A little help with my first aquarium (21l/5.5g)
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A little help with my first aquarium (21l/5.5g)

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A little help with my first aquarium (21l/5.5g)
Old 06-10-2011, 05:28 AM   #1
 
Annica's Avatar
 
Smile A little help with my first aquarium (21l/5.5g)

Hi,

As the title says Im new to this and this is my first aquarium, so I have a few questions I was hoping you guys could help me with.

1. My tank is only 21 l, (or 5.5 g) and I have been searching online to find out if this is enough for a betta male/female and a otto.. Some said no and other said yes (and that i could have like 3 ottos and 1 betta). I was just wondering your take on that? If it helps here is a picture of my tank :) (also, i will fill it with water all the way to the top, I was in the middle of changing it when i took the pic)



2. MY plants (dont know what they are called, if you do please tell me :P ) have gotten some black spotts on the top of their leaves. are these algae? and if so, will an otto eat these or not? If not, how do I remove them?

Here is a picture of it


3. I have heard that ottos cant have any sort of gravel so I just want to know if this one is ok? also, is this filter ok? Its a Marina, dont remember the model..




Sorry for all the questions, im a newb and just want to make sure I do this right :) Thanks
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Old 06-10-2011, 05:56 AM   #2
 
Hey there! Welcome to Tropical Fish Keeping! And congrats on your first tank :) My first tank was a 5 gallon as well! Hahaha. First, a couple of questions for you. How long have you setup and cycled the tank for? If you're unsure on what a tank cycle/how to cycle a tank, you can go to this thread http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/f...m-cycle-38617/ here. It'll explain what a cycle is, and what you can do to start the cycle.

Usually for a 5 gallon tank, its good enough only for 1 betta, or a small shoal of smaller fish, such as guppies. Ottos usually need a larger tank, and one that's been established for a little while so they'll have algae to eat not just on the leaves, but on and around the tank as well. Also, bettas are aggressive fish, and territorial to a degree, so mixing some fish with a betta isn't recommended. Some smaller tetras are also quite good starter fish as well, and both guppies and tetras are visually pleasing to look at.

I believe those plants you have are anubias plants. They're a great beginner plant, as they are low maintenance and are very hardy; you don't need plant fertilizers nor lots of light for these plants to do well. However, one thing you do need to watch out for is that you do not want to plant them underneath the substrate *gravel* as this would cause them to rot. You can anchor it to a rock, or leave it free floating. In terms of the black spots, it could be algae, but I'm not sure. If you're worried, you can buy a snail or get some for free at your local fish store, *petsmart is having a sale on mystery snails for a dollar each, pretty decent deal* and contrary to popular belief, snails DO NOT eat your plants; they only eat on the layer of algae growing on plant leaves, or decaying/dead plant matter, so don't worry about pest snails :) They, for the most part, are all beneficial *until they take over your tank, aka 100 snails in your tank, then you can worry :D*

In terms of the filter, it looks like a marina internal filter, not sure on which model. But assuming if its the smallest one, it should be good enough, as their smallest filter is rated for 6.6 gallons I believe. Since we're on the subject of equipment, do you have a water heater? I'm not sure on how the temperature gets in your neck of woods, but having an adjustable water heater will help regulate the temperature of your tank, and prevent large fluctuations, which can stress and potentially kill your fish. Also, do you plan on having an air stone with a pump? It's good to have those handy as it'll help the process of getting oxygen in the water for your fishies :)

Anyways, hope this helps, and welcome to Tropical Fish Keeping! And feel free to ask as many questions as you need; that's what we're here for!
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Old 06-10-2011, 06:29 AM   #3
 
I currently have a 5 gallon tank with 6 mollies and a mickey and they do just fine. With weekly water changes the water stays crystal clear. Just thought I give you an idea.
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Old 06-10-2011, 06:39 AM   #4
 
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Thanks :)

I have been cycling the tank forabout a month now! All the readings on my "Tetra: 6in1" test strips are normal, so I think its ready for some fish now :)

Oh, i thought guppies looked too much like bettas because of their tail and that the bettas would attack them because of it.. And that Otto's dont look like bettas therefore pose no threath to them?

Ill buy a rock and make sure the roots arent under the gravel :)

Yeah, I will buy a heater at the same time I buy the fish!! Dont want to risk the snails having millions of babies, so think ill skip that idea :P! And I havent heard about an air stone before, so Ill have to ask the people in the pet shop to explain how to use i/set it up, but will defenitly get one if the bettas like it :)

But is having ottos definitly out of the question for my tank then?
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Old 06-10-2011, 08:20 AM   #5
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tylermoore303 View Post
I currently have a 5 gallon tank with 6 mollies and a mickey and they do just fine. With weekly water changes the water stays crystal clear. Just thought I give you an idea.
That is extreme overstocking. Those fish will eventually be stunted internally, which may cause the fish to bleed internally and die prematurely. I would recommend you get a larger tank for those fish ASAP.

Anubias plant can be planted in the gravel, but you must keep the rhizome above the gravel. I see that one of your anubias is planted ok, but the one next to it is planted too deep (left one). 5g tanks with proper filtration can house a healthy population of shrimp or snails. It can also house 1 betta as excal mentioned. It will also be suitable for 1 dwarf puffer (if your willing to do the extra work to keep one). 5g tanks can also be used to house 1-2 guppies as long as the fry population is kept in check. Beyond that, 5g tanks have limited stocking options.
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Old 06-10-2011, 08:25 AM   #6
 
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Originally Posted by SinCrisis View Post
That is extreme overstocking. Those fish will eventually be stunted internally, which may cause the fish to bleed internally and die prematurely. I would recommend you get a larger tank for those fish ASAP.

Anubias plant can be planted in the gravel, but you must keep the rhizome above the gravel. I see that one of your anubias is planted ok, but the one next to it is planted too deep (left one). 5g tanks with proper filtration can house a healthy population of shrimp or snails. It can also house 1 betta as excal mentioned. It will also be suitable for 1 dwarf puffer (if your willing to do the extra work to keep one). 5g tanks can also be used to house 1-2 guppies as long as the fry population is kept in check. Beyond that, 5g tanks have limited stocking options.
Ok would a couple be fine in a 30g tank with dwarf cichlids?
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Old 06-10-2011, 08:34 AM   #7
 
what kind of dwarf cichlids? Mollies are livebearing fish and their fry will likely be eaten by the cichlids. If you are keeping dwarfs like the bolivian ram, they should be fine together. a 30g tank is good space for 6 mollies.
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Old 06-10-2011, 08:50 AM   #8
 
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ok, thank you.. I think Ill just have a betta then :)
And Ill plant one of the plants a bit higher up :)

Thank you
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Old 06-10-2011, 09:11 AM   #9
 
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Lots of people put Bettas in 'small' tanks, and a 5 gallon is about the minimum for them to be happy.

I'd really like to encourage you to consider a shoal of smaller fish... There's a wide variety of suitable fish...
Depending on your ph-

Acidic soft water-loving fish-
Least Killifish
Ember tetra
dwarf rasbora
chili rasbora

Neutral fish (6.8-7.3)
Betta, shrimp, snails

Basic hard-water loving fish- (Most of these have had their name changed recently. I forgot their new name)
Celestial pearl danio
Emerald dwarf rasbora (Microrasbora erythromicron )
Neon green rasbora (Microrasbora Kubotai)
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Old 06-10-2011, 11:04 AM   #10
 
In a 5g, a healthy population for the tetras and rasboras is too small. tetras and rasboras all should have at least 6 or more for a shoal and that would be too much for a 5g. The rasboras need more swimming room and the tetras will be crowded when they get bigger.
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