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Suggestions for stocking 55g tank?

This is a discussion on Suggestions for stocking 55g tank? within the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> Originally Posted by andrewr2488 Well, That didnt work.. I'm letting vinegar sit on the stains right now, I tried the wieman cleaner and it ...

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Suggestions for stocking 55g tank?
Old 10-11-2009, 06:00 PM   #81
 
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Originally Posted by andrewr2488 View Post
Well, That didnt work.. I'm letting vinegar sit on the stains right now, I tried the wieman cleaner and it didnt do a darn thing.. I looked around on the net and found some API Cleaner.. I'm going to go to persmart and buy it tomorrow, and talk to them about ordering the t5 fixture. I called and they said they cant ship it to the store. The one on ebay you gotta pay shipping and even then he doesnt guarantee that it will be in one piece when it arrives, so you have to pay for shipping insurance. If it does end up broken apon arrival you gotta pay to ship it back! thats a last resort for me.. Things should be up and running here pretty soon. I'd say 2 more weeks and I'll have everything going straight. So i can add the tetras the same day as i add plants or should I wait like 24 hours?
If the tank is heavily planted, you can add the tetras the same day. This is a 55g, so "heavily planted" means something like 10 plants like swords. As long as they are alive they'll do the job. I wouldn't push it with a lot of fish to start. B.
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Old 10-11-2009, 08:33 PM   #82
 
yeah i plan on heavily planting it. 2-3 sword chains, 2 amazon swords, 1 anarchis, 1-2 java ferns, 1 narrow leaf temple, 2 Magenta Water Hedge. thats all for now.. i might grow anubias nana on a driftwood if theres room and need for it. ill wait a day or 2 to add any fish.
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Old 10-17-2009, 03:12 PM   #83
 
How about corydoras sp. neon orange laser as my cory? i'm going to buy 5-6.





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Old 10-17-2009, 04:36 PM   #84
 
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How about corydoras sp. neon orange laser as my cory? i'm going to buy 5-6.





A beautiful Corydoras. Originally thought to be a local type of Corydoras aeneus, there is thinking now that they may actually be distinct species. The C. aeneus with about a dozen or so variants is found over much of South America and on Trinidad (which was of course once joined to the main continent). Such widespread distribution of the species, plus the wide variation among the variants found only in select rivers, makes many ichthyologists believe that some of the variants must be individual species, and a couple have been so described for some time.

There are three (so far) of the "stripe" version, all from Peru and so far scientifically considered variants of C. aeneus: the green stripe, the golden stripe, and the red stripe. The fish in your photos appears to be the second, the golden stripe, and it has olive/yellowish fins as well as the brilliant golden-orange stripe.

My only caution would be to ensure the tank is matured biologically before adding these fish. I had some of them back when they first appeared in the trade, and found them to be sensitive to water parameters and quality. Of course, many of the Corydoras are, some more than others. This species (if it is a distinct species) used to be quite expensive as corys go; I haven't seen any of them locally for years.

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Old 10-17-2009, 07:18 PM   #85
 
yes i found these on a internet website. 7 bucks a pop! which i dont think is too bad, they're a beautiful fish. I bought a 55g long tank and a stand for 50, 55, 75, and 80 gallon aquariums, both are top fin brand.. not sure how great that brand is? the tank was 135 and the stand was 165. the tank came with 2 lids that have single bulb flourescent fixtures with them, is that a suitable setup or do i need a 48" t5 or something. if possible i'd like to use what i have already... I found some small sized gravel at petco in a nice natural color. just to be assured, rule of thumb is usually 2 lbs of gravel per gallon? at petsmart it says 1.5 lbs but ill go with 120 lbs of gravel and chec k how deep it will lay. i know you said 2-3" for a planted tank. also what is the best way to clean the gravel so it doesnt cloud up my tank? gravel will probably be bought wednesday, Hopefully lol.. I guess around the end of november i could add the corys? then in december add the bolivians. I'm very excited about all this, everything i buy makes me that much more anxious!!! patience is a virtue though and i'm taking the neccessary steps to get everything right the first go around. as far as rams go would adding 3 pairs be too many? should i just have 3 males with their own territories?
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Old 10-17-2009, 08:24 PM   #86
 
I have picked my fish stock list for now. 11-13 cardinal tetras, then later 6-7 golden or "orange laser" corys, and 3 bolivian rams. later i might add some more fish like maybe some hatchets but for now this list seems pretty solid.. I picked these because i researched their water preferences and they are all similar.

