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just a few questions from a newb

2091 Views 20 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  jaysee
So I am new to the world of aquariums and am about to start my first one. I picked up an aqueon 29 gallon deluxe kit. It came with a tank (roughly 30" wide by 19" tall by 13"deep), heater, light shroud w/ plant friendly bulb, aqueon quietflow 30 filtration, and a few other miscellaneous things. I already have some caribsea super naturals substrate (will this be good enough for plants?) that I am waiting to put in. All I am waiting on to get the cycle going is a few plants, some driftwood, and ammonia, but I cant seem to find any ammonia.

Anyway on to my questions. I am trying to stick to a south american theme with the fish and overall look of the tank and I have a pretty solid plan for what I am going to put in it. So far its looking like:
1 raphael cat
4 peppered cory cats
6-8 neon tetras

I am looking for a good suggestion for one more south american fish to put in there. Maybe one that hangs around in the mid level of the tank since the tetras will be up top and the cats on the bottom. I was leaning towards an angelfish or maybe some guppies, but I wasnt sure. Also do you guys think the bottom will be too crowded with so many catfish in there? Thanks in advance guys
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Which sand is it? I've used a few of them, and as long as its not moonlight sand, I don't think you have anything to worry about. Moonlight sand is just ridiculously fine - like beach sand. Not practical for many aquarium applications.

Neons will occupy the lower half of the tank. I would ultimately have more than 4 Corys, but 4 is a good start.

Black neons are good schoolers and will stay in the top half of the tank. Other choice for SA fish or the upper region of the tank would be hatchets. At least I think they are SA. I don't really know much about them.
its just brownish sand that they call super natural. so its not the moonlight. i had considered hatchets as well. im going to my local store tomorrow to see what they keep in stock and if they can do special ordering. that might make the difference
On the bag somewhere it will say what it is. Sunset gold is my guess. That was my favorite sand.

Yes, you can only by fish that are available to you :)
does anybody have much luck with ordering fish online from sites such as they have a wide variety of fish available
i loved my catfish,just rarely saw him :-(, by the time he was coming out
i went to bed.
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I order from
The sand is fine for plants no worries there. The bulb you know what it is? I know you said it was a plant bulb but some of those are not the best for them. I have that same tank which is planted. I have one 24" T8 light strip on it. Might be similar to what you have with the kit. In that strip you need a bulb that has some intensity to reach the bottom of the tank. I use to use just a daylight bulb from GE but my plants were struggling with it. So now I have a Zoo Med ultra sun trichromatic super daylight. It works pretty good but I can still only grow low to a small amount of medium light plants. Another light you can use is a Hagen Life-Glo or Life-Glo 2. Either would work.
I pulled the bulb out and it just says that its an aqueon full spectrum. Doesn't go into details on wattage or kelvin or anything like that
I have heard that those bulbs were ok but not the best. I really believe from my experiences and from what i have read that you will need to get a better bulb for tate tank due to its depth. The two bulbs i mentioned are the best and still cheaper then upgrading a new fixture to get more light into the tank.
I recommend staying away from neons. I don't know what it's like where you are but around here all the neons are terrible quality. There are many similar tetras that should be easy to find but will be much hardier.
I don't recommend the raphael catfish. They can grow up to 8 inches which is very large in a 29 gallon. They will also eat any fish that can fit in their mouth once they are full grown (aka small tetras).

I would stay with just a group of small tetras and a larger group of corydoras on the bottom of the tank.

By the way, what are your water parameters in relation to gh, kh, and ph? I don't think I saw them listed (apologies if they were!)
No parameters yet. The tank is still empty. I'm going to get it filled up and cycling tomorrow
Actually I have one other question. If I were to get a few different types of Cory will they all group together? Or do they need to all be the same kind to become a group?
In my experience, when kept in smaller tanks yes they will group together. However, once I moved them to a larger tank (4 ft) there were 3 distinct groups. To me that means that they prefer to be with their own kind.
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Yeah I think that's probably what it means. There's just so many different kinds of fish I want and no room! Haha. It won't be long, I don't think, before I end up upgrading
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the bigger the tank you can afford and have room for is the best,
as us here fish keepers often end up upgrading.
i heard someone mention the rafael catfish....lovely little guys,
however i would say a mature tank with many hiding places,
also they are nocturnal,as i went to bed,my one was out looking for food.
Well i live with 3 other guys so the common area was kind of out for a tank. I had an old sturdy dresser in the corner of my room that I wasn't using. This tank fit perfectly on top of it. The thing was even if i moved the dresser i wouldn't have had room for anything bigger because there no room for a proper stand to hold it
ahh sorry i thought you mentioned upgrading ?
Our lease is up at the end of may 2014. And 2 of the group will be moving. So I'll most likely be finding a different place to live and I'll use that opportunity to upgrade
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