Tips for my first aquarium!

Wakerz

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Hi all! I have just completed the set up of my first aquarium. It has driftwood, sand, a plant nutrition soil and plenty of plants. Something on the aquascape seems a bit off to me and I'm wondering if anybody has any tips! This tank is an EHEIM LED second-hand 150 litre aquarium, 60cm x 50cm. I am looking to have a pair of electric rams in here, some platys, kuhli loach, corys, maybe some dwarf gouramis. However I also love the albino paradise fish and the african dwarf frog. My filter is the EHEIM ecco pro filter, however I am not sure if it doesn't provide enough oxygen for when I bring in fish. Sorry for all the questions, I'm just interested to hear what you say! Any stocking ideas aswell are welcome.
 

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Valkyrie_Lips

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That's a great looking tank! If you're worried about oxygenation you could always add an air stone for more surface agitation. My biggest tip would be to cycle your aquarium before stocking it with fish and to make sure that you understand the nitrogen cycle.
 

Colin_T

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Hi and welcome to the forum :)

Avoid dwarf gouramis (Colisa lalius) and all their colour forms. They have health issues that can't be treated. There are other small gouramis that don't have the same issues so look for them.

Have a picture on the back of the tank to make the fish feel more secure.

Move the rock and wood on the left hand side so you can see around it. If a fish dies in the back left corner you won't see it.

You can put 1/2 to 1 inch thick polystyrene sheets on the back and sides to help insulate the tank and save power.
 

Essjay

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Looking at your proposed stock list, there are a few suggestions.

Frogs need a shallow tank as they need to be able to reach the surface easily to breathe. This tank is a bit tall for them. And it is not advisable to keep frogs with fish. Frogs find their food by smell, and by the time they find it the fish have usually eaten everything. And frogs are very sensitive to fish medications if ever the fish get sick. If you want frogs, it is best to keep them in a tank with no fish. There's nothing to stop you getting another small tank :)

Electric rams need soft acidic water warmer than most fish.
Platies are hard water fish while all the other fish on the list are soft water.
Paradise fish can be nasty things and need cooler water than most fish.


Before you get any fish, can I suggest you find your water hardness. That should be somewhere on your water company's website usually in a section called in your area or something similar. You need a number and the unit of measurements as there are half a dozen units they could use.
And cycle the tank


As long as the filter output moves the water along under the surface there will be enough oxygen for the fish.
 

Lynnzer

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Agree with Essjay on that.
Actually one of my local pet stores has a section selling snakes, frogs, lizards, spiders et al. It's lovely to look at a properly constructed vivarium but I do notice that there's really not much water in them. Frogs, funnily enough are mostly land based except at breeding time.
I think you may not get what you intend by adding them to a tank.
Why not go for Vampire crabs instead. These too need to be able to climb up onto a raised branch or something but do spend most of their time eating in the tank.

Apart from stocking with fish, and Essjay's previous comments, I think you've done a wonderful job. I love it and will wait for when you enter it in the next Tank Of The Month contest.
This month's is due to close for voting tomorrow so it would be good if you could get involved as support for other members.
I have a personal entry myself that you may see from the link in my signature, although the tank light is off at present.

Your own tank is similar in size to another one I have and which I'm itching to do over as I think it looks too gloomy. Might just consider a copy of yours.
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Essjay

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African dwarf frogs are fully aquatic, they don't need land. As are the larger African clawed frogs. But they do need to breathe air. There are a couple of stickies on aquatic frogs in the Amphibians and Reptiles forum.
 

Lynnzer

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African dwarf frogs are fully aquatic, they don't need land. As are the larger African clawed frogs. But they do need to breathe air. There are a couple of stickies on aquatic frogs in the Amphibians and Reptiles forum.
Ah, just shows how much I've researched frogs. You'll know the store I was in up Portrack Lane. Bit pricey in there though.
Now, funny thing, or at least partly funny as it has to do with my wife's current cognitive ability.
We were in one LFS last week and while I mused over various hardscape things, she looked into the numerous tanks, She shouted over to me and then pointed into a tank saying. Look, that fish has legs....
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Essjay

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There are 2 in Portrack Lane - Teesside Koi & Aquatics and the one that used to be Pet Mania (Simply Pets?) - I haven't been in either of them in a while as last time I was in Teesside Koi they had mainly Rift Lake fish and Pet Mania changed hands (something about the staff getting sick from the animals in the petting zoo) and I've not been in there under the new management. Pet Mania was the shop where they'd put 2 male bettas in the same small tank, and the poor finless things were drifting around the tank in a terrible state. That's the last time I went in there.
 

Lynnzer

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There are 2 in Portrack Lane - Teesside Koi & Aquatics and the one that used to be Pet Mania (Simply Pets?) - I haven't been in either of them in a while as last time I was in Teesside Koi they had mainly Rift Lake fish and Pet Mania changed hands (something about the staff getting sick from the animals in the petting zoo) and I've not been in there under the new management. Pet Mania was the shop where they'd put 2 male bettas in the same small tank, and the poor finless things were drifting around the tank in a terrible state. That's the last time I went in there.
Yeah it was Pet Mania. Not a lot of staff interaction there at all but my grandkids love the rabbits and things.
Teesside Koi don't really offer much in the way of our sort of thing. To be honest, it's got to be Newton Aycliffe for me every time.
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Essjay

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Horizon and Aquatic Finatic for me. That's probably a bit far for you, on the road to Thirsk just south of Northallerton.




Apologies, Wakerz, we've hijacked your thread :blush:
Back on topic.........
 

AdoraBelle Dearheart

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Wow! Tank looks gorgeous! Super impressive for a first aquarium especially, wow.
My first tip is to follow the advice above, find out your water hardness and research fish accordingly - will save you heartache and headaches in the long run!

My main tip though is to do what you already appear to be doing, and that's research, plan, research some more, revise, review, research again - all before buying a fish. Planning out the entire stocking can be a nightmare, but it's so much better to know a fish species' tank requirements (minimum size, footprint, area of occupation etc), schooling numbers if applicable, compatibility with the rest of your planned stock... knowing these things ahead of time will put you ahead of most beginners, and give you the best chance of a thriving, peaceful tank and healthy fish.

Resist the urge to impulse buy fish in the stores. By all means looks around, see what grabs you - but if something does, then make a note of the species and research it first - even if it's just going off for a coffee and checking on Seriously Fish first (highly recommend that site for accurate info on fish) before buying.

Please do stick around! Read around, ask any other questions you have, and really enjoy planning what you want to do with your beautiful tank! Would love to follow the progress as you finish cycling it and stock it with whatever you settle on! :D :hi:
 

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