Thinking of a larger tank (questions) - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
 
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post #1 of 10 Old 01-15-2013, 08:34 AM Thread Starter
BWG
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Thinking of a larger tank (questions)

This is still very much hypothetical as I am just trying to decide if I wish to get a bigger tank or not. Currently I have a 10 gallon (20X10X12") tank housing 8 Boraras naevus. There is obviously still plenty of space for some other fish of similar size. My major annoyance though is that I would like some loaches. The 3 small sized Pangio species I know of that could live in a 10 gallon (P. piperata, P. malayana, P. cuneovirgata) seem to require a miracle to find. Any other small loach requires a longer tank.

I had been debating upgrading to a 20 gallon long. Same footprint as my 29 gallon (30X12") with the same height of my 10 gallon. So question time.

How hard would it be to move the fish and plants? What process? The filter is fully cycled and would work on either size tank given its size. The tank is also pretty well planted with crypts, anubias, mosses, Jave ferns, and Amazon frogbit. The reason I ask about how hard it would be to move everything is because of one small hitch. It is a soil based tank, which is what the new one would be.

That last paragraph was the downside of upgrading, now time for the upside. With a footprint of 360 square inches how many fish could I keep. The fish I was thinking about are Boraras naevus, Sundadanio axelrodi, and at least one species of Pangio, possibly a second or Barbucca diabolica (another miracle to find fish) if there was room. Stocking density has just never been a strength of mine, especially since I've never kept any of the species aside from Boraras.
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post #2 of 10 Old 01-15-2013, 09:46 AM
As far as I know, there are very few here, including myself, with 'dirt' tanks. Everything I've read, even with mineralized soil, the sand capped dirt tank can take up to two months with numerous water changes before the environment is stabilized and fish can be added???
It would seem best to me to establish the new tank while the existing one continues to run. So the question is do you have the space to do that?
Alternatively, since many here have very successful, heavily planted tanks in sand alone, is this an option for you (or are you 'sworn to dirt')?

I'm not familiar with the species you reference but recommend you reference the 'Tropical Fish Profiles' section where you may find the answers you seek.

AD

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post #3 of 10 Old 01-15-2013, 10:03 AM
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My 90g used to have a soil substrate, and I dreaded the thought of moving a plant within the tank, and you're wanting to move the ENTIRE contents of the tank?! Good luck with that. I would recommend starting the larger tank with new soil and a new cap.
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post #4 of 10 Old 01-15-2013, 11:17 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by funkman262 View Post
My 90g used to have a soil substrate, and I dreaded the thought of moving a plant within the tank, and you're wanting to move the ENTIRE contents of the tank?! Good luck with that. I would recommend starting the larger tank with new soil and a new cap.
Why on earth would I move the substrate? I said about moving the plants and fish. I'm sorry if I wasn't clear about that, but thank you for the sarcasm.
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post #5 of 10 Old 01-15-2013, 11:34 AM
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Originally Posted by blackwaterguy View Post
Why on earth would I move the substrate? I said about moving the plants and fish. I'm sorry if I wasn't clear about that, but thank you for the sarcasm.
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Originally Posted by blackwaterguy View Post
The reason I ask about how hard it would be to move everything is because of one small hitch. It is a soil based tank, which is what the new one would be.
Seems like a reasonable assumption based on your wording that you were planning on moving the substrate as well. I don't understand your remark about the "sarcasm" but whatever...
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post #6 of 10 Old 01-15-2013, 11:37 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by AbbeysDad View Post
As far as I know, there are very few here, including myself, with 'dirt' tanks. Everything I've read, even with mineralized soil, the sand capped dirt tank can take up to two months with numerous water changes before the environment is stabilized and fish can be added???
It would seem best to me to establish the new tank while the existing one continues to run. So the question is do you have the space to do that?
Alternatively, since many here have very successful, heavily planted tanks in sand alone, is this an option for you (or are you 'sworn to dirt')?

I'm not familiar with the species you reference but recommend you reference the 'Tropical Fish Profiles' section where you may find the answers you seek.