Bolivian Ram
Temp 72-79F
KH 0-10
pH 6.5-7.5

Cardinal Tetra
Temp 73-81F
KH 2-6
pH 5.5-7.5

Golden/Orange Stripe Cory
Temp 71-79
pH 6.5-7.5
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Old 10-18-2009, 01:39 PM   #87
 
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Originally Posted by andrewr2488 View Post
yes i found these on a internet website. 7 bucks a pop! which i dont think is too bad, they're a beautiful fish. I bought a 55g long tank and a stand for 50, 55, 75, and 80 gallon aquariums, both are top fin brand.. not sure how great that brand is? the tank was 135 and the stand was 165. the tank came with 2 lids that have single bulb flourescent fixtures with them, is that a suitable setup or do i need a 48" t5 or something. if possible i'd like to use what i have already... I found some small sized gravel at petco in a nice natural color. just to be assured, rule of thumb is usually 2 lbs of gravel per gallon? at petsmart it says 1.5 lbs but ill go with 120 lbs of gravel and chec k how deep it will lay. i know you said 2-3" for a planted tank. also what is the best way to clean the gravel so it doesnt cloud up my tank? gravel will probably be bought wednesday, Hopefully lol.. I guess around the end of november i could add the corys? then in december add the bolivians. I'm very excited about all this, everything i buy makes me that much more anxious!!! patience is a virtue though and i'm taking the neccessary steps to get everything right the first go around. as far as rams go would adding 3 pairs be too many? should i just have 3 males with their own territories?
If this is a 4-foot 55g tank, a single tube 48-inch T5 or a double tube 48-inch regular fixture will work; I would lean to the latter because you can mix types of tubes to get slightly more blue in the mix, which is my preference and what I have on my three larger aquaria. A double T5 would be far too much light intensity for the plants and these fish you list, by far.

Seven dollars for those corys is a far cry from the $20+ I had to pay all those years ago, but then they were a novelty, first importation, etc. Nice fish.

Gravel, 2 pounds to the gallon will give you adequate and probably some spare--it's always good to have some spare gravel to add a cup or two here and there as will occur. Make sure it is the smallest grain aquarium gravel and dark [maybe we covered all this, can't remember, sorry, so many threads plus my advancing years]. Tedious work, cleaning gravel: place some in a bucket, in the utility room sink or outside (it gets messy and gravel down the drain is not fun), run water in, swish the gravel around, pour water out, repeat several times...you get the picture. The one chore with aquaria I do not like doing. First few buckets (gravel at the very bottom) can be a bit dirty, but the upper layer should be cleaned well. Arrange the wood, rocks, hard scaping stuff first, then fill the tank; set a large dish on the gravel to run the hose in, avoids disturbing and clouding it more than necessary. Then plant and let it sit overnight to ensure filter, heater working OK. Then add the first fish, use water conditioner then if not the previous day--I always wait for the conditioner in case I have to drain out the water and it is wasted.

Three pairs of rams is a lot, unless you can be certain they are true pairs; five or six males would be croweded in a 55g. I would probably go with 2-3 rams and try to get both sexes but in small fish that is not easy. I have one, I couldn't tell what it was when I got it last Oct, but now clearly a male and what a stunner. I'm going to try and track down another one, female if I can. In my five-foot 115g they will be fine males or a pair. They're quite hardy, if you come across them sooner, as long as the tank is running say a month, get them. The corys are probably the most sensitive in your list.

Are you going to have pH slightly acidic? Cardinals really do not fare as well in water above pH 7, most are still wild caught in NA, but in my experience the tank raised ones are more trouble. Most characin authorities mention low pH for cardinals, 6.5 the upper limit. Yes, I know, some probably have them "healthy" at 7.5 but this is not recommended. Hardness is the real issue, cardinals develop calcium blockage of the kidneys in hard water, and it might be some time before it takes them, but many can't maintain this fish beyond a couple of years, yet they will live more than 10 years in acidic water, so it is worth bearing in mind. The proof is in the pudding.

