Plans for stocking a 55 gallon planted tank - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
 
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post #1 of 7 Old 08-09-2012, 04:48 PM Thread Starter
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Red face Plans for stocking a 55 gallon planted tank

I've been brainstorming about what to stock a 55 gallon community planted tank with. Here is the list of what I would like, and I would like to know your thoughts on this variety or if there are any suggestions for something else.
My betta and mystery snail that are in the 10 gallon with be moved over to the big tank (the 10 will be converted into a QT).
I would like to also stock:
4-6 oto cats,
3-4 loaches (either Zebra or Bengal),
10 tetra (Ember or Green Fire are my first choices, followed by Black Neons or Emperors)
10 danios (turquoise if I can find them, zebra or possibly giants [but not as many] if not)
I am also considering Amano or Red Cherry Shrimp, and maybe a couple of clams (because my husband keeps asking me if we can get one)

My 10 gallon has Eco-Complete substrate, but I really think I want to switch to the CaribSea Instant Aquarium in Sunset Gold and use Flourish ferts (liquid, tabs, and excel) for the plants. I will be adding CO2 injection at some point.
Current plants are Amazon Sword (1 medium/large, 1 small, 3 tiny), Anacharis (about 14 stems), Anubias (3), Banana Plant (1), Cabomba (2 stems), and a Moss Ball. I would like to add Java Fern, Java Moss, Vallisneria, Ludwiga, Cryptocorne, and maybe some kind of ground cover, either Baby Tears or Hairgrass.

Thank you for reading and for any comments or suggestions.

~Lizz

10 gallon planted.
Falkor the Betta
1 Oto

55 gallon South American.
1 Angelfish
1 Black Ghost Knifefish
3 Sterbai Corydoras
1 Bulldog Pleco
3 Assassin Snails
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post #2 of 7 Old 08-09-2012, 08:45 PM
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Sounds good, except for the betta. He might pose a problem because if any of the fish have anything but very short fins, he will nip at them. everything else seems to be pretty good. Look into the Khuli Loach. They stay small so you won't have to worry about overloading the tank with them and they are packed with personality.

100 gallon reef
50 gallon FOWLR aggressive
80 gallon discus tank
135 gallon fresh community tank
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post #3 of 7 Old 08-11-2012, 07:58 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you :D

As far as I know all of the fish I listed do have short fins, but the betta has never been housed with any other fish. What would be a good way to test him out? I've thought about getting a small school of danios to add to the ten gallon.

~Lizz

10 gallon planted.
Falkor the Betta
1 Oto

55 gallon South American.
1 Angelfish
1 Black Ghost Knifefish
3 Sterbai Corydoras
1 Bulldog Pleco
3 Assassin Snails
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post #4 of 7 Old 08-12-2012, 04:05 AM
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From what I understand, clams are hard to feed properly and when they die they release an explosion of nastyness that will foul your water very quickly. Its also incredibly hard to tell when they die so you may want to look at other options.

They also stayed buried a lot and I have heard they are generally uninteresting.


I havent had them myself though, just stuff I've heard from when I looked into getting them myself ^^
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post #5 of 7 Old 08-13-2012, 01:52 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the info :D

I wasn't really interested in them, and now I think I've convinced my husband they aren't really a good idea.


I also just found out, from my good friend that gave me Falkor, that he actually has been housed with Fancy Guppies and Ghost Shrimp before and never had any aggression issues. Now I feel much better about getting him some tankmates

~Lizz

10 gallon planted.
Falkor the Betta
1 Oto

55 gallon South American.
1 Angelfish
1 Black Ghost Knifefish
3 Sterbai Corydoras
1 Bulldog Pleco
3 Assassin Snails
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post #6 of 7 Old 08-14-2012, 11:14 AM
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I do not recommend Betta in a community tank. While individual fish can have different behaviours, there are the other fish to consider too.

Some of those being considered are small--Ember Tetra, Green Neon Tetra (if this is what the Green Fire refers to). Betta will readily eat such fish if the mood strikes him.

But on the reverse, all small fish have teeth, and characins have plenty and they like using them. The flowing fins of a sedate Betta can be like a red flag to a bull. The attempt to nip even if no nipping occurs can be stressful to the poor Betta. And Black Neon Tetra and Emperor Tetra are documented as nippers when the opportunity strikes them too.

Betta should always be stand-alone.

Now, going past that hurdle, there are some other issues. Some of the fish are slow cruisers (Ember and Green N tetra already mentioned). Emperor are not, they are more active. Combining sedate and active fish is not easy, as the activity alone will stress out the quieter fish. I have these fish currently, they are in separate tanks just for this reason.

Final comment about all this. Even if no actual physical confrontation occurs, either way, the fish can still sense it and get stressed. Fish release pheromones and allomones into the water, and other fish read these chemical signals. This can be highly stressful, and stress always means poorer health and early demise. One has to be careful putting together a community that will actually work.

Not really much different that humans, is it.

By the way, we have fish profiles, second tab from the left in the blue bar across the top of the page, and these fish are included. Shaded names means you can click that as a link to their profile.

Byron.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #7 of 7 Old 08-16-2012, 02:49 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you, Byron.
I understand that most Betta shouldn't be housed in a community tank, but I've talked to several people that have had Betta in community tanks and had no problems. I realize that it totally depends on the individual temperament of the Betta, and also the others in the tank, so that is why I plan on keeping the ten gallon as a back up if he can't be housed with others.

Green Fire tetra are not Green Neons.
I've done lots of research on the compatibility of the species I listed above and, other than the betta, don't see where any problems could arise. I am always open to suggestions though.

Do you think that what I've listed is too many for a 55 gallon, or could I possibly add more? Right now I am only considering the otos, loaches, 1 species of tetra, and 1 species of danio, along with a few red cherry or amano shrimp if I can find them local.


On another note, I did add 3 zebra danio to the 10 gallon on Monday, and plan on adding 3 or 4 more tomorrow (Friday) or Saturday.
And all of my Anacharis "melted" (found out it was from the Excel dosing) so I removed it this morning, and think I am going to replace it with Cabomba because the fish seem to like it more anyways.

~Lizz

10 gallon planted.
Falkor the Betta
1 Oto

55 gallon South American.
1 Angelfish
1 Black Ghost Knifefish
3 Sterbai Corydoras
1 Bulldog Pleco
3 Assassin Snails
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