A Couple Questions... New Tank

Discussion in 'Freshwater Beginners' started by A.D.D., Jul 21, 2017.

  1. A.D.D.Valued MemberMember

    Hello all.

    I've been given this 20H aquarium from my Mother in law. I'll add the pics later tonight when I get home, and water test stats later this weekend. The API kit is on its way from Amazon right now.

    Tank List:
    20 H
    Aqua Clear 30 - Added second sponge filter, removed Carbon pack.
    Regular Natural look Gravel
    LED Lighting

    Adding soon:
    Wood piece when i can find one
    Rock somewhere

    Last weekend I added the gravel and water, started the filter up, and have been just letting that run until I can make it to the store to get some ammonia and get that process started. I'll go through that process until I can safely add some fish and whatnot. I did have a few questions, and was hoping I could get your advice, opinions, and knowledge. I do appreciate any info I can get on this, as it has been several years since I’ve had an aquarium. Previous experience was a 55 gallon with Jack Dempsey (x2), Convicts x2, a Red Devil, plus a Pleco. Not the best setup there, but it worked really well for about 6 years until I left home and gave it to my sister to care for (went into the Marines). The last time I saw them (at around the 8 year mark) they were all about 4” – 6” long, and the Pleco was about 8”. They all seemed happy and not stressed, which was nice. But, she moved, they had kids, and sold the fish to their LFS, and the tank to Craigslist. L

    Anyways… I’m looking at possibly adding some plants to this, maybe this weekend. I understand that it’s safe to add them while going through the cycling process, which will help possibly but not definitely. They won’t die, will they?

    The couple questions I have are:

    1. Can I safely add plants, while going through the ammonia cycle process? (i.e., Java Moss, Java Fern, Anubis (not sure of spelling), etc.)

    2. Once the cycle is completed. What are your opinions of this stocking list? AQAdvisor says it's plenty fine. I even added 5 Khuli Loaches to the list and it was more than ok. I'm just not sure I want them.
    a. 5-6 – White Cloud Mountain Minnow
    b. 7 – Chili Raspbora
    c. 6+ Celestial Pearl Danio (possibly Fire Ring Danio if I can find them too)
    d. Want something for algae control, without being a danger to the above list. (shrimp, snails, etc?)

    I’m really looking to stock this with some nice colors, and things that will be joyful for my daughter (5 month old now). Other than water stats, pics, etc. Would you need/want any more info on this before making a knowledgeable answer?

    Thank you all, I appreciate anything you can give.
  2. ChiefBrodyValued MemberMember

    1. Plants will be fine but java anything is going to outgrow the anubias in no time so be prepared. Anubias are low-light, slow growth where java fern absolutely isn't. It might shade your anubias which can protect the anubias from algal growth but tread cautiously.
    2. As for stocking what's the motivation behind the white clouds? I'm a big fan but they like cool moving water. Also it seems redundant to have the cpd's in there as well. Why not pick one and double the size of the school. This is not only better for the fish but also more appealing in a display as the larger school is much more impressive. Conspecifics are more likely to school together as a cohesive unit. If definitely get some inverts. They'll probably hide anyway so why not put em to work in the food chain
  3. Cory & the CatzValued MemberMember

    Stock sounds alright to me, but i've never kept any of those so i cant be all too sure. As far as algae eaters go Nerite snails work great in my 20 gallon but, i still have to clean the tank, no cheating allowed. Other suggestions for things to get for your tank: airstone and air pump, heater(s) i hear having two is good incase one breaks, algae scrubber, gravel vac, and a reliable thermometer.

  4. OP

    A.D.D.Valued MemberMember

    Thanks for the info on the java vs. anubias. I don't think I accounted for the overgrow part... may just have to trim a bunch more often, right?
    I liked the WCMM because of the little white and red, thought they would look good together with the others... may have to re-investigate that taking in account the temp preferences.. I do like the idea of a larger happier schooling. Maybe drop the rasps, add more of the Danios. Would the Fire Ring and CPD school together though? The seem really similar in a lot of ways.

    Is it more work or different to keep shrimp in the tank, vs snails? Are Shrimp difficult at all? never had them, but love the way they look. Saw some online that were all sorts of different colors. I'd love to have a few of them in there.
    Maybe: 15x - CPD/Fire Ring and 3-4 Shrimp, couple snails?

    Was looking at Nerite snails last night as well. I do want something to help clean glass and gravel. Are they okay with no sand substrate? I can't remember.
    I've got the air pump/stone, Need a good heater still (another amazon purchase just can't find one yet), Have a scrubber, didn't think to add that.

