs.
  • Plant your aquarium. Easy plants like Java Moss, Fern, Anubias Petite, regular Anubias are all easy. Get some floating plants, a bunch of duckweed will do the trick, maybe some Amazon Frogbit.
  • Yes your basically fully stocked.
  • I'm not sure what you did with the tetra or the loach, but you can't really add them back.
 
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I'm not going to directly quote your post, as it generally confuses me and makes my response unorganized.
Besides this:


So, I am going to compile every issue and finally, what I think you should do with your tank. I do suggest you take my advice however. It is a pain in the butt, but you should be able to do this.

What can live inside your tank, with your current parameters:
  • Corydoras Julii, although a bit high pH for them.
  • Rosy Barb, perfect for them.
  • Bristlenose Plecostomous, although pH a bit high for them.
  • Bolivian Ram, although pH a bit high for them.
What can't live in your tank:
  • Melini's Corydora, pH way to high for them, hardness to high for them.

Your temperature should be: 70 degrees to 75 degrees.
Bolivian Ram likes hotter temperatures, however, at 80 degrees.
So I'd keep the temperature at 75 degrees.

The rest of the fish are fine. But, I recommend that you remove Melini's Corydora. Just because they're "ok" doesn't mean that they're "good." Would you rather live an "ok," life or a "good," life? That being said, I can guarantee that if you keep them in there, they will have a shortened lifespan.

Conclusion:
  • Return Corydoras Melini or get R/O or Distilled water and manually get it to the right pH/gH/kH.
  • Get 5 more Corydoras Julii.
  • Get 6 more Corydoras Panda.
  • Get 5 more Rosy barbs.
  • Plant your aquarium. Easy plants like Java Moss, Fern, Anubias Petite, regular Anubias are all easy. Get some floating plants, a bunch of duckweed will do the trick, maybe some Amazon Frogbit.
  • Yes your basically fully stocked.
  • I'm not sure what you did with the tetra or the loach, but you can't really add them back.

Gotcha, thanks for your suggestions. I think I'm on the right track now, can't wait to get this all squared away.
I traded the tetras and loaches into the LFS in exchange for some more Rosy Barbs.
 

Byron

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Ok I feel much better about my tank now. You guys have been great help and I appreciate your advice and the time you've all been taking to help me out. The Loaches and Tetras have been removed.
I will start bringing the numbers up on the Corys and the Rosy Barbs when I have a chance and as they become available with a goal of 6 each of the Cory species (total 12) and perhaps 7-8 Rosy Barbs, this will be the final pop of the 55g along with the Bristlenose and the Bolivian Ram.

This is fine. Temperature should be around 76-77 F (24-25 C), no higher, but no lower either. Bolivian Ram (Mikrogeophagus altispinosus) does not need 80F (the cousin, blue ram M. ramirezi, does). My former Bolivian was in a tank with this temperature and he was well into his ninth year when he died last year, which is pretty good for a species that has a normal lifespan of four to five years.

I have decided to just keep the Melinis in the tank for now but with the correct group size, with the acceptance that the pH is probably a little high for them but quite a few people that keep them are suggesting that as long as its stable and not outrageously high then they should be OK with it.

I am not going to keep arguing over parameters. The GH is the more important. With one or two exceptions, there is no Corydoras species that lives in water having a GH higher than 1 dGH, but the ichthyologists have sorted this out. You are fine.

Now that being said, will that be fully stocked for a 55 gallon tank, or do I have room to add a few fish in the future?
Like another Bolivian Ram or 2( I seem to be reading that they like company), or perhaps a pair of Kribensis?
Please don't crucify me if this is a bad idea, I know I am probably approaching the limit for this tank but I just really like the dwarf Cichlids and am still feeling the empty space my Electric Blue Acara left.

There will be room for additional species, but not cichlids; this would give you problems. Generally, only one species of cichlid should be in an aquarium. [The exception are the rift lake species from East Africa, a very different thing.] In large tanks, it is sometimes possible to combine species from Central America, or from South America. But that is not here. A Bolivian Ram will, like all male cichlids, establish his territory, and it will be the entire tank, guaranteed. He will be happier (less stressed) not having competitors. One cichlid species to a tank.

