55 gal stocking. Want opinions.

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Jack B.

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I have a 55 gallon I’m gonna set up in the coming months and I plan on planting it up pretty and had an idea for stocking and wanted some input/ideas for what I should do. It will be cycled before fish are put in.

my idea right now is:

Pearl gourami pair
8 blue king tetras
8 red phantom tetras
8 lemon tetras
8 x-ray tetras
Some hill stream loaches (don’t know how many I would like to do)

any input is good input, thanks in advance!
 

mattgirl

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If it were me, instead of 4 shoals of 8 each I would choose 2 shoals and up the numbers of those 2. You will see a more natural behavior with more of the same species of fish.
 

Morpheus1967

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One of the first things I do now when looking at "will these fish work together" is temperature requirements. If one fish tolerates temps of 72-78 and another fish tolerates temps of 78-84, are they compatible? Technically, sure if you set your temp for 78 degrees. But that is the absolute high for one and the absolute low for the other. Neither fish "thrives" in this extreme example. So maybe start there and see what you come up with?
 
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Jack B.

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Alright, I’m terms of the temperature the only one that would be iffy would be red phantoms which I’m ok with not using. Then also probably the loaches as the hill streams like cooler water so maybe not them too.

Perhaps I do the gourami pair then a shoal of the blue kings and then maybe like blood fins? I want some different colors which initially is why I had four different color tetras.
 

mattgirl

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Jack B. said:
Alright, I’m terms of the temperature the only one that would be iffy would be red phantoms which I’m ok with not using. Then also probably the loaches as the hill streams like cooler water so maybe not them too.

Perhaps I do the gourami pair then a shoal of the blue kings and then maybe like blood fins? I want some different colors which initially is why I had four different color tetras.
I understand your thoughts on the different colors. I do think you will see more natural behavior by having 2 species instead of 4 though.

You may also want to do a lot of research on Gourami's. Some of them are very territorial and will fight to death. Others are more forgiving.
 
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Jack B.

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Yeah I get that and appreciate the input I hadn’t thought about the behavior of four shoals.
As far as the gourami’s from what research I’ve done pearls are consistently peaceful and still get a decent size.
 

mattgirl

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Jack B. said:
Yeah I get that and appreciate the input I hadn’t thought about the behavior of four shoals.
As far as the gourami’s from what research I’ve done pearls are consistently peaceful and still get a decent size.
I have a feeling your tank is going to be beautiful. I am looking forward to seeing pictures once you get it set up :)
 
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Jack B.

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Ile do my best to remember posting some when it does get set up!
 

jinjerJOSH22

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Jack B. said:
Ile do my best to remember posting some when it does get set up!
Just as a heads up Pearls can be quite aggressive, not so much with other fish but with each other. It's not usually too bad and in a 55 there'll be room to get away from each other. As long as there are some tall visual breaks you should be fine.
 
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Jack B.

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There will be, I work at a mom and pop pet store so I’m hoping to be able to get a pretty large amount of jungle Val or somthing similar for a decent price so when it grows they have somewhere to go and also Im thinking about a couple floating plants that have longer roots to aid in that as well. Thanks for all the input!
 

toeknee

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If you prefer to do many smaller schools it's your tank and you can most definitely do the mixture of tetras you've mentioned however I would limit it to 3 of those four species mentioned for 24 total Tetras.

I used to keep groups of small schools instead of one large group. Now I much prefer a large group of one species....they way they behave and interact with each other changes drastically when you have one large school. I currently have 23 Harlequin Rasboras in my 55 and when they're all tightly schooling it's mesmerizing to watch. You don't really get that action with small schools.....alright enough of my 2 cents on that matter

You can do a pair of Pearls for sure.

I would avoid Hillstream Loaches. They like cooler waters and need a tank with a very fast/heavy water flow since they come from fast flowing streams.

In place of Hillstream Loaches you could either do a group of 10-20 Kuhlie Loaches, or 10-20 Cory Cats. (or 10 of each)...As with tetras, corys and kuhlie loaches do better and act more naturally in larger groups so I personally would do one large group of one or the other.

You're looking at roughly 50 fish all together with that plan. Which sounds like a lot and will only work if your tank is heavily filtered and planted.

I have 49 small-medium size fish in my over filtered and heavily planted 55 with no issue. (20 Harlequin Rasboras, 20 Peppered Corys, 7 Keyhole Cichlids, 1 Bolivian Ram and 1 Rio-Negro Pleco)
 

bizaliz3

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I agree. I highly recommend 2 schools of 16 rather than 4 schools of 8. The behavior is sooooo worth it. It's better to look at (in my opinion) and much better for the fish.

I also agree that the hillstream loaches should not be included. They have very specific care requirements.
 
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Jack B.

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thanks! My plan is to defiantly over filter and heavily plant. Then probably go with the gourami pair then around 18 blue king tetras then probably 18 or so blood fin tetras and some Khulis. And go from there, thanks again for the input.
 

12Cin12

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mattgirl said:
I understand your thoughts on the different colors. I do think you will see more natural behavior by having 2 species instead of 4 though.

You may also want to do a lot of research on Gourami's. Some of them are very territorial and will fight to death. Others are more forgiving.
Agreed about the pearl Gouramis! I returned my pair! I love to stump for Honey Gouramis. They are sweet and engaging, though they are smaller than the pearls and might get lost in the 55.
 

toeknee

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If you don't go the Pearl Gourami route I'm pretty biased towards Keyhole Cichlids. They get about the same size as Pearl's. Maybe a bit smaller. Perfect medium sized fish for a 55 IMO. Very peaceful, fun to watch, and do well in small groups since they're social charachters. You could do 5 in your tank.
 
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Jack B.

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Yeah i noticed your had some and I thought they were interesting, do they stick lower in the water column?

if so then I could start looking into hatchet fish and just do one shoal of tetras and a group of them too with some keyholes
 

toeknee

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Mine roam all over the tank. When they're in "relax" mode they tend to be on the bottom half of the tank among the plants. When they're in a more active and feisty mood they zip all over the top half of the tank.

Be aware however that if you wind up with a breeding pair like I have the breeding pair can get a little aggressive during spawning time. Mine have spawned a handful of times, during that time they just chase the other Keyholes out of their spawning site for a few days then everything goes back to normal. They never bother other fish or cause any harm to the other Keyholes.

A big group of hatchets and tetras with Keyholes would be very awesome. You could still add some kuhlies or cory cats if you wanted. Maybe a bushy nose pleco too down the road.
 
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Jack B.

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Awesome! I may have found my plan! And as far as a pleco goes I would probably end up with a emperor pleco I love the look of them.

how many keyhole cichlids would you recommend?
 
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