Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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grizz2534 01-29-2008 10:25 AM

New 55 gallon
I got a new 55 gallon aquarium a few weeks ago. Right now I only have a few feeder goldfish in there to get it cycled (so far so good) I work at Petsmart so I get to see fish all day and I think I finally made up my mind (more or less) about what fish I am going to get. i was wondering if I could get some feedback about my selection?

1 Peacock Eel
1 Leporinus fasciatus
6 Tiger barbs
3 Blue Paradise Gourami (1M 2F)
3 Australian Rainbow Fish (1M 2 F)
1 Pleco (either a common or rubber lipped)

I am thinking about adding live plants too, will any of these fish readily eat the snails that are common on the plants? Oh yeah, I'm giving the feeder fish to a friend for her Oscar so they won't be in there when I get the rest of the fish.

Thanks in advance for the advice and feed back. I really appreciate it!!!


Holly 01-29-2008 11:54 AM

Speaking from someone who needs to find a home for her pleco, stay away from them. My common is maybe 3 years old and too big for the 55g. I guess those big fish stores don't count on the average person being able to keep them alive that long but that fish lived through all my beginner mistakes. Unless you have a really big tank, I'm talking 100 or above, stay away from the common pleco.

I don't think any of those will eat snails. I know puffers or clown loaches will but puffers don't like any other fish and are blackwater fish. Clown loaches are a lot of fun to watch and will do the job nicely but they get really big also and like groups. I'm sure someone else can chime in on the snail issue.

Zule 01-29-2008 02:03 PM

I don't know anything on gourami's, but Holly's got the right idea. A common pleco will grow too big for your tank, so you should shy away from those. Go with the rubber lip, those will stay a medium size. There are also species of dwarf plecos that will stay small, like the clown and bristlenose plecos. If you can find one of those, it would be a much better for the fish in the long run.

Imagine the common growing 18-24 inches, and imagine him trying to turn around in a 12 inch wide tank.

grizz2534 01-29-2008 02:12 PM

Very true! That would not be fun! I had been shying away from the common one for a while, but figured i'd through it out there. Also, are these fish going to tear up plants or will they just nibble on them? I know plants are good for aquariums but I don't have enough money to be buying new plants every week! :? Would dwarf puffers be alright with the fish I listed or are they gonna become food for the other guys? I'm also thinking about putting a a couple of african drawf frogs in there too because my fiance likes them. And thanks for the advice so far!! :D


Zule 01-29-2008 04:36 PM

Based on personal research, plecos shouldn't be a cause of concern for plants as far as eating the leaves or digging them up. The only thing you'd have to worry about is if they choose to hang on one of the broad leaves and their weight snaps the stem.

I just did some reading on the dwarf puffer, and I don't think they're the ones you'd have to worry about. Apparently they can be very aggressive towards other fish species, especially fast moving ones that distract them. They are very prone to shredding fins and can kill much larger fish that way. They also like higher pH levels than most fish.

As for the African Dwarf frog, I'm not very knowledgeable with those, but I wouldn't put them in with tiger barbs. Having them in a school of six might be enough to divert their attention from your frogs, but I personally wouldn't risk it. The peacock eel might even get big enough to eat them, so there's that to think about as well.

okiemavis 01-29-2008 05:39 PM

I'd really really stay away from a puffer, they are aggressive fish with very specific needs that are best housed in a species tank. Plus, they can be picky eaters.

As for Tiger Barbs, they can be really nippy, and can be troublesome if you later decide to add a fish they like to harass. Have you considered a different species for a fun little school? It's not that these guys won't work in your tank, just that sometimes they are a huge hassle, and people regret getting them.

Also, it sounds like a pleco is your only bottom dweller. Have you considered adding a shoal of corys? They are happiest in groups of 4-6+, but can really add some fun to the bottom levels of your tank.

Cody 01-29-2008 06:05 PM

The best plecos you could get are either a Bristlenosed or a Clown. Rubberlipped stay somewhat small (10in.). As stated, stay away from commons.

I suggest not adding a lepornius. They get up to 12" long, and have the tendency to harass other fish.

Live plants should be fine.

Dont add DP's. They like specie-only tanks, and can rip apart the fins of another fish if they annoy the puffer.

jeaninel 01-30-2008 12:52 AM

A 55 might be too tall for an ADF. I read that they should be kept in tanks 16" or less in height. They do swim to the surface to grab a gulp of air. If they are very healthy and strong it may be ok though. Here's a link to some info about them. I just got one for my 10 gallon so I'm just learning about them.

okiemavis 01-30-2008 11:26 AM

I love bristlenosed! They're so weird looking!

Also, there's some really pretty looking different varieties. I've been considering the Queen Arabesque Pleco. So pretty, and only grows up to 3.5-4", which is no problem for a 55. One note: I saw one on That Fish Place for $25, and on Drs. Foster and Smith for $50, so don't get ripped off, apparently their price ranges.

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