How Would I Build/stock?

Discussion in 'Freshwater Beginners' started by DylanM, Jul 16, 2017.

  1. DylanM

    DylanMWell Known MemberMember

    I am interested in building & stocking a lightly planted 55 gallon aquarium to go at the foot of my bed, I want to know a few things before I even start making plans for this possible project.

    Build Questions:
    1. I want a semi-nice looking aquarium stand since it would be in my room that would also have to have space somewhere in it to store supplies, what would you recommend?
    2. Would it be cheaper to build the tank, or buy one from petco during the $1 per gallon sale for $65?
    3. What kind of filter would you recommend?
    4. What kind of heater would you recommend?
    5. Depending on what stock you recommend in the next section, should I get more rocks or more driftwood?
    6. Also depending on the next section, what substrate would you recommend?

    Okay, so now on to the stocking. I want larger (at least 3 inches in length), colorful fish that can be kept together, but don't necessarily school. I am interested in cichlids, but also wanted to know if any kind of discus can be kept in a 55 gallon. I am also up to other suggestions for fish, what do you think would fit a 55 gallon best?

    Thanks :)

    P.S. Just to be clear, I have not bought anything for this project and don't currently even have the funds to start it. But I am definitely interested in a larger tank, and want to know the cheapest/best way to set up a 55 gallon. And this would be a huge step for me, considering I have only kept 10 gallon and 20 gallon tanks in the past. :)

    Edit: the reason this is in the "beginner" section is because I literally have no clue how I would go about this.
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2017
  2. RainMaker13

    RainMaker13Valued MemberMember

    Hi! Your project sounds fun! As far as i know, petco's DPG sale only goes from 5-20 gallons, at least my local one. If you can get a 55 gal for 65, go for it! As for stocking, if you dont mind a heater, i would read up on cichlids! They get quite large, 3-5 inches, and some species are very colorful! I think 1-3 discus would be fine in a 55 if you can take care of them :) Also if you wanna diversify, an expierience you could try is breed african dwarf frogs. They will live and breed peace fully with any fish, and you may he able to sell adult frogs at your LFS!!! Anyway thats just my suggestions!
  3. FishFish221

    FishFish221Well Known MemberMember

    1. There are many stands out there, or you could build your own (just search up "DIY aquarium stand" and look in the videos")
    2. It would be cheaper to buy the tank unless you have everything already since glass could be expensive when you buy small amounts. Plywood aquariums would only be cheap when they are made to hold over 200 gallons of water.
    3. A canister filter would be best but multiple (2-3) HOBs would be fine.
    4. A heater with adjustable temperature
    5. Its your tank and choice, you can decide what looks better.
    6. Sand. Its easier to clean unless you want to do bare bottom.

    I wouldn't do Discus unless you have some experience and is ready to do 3-4 water changed a week to keep the water quality pristine for these delicate fish. Discus are also best kept in schools (shoals?) of at least 5 and need at least 75 gallons for the schools.
    Are you interested in African cichlids or New World cichlids?

  4. OP

    DylanMWell Known MemberMember

    I prefer New World cichlids. I was planning on getting a canister filter, could you recommend a brand or even a model? I am not going to be doing bare bottom, so pool filter sand is gonna be the way to go for me I guess. I like discus, but they are quite pricey and I don't want to have to do more than 2 water changes a week, so I guess I will steer clear of them for now. Thanks :)

    I am only interested in fish, but I didn't know cichlids stayed around that size! The new world ones would be perfect for the kind of tank I envisioned!
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 16, 2017
  5. FishFish221

    FishFish221Well Known MemberMember

    You could do:
    4 angelfish (gets up to 5-6 inches)
    12 Harlequin Rasboras
    8 Sterbai Corys
    1 Jack dempsey cichlid or 1 Green terror cichlid [These are extremely aggressive as they mature and both get up to 12 inches but usually stay smaller]

    There are also many other combinations for other central/south american cichlids so these are just a few.
  6. OP

    DylanMWell Known MemberMember

    I don't want any schooling fish in this one, so Im probably going to avoid the first option, and I want a variety so I won't do the jack dempsey or terror. I have never stocked cichlids, so some suggestions would be great.
  7. FishFish221

    FishFish221Well Known MemberMember

  8. toolman

    toolmanWell Known MemberMember

    Electric blue acaras are nice. Research if they're compatible with that size tank. I'm not positive, but think you could have several. Could also do rams.
  9. OP

    DylanMWell Known MemberMember

    I'm so dumb, I clicked on the african cichlid button thinking I clicked on the central/south american cichlid button, I actually prefer african cichlids XD.
  10. OP

    DylanMWell Known MemberMember

    I really like the fire mouth cichlid, too bad I made the mistake of thinking african cichlids were american cichlids :p

    Looking at the different kinds, these are my favorite so far...
    - Gold Sexfasciatus Cichlid
    - Calvus Cichlid
    - Yellow Peacock Cichlid
    - Demasoni Cichlid (nvm, I now realize they need to be in large groups)
    - Fuelleborni Cichlid
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 16, 2017

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