starting a 55gal. have lots a questions. plants fish etc. - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 7 Old 02-17-2010, 01:42 PM Thread Starter
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starting a 55gal. have lots a questions. plants fish etc.

i have at the moment a 29 gal tank im still in the process of cleaning the 55gal tank it was a steal off of craigslist. the tank hoods lighting ornaments filter heater and stand for 100!!!! the tank and stand just need a good cleaning. i really want this tank to be as close to perfect as possible. so let me start with the filter. they guy told me its a whisper something or another i have no knowledge of this filter and the filters that im positive do not go with it that he gave me. so my fisrt question is does anyone have any a clue as to how i can find out exactly what type of filter and cartidges i need? any info here is great.

next is i would really love to have a couple live plants in this tank but have never had 1 at all i started to read the stickies in the plant section and plan to head back there once done here but im not sure what type of plants are good with my fish i have 3 dwarf frogs 2 ghost catfish 2 khuli loaches 1 iridescent shark 1 loricara whiptail catfish 1 bala shark 1 blood parrot fish 1 cory catfish and 1 neon tetra i plan to add a couple more tetras once the new tank is up and going good. so what would be my best option here? and what type of gravel should i use? i have gravel and would really like to add sum sand in with it if that would work.also would i need different lighting at different times or anything like that?

also im in need of a new air filter so my question here is should i get 1 specifically for a 55 gal or could i get one a lil bigger maybe for a 100 gal? i do plan to have at least 2 different things hooed up too this if that makes a difference.

how about a few ghost shrimp????? is that possible at all in this tank with my other fish??? or would paulie my parrot fish eat them?

now a question about decorations. i found these really neat rubber type jelly fish at a local pet the center the have a pocket of air, however i cannot keep mine floating they stay up for awhile maybe 2-3 weeks then i find them laying at the bottom of the tank and have to fish them out is there anything i can do to get them to stay floating or did i just waste $$

also i seen in another post about a calculator??? what is this and would it be of good use too me?

so far this is all i can think of at the moment but if theres anything anybody else would like to throw in if u think it would help thats great.

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post #2 of 7 Old 02-17-2010, 03:31 PM
Angel079's Avatar
Welcome tot he forum!
If you want to go planted I'd suggest to exchange the HOB for a canister, as the HOB with create too much surface disturbance for plants. You could get a Eheim 2213 on there that run's you about $60-65 if bought online.
You could go with a wide verity of plants there really anything like Amazon Swords, Anubias, Crypts, Vallis.....the list is endless maybe its easier if you look through here and see what plants you like Aquarium Plants Pond Plants From Sweet Aquatics If you wanna see some planted tanks for ideas here are all my tanks listed with pictures maybe that helps you narrow down plants too
Using fine gravel will be fine or if you like sand; set it up with poolsand or playsand from your homestore. Very inexpensive and works great for your fish there and the plants.
No Air stone; you do not wanna add a airstone to a planted tank because it will drive out your co2 which the plants need to thrive.
Shrimp are awesome; I had written up a stick in our shrimp section here for their tank set ups; but i'd not recommend them with the fish you have there as the'd regard them as food.

What do you wanna calculate?

~ Life Is Too Short, Break The Rules, Forgive Quickly, Kiss Slowly, Love Truly, Laugh Uncontrollably And Never Regret Anything that Made You Smile.
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post #3 of 7 Old 02-17-2010, 03:58 PM Thread Starter
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yea im really thinking about a new filter either way since im not so sure of the 1 i have. if i have something i like to know as much as possible about it. its great to know i can have some plants!!!! im still not to positive on some favorites ive heard of some plants that the leaves turn red on cant remember what it was called but maybe some of those or i spotted a java fern on the on link you gave me i really like it too so maybe some of those im not to picky just so the fish are happy. also i was wondering which fish specifically that would arm the shrimp im really considering setting up my new tank and also the old one for my mom and could maybe talk her into talking the ones that would hurt them. i had ghost shrimp before and LOVED them there so fascinating. i did buy a bubble wall so i am assuming that would need to be taken back if i do decide to go planted correct?
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post #4 of 7 Old 02-18-2010, 05:00 AM
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Welcome to TFK! Always good to see people getting good tank deals on craigslist.

