Help Me Set Up My Future Tank!

midna

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hi guys! i'm planning on starting up a new tank later this summer. this will be my biggest tank yet (upgrading from a 5.5 gallon to a 20 gallon long), so i have some questions! i've read a lot of stuff on this site + others, but i'd like some advice and suggestions from the pros before i go off and try to do my own thing.

here's what i have so far:

tank
aqueon 20 gallon long rectangular glass aquarium (30.3 x 12.5 x 12.8)

stocking
4 to 6 african dwarf frogs (the main reason for starting this tank)
a few snails (nerite and/or mystery?)
a few cherry shrimp (red or yellow)
1 amano shrimp

EDIT: probably going to skip the fish for now!
fish (if any):
male betta fish (unless you can convince me otherwise -- i know they can be aggressive, and i normally wouldn't risk it, but this site has really made me want another betta lol)
OR
2 to 3 (maybe more?) male guppies (will possibly get a female later for feeder fry, yum yum)
OR
6 to 10 long finned zebra or gold danios (tank will be a steady 78 degrees fahrenheit; is this too hot for these guys?)
OR
6 to 10 neon tetras (too hot?)
OR
other suggestions (i like pretty fish and i don't want the tank to be overstocked)


lighting + lid/hoods
i really don’t want to break the bank on lighting or a hood: frogs seem to prefer low light. i want the best inexpensive deal possible. keep in mind that the tank will have plants, but i want low-light beginner plants, and hopefully a little top-cover floating plants.
  • glass lid such as ($38) plus a hooded lighting bulb or led strip (??? i'm very confused about lighting, help)
  • deluxe hood, such as - comes with 24” t8 bulb ($45)
plants
will be a light-to-medium planted tank, prefer low-light beginner plants needing little to no ferts (no co2 injections). here are some plants i've come up with, suggestions very welcome!

hornwort
java moss
java ferns
marimo moss balls
crypts
pennywort
hygrophila
anubias?
amazon sword? (these look lovely but i think they need more light..?)
easy floating plants - dwarf water lettuce, frogbit, duckweed (i haven't been able to find any of these in stores and i heard they die if you order them online? )

filtration
sponge filter (1 or 2?) with airstone connected to air pump
do i need a hob as well??? adfs don't like a lot of current, but i don't want any biofilm on the surface of the tank
will have seachem matrix bio media

substrate
seachem flourite black

chemicals etc.
seachem prime
seachem pristine
seachem stressguard
api master test kit
tetra safe start+ for cycling
dr. tim’s ammonia for cycling


thank you!!!
 

emerald6

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I would just keep your current stocking at the moment, maybe with more shrimps added to the mix once you've established your previous animals. Also, since you already have a 5 gallon tank setup, I would transfer the media of that tank into your new tank.
 
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midna

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i had to nuke the tank because of the bacteria my frogs were sick with in the 5.5 gal. :/ no bb for me. everything has been bleached or thrown out.

thank you! so no fish then?
 

wrs2

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If I had a 20g long and wanted to get bettas I would just do a sorority. BUT you need it heavily planted with plenty of hiding spots. AND you need to closely monitor the tank and have extra tanks to put the girls in in case something goes wrong.

But I wouldn't keep them with all of those frogs tbh. I think one male betta should be okay as long as he isn't too aggressive. Of course this is only once the tank is all cycled.
 
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midna

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yeah, i'm not really interested in female bettas. i like 'em big and beautiful.

of course! i'm doing a fishless cycle, so there won't be anything living in there.
 

Hunter1

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Ask here, or google if male bettas are compatible with adf.

But the shrimp may be a problem with the betta too.

I have a 20L with a male betta, 6 sterbia corys, 1 Mystery snail and I think 1 nerite snail now.

Fairly heavily planted.

The sterbias hide more than I like, and way more than my peppers or Pygmys in other tanks. But everything coexists well together.

If you’re a big adf fan, I recommend the frogs, shrimp, snails and leave the fish for another tank, someday.
 
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midna

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i've researched that a lot, and i heard it's a hit or miss. some do well with each other, others don't. i'd love to just get an extra 10 gallon for a betta only, but that would cost more money lol. plus i have nowhere to put it. maybe someday, though!

all right, so i'll probably nix the fish for now. does anyone have any advice on the lighting, plants and filtration? those are the things i'm the most confused about.
 
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