i need ideas - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 6 Old 03-02-2007, 05:27 PM Thread Starter
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i need ideas

(this is my first post, just joined)

Well, as the title says, I need some ideas. I want to get my first set of fish, with a 20 gallon tank, but I'm not really sure what a good starter set of fish would be that's cheap, but yet unique.

My brother has goldfish, and I guess they're alright, but I'm into more unique fish. I'd love to have a gar, but I realize having a gar in a 20 gallon tank is probably just not possible. Also, I'm in college and that's the tank limit size for my school, so i can go no bigger..

To be honest, id like freshwater puffer fish, i saw them on aquariumfish.net for cheap, and was wondering if theyd be ok to start with or if i should go for something more basic.

Any and all thoughts and opinions are appreciated. :)
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post #2 of 6 Old 03-02-2007, 05:37 PM
if you like puffers, than tell us what size you like and color, and im sure we will pull something out. There are so many fish and we dont even know what color you like, lets learn more about what you want, not what we want you to want
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post #3 of 6 Old 03-02-2007, 05:53 PM Thread Starter
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well, i was thinking about some green spotted puffer.. not sure how many i could have per 20 gallon tank tho.. or what other fish i would need to include with them?

keep in mind i have until summer before ill be buying the fish themselves, but itd be nice to know what kind of stuff i should buy and be able to really plan it out in advance..
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post #4 of 6 Old 03-02-2007, 06:47 PM
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i think a fairly easy fish to start with would be a tiger barb or gold barb. ive had my gold barbs for 3 months and they are awesome fish. they run in packs as all/most barbs do. they are relatively cheap and entertaining to watch. the colors are also fairly cool

women want me, fish fear me
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post #5 of 6 Old 03-02-2007, 07:01 PM
equipment you will need is salt-mix, hydrometer, filter, water, buffering substrate (aragonite is most reccomended) high quality flake or pellet food or freeze dried as well as high quality frozen or live food , high quality heater. If you want plants then you will need a stronger light but im pretty sure you wont want any since i think puffers rip them up.

Salt-mix: You should use marine salt-mixes
hydrometer: Instant ocean hydrometer is good
Filter: in order from worst filter to best filter

Internal filter with only one filter media that you change monthly
HOB filters with only one filter media that you change monthly
Normal flow undergravel filter
Internal filter with two or more filter medias where you leave one type of media in there and never change it
Reverse flow undergravel filter
Sponge filter
HOB filter with 2 or more filter medias where you leave one type of media in there and never change it
Canister filter
Wet/dry filter

Buffering substrate: Aragonite sand
Im not too sure of the dietary needs of GSP
Not sure what a high quality heater is.....

this equipment is very basic, there are many more things to look at and to learn about
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post #6 of 6 Old 03-03-2007, 05:10 AM
In the same boat

I'm in college too; but I have an apartment, so there's no limit on the size of my tank. I'm by no means an expert. As a matter of fact, I just added my first few fish to my aquarium about 12 hours ago. This is my first post in this group, so I'm a true rookie aside from growing up in a home that has always had fish. I am, however, a thrifty college pet owner. If you're living on the basic ramen/macaroni/pb&j diet that I'm on, this might help you.

If you're in or near a larger city, this a great thing to look up. Post a want add for an aquarium or even the fish themsevles. I answered an offer ad by a nice lady in a town 30 miles away from mine that was giving away healthy mollies and guppies (my fish of choice because they're cool looking and livebearers). She also happened to have some extra tanks and sold me one for really cheap when I went to pick up my fish. Even if there aren't any fish enthusiasts in the local Freecycle group, it's still a great group for poor college students and a lifetool for those of us with useless majors ;).


I know I've read a lot of detrimental things about PetSmart in just the last hour that I've been browsing this site. Something to keep in mind, however, is the store policy that they can't sell the babies. I don't know if that's universal, but in Lincoln Nebraska, if you can walk in and point out some babies, you can keep them. It's a nice bit of mystery not to be quite sure what it is you're getting, male/female... mikeymouse-fin/potbellied... and when they grow up to be beautiful, all the better.

If nothing else, they'll probably have something cheap you can put the tank on, like a tv stand... maybe some trinket you could boil and boil and boil again and clean 20 times and use as an ornament, though... I'm not sure if that's really okay or just something my parents think is okay.

Good luck.

"It's not how long you live, but what your morals say." ~Sonata Arctica
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