Rookie fish tank..come judge (pics) - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 12 Old 03-19-2009, 12:15 AM Thread Starter
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Rookie fish tank..come judge (pics)

Hi, Im new to the forums. was searching the net for some information on aquariums.. a little about myself..i got this tank about 6-8 years ago..i was young..I dont know anything about fish tanks.. i bought it on impulse...some 10 gallon starter tank.. it has an aqua clear 200 that i got from my aunt.some junkie heater..a therostat that floats around.. my dad just buys fish he thinks looks nice.. i dont know what fish i got in there.. i dont know if they are compatable..any info would help.. i want to get a 20 gallon tank and do it right.. but i want to learn alot more so atleast ill know what im doing this time around.

but how does this tank look? a petsmart opened near by and my dad visits it once in a while.. picks up a fish or 2.. but one always dies.. he returns it and gets another.. and dies again..we assume its the fish at the store and not the tank cause the other fish seem to stay alive

what fish do i have?

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post #2 of 12 Old 03-19-2009, 12:21 AM
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welcome to the forum.

the fish in the pictures are alittle blurry but appear to be cichlids. the "sucker fish" is a pleco. the fish are dying from either an un-cycled tank or other water parameters.
heres a good read to start off,
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post #3 of 12 Old 03-19-2009, 12:42 AM Thread Starter
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great read.. could you recommend me a good water test kit that i can test the ammonia,nitrites,nitrates and ph. or are the ones at the pet store all generally the same and can test for all of those?
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post #4 of 12 Old 03-19-2009, 01:10 AM
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API liquid freshwater master test kit. it can be found in stores but usually cheaper online.
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post #5 of 12 Old 03-19-2009, 01:19 AM
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Well to me it looks like you have some africans there. By the looks of some you have some zebras and either several venustus or livingstoni. Beware these fish grow big and can attain the 5-6 inch mark in the first yr topping off at around the 10-11 inch mark!! and with regards to the water quality these fish appreciate a ph level of around 8 which can conflict with the other species you have in the tank.

IMO i would take them back and get some more appropriate sized fish for your tank or find a good home.

Good luck with what ever you decide to do.
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post #6 of 12 Old 03-19-2009, 01:31 AM Thread Starter
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whats a good canadian website for fish supplies?
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post #7 of 12 Old 03-19-2009, 02:47 AM Thread Starter
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i got 10 fish in there.. 2 algae eaters..1 pleco and 1chinese algae fish. is that too many algae fish for a 10 gallon tank? ive been reading around and i would much rather have a group of cat fish instead.. they sound more exciting than 2 algae fish. but i think ive reached my max capacity ?
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post #8 of 12 Old 03-19-2009, 02:57 AM
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If you are going to keep the cichlids which I think that they make great fish with all of their colors I would put more hidding places in the tank an upgrade to a 20 gal would be great. For the cichlids they like to have a sand bottom I went to and got some sand for cichlids, they have good prices to. If you put rocks into the tank just be sure to treat them first. By the looks of it I think you have a couple a zebra cichlids a couple of yellow lab cichlids and a couple of bumble bee cichlids and I can also see a zebra danio at the top there. I would recomend reading up on the cichlids because they can be very aggressive and that might be why you keep losing some of the new ones, they are very territorial also. If you need a few pics for ideas or anything look under my tanks and there is a cichlid one in there.
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post #9 of 12 Old 03-19-2009, 07:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Wezz0 View Post
i got 10 fish in there.. 2 algae eaters..1 pleco and 1chinese algae fish. is that too many algae fish for a 10 gallon tank? ive been reading around and i would much rather have a group of cat fish instead.. they sound more exciting than 2 algae fish. but i think ive reached my max capacity ?
If you pleco is a "common pleco" he will outgrow that tank very quickly. A Common pleco can grow to about 13-15 inches long!! I've seen one in my LFS that was 18"!

As far as a canadian fish supplier. Check out I'm not sure if they ship to canada or not. they are some of the most reasonable prices you can find on the web and usually offer some great shipping discounts!!!

and definetly pick up a LIQUID test kit. the API one that onefish2fish mentioned is awesome
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post #10 of 12 Old 03-19-2009, 10:20 AM
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Hi WezzO and welcome to the forum and the hobby. As we are both in the Vancouver area I can certainly recommend the best stores. But the first thing is for you to decide what kind of tank/fish you want so we can resolve the present problems. A 10g is not the place for experimenting with any fish that looks nice in the store, and as others have mentioned you have a mix of fish that is going to cause you big trouble if they stay as they are and any you add will in my opinion continue to die. This may be because of the water, but probably more because of the type of fish and being overcrowded. This all leads to stress and that causes disease, partasites and death.

Vancouver water is soft and very slightly acid (the pH this week was 6.8, some weeks it is 7.0) so you are in the fortunate position of being able to have almost anything, since it is easier to raise pH to 8.0 (as must be done if you want the African cichlids) or keep it as it comes out of the tap if you want south american tetras, SE asian fish, etc. We can go into this more once we know what you intend to keep. Getting a larger tank is a good idea, but even a 20g is small quarters for African cichlids; as others have noted, they are agressive fish.

Let us know what you want, and I'm sure others here will have suggestions. Let me know which part of Vancouver you're in and I'll recommend fish stores.


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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