Let me comment on your stocking:
3 dwarf frogs - These guys are notorious for being sort of "bumbling" when it comes to eating, so in a crowded community tank you might have trouble getting them enough food to eat. I would recommend doing targeted feedings (i.e. putting the food right in front of them) to make sure they get enough.

2 ghost catfish - These guys are schooling fish and notoriously nervous/skittish. I would get more of them, say six or so total. They'd feel much more comfortable that way.

2 khuli loaches - These guys are also schoolers, so you should have at least six of them.

1 iridescent shark - These fish aren't really a fit for any aquarium (except maybe very large public aquarium tanks). They get to four feet in length (the length of the entire 55g tank), are schooling fish, will eat smaller fish and because of their size and notoriously nervous behavior are known to be "tank busters." I would return this fish as soon as possible, or you may start noticing your smaller fish going missing.

1 loricara whiptail catfish - Not much to say here. These are usually peaceful community residents.

1 bala shark - These guys get over a foot in length, are active swimmers and need to be in schools. In other words, they can only be kept in very large tanks (hundreds of gallons at least). I would return this guy as well.

1 blood parrot fish - This is a cichlid and, while blood parrots are generally pretty docile as far as cichlids go, they can get pretty unruly and will eat smaller fish. I would be afraid that it would eat your smaller fish like the neons and loaches. It may also be a little to intimidating for the glass cats. I'd say he's a risky fish to keep in this community.

1 cory catfish and 1 neon tetra - Both of these are peaceful community fish but need to be in groups, again six of each should be good.

Since you've got the sensitive bottom dwellers (the loaches and cories specifically) I think you should go with a softer substrate like very smooth gravel or, ideally, sand, as the loaches like to burrow. I think the ghost shrimp would likely get eaten by the parrot (and definitely by the bala shark and iridescent shark). If you removed some of these larger fish from the tank, ghost shrimp would probably do alright in there. So, with three frogs, six ghost cats, six kuhlis, the whiptail, six neons and six cories you'd probably have room to replace some of the problem fish with other, more peaceful "centerpiece" type fish. Maybe a smaller gourami like a honey gourami and a dwarf cichlid?

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post #5 of 7 Old 02-18-2010, 01:17 PM Thread Starter
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thank you for the info on my fish i have been looking up info on all of them but there never really is a guide as to what can go with what. i did however ask the lady at the pet store if the blood parrot would go good with my other fish and told her what i had and she said it was fine. i doubt very much that i will be buying anything from there anymore. i do plan to buy more neons and such as soon as i get the 55gal completely setup. my shark i plan to keep him in the 29gal with maybe 1 other fish (not sure what yet) until he gets a lil bigger then moving on to a bigger tank for him also! hes my favorite!!!! the parrot fish will be going to my mom in her own tank as well. and the bala i will return if i cant find him another home. I do plan to put sank in the new tank! and just a bit of gravel but i plan to make sure none of it is sharp.thank you so much for this info!!!!
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post #6 of 7 Old 02-18-2010, 03:29 PM
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If you want a good & reliable filter for yrs to come I'd suggest a Eheim; I use the Model 2213 for my 55 set up's and they're just superst queit well built last forever & a day unless you break it and you can always find parts for them even after 10-15yrs.
Then just go with the plants that "look" good to you; I love sweetaquatics they're quality is great; I don't buy plants anywhere else any more.
But yes once you add plants you'd have to take that air stone out as it will drive out the co2 needed for plants to thrive.

You already got a bunch good info on the fish there - As for the store I'd be VERY careful on their advises and rather read up by yourself or ask here - They're Sales people and that's that - Not proper fishkeepers so whatever they can sell you they WILL.
You can see about trading some fish off at the store or sell them yourself; post them on etc

~ Life Is Too Short, Break The Rules, Forgive Quickly, Kiss Slowly, Love Truly, Laugh Uncontrollably And Never Regret Anything that Made You Smile.
Life May Not Be The Party We Hoped For, But While We're Here, We Should Dance. ~
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post #7 of 7 Old 02-18-2010, 06:08 PM
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It's amazing what pet store owners tell people. Anything to make a buck seems the way of the world now.
I guess a lot of them don't care so long as they move product. And it makes it easy for these greedy pigs when someone comes in and doesn't really know better yet.

“He who knows nothing is closer to the truth than he whose mind is filled with falsehoods and errors”
Thomas Jefferson quote
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