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i heartmypleco 07-20-2011 12:29 AM

upgraded to a 90g! help! (also new here) :)
well as the title suggests i'll be upgrading from my 29 gallon very shortly to a 90 gallon long tank. I plan on moving the inhabitants that are currently in the 29 gallon into the new tank so I should have a decent amount of option for further stocking. Also i've never set up a tank that large as well a not having setup a new tank in some years, the 29 gallon has been running for atleast 4 years. I'd like to hear your opinions on the best way (and hopefully quickest, without sacrificing or putting the fishes wellbeing at risk) to go about cycling the tank. Theres a lot of information on google but the information varies a lot and I think I trust the opinions of people on this forum more than I do random articles on google. I'd also like to hear your opinions for the best substrate, plants, and filtration in general. I wanted atleast a filter designed for a 150 gallon tank, but more is better, And I think I prefer the HOB variety so if anyone can suggest good powerful filtration for a 90 gallon that would be appreciated too. The fish that will be going in there are 3 juvenile albino bushy nose (one with LF), 1 adult LF bn, a "leopard" synodontis.. about 2''...about 5-6 kuhli loach..2 bamboo shrimp, and a 2'' raphael cat .. Im going to have plenty of space so what do you guys suggest I get? I wanted some other sorts of nice spotted or striped pleco's. and id like a large top dwelling fish or two..something that kinda lurks around.. .. and maybe a couple different schools of something smaller.. Im just so undecided as what to get and there is so many options (i've recently been finding some VERY good stores here in south florida). Sorry to ask for so many suggestions it sounds like im pretty much asking you guys to set up my tank for me, and I kinda am. Ha. I know more or less what I want and what direction to go in just dont know exactly how. I know I want to make the tank look as natural as possible.. I want to plant it.. have lots of driftwood.. yellow lighting (maybe) .. a dark brownish red substrare..etc..Again im open to any and all suggestions. Thanks in advance..

(btw my name is danny and I am from miami, FL. I guess this post will be my introduction. so hiiiiiiii) pic of the new 90 g and me excited over it

ladayen 07-20-2011 01:20 AM

Hi Danny

Well with Kuhli loaches you want a minimum of 6 to really see their true beauty. Also I would be careful about putting larger fish in the tank, even at full grown it could fairly easily become a snack for something. These guys also like a sand bottom.. and with your appreciation of bottom feeders in general it seems that might not be a bad idea. As to more plecos, I dont see a reason why you couldn't add even a full size one (12-15") in there, but with all the others you might have to supply additional food such as blanched cucumbers.(dont forget to remove uneaten portions.) You could possibly also look into the various Corydoras. These like to school in groups of 6 but you can have 2 species with 3 of each.

Now as to the other fish you do have alot of choices. Cichlids in general have issues with planted tanks but there are certain ways to get it to work... most of the time. May want to avoid those. I enjoy my "characins" mostly the tetras, particularly black skirt or Black widow tetra. These guys school and do best with at least 6, they tend to occupy the mid section of the tank. I like my danios as well, such as the Zebra Danio or Pearl Danio. You could possibly look into Glofish as well. They are a genetically modified version Zebra Danios. Make sure they are legal where you live. These are fairly active top dwellers and can be a bit aggresive to at first and with new additions but they usually calm down in a couple hours.. 2 days at most. Again.. school in groups of 6 or more but seem to do fine with other danio species.

As to cycling the tank fast... plants. Byron has written a 4 part article about plants(and a fair amount of profiles. You can search these near the top or click on the shaded names of fish and plants) over in the Aquarium plants section. You should go take a look at that.

As to your filter it depends on your fish. If you want to go with larger fish you will probably need a more powerful filter. Fish that come from rivers and are used to a good current will also require a strong waterflow. Smaller fish(The ones I suggested are rather small, only a couple of inches) will need to be able to avoid the current from the filter so they can stop and rest. Lake fish will generally prefer calm water and not appreciate the current a stronger filter puts out.

I kinda touched on the sand substrate earlier but I'll mention a bit more. Pool filter sand is fairly cheap and works well, but as with any sand it can be a little difficult to clean without stirring a whole bunch up. I believe sand, as with pretty much any non gravel substrate can potentially trap and build up toxic gases causing what I like to call the bermuda triangle effect. Bubbles build up and eventually burst out poisoning or even crushing anything on it's way to the surface. With your appreciation of bottom dwellers though this really shouldn't be an isue as they will aerate the substrate and not allow the gasses to build up.

Ok i'm getting tired so I gotta cut myself off there. Hopefully that gives you some ideas.

Welcome to the forums :)

Oh almost forgot the most important thing.. we need tap water levels. PH, ammonia, nitrite, nitrate.

jeaninel 07-20-2011 02:30 AM

Hi Danny and welcome to TFK.

