Small but aggressive fish options? - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 7 Old 11-18-2011, 01:01 AM Thread Starter
iamgray's Avatar
Small but aggressive fish options?

A friend at work is starting his first fish tank with help from me. When I ask him what fish he wants, he doesn't have a clue other than to tell me he wants "super cool bada** fish."

The tank is 30G. I suggested pool filter sand as his substrate but we haven't put it in yet so any alternate suggestions are welcome. I have come to terms with the fact that I have become a bit of a fishy control freak and pool filter sand is MY personal favourite and I like a natural looking tank, but I also don't want my tunnel vision to result in him having a fish tank that I love but he hates.

So as of right now the only thing in the tank is water and I showed him how to get the filter up and running... Not sure what brand the filter is but it's an HOB. I can post the exact brand when I get to work tomorrow.

I have told him he can "borrow" my betta to cycle the tank and once it's done, I'll put him back in my tank.

As for stocking, are there any suggestions, keeping in mind his desire for something somewhat aggressive? I showed him the profiles from here for firemouth cichlids and kribensis, and suggested that a male and female pair of kribs would be better for his tank size than the firemouths... He said he really liked the kribs better as well. So for now, that is what we're planning for... But if anyone has other ideas, I would love to hear them! I don't really know much about non-peaceful fish other than bettas.
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post #2 of 7 Old 11-18-2011, 01:28 AM
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Tiger barbs are a semi-aggressive schooling fish. Maybe those would work?

"Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends."
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post #3 of 7 Old 11-18-2011, 09:26 AM
1077's Avatar
Would maybe see what the water is like with respect to pH,GH,KH before suggesting what fish to place in the tank.
Bad-- fish usually mean's few tankmates will co=exist.
Would maybe offer some filter material, and or a cup of substrate to help seed your friend's tank with bacteria rather than subject a fish to the rigors of cycling.

The most important medication in your fish medicine cabinet is.. Clean water.
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post #4 of 7 Old 11-18-2011, 09:49 AM
MinaMinaMina's Avatar
Totally, totally agree with 1077! Especially the part about giving him seeding material and not a loaner fish!!!

After you've ascertained parameters, here are site with some ideas...
Cookie Cutter - 29-gallons
Cookie Cutter - 20-gallons (long)

They have ideas for a Malawi "mini community" and a Tanganyika "mini community". Maybe that's up his alley if he has hard, high pH water? But they have different ideas for different water. You may want to keep an eye on their recs for numbers of schooling species, I don't necessarily agree with them. But there are some great ideas, and a place to start!

"My dither fish need dither fish!"
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post #5 of 7 Old 11-18-2011, 12:13 PM Thread Starter
iamgray's Avatar
Yeah I can definitely give him seeding material instead of the fish... I have an established tank on my desk, approximately 10ft away from him so transportation of materials should not be a problem. I just initially thought "loaner fish" because it'd give him something to look at... and even though it's not the most fun for a fish, I didn't think too much of the stress it would cause due to the mindset of "it's still better than the vase that so many other bettas get kept in." I'll give him the seeding material and I will also probably end up bringing him some plants from my tank at home.

Our water has a pH around 7.5 and is fairly hard. I will look into those "cookie cutter" ideas for sure!
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post #6 of 7 Old 11-18-2011, 12:20 PM
Calmwaters's Avatar
Just wanted to add if you can give him enough plants he could go ahead and add a fish to the tank so he will as you say have something to look at. The plants when there are enough of them will automatically cycle the tank.

Kindest Regards,

Keeping fish its not a hobby it is a passion!

I have a 55 gallon, 40 gallon, 29 gallon, 20 gallon tank, 5 gallon , and a 2.5 gallon all with real plants.
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post #7 of 7 Old 11-19-2011, 01:04 AM Thread Starter
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Yeah that's true! I think I'll give him some java moss and water nymph for sure.
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