Almost Ready For Fish. How Heavily Do I Stock?

Discussion in 'Aquarium Stocking Questions' started by camste, Apr 16, 2018.

  1. camsteValued MemberMember

    I've got a new tank which I'm cycling, and I see I'm getting close to the end. I dose to 2ppm of ammonia every night, and it's gone the next day. The nitrite test is now after a few days starting to go back as well :) I added some rocks, plants and a little bit of gravel from my old tank, so it was relatively quick. It's a 300 liter tank (about 80 g), and the filter processes 1200 liters an hour according to the manufacturer.

    Now I'm wondering how much to stock to begin with. I don't want to starve my cultivated bacteria, but at the same time I don't want a spike which can torture and kill everything. I've never had a tank of this size before. I'd like to add a school of head and tail light tetras, or if they don't have them I'll add some cardinals. Then a bristlenose pleco to deal with the algae. And a couple of angelfish, but that's further down the line when things have stabilized some more is what I'm thinking. Will a school of tetras be enough to keep things going? And how big would it in that case have to be? Perhaps I could get two schools of different tetras? I plan to add two different groups of schooling fish to the tank. Should I get the pleco right away? I found a guy who breeds them, so he has some young ones to sell. But it might then be a little bit too fragile for a new tank?
  2. Iverg1Well Known MemberMember

    Base it off of one gallon of water per inch of full grown  .


    But keep in mind that most fish you see at lfs are teens see what the adult length is
  3. dwarfpufferloverWell Known MemberMember

    Adding schooling fish can be tricky, you don’t want to add to many to throw your cycle and you don’t want to few so they are scared.

    I limit myself to adding 4-5 max at a time to limit issues.
  4. camsteValued MemberMember

    But in an 80 gallon tank? Wouldn't adding just 5 tetras mean that most of the filter bacteria that's built up would starve and die? When I started my 15 gallon I added just a few tetras to begin with, but this new tank has a filter that's a lot bigger. I don't want to fully stock right away, but I don't want all the bacteria to die either. I've done a fishless cycle, so there are no fish to begin with. I started with 4ppm ammonia, and after nitrites appeared I started dosing to 2 whenever the ammonia's gone. The nitrite was all the way down to .25 yesterday evening and the nitrate is getting quite high, so it's close to done.

    The bristlenose pleco babies the guy is selling are about 2 inches now. So they aren't huge, and shouldn't have too much of a bioload yet I guess, so that they would overwhelm the filter right away. I'm planning to get 2. I'd like to get them quite early because there is quite a bit of algae growing (and they are cuties :) ), so if not now in batch 1 then maybe in batch 2. Will they survive a new tank as their home while they are young? And then maybe add a group of 6 tetras at the same time, to keep things going? Or should I just wait with the plecos and add a bigger school of tetras?

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