Help? - Page 3 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #21 of 32 Old 01-11-2011, 01:14 AM
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Have you found out what sort of water you've got?

How about platies? They are hardy and have lots of different colours. (They prefer harder water)
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post #22 of 32 Old 01-11-2011, 03:30 AM Thread Starter
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Might sound cruel, but I think I would like to stay away from breeding fish as much as possible. They are a beautiful fish though.
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post #23 of 32 Old 01-11-2011, 03:45 AM
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You can just buy all the same sex if you don't want them to breed.
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post #24 of 32 Old 01-11-2011, 11:28 PM Thread Starter
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So, how about this? 3 angelfish, 3 black mollies, 6 blackskirt tetras, 6 marble hatchetfish and 6 panda cories.
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post #25 of 32 Old 01-11-2011, 11:42 PM
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I'm no expert but I think that sounds like a pretty good stock
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post #26 of 32 Old 01-12-2011, 12:53 AM Thread Starter
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Cool! Thanks. I haven't been able to sleep well because I've been so excited and there are soooo many choices. I hope this will do it.
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post #27 of 32 Old 01-12-2011, 12:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newbie336 View Post
So, how about this? 3 angelfish, 3 black mollies, 6 blackskirt tetras, 6 marble hatchetfish and 6 panda cories.
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There are a couple issues here.

First the angels, as you have a 55g you can do it properly and get 5 or 6. They will be much more settled in this size group, as noted in our profile [click on the name, Pterophyllum scalare]. Otherwise, you may well have serious squabbling; the dominant fish of the 3 can easily hound one or both of the others to death.

Black skirt tetra [common name is Black Widow Tetra in our profiles] are not the best tankmates for angels. This tetra frequently becomes a fin nipper, and the flowing fins of the angels would be too great a temptation. A better choice would be one of the Rosy Tetra clade [several species in the genus Hyphessobrycon, check our profiles]. Not only are they far less likely to be "naughty," but they add some lovely reddish colouration to the tank. And as you have the space, even with 5-6 angels, I would increase the group from 6 to 8 or 9. Here again, the more fish in the group the less likelihood of trouble.

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 youíre going to take it under your wing then youíre 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 #28 of 32 Old 01-12-2011, 12:35 PM
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100% agrree with Byron. 5-9 Angels would be quite a display in your 55g. Maybe a group of 5-10 corys as well for some action on the bottom. Black skirt Tetras will most certainly nip. If you're looking for a colorful, active tetra, a nice shoal of Rummynose Tetra would be nice too. I have 15 in my 125g and they are a lot of fun. Rummynose Tetra are one of the few tetra that will actually swim together in unison across your tank all together. Most other tetras need to be in groups for security, but will not group together to swim like the Rummynose. I did try Bleeding Heart Tetras in my tank (a group of 7 or 9 I believe) and they became nippy towards my Angels and had to be taken back. Just a word of caution.
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post #29 of 32 Old 01-12-2011, 12:37 PM Thread Starter
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I would love to have that many. I was on aqadvisor.com and it said I was overstocked with the fish I listed.
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post #30 of 32 Old 01-12-2011, 01:00 PM
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I would love to have that many. I was on aqadvisor.com and it said I was overstocked with the fish I listed.
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The great problem with any calculator to determine fish stocking is that some of the variables cannot possibly be incorporated into the method. "Compatibility" in a community aquarium has several aspects that affect the success (or cause failure) beyond simple numbers.

To take just one aspect, interaction within the group: A group of 3 angels will quite likely cause stress to the angels from the dominant behaviour of one of them. In a group of 5 or 6, this dominance is more evenly spread out, and it is natural; these fish occur in such groups in nature, and it is inherent in their makeup to have this interaction--but not to excess. A group of 3 angels will be under severe stress and this in turn affects the other fish in the tank through chemicals and pheromones released by stressed fish. But in a group of 5-6, this is significantly lessened, resulting in a calmer environment. And that means healthier. So having more fish actually improves the environment. Now, of course one can carry this too far, and the size of tank must always be kept in mind. Plus having live plants helps a great deal because of the "filtration" they perform that no filter we add can match.

Carrying this interaction idea one step further, we add a group of other fish, like one of the rosy tetra. Sometimes this is termed "dither fish" which means these other fish are there partly to calm the angels. This works with almost all cichlids, which on their own can be quite withdrawn and nervous. But a group of peaceful tetra cruising among the plants tells the angels that it is safe to be out and about. By nature, angels are very shy fish, remaining among fallen tree branches, tangled roots, etc., in quite dimly-lit waters. In the relative brightness of our aquarium they do better with companions. Discus are even more like this.

Aquarists seem to frequently forget that fish have evolved over thousands and millions of years to suit their environment. Replicating that environment is a big step in providing a suitable one in the aquarium. A fish like the angel from the habitat I have mentioned, when placed in a relatively bare and brightly-lit tank will always feel threatened. If does not understand that it is under no danger from predators. It only knows what nature has programmed into its instincts, that in such a surrounding it is highly vulnerable and likely to be attacked at any second. This inherent instinct is present in all fish species, and sometimes we see it (as with pale, shivering fish) but often it is not overly-apparent externally. But inwardly the fish is literally terrified. And that means under stress, which means poorer health.

I hope this explains it a bit.

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 youíre going to take it under your wing then youíre responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]

Last edited by Byron; 01-12-2011 at 01:06 PM.
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