Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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-   -   possible to have too many bottom dwellers? (

Aquarius Keeper 09-30-2008 01:51 AM

possible to have too many bottom dwellers?
My 30g will be ready for fish next week and I've had a lot of time to think about what I want...

The one fish I have no doubt about is a kuhli loach (or three, they do best in groups, right?) - although I've also some interest in cory cats (also best as three or more?) and probably an upside-down catfish as well...

... so that's a lot of bottom dwellers. Is it possible to have too many? The tank is a 30h (i.e. it has exactly the same floor space of a 20h -24x12) so it might get crowded down there pretty quickly.

Is it possible to overstock one "level" of the tank even if you're not overstocking in terms of total gallons?

jeaninel 09-30-2008 02:06 AM

In that size tank I would probably just stick with one type of bottom dweller...either kuhlis or cories. They do best in groups of 6 or more. Not sure about the upside down cat. Maybe someone else can help you there.

Aquarius Keeper 09-30-2008 02:18 AM

well, if I had to choose between kuhlis and corys, I'd go with the loaches.

But the corys do a lot of good actually cleaning the bottom, right? whereas the loaches just live there? So I'd have to find something else to help keep the place clean?

Tyyrlym 09-30-2008 06:47 AM

Cories are scavengers. They'll eat any food that makes it to the bottom but that's it. They don't eat everything that falls to the bottom of the tank.

Aquarius Keeper 09-30-2008 12:40 PM

yeah, that's what I meant - someone to eat the scraps so the bacteria can focus on the waste. I'm not really worried about algae but if it starts to bug me I can always get a few snails, no?

mkirby258 09-30-2008 07:16 PM

Loaches will tear up the snails. That is one reason why a lot of people get loaches (for their snail problem). Not sure about cories

Aquarius Keeper 09-30-2008 08:26 PM

I've heard that loaches eat snails, but I guess I assumed that meant small pond snails - will they go after those big monster snails too?

iamntbatman 10-01-2008 12:46 PM

Nope. Kuhli loaches don't really do much at all when it comes to snails. Mine definitely don't touch my Malaysian trumpet snails or my mystery snails, and they even ignore the couple of pond snails that found their way into the tank. Kuhlis, like cories, will scavenge for food from the bottom of the tank. The kuhlis are *very* active fish, but are really only active at night so you might benefit from some moonlight LED's. My cories in a different tank are out more during the day.

Depending on your decor, the upside-down cat might not really be much of a bottom dweller. If you've got sufficient rocks and driftwood, they prefer to hang out upside down underneath overhangs. They'll even hang out under plant leaves, hugging the bottoms of the leaves upside-down.

I wouldn't get both cories and kuhlis though, as then you'll definitely be pretty cramped for space on the floor of that tank.

qpc68 10-02-2008 03:47 PM

Kuhlii loaches won't go after snails. Yo-Yo's will devour snails however. And they're awesome fish.

Unless you have inadequate cover, if you have only 1 upside down catfish you will never see him. I literally had to pull my tank apart twice to make sure he was still alive after weeks of him disappearing. Added 2 more, and now they come out and swim around, day or night. Awesome fish, but I would suggest at least 3.

Aquarius Keeper 10-04-2008 12:37 AM

I just got an upside-down catfish and he seems pretty adventurous so far.

I think I'm going to hold off on the cories until I'm ready for a betta setup... that could be a couple months, but I've heard cories and bettas do well together. I want some cories even more than I want a betta, so I'm definitely motivated to make it happen... I saw this awesome giant glass bowl at a world market last week - with heavy-duty planting and a good filter, it might be perfect...

In my 30g, I'll let the kuhlis and my Ctenopoma acutirostre have the floor, and the upside-down catfish can do what it likes...

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