    :) Went to AQAdvisor real quick.

    Put in:
    15x CPD
    3x Nerite Snails

    Filter Cap - 261%
    Water change - 11%/wk
    Stocking Level - 52%

    Not complaining about that. That's pretty cool. But wouldn't that few of fish, lessen the bio-load to the plants? Thus, causing other issues?
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 21, 2017
  5. Cheesearmada

    CheesearmadaValued MemberMember

    The only issue with snails is they might over populate your tank and become a nuisance. I would go with some Cory Catfish or more shrimp. Shrimp produce a lower bioload and don't multiply like nuts.
  6. OP

    A.D.D.Valued MemberMember

    I don't think (from what i've read) the Corys like the gravel i'm using. it's hard on their barbs. I like shrimp though. Would like some suggestions for ones that could live in cooler water. 70-75 deg f. It looks like the fish i'm looking at prefer cooler temps.
    Snails overpopulating aren't much concern. I can pop them out if need be. Maybe add the loaches later to help that issue?
    Can you add shrimp with the plants, before the cycle is completed? Does that count as a "Fish-in cycle"?
  7. jmaldo

    jmaldoWell Known MemberMember

    Just some things I should have known but was to impatient to get things going. So do your research and your starting off good by asking questions. Depending on your area. A heater would be top of the list along with a thermometer. I see you have a test kit on the way (definitely need). Otherwise, plants will be fine. But just start off with any low light plants and see how it goes... If trying rooted plants you will need root tabs. I tied some Java Moss to a piece of slat and some Java Fern to a piece of driftwood. Let tank cycle. Go slow with adding any cleaning crew (snails, shrimp) you have nothing to clean.. I made the mistake with shrimp and lost most due to the fact they had no food in my newly cycled tank. (recommendations were for an established tank - biofilm, algae, detritus, etc. for shrimp, I guess I missed that) Lessen learned.
  8. OP

    A.D.D.Valued MemberMember

    Great info! Thank you.
    I won't add animals yet. I do want to find some nice plants. I really want a nice piece of driftwood, but can't find the right piece, OR it's insanely expensive.. Seriously, its something someone found while walking around.
    Heater is on the list. I'll find one this week/weekend. Thermometer is cheap, i'll add that to the cart lol.

    Fluval M-100 is coming in today. Amazon same day for $5 plus it was still cheaper than the big box store here. FTW! and thermometer...
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 21, 2017
  9. Cheesearmada

    CheesearmadaValued MemberMember

    Ok so you think you can just "pop" the snails out when they over populate? Just from my experience snails can multiply into the hundreds. I'm not trying to discourage you from putting snails into the aquarium but just a word of warning.
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2017
  10. BuddyD

    BuddyDWell Known MemberMember

    Also you may consider 6 Gold White Cloud Mountain Minnows and 6 ottos for algae control. Until you get enough algae they like blanched veggies.
  11. OP

    A.D.D.Valued MemberMember

    lol .I don't know why i said that Cheesearmada. I had a snail issue in my 55 back in the day. Fortunately I caught it quick, and that's how I ended up with the Red Devil. He got his fill on those for sure. It was fun watching him eat them.


    I've ordered a couple plants online earlier today, then something came up thats going to cost some $.

    Quick question. Since i'm not all that far into the cycling of the tank anyways, would it be okay to plant those plants, and just let it be like that for a while? Then in a few weeks start the nitrocycle again? I have Flourish and gravel fert coming for the plants, so i think that will be okay like that, right?
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 21, 2017
  12. OP

    A.D.D.Valued MemberMember

    New plants

    Attached Files:

  13. vikingkirken

    vikingkirkenWell Known MemberMember

    Plants will do fine while you cycle the tank. They will thrive on the ammonia, as long as it isn't super-high.

    Nerites can't reproduce in freshwater, so there's no risk of them overrunning your tank.

    I'd consider something like:

    1-2 honey gourami
    12-15 CPDs
    3 nerite snails
    amano and/or red cherry shrimp

    It's possible the gourami might eat some cherry shrimp, but if you provide some decent plant cover, they should be able to sustain a healthy population.

    If you just want tiny fish and no centerpiece, I think you'd be fine with two schools. CPDs, chili rasboras, fire ring danios, green neon tetras, blue-eyed rainbows, threadfin rainbows are all good options. If you really like white cloud mountain minnows, the fire ring danios might go well with them, or neon tetras... those will all do well in cooler temps.

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