Colorful Fish Compatible With Serpae Tetra And Zebra Danio

Discussion in 'Aquarium Stocking Questions' started by noturbizniss, Jul 19, 2015.

  1. noturbiznissNew MemberMember

    Just got my first 6 fish today. Cycled my 20g tank successfully, went to LFS and we told them we wanted colorful fish like guppies. The dumb rep said that most of the fish can go together, and they would get some new colored guppies in a week or 2, so in the meantime sold us 3 zebra danio and 3 serpae tetras.
    Getting home I did some research and discovered that guppies are a huge no-no with serpae tetra. I was extremely upset, and planned on calling the LFS to bring back the tetras.
    I did some more research and discovered how hyper fertile the guppies are, and given this is only a 20g tank, and I am just starting, I really do not want to deal with the myriad issues and over population, so we decided to go with no guppies.
    My questions are:
    1. What colorful fish (if any) would go well with my danios and tetras?
    2. Is 3 of each enough? The Danios are having a blast near the top of the tank, but I am noticing that 1 of the tetras is chasing around at least one of the others all over. Should I get more tetras? more danios too?
    3. do i need/should I get a bottom feeder like a cory? (will they go well with the tetras?) is it necessary? I like the idea of a fish picking up the extra food that falls, although i'll have to vac anyway to get the waste cleaned.
    Thanks all in advance!!

    Just wanted to add, I have polished gravel substrate from petco (fish are NOT from petco), and have malaysian driftwood and silk plants, no live plants.

    Last edited: Jul 19, 2015
  2. LiterallyHydroWell Known MemberMember

    Is your tank a 20 high, or a 20 long?

    If you have a 20 long, you could rehome the serpae tetras and up the school of the zebra danios to six or more. They are a schooling fish and will need the extra numbers.

    You don't need a bottom feeder at all. Even though they eat leftover fish food, they still add to the bio-load of the tank and don't "clean" the tank as far as water parameters go. However, if you like corydoras, you could do a school of six smaller varieties of cory in the tank.. Particularly if it's a 20 long.

    The issue however, is that corydoras much prefer to have a sandbed, rather than a gravel bed. The issue is their barbels can get damaged from the gravel and it would make the corydoras more prone to infection and makes it harder for them to find food (So I've heard, don't have any source to back that up)

    As far as the breeding behavior of guppies, that's partially why we tend to get all male tanks for our guppies. They also are usually more colorful anyway.

  3. noturbiznissNew MemberMember

    It's 20 long (24x12x16high). When you say rehome, if you mean put them in another tank, i don't have another one. I'm not sure I would want to divide the tank, It's my first one, and I want to keep it simple.
    I'd love to get male guppies, but i don't know how to tell the difference, and I am not sure my LFS would reliably be able to tell either. GIven that, do I have any choices? If I need 5 each of the danios and tetras, do I even have more room for others?
    Just wondering - the danios are hanging out right at the top of the tank. Is this normal?

  4. LiterallyHydroWell Known MemberMember

    Define hanging out at the top of the tank. If they are constantly darting around the tank near the water's surface, that's normal behavior for danios. If they are sitting in one place not moving much, that would mean that you have low oxygen in the tank and you need more surface agitation. Surface agitation is achieved with anything from a powerhead to bubblers to agitate the surface.

    And by rehoming, I just mean finding a new home for the tetras. Whether that's giving them to the pet store or to someone else who can provide a good home for them.

    Also, there are a few ways to sex guppies.

    If the fish is colorful, that suggests it's a male. Bland colors suggest females.
    If the fish is "large" (Over an inch long) with a heavy-set body it's a female. Males tend to be smaller and more slender.
    If the anal fin is long and pointed, the guppy is male. Females have more triangular, fanned out anal fins.
    If there's a dark spot just above the anal fin, it's definitely a female, and pregnant.
  5. noturbiznissNew MemberMember

    Definitely darting around like there's no tomorrow. I have the filter going and a bubble thingy, so i know the oxygen is good.
    Let's say I can't rehome the tetras - is there another pretty option we have?
    also - are 3 and 3 ok for the tetras and danios? I'm seeing most places saying at least 5...
    Thanks for yout quick replies!
  6. Dom90Fishlore VIPMember

    Your tank is actually a 20 High, 20 Long would have a length of 30"...


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    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 20, 2015
  7. noturbiznissNew MemberMember

    Go figure. I thought the high would be like half the width and twice the height.
  8. Bijou88Well Known MemberMember

    You could do a few male platies too, they come in lots of different colors. They're sexed like guppies, by the anal fin.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G900A using Fish Lore Aquarium Fish Forum mobile app
  9. noturbiznissNew MemberMember

    Are they compatible with the serpaes? If i have male and female they'll overbreed like guppies?
  10. Bijou88Well Known MemberMember

    I think they should be compatible as long as you fill out the tetra and danio schools. Yes, with males and females both you'll be overrun with babies, probably best to stick with males if you don't have another tank for offspring. :)

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G900A using Fish Lore Aquarium Fish Forum mobile app
  11. noturbiznissNew MemberMember

    Update, just spoke to Lfs and they said I can bring g the tetras back. They did say that in their experience the guppies and serpae get along cuz the guppies are fast and the serpae go after bigger fish,bu Tim still nervous.
    Maybe I'll get some copies instead if the serpae.
    Will the Danios be ok with guppies or the like or should I bring those back as well?
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2015
  12. Tiny goatfishWell Known MemberMember

    I think danios should be fine with guppies IF you have enough danios
  13. noturbiznissNew MemberMember

    How many is enough? 5?
  14. Dom90Fishlore VIPMember

    6 or more, the more the merrier.

    Sent from my iPhone using Fish Lore Aquarium Fish Forum
  15. AquaticBrandonWell Known MemberMember

    For a good school , 6+ is recommend

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  16. noturbiznissNew MemberMember

    So if I get 6 Danios I can get 5-6 guppies as well?
  17. Dom90Fishlore VIPMember

    Again, this depends on your current stock and bioload. Big difference between a 20 High and 20 Long.

    Sent from my iPhone using Fish Lore Aquarium Fish Forum
  18. noturbiznissNew MemberMember

    If that's all I had, with no live plants. I'll check aqadvisor.
    I've heard that cories are OK polished gravel like from pet shops. Is this true?
  19. AquaticBrandonWell Known MemberMember

    That site is kinda inaccurate. Cories are best kept with sand, although gravel is okay with them as long as it's not sharp. But they prefer sand

    Sent from my iPhone using Fish Lore Aquarium Fish Forum

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