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Hello all,

I made what was a possibly poor decision in trusting our local fish store worker - and I figured I'd poll the internet for advice.

I own a pair of african clawed frogs, but that is the limit of my knowledge of aquariums. I decided to set up a tiger barb tank at work, and the worker at my LFS said that cycling with tiger barbs was perfectly fine - I'd originally intended to go to the LFS and ask about cycling advice. She said just to leave the tank with the barbs for a month and bring a water sample to the store at that time to test. I do have a strip kit (that does nitrates, nitrites, pH, kH, and hardness), as well as a nitrate-only kit, if need be.

So I picked up a trio of tiger barbs when they got them in (the worker said more than 3 and I'd worry about too much bio load). The tank is a 20 gallon tall, hovering around 78degF, and has a filter. The tank has been set up for about two weeks, but without any external bacteria added. Water was treated with Prime.

I purchased the tiger barbs on Saturday and added them in, and it's pretty obvious that one of them is dominant - he chases the other two (they look like females) all over the tank and they've taken to hiding behind the filter, noses pointed down, while the bright orange male roams the tank and takes the lion's share of the food when I feed. I've read that more tiger barbs can help, but I'm worried about adding more when the tank isn't cycled. Today is Monday (two days post-fish)

We have some plastic plants that we hadn't planned on adding - would more hiding places help the two females? Or would the best option to be trying a tank divider until we can get a larger school? I'm worried about the two submissive fish.


tl;dr: Cycling with tiger barbs, one dominant male controlling the tank
 
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