How Many Fish To Add At A Time To Newly Cycled Tank?

Discussion in 'Aquarium Stocking Questions' started by EmmaBudgie, Apr 10, 2017.

  1. EmmaBudgieValued MemberMember

    Hi all, I believe I am almost finished cycling my tank (with the help from many people on this forum) and will soon be able to add fish to my tank! I have tried to look around the internet to see how many fish to add at a time to a tank and cannot seem to find a definitive answer.

    My tank dimensions are as follows:
    122cm length
    45cm height
    41cm depth
    225 litres

    I hope to stock the tank with the following:
    16 Cardinal Tetras
    10 Bronze Corys
    2 Angelfish

    I would also like to add a Bristlenose Pleco, and would like your opinion on this also. I hope to heat the tank to 26 degrees celsius for the other fish and wanted to know if this would suit a BN also (or if I could/should go down to 25 degrees celsius), as some websites I've read say they go up to 27 degrees celsuis but I am unsure. Also I am unsure if 2 Angelfish is the right amount, if my tank isn't big enough/it's risky I'd just have one but I don't want it to be lonely? Note I am not hoping to breed any of these fish I just want a happy little fish friends.

    From the reading I have done, I think it would be best to add the Tetras, the Corys then the Angelfish (once the Tetras and Corys are all grown up then add juvenile Angels).

    But my question is, how many Tetras at a time? I know 6 is schooling amount, but is this too many in one hit for a newly cycled tank? Also, if I add multiple groups of Tetras at separate times to stock the tank slowly, will the Tetras in my tank still be friendly to new Tetras added?

  2. MaddieTaylahWell Known MemberMember

    Your stocking list sounds good.

    The temperature range for these fish is 24/27 C so I would say 25-26 C so that you aren't at either end of that scale.

    The 2 angelfish will be fine with each other.

    As for how many fish to add at once, it depends on how large of a colony of beneficial bacteria you have, which is dependant on the level of ammonia you dosed during cycling.

    Oh and same species tetras will school with any new tetras without an issue.

  3. EmmaBudgieValued MemberMember

    Hi Maddie, thanks for replying. That's great news about the stocking I really love all of the fish I mentioned.

    Unfortunately when I first started trying to cycle I didn't know I could get Dr Tims Ammonia so I was using fish food flakes and found it hard to measure how much ammonia I was putting in. Once I found Dr Tims ammonia I was dosing 2ppm but my nitrite spike went crazy so I'm currently dosing 1ppm instead and it seems to be converting to nitrite then nitrate a bit better.

    Would say 5-6 Tetras be a good amount to start with or should I go less?

  4. AWheelerWell Known MemberMember

    I would only go with 5-6 Tetras at first :)

  5. MaddieTaylahWell Known MemberMember

    5-6 tetras is good to start off with, just keep in mind that you need enough ammonia from the fish in order not to lose the cycle that you have created. Also, remember that you will need to slowly add fish in order to build up the beneficial bacteria so that it can handle more than 1ppm of ammonia. Does that makes sense?
  6. EmmaBudgieValued MemberMember

    Thanks guys. I will start with this amount.

    Yeah that makes to me I think. So after the first 5-6 tetras have been in for say, a couple of weeks, I could slowly add more. Say 4 more at a time every few weeks? Or would this be too many
  7. Mom2someWell Known MemberMember

    The BB multiple by dividing as I understand it. So when you have a larger colony they multiply more rapidly. For example 1 BB becomes 2 in the same time it takes 10 BB to become 20. So it was suggested to be to be extra slow at the start and end of stocking, but I could be a little more relaxed in the middle. See how it goes. You may find your tank handles it super well & you can add more fish more quickly. I generally waited 3-5 days post levels being stable after new fish before I considered adding more. Another thing to find out is what day of the week your LFS gets fish in. You want to go that day so that you have the best pick of the stock if at all possible. Good luck! This is the super fun part! Keep sharing your journey with us please! We love pictures!
  8. EmmaBudgieValued MemberMember

    Thanks Mom2some! This is the exciting part I can't wait, once my little friends are in there I will post pics.

