Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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invictusmaneo 12-26-2008 07:58 PM

new hobbyist
Soooo I have read for awhile, read the thread recommending posting specific details about our (new tankowner's) tanks and setups for better details, and decided to join today.

First off, hello to all. No intro thread here so this is my first post, a bit of background: I am a Marine and awaiting a slot at a school (28 April). I grew up with tanks of various sizes as a kid, from little 5 gallon hexes to 75 gallon freshwaters. I have become more and more interested and this year my lady friend got me a 26 gallon tank kit for xmas and this is what brings me here.

So this is what I have:

its this tank:

with one of these "deluxe" kits:

Aqueon Products Aqueon Aquarium Kits

(it has the submerisble heater)

Now I know it is not the greatest but I am ecstatic my GF got it for me and would like to use what I could. I am leaving in April and plan to give my fish to my very experienced fish obsessed friend, so they will be moving to another responsible owneer. I am responsible and willing to care for them so that is not an issue. However because I will be leaving I am not looking for anything too rare or pricey fish and plant wise. I have read about cycling and all that, and understand it, however am seeking some more advice.

I would like a few cichlids, maybe a shark or two, and some sort of algae eater/pacostomus/cat (depending on whats best). I want a saltwater tropical tank, with a decent amount of color. I am thinking live plants but am not sure.


what number/type of fish would be good? I would like one or two decent sized cichlids (2-3")
live or fake plants? am I going to have time for them to mature or is it not worth it?
what should I swap out of the kit?

any and all advice is appreciated and happy holidays!

Pasfur 12-27-2008 11:39 AM

I think the kit would work fine as is, so long as you stick with fish of appropriate size for the tank. This is only a 26 gallon tank, so keep the fish small. If you want to do Cichlids, you have choices that will work. I would personally suggest a large school of a single species of Tetra, say 8 to 12 Bleeding Hearts, and a pair of Rams or Kribensis. This would give you the Cichlid behavior you seek and a nice memorable display.

I would personally use fake plants, given that you will be moving the aquarium in the near future.

Oldman47 12-27-2008 11:57 AM

Welcome to the site. Your first task will be to decide whether you want freshwater tropical, saltwater tropical or brackish. With a single tank it will mean choosing only one. You have posted in freshwater but part of your post says your interest is saltwater. Few people here will be able to help as much with saltwater.
You have a very nice sized tank as a starter tank. In a tank that small I would suggest some of the smaller cichlids or even dwarf cichlids. You could house a small number of rainbow cichlids, herotilapia multispinosa, in a tank that size. They are quite tolerant of various water conditions and easy for an enthusiastic beginner to care for. Here are a few of mine.
You probably have enough room for 3 or 4 since they get to about 4 inches fairly quickly when well fed.

MBilyeu 12-27-2008 03:34 PM


Originally Posted by invictusmaneo (Post 159490)
I would like a few cichlids, maybe a shark or two, and some sort of algae eater/pacostomus/cat (depending on whats best). I want a saltwater tropical tank, with a decent amount of color. I am thinking live plants but am not sure.

I am assuming that you meant freshwater since nothing you have mentioned has to do with saltwater. Just making sure that you don't buy saltwater fish:-D

invictusmaneo 12-27-2008 07:26 PM

Yup-definitely freshwater. Saltwater would be snazzy, but at my price point and because I am leaving (not to mention my tank size) I'll put that off.

I'll look into a few cichlids, that was what I had in mind. I was thinking along the lines of 3-4 smallish cichlids, and maybe a few smaller schoolers or something and an algae eater (by that I refer to any of the types that eat it). Appreciate the suggestions-think that would be overcrowding?

I think artifiical plants will be the way to go for me so I will use them. Any advise on substrates?

Thanks much

MBilyeu 12-28-2008 02:47 AM

The 4 smaller cichlids should be fine. If you wanted to do a pleco there are a few species that do not get over 4", one of those should be fine in there as well. Any more than that is probably pushing the limit on overcrowding depending on how often you, and the person who will be taking care of the tank, will be doing water changes.

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