Stocking my 55 gallon planted tank. Clown Loach, Gourami...
I have a 55 gallon fairly heavily planted tank, with floating plants, drift wood, and river rocks. I currently have a bristle nose pleco, one male three spot gourami (gold variety), three female three spot gourami's (platinum, blue, and opaline) and 5 young clown loaches. I have a HOB filter suitable for a 75 gallon tank. I plan to get the BIGGEST tank I can find/afford when the clown loaches outgrow this one, MINIMUM of 110 gallons. I assume that will be when they are around 6 inches or so?
I was wondering...
What other fish could I add to this mix? I wanted to add tiger barbs because they will school with the loaches, but I fear they will nip at the gourami. Do you think this could work if I add a large enough school?
Could I add more female gourami?
Would it be possible to overstock a little since I am well planted and I have a fairly strong filter?
Also, at what size do you think I will need to relocate the loaches? How big of a tank should I get them?
Off subject... How do I get them to stop eating my swords? lol
hi just to answer your question concerning the tiger barbs it would not be a good idea to mix them with your current stock because of their fin nipping. when kept in bigger sized groups they tend to be occupied with their own antics. but there is still a very good chance they would attcak your current stock. Also gourami tend to be slow gentle swimmers, whereas tigers are fast and constantly shooting around the tank and this could stress you gouramis.
That's what I thought, I was told it could be done by my lfs... but i was very skeptical. I would Like Something Smaller than the gourami though... the tank looks kinda empty around the middle.
how about a group of tetras there are so many brightly coloured ones they are great for making an aquarium more active and colourfull
My clowns (five of them) are just at six inches now (I've had them two years) and they are nowhere near needing anything bigger than the 100gl they are currently in. When the time comes I will upgrade them but it's not needed as of yet.
Who is eating your swords? Loaches don't eat plants but due to the nature of their extreme activity it's possible they are punching holes in your swords?
i read online that the clown loaches can eat aquatic plants, it also mentions that sword plants are one of their favorites. It specifies that they prefer the baby leaves. Seeing as I never had any holes in my sword plants before introducing the clowns, the holes are only in the young leaves (which would be less likely to be punched then the larger leaves I would think) and the holes are noticeably left behind from something eating them. There is no browning and the leaves are practically shredded. Also with the amount of green I am missing I would think that if it was not consumed it would show up elsewhere, perhaps the filter intake?
I will look into those tetras.
Just adding to what has already been mentioned by others.
Tiger Barb is a lovely looking fish but in honesty is not a good community fish. It should never be kept with sedate fish or those with long fins. Have a read of the fish profile here, you can click on the shaded fish name in posts or click the second tab from the left in the blue bar to go to the profiles.
Suitable tankmates for the gourami are any of the rasbora (aside from the dwarf species of Boraras), some of the medium-sized barbs like the Black Ruby Barb. These fish are all in the profiles under Cyprinids. There is info in the profiles on compatibility, special requirements, water parameters, number of fish etc.
If you read the profile of the clown loach it will answer your question on tank size. A 55g is not really suitable because these fish tend to grow fast from 2 to 5 inches and they need adequate space in order to develop properly. I find it hard to think the loaches are eating the plants, could you post a photo of the plant leaves so we can see what they look like?
A caution on filtration, gourami come from very still waters and do not appreciate strong currents, so the filter should have minimal flow; this is also noted in the profiles of each species.
It might be your BN pleco rasping holes in your leaves. Mine does that sometimes when he doesn't get enough to eat so I started putting zucchini in more often for him. The Tiger Barbs are such piggies I think they were eating his algae wafers before he could get to them.
Cherry Barbs may be another possibility for tank mates.
I might look at Lemon tetras, glow light tetras,and or pristella tetras were it me.
Ruby barbs I have kept were fond of alage and when in good supply may or may not leave plants alone. i believe they are more herbivore than omnivore or at least it appeared to me that way ,although they ate nearly everything.
As mentioned clown loaches will eventually need larger tank and I believe 110 gallons would be fine. They don't grow particularly fast, so they should do well for some time in the 55 gallon assuming they aren't over five inches. They do appreciate moderate current and clean water with lots of places to hide,explore and Byron makes a good point with respect to the gouramis preferring minimal current but so long as the Gourami's aren't being swept around the tank, perhaps they too will be fine.
Pin holes in leaves sounds more like snails than damage by fishes to me but as mentioned,photos would be helpful.
I should think that with clown loaches propensity for rooting around in substrate,that keeping all but the strongest rooted plants in place will become problematic as the clown loaches get larger.
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