    I also have another question, hope it's ok to put it in this thread.

    Is it true that it's better to have a stable pH rather than one that is the fishes preferred? So my pH is just over 8, would I be better to leave it as is and stable rather than try to lower it? Note I will be adding driftwood to my tank later but I am still in the process of soaking it

    Also just read that after the water is in the tank for a while the pH lowers being exposed to air and all, my last test was after a big water change so maybe I should test it a couple of days after! Silly me
    Last edited by a moderator: May 5, 2017
  9. AlhanaValued MemberMember

    It seems that a lot of fish are able to acclimate to different pH as long as its not in the extremes. I find it helpful to test the water that you use during water changes and compare that to the levels you want to maintain in the tank. This gives you an idea of what you might need to do to newly added water in order to maintain your desired level.
  10. EmmaBudgieValued MemberMember

    Yeah I've heard when doing water changes you can put an air stone in for a day or so in the water you are going to add to your tank to assist with matching the slightly lowered level of pH your tank
  11. MaddieTaylahWell Known MemberMember

    It is definetely better to have a stable pH than to use chemicals to try and change it. Also, some fish are more sensitive than others.
  12. KelceyMaeraeiValued MemberMember

    So I had a problem when adding my angels after all my other fish. They were bullied to death in a night. If you add your tetras and cories first, I would suggest rearranging your tank (while acclimating your angels) and introducing them with the lights off. These steps worked for me when adding my second pair and all my fish are living in harmony.
  13. Anders247Fishlore LegendMember

    What were they bullied to death by? That doesn't sound normal to me....
  14. EmmaBudgieValued MemberMember

    I really want to add the corys and tetras first based off what I've read. From what I've read, if you wait for your tetras and corys to fully grow then add juvenile angels, as the angels grow up with the other little fishes they will see them as friends not food :)
  15. KelceyMaeraeiValued MemberMember

    Surprisingly enough, platies. The platies would find them in their hiding spots and the other tank inhabitants would follow (Congo and bloodfin tetras).
  16. Mom2someWell Known MemberMember

    Just an FYI - it is my understanding that cardinals are rather delicate. I would NOT stock them first. So start with the corys.
  17. KeeperOfASilentWorldWell Known MemberMember

    Dear @EmmaBudgie ,

    I would definitely keep on cycling until I get 1 ppm of ammonia to fall down to 0 ppm in 24 hours. Only then I would start dosing 2 ppm until I get the same result from the 2 ppm of ammonia. Then 3 and then 4. After you cycle 4 ppm of ammonia in 24 hours time with also the nitrites dropping, you have a perfect cycle. At that point you will be ready to fully stock your tank without having any ammonia or nitrite readings. Perhaps @CindiL could help you further.

    Please read this link by @CindiL thoroughly, it is the best one out there:
    Ammonia Instructions when Cycling with TSS+ or other Bacterial Starter

    Hope that I could be of any help.

    Happy Fish Keeping :)
  18. EmmaBudgieValued MemberMember

    In relation to getting corys first can do, they're actually the fish im most excited for, then they're running around on the bottom they remind me of dogs sniffing around and I think there so cute :)

    @keeperofaslientworld thanks for the feedback, Cindi actually helped me on another thread when my nirtrites were crazy high and I have read that article a lot :) seem to have missed the part where she said you should add more ammonia and cycle a higher ppm of it. Sigh I though I was finally almost ready my 1ppm of ammonia is going to nitrate in almost under a day. I've been trying to cycle since 5th of March haha
  19. el337Fishlore LegendMember

    I think you'd be fine to add the cardinals first. I believe neons are the more sensitive species. And I also don't think you need to increase your ammonia to 2ppm to finish cycling if you're already able to convert 1ppm in 24 hours. Neither the tetras or corys should produce that much more ammonia in this tank size.

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