Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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Mikiel1984 10-16-2011 10:45 PM

New 55 Gallon Aquarium
 
Hi Everyone!

I am brand new to the site and have only been keeping fish for a little over a year. I currently have a 30 gallon planted tank which my community is starting to outgrow. Below is what I currently have in my 30 gal.

- 2 Angels (less than a year old)
- 3 dwarf gourami's
- 4 glass catfish
- 3 Harlequin Rasboras
- 3 Rummy Nose Tetras
- 3 Emerald Corycats
- 1 Chinese Algae Eater (which I will be removing as he is starting to become VERY aggressive)
- A few golden mystery snails

Don't get me wrong I understand that this is a lot for a 30 gal but I bought most of these when I was pretty green to this hobby and they were all really small. I didn't realize how big they would get! Now that most of my guys are full size and I have learned a lot more about each breed I am moving them into a 55 gallon tank.

Now that you have the details here are my questions. I am starting to setup my new 55 gallon tank and need some advice as I want to make sure I do it all properly so I lose none of my little guys. What are things to be aware of when setting up a tank of this size (I have never owned a tank of this size)? Is there anything different about owning a 55 gal. tank compared to a 30 gal. tank other than size? With the group of fish that I already have is there any room to add more fish or am I at maximum capacity? I have been considering converting to sand rather than gravel substrate, is this a good idea for a planted tank? What are the best algae eaters for a tank of this size that is planted?

Any other advice or input is more than welcome. Please let me know when you have a moment as I would love to learn and know more about keeping fish as I plan on continuing this hobby for years to come.

Thanks in advance for all your thoughts, advice and comments.

- Mike

leeteekyung 10-16-2011 11:08 PM

hi, just be carefull with "new tank syndrom", there is no bacterias in a new tank to convert nitrits which very harmfull to fishes. u can add old equipments like stones, gravel, of filter to provide those bacteria, or u can do water cycling by adding water to ur tank then "feed" the tank. excess food will triggers bacteria to comes. goggle about "new tank syndrom" to find more about it, and dont forget to post ur new tank. good luck
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Mikiel1984 10-17-2011 11:24 AM

Thanks so much. I knew about setting the tank up properly for cycle time but wasn't aware that it could be this in-depth. I appreciate the comment and look forward to hearing any other thoughts.

-Mike

Byron 10-17-2011 01:43 PM

Mike, welcome to Tropical Fish Keeping forum. Glad to have you with us.

The 55g will be much the same as the 30g, to answer your first question. As for substrate, if you have substrate fish like the corys, or later loaches and others, sand is a good choice. Expensive black sand made for aquaria is fine, but for something cheaper than looks absolutely natural, consider playsand from Home Depot or Lowe's. It is gray/tan in colour, and replicates the sand in many Amazonian streams. You can see it in the photos of my 115g and 33g tanks [click "Aquariums" under my name on the left]. Two bags (25kg/55pounds each) will more than be sufficient for a 55g, with sand to spare. Plants do well in it; you only need 2-2.5 inches depth.

Algae eaters: some fish are good with common green algae and diatoms (brown). Otos, pleco, Twig Catfish, Whiptail Catfish (depending upon water parameters for some). These will not touch brush algae, hair algae, etc. Light control for those algae is preferable. The CAE is going, good idea, this is not a good community fish as you've noticed already.

Fish stocking. Some of those named need more to be in better health (less stress). Rasbora, I would have 8+. Glass cats, 4 is OK, but if you like them, add a couple more. Rummy nose tetra absolutely must be in larger groups, 9 or more, this is a tightly shoaling fish and always is healthier and better in larger groups. You can read more in our profiles, second tab from the left in the blue bar across the top of the page. All your mentioned species are included.

Corys, definitely more. Can be same or other species, they all get along. I like many species, my 11`5g is the "cory" house and I have over 30 representing about a dozen species. Try to have 3 minimum of each species, 5 is better, depending upon species. Most are in our profiles with photos.

