20 Gallon Hexagon Tank - What to stock?

Leeman75

I'm working on my 20 Gallon Hexagon tank project and as I'm taking a break from building the stand, my mind drifts towards stocking. I'm a planner, so some of the fun of this project is planning all the details. I've already figured out the filters and heater and am beginning to look for driftwood and decor. In order to get very far with that, I need to make the decision on ultimate stocking.

It's a tall tank, so I'm thinking that I can get at least 2 layers of fish. I'd love to have 3, but it's a 20, so I'm thinking that 2 will have to do. Here are the options that I'm considering:

Bottom Showcase:
Apistos
Kribs
Rams - These are my third choice because I already have them in another tank. If I did go with them, I'd do it right and invest in showstoppers from Coralbandit

Bottom Maintenance:
Pygmi Corys
Amanos?
Yoyo Loaches

Top Swimmers:
Chili Red Rasboras
Green Neon Tetras
Endlers

Thoughts?
 

Crimson_687

For top level, do the chilis or the tetras. Endlers are going to multiply, or if you do male-only they will bully each other.

I think Amanos are great and they’ll add an interesting aspect to the tank. Remember to drip acclimate tho and make sure they have the minerals, especially calcium, they need to shed as well as hiding spots to do so safely. They’re also quite social so I would recommend 3-5. They have a very low bioload, too.
 
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toeknee

Sounds like you're on the right track.

Out of your current selection I would go with Appistos for your showcase fish.

I'd stay away from Yoyo's they have the potential to get up to 5 inches which would be too big for a 20 Hex. I've read from various sources adult Yoyos should be in a 40 gallon. This is on species I've never had personally though.

From what I can see an average 20 gallon hex has a footprint just a little bit larger than a 10 gallon, which is a larger factor in choosing stock than just looking at how many gallons you have. So I would stay away from Pygmy cories. I've had them before in a 20 long which has more swimming space than a hex, they're very active swimmers and In my opinion they need the same requirements as normal size cory cats. (not saying you definitely can't do Pygmy though, just maybe not ideal) I would go with a shrimp species, Amanos, or maybe a Bamboo Shrimp. A small group of Ottocinclus could be an option as well, plus they're one of the best algae eating fish out there.

Lastly I would go with the Chili Rasboras for your top swimmers. They're the perfect size for your tank, and a very vibrant good looking fish for their size. You could do a nice school of 10-13.
 
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Crimson_687

Sounds like you're on the right track.

Out of your current selection I would go with Appistos for your showcase fish.

I'd stay away from Yoyo's they have the potential to get up to 5 inches which would be too big for a 20 Hex. I've read from various sources adult Yoyos should be in a 40 gallon. This is on species I've never had personally though.

From what I can see an average 20 gallon hex has a footprint just a little bit larger than a 10 gallon, which is a larger factor in choosing stock than just looking at how many gallons you have. So I would stay away from Pygmy cories. I've had them before in a 20 long which has more swimming space than a hex, they're very active swimmers and In my opinion they need the same requirements as normal size cory cats. (not saying you definitely can't do Pygmy though, just maybe not ideal) I would go with a shrimp species, Amanos, Cherry Shrimp, or maybe a couple Bamboo Shrimp. A small group of Ottocinclus could be an option as well, plus they're one of the best algae eating fish out there.

Lastly I would go with the Chili Rasboras for your top swimmers. They're the perfect size for your tank, and a very vibrant good looking fish for their size. You could do a nice school of 10-13.
IMO, Amanos would be better in a community tank. Cherry shrimp get stressed by fish and won’t display natural behavior. Amanos are larger, more active, and will still show natural behavior in a fish community. Amanos, under stable conditions, can also live a very long time. Although some say they live 2-3 years, I’ve had mine for longer than that and some have had them for 8+ years
 
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SnookusFish

I would aslo say a pair of apistos is your best option. No cherry shrimp because they will just be eaten. Amanos will work well. What apisto are you looking at? I would go for a smaller species.
 
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Leeman75

Thank you to everyone for replying! Honestly, the advice given confirms some of my original thoughts. Apistos, Chilis, and Amanos. I had a rough go the first time with Amanos that I purchased online, but there were some cards stacked against me with those (big tank, bigger fish), so I will give it a go again maybe try the local route.

I think the Chilis have been my top choice for the top all along, so glad to hear all the Chili love!!

As for Apistos, they have been my top choice too. I'm kind of partial to the Borellii, though the Cockatoo looks cool too. Any suggestions from experienced Apisto keepers?
 
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