Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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tpinderBahamas 02-08-2012 11:38 AM

New to hobby - 29 Gallon - Stocking options
I have a 29 gal freshwater tank with a gravel bottom, a piece of driftwood and 3 different sizes of plastic and silk plants. The tank is a tetra starter tank which came with bio filtration, light, heater and I added an air stone. I have been cycling the tank with pure ammonia and the ammonia and nitrite levels are almost gone. I wanted some advice on stocking the tank. I want a non-aggressive community tank and was thinking of the following added in this order separated by a week or two.

3 Platies (1 male, two females)
3 Cherry Barbs (1 male, two females)
6 Cardinal Tetras
1 Dwarf Gourami
4 Corydoras

Thoughts are greatly appreciated!

Geomancer 02-08-2012 12:05 PM


Do you know your water parameters, particularly the pH, GH (Hardness), and KH (Alkalinity)?

If you don't some pet stores will test it for free (I know Petsmart does). You can also try looking at your water department's website (or call them). I wouldn't buy a kit just for GH and KH as you only need to do it once.

I ask because you have Platies which are live bearers, and they need hard & basic water. The others are soft & acidic fish.

The Cherry Barb is a schooling fish, which means you need at least 6 of them.

The blue bar at the top of the pages here has a link for Tropical Fish Profiles. I would go there and look up each one, there is lots of valuable information for each of the fish you have selected.

Geomancer 02-08-2012 12:09 PM

Also I forgot to mention, with live bearers ... mixing male and female means you will have fry. Lots and lots of fry. They are worse than mice!

If you don't want that, you can just let nature take its course (they will be fish food for everyone else), but nature being nature an occasional fry will live (for example they'll get sucked up into the filter and surprisingly live in there).

Even if you get all female, there is a (very high) chance they will be pregnant from the store as they can store sperm for a remarkably long time.

Most people recommend getting all males if you can =) That is of course assuming you have suitably hard water for them.

thekoimaiden 02-08-2012 04:13 PM

Welcome to the hobby and the forum!

I'm planning to stock a soft water community tank with some very similar fish. Cardinals and gourami. I would just like to add that corydoras are a schooling fish and will be much more active and playful with more of their own kind. Six is usually the minimum kept together.

My other thought is that some of those fish like different water parameters from other. The dwarf gourami, cardinal tetra, and corydora do best in soft, acidic water while the platies will do best in hard, alkaline water. Once you figure out what your tap water is we can determine which would be best for you.

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