First tank set-up!
I have two tanks that are lying around my house that I can set-up for an aquarium. One is a 55-Gallon and the other is a 5-gallon. I haven't had an aquarium in a while so I want to start off small so I am going to use the 5-gallon while the 55 G will sit around until I am ready to pull it out. I am going to go freshwater. I am aware that the livestock I can choose from is very, very unlimited. Does anyone have any ideas? I was thinking a few Endler's livebearer.
Whoa! Dude, you've got a 55 gallon just hanging around? And you are going to start with the 5gallon?
Oh, Welcome aboard!
As much as it may be a great idea, I couldn't do it.
Personally, I'm not fond of live bearers, trying to deal with all the fry if/when they breed... The endlers may be a good choice, others can comment.
Do you know what your water parameters are? Hardness, pH? That will affect what you can choose.
A 5 gallon won't be as forgiving as a larger tank but certainly easier to change out the water.
Plants? Or plant less (I'd recommend plants but some don't like to put them in even though it helps with the ammonia and looks great) if you want plants, what light do you have?
Depending on your water you could go with something like a group of Pygmy Cory , dwarf Rasbora , Mosquito Rasbora . A single species anyway. Those are some of the smallest that will allow for a decent sized group in such a small tank. Click on the highlighted names to go to the profiles... if I spelled them right. You might be able to put 8 in but they all need a group of at least 6.
Add a tiger snail or similar to provide a little cleanup duty. I find four in a 37 gallon do a nice job so don't go for a large one.
You know, if you just bump up to a 10 gallon, it opens up more options for you and a 10 can't be much more than $15... what other equipment do you have that you are going to use for the 5? Heater, filter, light?
lol It sounds crazy, doesn't it? I'm pretty sure you have an idea of how bad I want to set the 55-Gallon. My only problem right now is finding space for it. Once I find a good spot for it where it won't be in the way, I can set it up. I don't have any water parameters yet. I don't have the tank set up or anything. I'm in the planning phase right now. The 5 gallon came in a starter set so the lighting is not really anything spectacular. I forget the wattage on it. I have a submersible heater for 5-20 gallons.
Oh, so this is like an appetizer.
Fun little project tank.
I would do a planted betta tank. If it doesn't need to look professional or anything, you can just use a CFL inside of one of those dome work clamps. That'll be plenty of light for a 5g.
I want to start using live plants in my tanks from now on, it's just that i'm not plant smart. I know they need light to grow, but that's about it. This tank might be a good way for me to start growing plants so I don't ruin it in a large tank. Would snails do well in a tank with a Betta? Would the Betta terrorize them?
A CFL, good idea. You can get some plant friendly bulbs cheap enough I expect.
I started into aquariums in December and just did a bunch of plants to see what would work. Out of 14 species 12 are successful and I am not doing really anything. Decent light (LED) hard water, bit of fertilizer. They just grow... and grow.... and grow. Check out my shotgun planted tank thread, I outline what I did in my 37 gallon planted tank.
I almost like the plants as much as the fish, I like playing in the water garden.
A 5g tank is pretty small, and there are very few options when it comes to fish. But knowing your tap water parameters will help us suggest possible fish. You should be able to obtain the water params from the water folks, they likely have a website. You need to know the GH (general hardness), KH (carbonate hardness or Alkalinity) and pH. The first two will change very little if at all in the aquarium, so selecting fish suited to the hardness is advisable.
On the issue of planted tanks, check out my series A Basic Approach to the Natural Planted Aquarium stickied at the head of the Aquarium Plants section of the forum. That will set out the whole picture.
And, welcome to Tropical Fish Keeping forum.:-D
What does CFL stand for? I have another question. Say if my tap water has its parameters that are not suited for the fish I want to get, would I be able to change it by will to the level I need it at in order for the fish to thrive? I've heard of aquarium supplements before but I don't know if they have anything that will change hardness, alk, ph, etc...
Second question.... yes, you can change the parameters but it is not a great idea. The issue is that if you mess with the chemistry on one level, something else goes out of whack and you are always adding chemicals and messing with it to get it where you want, that's hard on the fish. The one exception would be if you have hard water, you can cut it with reverse osmosis water to reduce the hardness (GH). I have done this and it's not an issue BUT you have to have RO water available for water changes. The closer to your source water the tank parameters, the more likely you are to do regular frequent water changes.
If your water is 20dGH and 16dKH and you cut it half and half with RO water it effectively cuts to 10dGH and 8dKH and the pH may shift but it will be predictable.
Byron has good results adding Equilibrium to increase the hardness if it is low now that I think about it.
Messing with the pH is asking for trouble though.
What fish are you hankerin' fer?
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