Is my tank overcrowded?
I have a 20 gallon tank that includes 1 tiger fish, 2 glass fish, 1 bala shark, 1 pleco, and 1 gourami. I do 25% water changes every week and even with that I still have to fight cloudiness and high ammonia levels. It seems as though even right after I change the water that I still have to add chemicals to reduce the ammonia. What should I do? Do you think the tank is overcrowded? Thanks.
Your tank is overcrowded with the bala shark around. What pleco is it? Pictures will help. If this plec is one of the giant species, I'd recommend rehoming it altogether with the bala. What gourami and glassfish do you have? One of the glassfish, Chanda wolfii will grow larger than the Chanda ranga and should also be rehomed if it is the former.
No need to use the chemicals. I'd suggest you do water changes. Chemicals are a waste of cash.
Tank may be stocked a little on the heavy side. It all depends on the size of the fish. Also, if your filtration is adequate, you can get by with a heavier stocking scheme. The bala and the pleco, depending upon the species, will achieve some size. But, that is just a good excuse to get another tank. lol
I'm not sure what kind of pleco I have but he is about 3 inches long. I also woke up this morning to find one of my glass fish to be gone. I don't know if he died and the other fish ate him or what happened. So now I am down to five fish. The bala shark is about 3 inches long as well. Would you still reccommend moving a fish out of the tank, if I am down to five fish? If so, which one? thanks
I'd definitely recommend either rehoming the bala to a larger tank or return him to the lfs. Any pictures of your plec? I'll recommend ancistrus as the suitable plec for your tank or a group of corydoras.:) Common plecs, however, must be removed from your tank(same as bala).
I forgot to include a question asking what gourami you have. You'll be okay with pearl, blue, gold, dwarf, honey or thick-lipped.:) Harlequin rasboras, small South American tetras(i.e. cardinals, neons, glowlights) or even danios will be suitable in your tank.
Are you sure you're not just feeding them too much? I've stocked tanks tighter than that and maintained healthy water quality. Remember, in the wild fish can go days without eating and in an aquarium it is actually good to skip a day here and there.
I would say it's overcrowded just a little. BUT, I am also overcrowded. Simply put, it's all about fish size and tank maintenance. Not sure if you have enough room for the Bala and a pleco to be comfy in a 20 gal, but as long you keep up with the water changes and gravel vacuuming, you will be fine.
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