As for adding another (or more) Bolivians, this is fraught with danger. Like all neo-tropic cichlid species (there may be an exception or two that I have not come across), cichlids must select their mates. Some are "pair" species, like the two rams; some are harem species, like many but not all of the Apistogramma species. A male and female Ram will select each other and bond; this bond may last their lifetime, or it may not. But if they have not selected each other, and a male/female are put together, one of them (usually but not always the female) may be dead before long. You might hit it off, but not likely. I speak from experience; a year or two after I acquired my former Bolivian Ram male, I added a female. They seemed to accept one another, but I was not as informed then as I am now on cichlid bonding, and looking back I can see there were clear signs of trouble brewing. They spawned four times, but with odd interactive behaviour each time; finally the male had enough, and the female was dead. And this was in a well planted five-foot long 115g tank with over 100 characins and cories. The male owned that space, period, and he was not having it invaded by some female he didn't accept. It was also amusing to watch him ordering the cories and tetras around too. No physical aggression, other than pushing cories away from his food tablet, but he clearly ruled the tank, and the other fish knew it. Fish send out chemical signals, and they make their wants clear.

I also mentioned that I wanted to make this a planted tank and wanted to add some Java Fern or Java Moss or some type of Anubias. Do these sound like good choices or is there something better suited for my population?

These are low-light plants. I would also get some floating plants. Will need to know about the lighting before proceeding.
 

Hyr

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Just do what you want. I was just trying to look out for the best interest of adding more fish in the future; with Corydoras Melini it limits what you can add a lot. Alot easier to goto the store and trade them in for Pandas. That's my two cents.
 
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These are low-light plants. I would also get some floating plants. Will need to know about the lighting before proceeding.

I gotcha, I just have 2 24" full spectrum T8 bulbs in the hood, would this be better off starting a new thread in the planted aquarium section?

There will be room for additional species, but not cichlids; this would give you problems. Generally, only one species of cichlid should be in an aquarium.

Thanks for the quick and dirty Cichlid lesson, I had a feeling that might be troublesome but I was just reading that the Rams like to be in groups. Do you have any species off the top of your head that would be a good fit? I dont want to make any stupid mistakes again. I started stocking up on the Rosys and theres an awful lot of orange in that tank, I'd like to eventually add a few fish to bring in some accent color.
 

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I gotcha, I just have 2 24" full spectrum T8 bulbs in the hood, would this be better off starting a new thread in the planted aquarium section?

What are the tank dimensions? A 30g was initially mentioned, then a 55g. This light will be fine over the 30g (assuming a 30 or 36 inch length) but not over a 55g (assuming a 4-foot length). Although, with good quality tubes you could probably manage shade plants. Or of course you could go for a more authentic biotope look, with no lower plants (except perhaps moss on wood) and have lots of wood and branches, with floating plants.

Might benefit starting a new thread, this one at 3 pages can get involved if one has to keep looking back for data.

Thanks for the quick and dirty Cichlid lesson, I had a feeling that might be troublesome but I was just reading that the Rams like to be in groups. Do you have any species off the top of your head that would be a good fit? I dont want to make any stupid mistakes again. I started stocking up on the Rosys and theres an awful lot of orange in that tank, I'd like to eventually add a few fish to bring in some accent color.

OK, so we're dealing with soft water, slightly basic pH (which may lower in time). You have Rosy Barbs which are active swimmers, but not excessively so. Sedate fish can be frustrated by active fish around them, and the Bolivian Ram is sedate, but here it should be OK as the barb species is not overly active. But it is something to keep in mind. Cories are not really "active swimmers" in the same sense as upper fish would be, and should not have problems.

It might be best if you did some research for what you might like in terms of the colour, and run it past us. I tend to be much better pointing out this or that about a species than I am suggesting species, aside from the general traits like swimming level, parameters, and temperament.
 
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It might be best if you did some research for what you might like in terms of the colour, and run it past us. I tend to be much better pointing out this or that about a species than I am suggesting species, aside from the general traits like swimming level, parameters, and temperament.

I understand. I think this thread has run its course. I feel pretty good in how I want the 55g to be populated and that was the main focus of this thread. I'll bring the plant questions over to the planted aquarium section, and ill give some thought into what im looking for in another species and bring it to the forum when I am ready. Thanks so much for your help, I appreciate the effort!
 

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