Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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-   -   Questions Regarding Zebra Danios (http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/cyprinids-atherinids/questions-regarding-zebra-danios-31714/)

La Reina 11-04-2009 06:02 PM

Questions Regarding Zebra Danios
 
Hey there everyone! I've got some questions regarding the potential of keeping danios.

-What are reccomended tank mates?

-What tank size and group size do they do well in?

-Will they breed in a standard tank? (If so, what can I do to prevent this? I'm not experienced enough to look after fry.)

-Do they require a heater or other special equipment? (I will be getting a filter.)

-Do they require specific tank conditions? (pH etc.)

Thankyou in advance for answers and for helping the rookie. :-)

bettababy 11-05-2009 02:29 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by La Reina (Post 268836)
Hey there everyone! I've got some questions regarding the potential of keeping danios.

-What are reccomended tank mates?
Zebra, blue, and leopard Danios are a good community fish provided they have a few of their own kind to chase to avoid harassing tankmates. Danios can be compatible with most tetras, most live bearers (guppies, mollies, swordtails, platys, halfbeaks), small catfish (cory catfish), and various species of barbs. The trick with the danios is to pay attention to territory, other fish who can tolerate the stress levels due to their constant motion and chasing, and in finding other fish that will not bother them or eat them.

-What tank size and group size do they do well in?
That will depend on what type of mixture of fish you wish to keep. A group of 3 - 5 zebra, blue, or leopard danios can work well in a 10 gallon tank with a few small tetras and a cory catfish. On the other hand, giant danios, a group of 3 - 5 would require at least 55 gallons, and still leave room for a few larger tetras and a couple of cory catfish. Giant danios are a bit more aggressive than their smaller cousins and should be kept with larger tetras, barbs, gouramis, etc.
-Will they breed in a standard tank? (If so, what can I do to prevent this? I'm not experienced enough to look after fry.)
Zebra danios are known to readily breed quite easily in a home tank, when conditions are proper. There are 2 ways accommodate this. Either make sure when purchasing that the fish are old enough to be sexed, and keep just one sex of these fish together, or to let them be and allow the other fish to eat the eggs. In order to get fry from danios to survive, the eggs would have to be removed to a tank of their own to avoid being eaten by the other fish before hatching. It is rare to find danio fry in a community tank.

-Do they require a heater or other special equipment? (I will be getting a filter.)
Zebra, blue, leopard danios can survive with a temp in the low to mid 70's, however.. if you plan to mix in other compatible fish, a heater would be required. Danios can thrive in temps of up to 80 degrees without issue. Over 80 may cause them issues. Your options of other fish without a heater would be quite small, especially seeking out something compatible with the danios.
Giant danios should be kept in tropical temps, and don't do well under 76 degrees.

-Do they require specific tank conditions? (pH etc.)
Danios are one of the few fish that can thrive in most water conditions, though wild types do prefer softer water. Danios are so readily bred in captivity now, though, it is very difficult to find wild types. As with any fish, it is best to find out what they were born/raised in before you purchase them, so you can accommodate their needs at home. When purchasing your fish from a specific store, be patient and ask the store to test their pH for you before you spend your money. If they refuse then it is best to walk away, as then you have no idea how to match their needs. Also pay attention to how fish are doing in the store tanks. It is frequent that the stores do not and/or cannot meet the needs the fish were born/raised in, and coupled with the many stresses of shipping and being moved, the fish will get sick when put into these very different conditions. If 1 fish in a store tank doesn't look well, chances are the others are likely not well either. Those are fish you don't want to purchase, ever.

Thankyou in advance for answers and for helping the rookie. :-)

One other quick note for you about danios. Because of their strong immune systems and sturdy nature, danios are often a great fish to use when cycling a tank. They can typically withstand conditions that most other fish cannot. It is still a good idea to wait a few days after setting up a tank before adding the first fish, but when you get to that stage, danios are a great beginner fish.

Should you need further help, please feel free to ask.
Hope this has helped.

La Reina 11-05-2009 07:27 AM

Thankyou very much, bettababy. That's a huge help!

When I get my tank, how long should I wait prior to adding fish? Do I need to wait the two weeks for the nitrate cycle?

fishyinpa 11-08-2009 12:55 PM

It takes longer than two weeks to cycle. Took my 10 gallon like 8 weeks to cycle. You need API test kits,the liquid ones not the strips. Monitor the levels every day,if ammonia,nitrite or nitrate go over 0 do an immediate water change.
Also it wont cycle without a source of ammonia,be it the danios or pure ammonia. Most recommend doing it with pure ammonia,much less cruel. If you do it with the danios,like I said before you will have to monitor the levels everyday. good luck!!

bettababy 11-09-2009 02:40 PM

That was great advice fishyinpa! And, I completely agree with the information about watching the tank carefully during cycling.

As for how long to wait to put in the danios and how many fish... if you choose to cycle with danios I see nothing wrong with that. Danios are one of the few fish I would suggest for such a process because they have such strong immune systems and tend to thrive even though the rough conditions of cycling.

To keep the fish safest I suggest you be very careful and selective on how many fish you start with and in what size tank, keeping in mind your expected total population for your tank. For a 10 gallon tank I would start with no more than 2 - 3 small danios of the zebra, leopard, or longfin blue species. The average tank will take approximately 6 - 8 wks to complete the cycle with fish, provided it is stocked appropriately and the fish are not over fed. Keeping feedings to once every other day, making sure the fish can completely finish the food within 1 - 2 minutes is what I reccommend during the cycling process. Water testing should be done at least 2 - 3 times/wk or anytime the fish appear to be in any type of distress until the cycle is complete, and as explained above, liquid test kits are needed. Test strips offer very inaccurate results and cannot be trusted, especially during cycling. API is one of the most accurate and also least expensive of the test kits available.

If you choose to cycle with the fish, I would suggest setting up the tank, being sure they have plenty of decoration from the start, making sure the heater is functioning properly and tank water temp is stable for a minimum of 48 hrs, and that the filter is functioning correctly. I would allow 3 - 5 days for the tank to run without fish before putting the first in, and the next fish should not go into the tank until about 1 wk after cycling is complete, and in small numbers at a time.

I hope this helps.

La Reina 11-09-2009 08:37 PM

Thankyou very, very much for all the help! :-D

bettababy 11-10-2009 02:07 AM

You're welcome. :-)


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