Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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andrewr2488 09-19-2009 09:31 PM

Suggestions for stocking 55g tank?
Hi, I'm new to this forum and im seeking advice for my 29g tank. i also have a few questions which i'd like to address in this thread while im at it.

1. I plan to have cacomba plants in the tank, Once they root themselves how to I clean the tank/change water?

2. For filtration I'm looking at buying the Emperor Power Filter 280 ( Emperor 280 Power Filter) What do ya'll think of this, i am going to be upgrading to a 50g tank within the next 6-8 months. I have read reviews of this being quite loud, any opinions? This aquarium will be in my bedroom so I'd like something quiet, If ya'll know of a quiet filter that can get the job done let me know!!

3. As stated in the first part of this post, I am looking for a stock list for fish. I'd like something bright and eye catching. I was thinking of having some cichlids but im not familiar with them so im kinda hesitant. Once I get the 50g tank I'd like to have some schooling fish, maybe some black neon tetras, neon tetras, along with a few decent sized fish (3"-4")

Thats it for now. please let me know some answers

aunt kymmie 09-19-2009 11:40 PM

Hi Andrew, welcome to the forum! I love a planted tank but with most cichlids you won't be able to do that as they will tear them up. I love the dwarf cichlids (rams to be exact) and they don't touch my plants. In a 29gl you have alot of options for schooling fish. Do you know the ph of the water you'll be using? I use straight tap and it's 7.8. Ph will determine which fish will do best as far as your natural water parameters.
I also have cabomba in my tank. When doing water changes you move the gravel vac around them.
Can't comment on the filters as I'm only familiar with the noise mine make. If my tank was in my bedroom I'd never sleep with the noise they make!

Twistersmom 09-20-2009 10:59 AM

Welcome to the forum!
Yes, The Emperor is a great filter, but a little noise. If you are looking for a good quite filter, you may want to consider an aqua clear.

andrewr2488 09-20-2009 09:55 PM

for fish im thinking about some neon tetras or something of that sort. a schooling fish. would neon tetras and black neon tetras get along? im going to make it a planted tank but with enough room for them to swim, any input is appreciated as im new to the matching thing. I've always just had guppies and neon tetras, lol

andrewr2488 09-24-2009 11:52 PM

A few updates. I've decided to go with a planted tank and schooling fish.. My fiance bought me the Emperor 280 and I tested her out for about 5 minutes. I don't have the aquarium in place or setup but I just couldnt resist testing out the Emperor!! Let me tell you it was pretty darn quiet! I was very happy with the noise level of it. Now I will have to wait and see how it does as far as filtering and what not. I'm gonna start working on the tank sometime this coming week. I've decided on Cardinal and Neon tetras with some green corys. a medium sized driftwood as the focal point for the aquascaping and alot of plants! updates coming soon so stay posted

1077 09-25-2009 04:44 AM

Congrats on your new tank. The Emperor 280 will be plenty of filtration for your tank. I would encourage you to research information on setting up a new tank either here, or by googling elsewhere. Specifically the Nitrification process that needs to happen before placing fish in the new aquarium. I would also encourage you to purchase a Quality test kit that uses drops of liquid rather than the test strips that are not all that accurate. The test strips will give you a ball park idea of water parameters ,but the API Freshwater Master Kit is the choice of many and will last longer than the strips. With the test ,you can determine what pH value your water that comes from your tap is. This will help you determine what fish will do best in your water.For example.. Cardinal Tetras, need soft rather warm water, with pH values of no higer than 6.8 in order for them to thrive. The Neons would also adapt to the soft water but need cooler temperatures than the cardinals would appreciate. I recommend researching the fish that interest you, and once you determine what your water is like ,then you will be able to stock fish best suited to that enviornment. Fish that are uncomfortable ,become stessed and often this leads to sickness. Not something one want's to subject themselves ,or the fish to if possible to avoid. Folks here will be happy to help you set up your tank properly with the least amount of frustration or fish losses.;-)

1077 09-25-2009 05:03 AM

In addition to previous post.. Were it me, (and it ain't) I would get the planted tank established with proper plant substrate. Gravel can work as well but will require some fetilizers or nutrients to be added on consistent basis. I would perhaps start with some easy low to moderate light plants unless you decide to go with cO2 and upgrade the lighting from that which usually comes with new tank kits. By getting the plants established, the fish will feel more comfortable(cardinals.neons) and the water parameters will be easier to maintain. All kind of creatures and micro organisims begin to appear in planted tanks many of which fish enjoy snacking on and you have the added benefit of plants being excellent at filtering the water by using up considerable waste from fish for growth.
Sadly, My brief dabbling in the planted tank world has been dissapointing but we have a few members here who are quite accomplished in that area and they too would be willing to help. Good Luck and don't be afraid to ask questions.;-)

andrewr2488 09-26-2009 11:44 AM

Thanks for the help and information. Yeah I plan on letting my fish tank cycle for atleast 1 whole week before anthing is added to it. for substrate im gonna go with Aqua Soil Amazon I. As plants I'm going with cabomba, dwarf baby tears, and a few other small plants.

NC Frank 09-26-2009 02:45 PM


Originally Posted by andrewr2488 (Post 248665)
Thanks for the help and information. Yeah I plan on letting my fish tank cycle for atleast 1 whole week before anthing is added to it. for substrate im gonna go with Aqua Soil Amazon I. As plants I'm going with cabomba, dwarf baby tears, and a few other small plants.

Proper cycling will take much longer than a week. The best advice that anybody can give people new to the hobby is to properly cycle your tank and to properly maintain your tank (filer maintenance, scheduled water changes, scheduled surface gravel cleaning, constant water parameter tests, etc.)

Byron 09-27-2009 10:33 AM

Cabomba is not the easy plant to keep alive and healthy. Being a stem plant, it is a fast grower which means it needs more light and nutrients than slower-growing plants such as most of the rooted plants. What type of light do you have on this tank? Be specific--assuming it's fluorescent, how many tubes, what length, and what type and wattage (this is indicated at one end of the tube). I can offer suggestions once I know this.

If you intend on having a planted tank, the plants will cycle the tank immediately for you. I can explain this further as well.


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