AD
Sworn to it? No, but I am liking the growth it provides. I had set up two tanks at the same time with the same crypt varieties. One is this soil based (MGOCPM capped with play sand) the other was a 20 gallon high with Eco Complete and Osmocote+ root tabs (I imagine Eco Complete and play sand would be similar in this regard since neither contains ferts). Growth was much better with the soil, despite lower intensity lighting.

I've also been very careful to check water parameters daily. Ammonia rose at the beginning, but once the seeded/cycled filter was added the parameters stabilized quickly. I still waited additional time, but no changes after that. The fish were added a week ago, still no changes yet, but I kept the bioload small. In total the tank has been set up about 2 months.

I've read the profiles here many times :) Not all the species I've mentioned have one here though, so I read other sources as well. I know they will work together and with my tapwater. I just suck at numbers lol
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post #7 of 10 Old 01-15-2013, 11:40 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by funkman262 View Post
Seems like a reasonable assumption based on your wording that you were planning on moving the substrate as well. I don't understand your remark about the "sarcasm" but whatever...
As I said, my apologies. The beginning of the paragraph stated fish and plants. I suppose I assumed that was everything. Glad we have that cleared up. Thank you!
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post #8 of 10 Old 01-15-2013, 01:42 PM
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I would go with new plants in the new tank, rather than trying to move the existing plants over.

BTW, Eco-complete does contain nutrients, or so CarribSea claims. I have the very similar product Flourite (made by Seachem) in my 70g and it has been disappointing to say the least. Plants have not been better in this tank than they (same species) do in my plain sand tanks [lighting is identical, fish load same, etc], and I have to dose liquid fertilizer identical in both. I have some play sand,intending to tear down the 70g and replace the Flourite with play sand; just waiting for the day when I feel energetic enough to tackle this.

On the fish, working out numbers numbers shouldn't be a problem, not sure I understand this.

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 #9 of 10 Old 01-15-2013, 02:36 PM Thread Starter
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On the fish, working out numbers numbers shouldn't be a problem, not sure I understand this.

Byron.
For instance when I was setting up my 29 gallon you had suggested about 45 nano sized fish (mosquito rasbora, glowlight danio, Hangel's rasbora, other fish of the same size). Smaller tank so would I be able to do 8 Boraras naevus, 8 Sundadanio axelrodi, and however many (8?) kuhli loaches without being overstocked? I know from reading you other posts that having large enough shoals can be less of a burden on bioload. I know you said in the 10 gallon you used to have that you had 12 Boraras and 9 pygmy cories. I thought (on yet another post by you) that fish able to also breathe air had less impact on stocking.

I ran the closest I could in AqAdvisor (I had to use Boraras maculatus and Boraras brigittae in place of B. naevus and Sundadnio axelrodi). That came out to 79% for 8 of all three. Just not sure how accurate it is.
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post #10 of 10 Old 01-15-2013, 04:26 PM
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Originally Posted by blackwaterguy View Post
For instance when I was setting up my 29 gallon you had suggested about 45 nano sized fish (mosquito rasbora, glowlight danio, Hangel's rasbora, other fish of the same size). Smaller tank so would I be able to do 8 Boraras naevus, 8 Sundadanio axelrodi, and however many (8?) kuhli loaches without being overstocked? I know from reading you other posts that having large enough shoals can be less of a burden on bioload. I know you said in the 10 gallon you used to have that you had 12 Boraras and 9 pygmy cories. I thought (on yet another post by you) that fish able to also breathe air had less impact on stocking.

I ran the closest I could in AqAdvisor (I had to use Boraras maculatus and Boraras brigittae in place of B. naevus and Sundadnio axelrodi). That came out to 79% for 8 of all three. Just not sure how accurate it is.
The "air breathing" isn't much of an issue as they still empty organics into the tank, and they do use gills as their main respiration.

Generally, a 20g long will house much the same as the 29g because the footprint is the same [=surface area of water and substrate] provided we are considering the same sort of fish. A tad fewer in the 20.

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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