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Old 10-18-2009, 06:50 PM   #88
 
My tap water is 7.4 pH but i will have 3 peices of driftwood, and i'm using prime water conditioner. Isnt there also a water supplement that API puts out to lower pH levels? on liveaquaria.com it says cardinals can be housed in water with pH levels any where from 5.5 to 7.5??? maybe thats pushing the edge a little bit? I'd also eventually liket o have 6-7 zebra danios. I found some gravel at PETCO that i really liked colorwise, and its decently small. I'll have to buy some flourish comprehensive also. Do i add the flourish the day i plant the tank? and you mentioned using root tabs or something of that sort. I'm going to search the internet and see which light fixture would be cheaper, a double tube flourescent or a single bulb t5. here is the gravel color, although it doesnt say the size it cant be but maybe a 1/4 inch each pebble..



I was thinking about getting 3 of the Nutmeg color which is the top picture, and 1 bag of the pebble beach, which is the bottom picture and mixing them to get a more natural medium color..

15 bucks for 25 lbs. I'll probably buy 4 bags to get 100 lbs, and see how that does.

Last edited by andrewr2488; 10-18-2009 at 06:55 PM..
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Old 10-18-2009, 07:26 PM   #89
 
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Originally Posted by andrewr2488 View Post
My tap water is 7.4 pH but i will have 3 peices of driftwood, and i'm using prime water conditioner. Isnt there also a water supplement that API puts out to lower pH levels? on liveaquaria.com it says cardinals can be housed in water with pH levels any where from 5.5 to 7.5??? maybe thats pushing the edge a little bit? I'd also eventually liket o have 6-7 zebra danios. I found some gravel at PETCO that i really liked colorwise, and its decently small. I'll have to buy some flourish comprehensive also. Do i add the flourish the day i plant the tank? and you mentioned using root tabs or something of that sort. I'm going to search the internet and see which light fixture would be cheaper, a double tube flourescent or a single bulb t5. here is the gravel color, although it doesnt say the size it cant be but maybe a 1/4 inch each pebble..



I was thinking about getting 3 of the Nutmeg color which is the top picture, and 1 bag of the pebble beach, which is the bottom picture and mixing them to get a more natural medium color..

15 bucks for 25 lbs. I'll probably buy 4 bags to get 100 lbs, and see how that does.
The colours are quite natural, but I'd wonder about the grain size. Smallest grain gravel of 1-2mm is my preference. I have something very similar to what's pictured here I think, I use it in my amphibian tank, but I wouldn't put it in my planted aquaria. Have you checked out local fish stores, and landscaping places which often have bulk gravel? By comparison, you could do the whole tank for less than one bag. Provided of course you can find what you want.

Cardinals like many fish can exist in various water parameters. I prefer thinking long-term health of my fish and thus recommend that people select fish to suit their water. Using the chemicals to adjust water parameters is something I do not recommend, and you'll find many on here agree. The hardness of your water is going to buffer the pH and this means fluctuating water parameters which is even worse for the fish than steady if not within the preferred range. The best way to soften/acidify hard water is RO (reverse osmosis). Bogwood will lower pH by acidifying the water but it is minimal. A tank full of wood might lower by .2 or .3 and that is also subject to the buffering capacity and partial water changes will raise it again, etc.

Prime is a good water conditioner; it detoxifies ammonia, chlorine, chloramines and heavy metals. It will not adjust hardness or pH. Do you know the hardness of your water? There is GH (general hardness) and KH (carbonate hardness), the latter is the pH buffering agent while the former generally indicates the level of calcium and magnesium. A KH of 2-6 (as recommended on the site you mentioned) is relatively soft water; I have 0 dKH and 0-1 dGH out of my tap, and I add dolomite to the filters to keep the tanks at 2 dGH (still 0 dKH). Cardinals thrive in this water hardness. Remember, that site is in the business of selling fish.

B.
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Old 10-19-2009, 01:40 PM   #90
 
the pebbles arent too big.. probably 2-3mm? i can go to some fish stores and landscaping places before i end up buying the petco gravel. and i believe my pH is 7.4, how do i test kh and gh? is there an additional test kit i have to buy? i have the api freshwater master test kit.
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