Cycled tank, schooling fish advice!


Hello hello everyone!! My tank is finally cycled!!! YAY!! I actually discovered I was being a little silly. I was testing the water for nitrates and it kept turning bright purple....then I realized I have to wait 2-5 minutes before reading the color change and finally figured out that my nitrites were ok. Soooo...I have 2 dwarf cories and 4 kuhlI loaches (I only wanted to get 3 but an extra one ended up slipping into the bag). My tank is 60cmx30cmx30cm. I was wondering, since the fish I have now are mostly bottom dwellers, if I could get some schooling fish. Any advice on what kind/how many according to my bio load.

ps-the fish I have now are still teeny tiny, once they grow a little I will get a bigger tank....does that make a difference for the bioload (if I'm not measuring by adult size)?


Congrats! Since your tank is only about 13 gallons, you don't really have a whole lot of room left for a lot more fish. Your corys would probably be happier with at least 1 more cory in your tank, and what I probably would suggest would be a betta right now until you can get a bigger tank. When picking fish for a new tank, always plan your tank on the size of the fish once it's full grown. Plans to get a bigger tank later on don't always work our as planned, and you end up with an overstocked tank and sick fish. I know your tank might look a little bare to you, but it's better for the fish. And realize what a great job you have done so far - smaller tanks are harder to maintain than larger tanks because you have less volume to work with. If you have an ammonia spike in a 10 gallon tank, it becomes toxic much quicker than a 50 gal. tank, so pat yourself on the back for a job well done!


Thanks for the encouragement Gunnie! I live in a student flat - 12mx12m - so a small tank for a small space.

Yeah, I know. I'm getting a little too excited about the new tank. If I don't control myself I'd put a whole pond in there...
I was staring at the tank earlier today and it would even LOOK crowded with more fish (especially at night when the loaches come out to play). I decided I'm going to get another cory (they're so cute! if they're not eating they play in the jet of the filter) and think about a beta. They don't really sell them here, but my fish store has gouramies. Any opinions on those?
Thanks for the advice, it's really been a help especially since I'm in a foreign country where I have no idea where to even begin looking for fish info. It took me weeks to find an actual aquarium fish store.

Question about feeding: I know I'm supposed to feed twice a day as much as the fish can eat in a few minutes. Buuut, none of the fish I have now come to the surface. And the fish don't exactly chase down the food that drops down to the bottom. So how do I determine how much food to give? The cories are really tiny, I'm worried they might not be getting enough food - but I don't want to pollute the tank.

Here are some pictures... (I posted pictures a few weeks ago of the tank during cycling - those plants ..uhm.. didn't make it :-\ ) The tank now - you can see two fuzzy blobs (the camera's auto focus doesn't work well with glass) which are the cories. A loach or two hanging out in the rock cave.


Since you don't have any fish that normally swim in the mid or top levels, I would definitely get some veggie wafers and some sort of sinking sticks like earthworm sticks, plankton sticks, or carnivore pellets. All this stuff sinks to the bottom, and the more variety you offer, the healthier your fish will be. You could use the veggie wafers as your staple food and add to that. Also, veggie wafers differ in ingredients between brands, so watch that also. If you can get the Omega One veggie rounds, they are the best in my opinion. Also try finding some freeze dried tubifex worm squares (avoid the Wardley brand if you can). You take these squares and press them against the glass. Just press one near the bottom of your tank and watch at least the cory cats go nuts, but don't feed these more than twice a week. Save your flakes for your fish that will go to the top of the water for food. I'm not sure about the loaches, but a dwarf gourami would probably be fine for your tank. A golden, 3 spot, or opaline gourami would probably get too big for your tank but you could try it. They can be aggressive, so just watch it close for a few days if you put one in the tank.


Gunnie, would cories and Kuhlis eat algae wafers?? I didn't think either were big algae fans. I know cories are supposed to like shrimp pellets.
I might as well add a question here: Do those Omega One veggie rounds disintigrate quickly? The wafers I tried using fell apart really fast, and then my Otos didn't get any before the other fish ate it.

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