Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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IntelligentDesigner 04-23-2008 03:22 PM

10 gal suggestions
I was thinking of giving my dad my 10 gal aquarium and setting it up in his home office for his upcoming birthday. So what do you tguys think might be a good low maintenance, not too expensive, decent looking, type of setup? My only idea so far is some tetras might look cool, with a bottom feeder to keep it clean, and some good space taking plants that wouldn't be too bulky, but give the tetras their cover. Any other ideas? Much appreciated.



willow 04-23-2008 03:35 PM

what about some male guppys ?

Holly 04-23-2008 03:39 PM

I was thinkingthe same thing for my upgrade on the work tank. Either that or I might just put 3 of the Ram babies in there once I we have babies. There's so many little school fish that I'd like to put in there. I like the idea of a small schooling fish with plants.

willow 04-23-2008 03:53 PM

the thing i like about the guppys is that they are
always on the go,and you can have a nice flutter of colour,
which looks lovely with the greenery.

bettababy 04-23-2008 03:54 PM

If this is for an office, a few things need to be taken into consideration... like cleaning it/maintenance... feedings, and temps.
Be sure it has a good heater in there!

To make it the easiest to care for, turning it into a self maintaining environment will be the best way to go. Keep yourself limited to 3 fish... especially if you're working with tetras... as many species of tetras will reach 3 - 4 inches as they mature. I would more opt for putting in white clouds simply because they wouldn't need a heater, but any bottom feeder you might consider will need the heat.
For tetras you might want to consider phantoms (red or black) or von rios(flame tetra), green fire tetras, glolite tetras, silver tip tetras... they stay smaller. Instead of tetras, you might also consider:
harlequin rasboras
lampeye rasboras
cherry barbs
furcata rainbows
signifer rainbows
danios (zebra, leopard, longfin blues)
choprae danios
neon dwarf rainbows
killiefish (stay away from golden killies and other species that get large)
odessa barbs
dwarf puffers (species only tank)
indian glass fish

For bottom feeders, maybe consider any of these:
ghost shrimp
ammano shrimp
pygmy cory catfish
kuhli loach
desert goby

Please keep in mind that not all of these fish will mix together, and your limits on bottom feeders will be 1, maybe 2 in a tank that size unless you're working with shrimp. Ammano shrimp will also eat things from the bottom, not just algae... and standard cory catfish get quite large and do better in groups of 3 - 5 or more... which would be too many for a 10 gallon tank long term.
If you would like help putting something together out of these choices, please ask.

For plants:
java fern
java moss
rotala (lots to choose from)
ludwigia (broadleaf and/or narrowleaf)

These are all plants that are rather easy to grow without any specific requirements. Any of the bunch plants like rotala and ludwigia, etc can be easily snipped when they grow too tall, and then just plant them down with the others to thicken the bunch.

If you're wanting to keep this easy and low maintenance, the important thing to remember is a few fish and lots of plants, and easy on feedings, along with a good filtration unit with plenty of biomedia in it. You would be designing what is called "the natural aquarium" where waste finds balance with plant life who eats it up and uses it, and lots of biological filtration to allow for growth of denitrying bacteria as well as nitrifying bacteria.
I have set up many of these types of tanks over the years, so if you need further help in how to balance it properly, let me know.

willow 04-23-2008 04:00 PM

what lighting would be good ?

bettababy 04-23-2008 04:05 PM

A basic fluorescent fixture with a plant bulb in it would be perfect. The plants I suggested will need medium to low light, and that sort of light would provide perfectly for any/all of them. Anubias should be shaded by other plants and/or rock structures.

Be sure to add some kind of rock structure to the tank, the fish will need territory, especially anything bottom feeding. They tend to like caves and to dig under rocks. Plants alone won't allow for such a thing. Small rocks stacked on top of each other are much more effective than 1 - 2 larger rocks standing alone.
When you decorate, remember that a space between 2 objects is a territory, and each fish will need 1 - 2 territories to call its own. These territories should allow the fish to be at any level of the tank and still find shelter, from people and from each other.

willow 04-23-2008 04:09 PM

great info thanks dawn. :)

bettababy 04-23-2008 04:20 PM

The reason I didn't suggest the male guppys is because they're not the sturdiest of fish, and in an office setting it can be very hard to keep them thriving, and if they should get sick, it can be very difficult to keep up with medications and water changes in an office setting.

willow 04-23-2008 04:30 PM

hmmmm never thought of that.
i was just thinking of the lovely flash of colour.
there would be an advantage of mature filter media on offer
though wouldn't there ?

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