Here's some suggestions I have for some larger, shoaling, peaceful fish that would look fantastic in a planted tank:

1) Rainbow fish - Boesemani are my favorite. But there are many other varieties. Very colorful and active fish.

2) Dennison Barbs - Another gorgeous fish. LOVE these guys.

3) Congo Tetra - One of my favorite tetra. I have some currently. They get to about 4".

These should do fine with your BN's, Kuhlis and Raphael cat. Not sure about the syno as some species can get large and rather aggressive. You have a lot of bottom dwellers already so I don't think I would add any cories but you could increase the loaches.

You will have to take what type of water you have into consideration when making fish choices. Find out what your Ph, Gh and Kh is. The ones I mentioned above are fairly adaptable fish. I've kept the Boesemani and the Congo in my water with a 7.8 Ph and a Gh and Kh of 5 which is moderately soft. Also check out the fish profiles (2nd tab from the left at the top of the page).

As far as cycling your tank if you could move your existing filter and decor from your 29 gallon tank (in addition to the new filtration system) along with a good amount of plants in the tank you should be able to move over your existing fish from your 29 gallon immediately. You would need to keep an eye on the water parameters for any mini cycle and do water changes as needed. When I upgraded from a 20G to a 55G a few years ago I used new gravel and water and moved over the existing filter and decor along with my fish. I tested every day for a week or so and didn't see any ammonia or nitrite spike.

Filtration - most people will tell you with a planted tank not to use HOB's because of the waterfall effect driving out the CO2 content in the water which the plants need. A cannister filter would probably be your best bet. I will say that I do have HOB's on my planted angel tank and the plants are doing fine. They are mostly hardy,easy to grow plants such as anubias, swords and java fern.

Anyway, have fun with your new tank. And be sure to update here with what you decide to do. We love lots of pics too! Have fun.

(P.S. Fellow Pink Floyd fan here as well.)

SeaHorse 07-20-2011 06:10 AM

Welcome to TFK Danny! Can't wait to follow along with your progress!! Enjoy!!

Byron 07-20-2011 09:52 AM

Hi Danny and welcome to Tropical Fish Keeping forum. Nice to have you with us. I can't add to what's been suggested. I am glad to see that you are working out the fish before deciding on the tank; a key to success is having compatible fish in a community aquarium with the aquascape designed for those fish. And compatibility means not only behaviours, but the same water flow requirements (the filter here), light, decor, plants or not, and of course water parameters.


i heartmypleco 07-20-2011 09:10 PM

thanks for the info.. i was thinking of getting like 5-6 more kuhlis.. and a Gold Nugget Pleco. and perhaps a green phantom and then no more bottom dwellers.. lso for the top i was thinkingof maybe one or two leopard bush fish. Either that or like 3 Discus.. would either of those options be ok? Also i was considering of donating the raphael to a good home and freeing up some space. since hell grow to about 8''. I rather have a green phantom or some other sort of pleco in his place. I really want a sort of largish lurking type fish for the top. Like bush fish or discus sized.. maybe a little larger if not too agressive or predatory. i'm being kinda picky, huh ;x

Christople 07-20-2011 11:01 PM

i really like african butter fly fish, I also like ada as a substrate, it has done me well for my plants. I think that a large school of 90 ish dwarf rasbora would look amazing, oh and welcome. What type of water do you have (pH,GH,KH). Look around for a large peice of drift wood to be a center piece, ehiem is a great filter brand

ElectricBlueJackDempsey 07-20-2011 11:35 PM

I would pick 1 of the 2 plecos because both the Gold Nugget and the Green Phantom plecos get around 10 inches and can be territorial toward other bottom fish. I have a 8 inch Gold nugget pleco and he will chase my kulhis and corys out of his favorite spot so beware. You have to have very good and stable water to keep discus and they should be kept in groups of 5 or more as they can be aggressive toward each other. I would go with some of the suggests jeaninel said. The Congos, rainbows and densions barbs are all somewhat hardy species and would make an amazing addition to your tank.

jeaninel 07-21-2011 12:41 AM

My bush fish (Ctenopoma Acutirostre) is one of my favorite fish. You could certainly do a bush fish with some Congo tetra. I have this mix and they do well together. You just won't be able to have any small fish or they'll get eaten. The Cteno is predatory but not aggressive. They're actually quite shy. They appreciate lots of plants to hide in.

Couldn't resist the opportunity to post a pic and video of mine. I just love this guy.


i heartmypleco 07-21-2011 12:54 AM

Im actually really inclined to get this bush fish. ive been getting lots of recommendations for him on another forum.. but a concern is that he may eat my kuhli loaches.. ;x btw beautiful fish you got there

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