75 Gallon tank advice
My partner @ the fire station gave me a 75 gallon Oceanic Tank and a Oak stand with a cabinet top all for zero dollars.? It needs a filter, gravel, decorations and fish. The tank and stand are in 9.5/10 condition. Im stoked.
I like freshwater fish. I want some barbs, tiger barbs and a wide assortment of fish.
First, what filter do you guys recommend and what is its advantage of some of the others? I would prefer not having alot of bulky things hanging in the water, so I guess I want a canister style filter???
Second, Gravel and decorations. I want a natural color gravel (my partner recommended very well rinsed pebble rock from home depot, that is what he used but is keeping for a different tank later on) Decorations - big rocks, cave or something? Suggestions?
Third, I dont want to spend a ton of money on exotic fish, But I want schooling fish.
Any advice would be awesome. Thank you in advance for your time and help.
--- My friend has a 3 butta kopri? spell check in a 55 gallon tank that are tough little fish. They eat stuff alive. Maybe a possiblility but I can not spell it so I can not research the fish. Maybe you guys know what I am talking about?
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Hmm, canister filters are great and their quite. They also arent that ugly if you hide it behind the stand BUT they are exspensive. Get a filter that has a wet dry option. Even better, get two different types of filters. Maybe an undergravel filter and a canister filter. Its your choice, all filters are good if you know how to use them. Also, make sure you learn about cycling because this is very important in a new tank. Good luck with your fish. Oh and tetras are good fish for schooling, a cheap, hardy, nicy looking danio are great for begginers.
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Try searching for the Cascade Canister Filter, by Penn Plax. They're sturdy, easy to use and assemble, easy to maintain, and a lot cheaper than most of the others. I run one on my 220, have had it about 6 - 7 yrs now, and my only complaint went to their rep, and they fixed the problem about 5 yrs ago. If you go with canister, consider at least a power head or air stone to increase your cicrulation levels. Rio power heads work well and are small, easy to hide behind a rock structure.
As for fish, you mentioned tiger barbs... and these will school if they have a group of at least 5. There are also green tiger barbs and albino tiger barbs to add a lot of color to the tank, and all are compatible. If you mix in some rosy barbs, you'll get a different looking fish, still extreme color, especially in the males...
You also could work with any of the standard gouramis... gold, blue, opaline, snakeskin, pearl, and pink kissers. Be forewarned, the pink kissers will max out at about 7 inches in diameter, so don't overstock the tank. 1 - 2 of them with a few small groups of the others, and you'd have a full tank. Also, denisoni barbs, otherwise known as red streak barbs, would mix with those fish, they're bright, and look different.
In answer to your other question, the fish I believe you were referring to is TILAPIA BUTTERKOFERI. They are a large (8 - 10 inches full grown) and extremely aggressive african cichlid, and should not be kept with other fish. In a 75 gallon tank, I wouldn't try more than 2 - 3 of these, and I'd watch not to have 2 males together. They're beautiful fish, but really really nasty. I didn't find much about them online in Google, but you might want to try some of the other search engines now that you know the name and how to spell it.
Your task is a noble one. Filtration is ALWAYS going to be arguable. A combination of methods is adbisable. I do recommend an undergravel using reverse flow powerheads. Marineland makes one using their model 660 power head. These beauties run opposite of what other powerheads run. Rather than pulling water and waste down into the gravel bed, they pull water and debris through a sponge media and supply your bacteria bed with much needed oxygen. I would also recommend a power filter and maybe an external canister filter.
As far as stocking the tank, Butterkofferi are a cichlid. Cichlids are territorial, aggressive, pugnacious, and many times downright nasty. I love 'em. And, yes, big fish eat little fish. Keep that in mind. As for selecting a shoaling fish, I am becoming especially fond of the many tetras coming into the hobby. Emperor tetras, probably my favorite, Columbian tetras, cardinal tetras(these are larger versions of neons and, in my opinion, more hearty), lemon tetras, rasboras, danios, Australian rainbows are just a few of the many choices of shoaling fishes to choose from. NONE ARE COMPATIBLE WITH BUTTERKOFFERI!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
If you don't plan to go plantet ever in the tank then an undergravel could work well if you have gravel and only have 1-2 inches of it in your tank. UGF eliminate the possibilty of any sand as a substrate, normal or reversed as they will kick up the sand and the sand will fall through the slots of the filter. You will also not be able to eco Complete, or any of the fancier substrates. A canister will serve you well and if you want redundancy, then an AC HOB rated for a 75 will work well. Aheim filters have a lot of option for media and so do many others. The return can be hiden low in the tank or high at the top so it doesn't distract form the tanks asthetics.
As for fish, GBR for the bottom although they will visit the whole tank, Maybe a 4-5 cories, a passive species of killifish for the top and for the middle, Barbs, Rosbaras or Tetras. (I am terrible at recommending fish, so this is just my 2 cents)
I would also recommend some type of plant even if just in one corner because all fish appreciate them and they help to give the tank a more natural look. Wisteria, Primrose, or maybe just a couple larger Anubias species in the corners would really give the tank a more natural look.
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