Angels. Ideally, being a shoaling fish, a group of 5 in a 55g is nice. But adding to an existing pair is not always easy. You can read about this in pour profile, Scalare Angelfish (click the shaded name). We can discuss more later.

Hope this helps.

Byron.

Mikiel1984 10-17-2011 02:07 PM

Hey Byron! Thanks so much for the insight this really helps a lot. I am still a few weeks out from getting everything set up but I am making sure to do my research ahead of time. I am also glad to hear I am not close to hitting my max capacity on owning because I really want to grow my tank and have a true environment for my fish.

I know that adding to Angels is a complicated process but I have always heard if you find Angels of comparable size then it wouldn't be as bad as adding smaller angels. Is this a true statement? Like I said previously my Angels aren't at full size but are a decent size.

Last thing Cory's are some of my favorites as they always seem playful and are just fun to watch. As mentioned I have 3 Emerald Cory's what are some others that mix well and will stand out?

Again thank so much for the responses and the kind welcome. I hope to hear more from the pro's here and continue to learn more.

Byron 10-17-2011 04:05 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mikiel1984 (Post 864907)
Hey Byron! Thanks so much for the insight this really helps a lot. I am still a few weeks out from getting everything set up but I am making sure to do my research ahead of time. I am also glad to hear I am not close to hitting my max capacity on owning because I really want to grow my tank and have a true environment for my fish.

I know that adding to Angels is a complicated process but I have always heard if you find Angels of comparable size then it wouldn't be as bad as adding smaller angels. Is this a true statement? Like I said previously my Angels aren't at full size but are a decent size.

Last thing Cory's are some of my favorites as they always seem playful and are just fun to watch. As mentioned I have 3 Emerald Cory's what are some others that mix well and will stand out?

Again thank so much for the responses and the kind welcome. I hope to hear more from the pro's here and continue to learn more.

On the emerald cory, is it the true Corydoras aeneus or actually Brochis splendens? Click the shaded names for the profiles with photos, it explains there how to tell them apart. As for other species, it's up to you; all get along. I would not however put one of the dwarf species in a large tank, they tend to just get lost.

Angels are risky. Yes, acquiring more of the same size may help, also moving all of them into the new environment as once is more certain to help as the existing will not have "their" tank to defend. Unless you now have a mated pair, you can try it. If you have a mated pair, definitely not; I can all but guarantee that the male would bully if not kill off any others. Depending upon their age; the older the more probable.

Mikiel1984 10-18-2011 12:32 PM

That's a really good question Byron. Based off of what I read it seems that it is Brochis splendens. When I bought it they were labeled as Emerald Cory's so I was just assuming. Does this effect what I keep them with?

Also if I get the new tank set up and then place the new angels in first for a few days then put my older guys in would this up the chances for compatability?

Byron 10-18-2011 12:45 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mikiel1984 (Post 866154)
That's a really good question Byron. Based off of what I read it seems that it is Brochis splendens. When I bought it they were labeled as Emerald Cory's so I was just assuming. Does this effect what I keep them with?

Also if I get the new tank set up and then place the new angels in first for a few days then put my older guys in would this up the chances for compatability?

On the Brochis, they are peaceful. They are in the same family (Callichthyidae) and even same subfamily (Corydoradinae) as Corydoras (and Aspidoras too), and all species are peaceful and compatible. However, being larger, they do need and take up more "space" on the substrate. But a trio of Brochis splendens [which is almost always sold under the misleading common name of Emerald Cory:roll:] with a group of corys will not be a problem.

On the angels, I would add them to the new tank together. While I would not expect a few days to make much difference, fish can be independant, and it might be best to add them together. New fish together for the first time in a completely new and strange environment to all, seems preferable.

Mikiel1984 10-18-2011 11:34 PM

Thanks again for all the advice Byron you have been a great help. I am getting everything set up and once it's live I will post pics for you to see. Never realized how much water 55 gallons was until today!

Thanks again!


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