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FishFinatic77

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Hi everyone!

So, I'm going to be moving the fish in my 10g community tank to a 20g high. At the moment, I have 4 herlequin rasboras, 4 cherry barbs, 1 baby honey gourami, and 1 young clown pleco. Once I add them to their new tank, I would like to add a few more fish with low bio-loads so I don't overstock. I was thinking maybe adding more rasboras and cherry barbs, but I also really love cories. Could I add some without overstocking the tank? My water is quite soft and my ph is about 7.5-8ppm.

Also, I plan on carpeting the bottom of the tank with dwarf hairgrass or something similar. If I do add cories, would they destroy the plants? Thanks!
 

AbbeysDad

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I'd go easy on adding more fish especially since some gourami's and pleco's can get a bit large. And you'd definitely want to let the tank get established before adding any new fish.
As to the dwarf hairgrass it typically grows in shallow water with bright light, so it might be a challenge in your 20H unless you have bright light, ferts aplenty, and perhaps CO2. It's also very difficult to keep it planted/rooted with cories rummaging for food.
 
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FishFinatic77

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My gourami is a honey gourami so he would only get to about two inches, and the pleco is a clown pleco so he will only get about 3.5 inches. Also, I do not have my heart set on dwarf hairgrass specifically. I just want something that will cover the bottom of the tank to create the feel of a clearing in a forest (I will have some jungle val and anacharis filling out the back of the tank). I was also planning on letting the fish settle in the new aquarium before adding anything else. My question was, can I add any more fish as long as they have low bioloads, and if yes, what fish would be best? Should I just expand my schools, or should I add something else?
 

seangee

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I would increase the rasbora and barbs. There behaviour is really completely different in larger groups.
 
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FishFinatic77

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That's what I was thinking. My only concern is that the barbs might become more aggressive in a large group. Could that happen? It's probably a dumb question but everyone in my family loves the honey gourami and I don't want anything to happen to him. He hasn't been bothered so far, but I'm just worried about adding more of the barbs. Thanks!
 

essjay

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Cherry barbs are not terribly aggressive for barbs. And those that are aggressive do better with more of them as they then keep the aggression between themselves. Go for more barbs and harlequins :)
 
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FishFinatic77

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Ok, thanks. One more thing. How many more can I add without overstocking?
 

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My only concern is that the barbs might become more aggressive in a large group. Could that happen?
As essjay mentioned, it is actually the reverse...shoaling fish can become more aggressive if there are not sufficient numbers, and regardless of any "minimum" we might suggest it is always going to be more successful the more there are of the species (with very few exceptions).

Ironically (perhaps, depending how one understands this) having more fish in the shoal can have less impact biologically than too few. This is because the fish will be more likely to be stressed with too few, and this increases their impact, plus their behaviours.

One more thing. How many more can I add without overstocking?
This is frankly a small tank for both of these species, but as you have them it is better to risk too many than not enough, for the sake of the fish. I would up the rasboras to 6 (add 2 more) and the cherry barbs to 6 or 7. And if you are diligent in weekly partial water changes of 60-70% of the tank water, every week, and rinsing the filter media at the same time, and doing some substrate vacuuming...you will be fine. The plants will also help, and floating plants are especially useful here.

For plants have a look at the pygmy chain sword; this plant once established will spread via runners quite rapidly, and it manages with moderate light; I have it with floating plants and it thrives.
 
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FishFinatic77

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Thank you so much for your help! I will add to both the schools once the fish have settled into their new home. Also, the pygmy chain sword looks really great so I think I'll use it as my carpeting plant. Thanks again!
 
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