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All that is Fishy 08-04-2013 11:30 AM

Calculating how many fish you can have- gallons of tank or gallons of water?
Quick question-

I am trying to figure out how many fish and what kinds will fit in my new 29 gallon tank. If using the "inch per gallon" rule (I know this isn't the most accurate, but for example) or a fish stocking calculator, should I put that it is a 29 gallon tank, or 24 (because 1/6th of the tank will be gravel)? Or less, because of driftwood that I will probably put in?

jaysee 08-04-2013 11:39 AM

The actual number of gallons is largely irrelevant when it comes to stocking. What is important are the dimensions of the tank. The inch per gallon rule is meant for small schooling fish, and works just fine for that. It's actually a bit conservative in my opinion, as I stock tanks with small schooling fish at around 1 fish per gallon.

You could keep 3 schools in your tank - one for the top, one for the middle and one for the bottom. So, for the sake of discussion, lets say 8 zebra danios, 12 cherry barbs and 8 corys. Right there, you are at 1 fish per gallon and the tank is not even heavily stocked (by my standards). Not that heavily stocking the tank should be your goal, but it gives you an idea of what the tank can sustain, provided the filtration is there to handle it. Then, in addition to the 28 fish listed, you could add some sort of centerpiece fish and perhaps a small pleco.

Should you get all these fish at once? No. It should take time to stock your tank. Start with small schools and add to them over time as to not overload your filtration.

All that is Fishy 08-04-2013 12:08 PM

Wow, I had no idea. Thanks!

My dimensions are 30" long by 12.5" (or 13"?) wide by 18" tall. There will be 3 inches of substrate in there. Would 15" deep water be to short for three small schools of fish?

The fish I REALLY want are two honey/sunset gouramis. I think they are so pretty, so they are my first priority. Then maybe 3 serape hi-fin tetras and 3 black hi-fin tetras. Then maybe a few dwarf cories. What do you think?

Other fish I like are a dwarf flag cichlid (but I need to investigate whether these are aggressive and/or eat plants) and rummynose tetras. I don't want to overstock though.

jaysee 08-04-2013 01:43 PM

I would skip the serpae tetras - they are notoriously nippy, especially so when kept in small numbers. I would not advise you keep any schooling fish in small numbers.

Your tank has enough space for 3 schools of small fish.

jentralala 08-04-2013 08:25 PM

I would go three honeys, with a 1m/2f ratio. That way the females won't always be the center of the males attention. If you get two, I suppose you could have just 2 females, though. That's the safest way for two to work. And even then they may fight, speaking from experience with my pearl gourami females.

Then a school of fish, (something non-nippy, as gourami can become easy targets) around 10-12, and possibly a bottom dweller.

What are your water parameters, in regards to gh/kh/ph?

Also, 3 inches of substrate seems a bit deep. Any particular reason?

All that is Fishy 08-04-2013 08:33 PM

It seemed deep to me too, but I read that that's a good depth for a tank with a lot of plants, especially in the back of the tank.

About the water parameters- I have no idea. I am moving to a different state in a little over a week. So, I will set up the tank, then add plants, then add fish.

jaysee 08-04-2013 08:33 PM

I agree and forgot to say something - 3 inches is a lot of substrate.

All that is Fishy 08-04-2013 08:36 PM

Thanks you guys!

I am also thinking that not getting those tetras might be a good idea... I don't want the gouramis to get nipped at.

All that is Fishy 08-05-2013 08:47 AM

How many inches of substrate would be good to have? Would 2 be good?

jaysee 08-05-2013 08:54 AM

Yeah, 2 is good :-)

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