Two New Plants & Three New Fish - problem?
Today, since Mustard (the survivor) hasn't had any tankmates, my dad's girlfriend decided to buy for him three new fishy friends. I thought I could only have 1 of those fish in a 2.4 gallon tank, but the man at a specialty fish store said I could have around 4. It seems like a good idea since the fish are schoolers, and after inserting the new plants she bought (I think one was a peacock something, and the other a gold ribbon - also removed huge fake plant), I floated the fish for a while, and scooped in the water, etc. They all seem to really like one another, and Yellow seems happier with a group. However, I have a few questions:
1. Will they all get along, or do you think the three regular danios will exclude Mustard b/c of his coloring or previous unfamiliarity?
2. I know I must prune the plants - do they need any supplements or different water conditions?
3. Are my fish more likely to contract diseases from one another now that there are four of them in one tank instead of one?
And a slightly unrelated question - if my fish don't like their regular food, what can I feed them besides bloodworms? Will they eat those plants heartily (I know my sister's goldfish like sucked up half the plant xD)
We need to know what specific fish you have. The three new ones are danios, but which species (there are several)? And what is the fish ("Mustard") you already had?
Stem plants require regular trimming (they grow fast) but most rooted plants do not. Maybe a photo will help us determine the plants you have?
Disease frequently occurs due to stress. I and others will probably have more on that when we know the fish you have. On the food, I would use a good flake, Tetra, Wardleys, OSI, Omega One, Nutrafin all make healthy flake foods. One feeding a day is sufficient for mature fish, and only what they will clean up in a few minutes.
+1 on what Byron said...maybe you can look through here to ID what fish you have and or post pictures of your fish and plants? Aquarium Fish: Tropical Freshwater Fish and Saltwater Fish for Home Aquariums
On a side note: Do you have a filter on the 2.4g tank there? How often to do exchange water there and do you use a water conditioner?
Whoops, yes - forgot to tell. The three new fish are zebra danio, whilst Mustard is a GloFish (basically, same species). I condition my water with Neutral Regulator from Seachem - it keeps the pH neutral, removes chlorine, and removes ammonia. I exchange water whenever the tank displays too much ammonia, or every two weeks, whatever's needed. They have to cycle through again, though, don't they (since they messed up the cycle with more inhabitants?)
First, doing a partial water change when something goes wrong ["too much ammonia"] is very bad maintenance, and will only lead to fish stress and that can cause disease and internal health issues for fish. There should never be too much ammonia, or too much nitrite, or too high nitrates, ever, in an aquarium once it is cycled. A regular partial water change is, in my view, mandatory in any aquarium that is not well planted, and it will allow this necessary stability to exist. In heavily planted tanks, the pwc can be fewer depending upon fish load, but I won't get into all that. Once a week is a good routine to get into, as it is regular and do-able; every Saturday morning, or every Sunday morning, or whatever fits your life. But please do it. And a pwc of 30-50%, the more the better; I explained why in another thread, here it is copied over for you:
To the partial water change, starting with the reason, which is often stated to be the need to reduce the nitrate levels; this is part of the reason but not the really important part. And at this point I would mention that in planted tanks, nitrates should not be above 10ppm and thus a pwc for nitrate reduction is not relevant--yet the pwc is still critical for most of us with planted aquaria. In non-planted tanks, nitrate levels can rise substantially and the pwc does assist in keeping nitrates low. But even in these tanks, this is not the major reason.As for the Neutral Regulator, is there a reason you use this? It adjusts the pH and hardness, but unless there is a good reason for this it may be more trouble long-term. The less chemicals that go into a tank with fish, the better. A regular water conditioner like Prime or several other brands will work fine with each pwc. When I know why you feel the pH needs adjusting, I may have more comments.
Last comment, I consider 4 danios to be somwhat crowded in a 2.5 g tank. Danios are active fish, they like to swim; a larger tank, minimum 10g would make them very happy.
Okay! Thank you, Byron, for your advice ^-^ It really helps. I know I'm not the best fish wrangler (really, I'm a noob - I thought these little suckers would be easy to handle!) I've also got AquaSafe (from TetraAqua) that's just a plain ol' conditioner + bacteria. Would that be better than Neutral Regulator? The guy at the specialty fish store told me that my water was too alkaline (higher than 7 - it was like at 8.4, and I know what he means), so he said Neutral Regulator would be good for that, because it cleans out chlorine, ammonia, and resets the pH. So I bought a teeny little bottle. Another member did mention that LFS people DO tend to sell you the wrong things or give you the wrong advice; I'm just a little torn! But thank you anyway for the advice about the weekly water changes.
Alright man here is the truth of it, when you use chemicals to alter pH, stuff can happen and you get a pH swing and thats REALLY bad for the fish! Fish can adapt (besides a few species that take exact water parameters, but most aquarists don't have these fish) Its better to have a stable pH thats a little off than one thats all ove the place because thats really bad for fish.
Oh, okay! :D Thank you, Phil. Does anyone mind if I PM them? I am still in need of some sound advice (and I like how honest y'all are!).
What advise are you looking for? Please either post your questions or PM me if you like, I'd like to help ya there cause its a not so ideal set up you have there.
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