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Is My Tank Overstocked?

Discussion in 'Freshwater Beginners' started by fishman44, Apr 17, 2019.

  1. fishman44New MemberMember

    Hello! I've done all of my research on making sure the water conditions will be perfect for the fish. I have a 10 gallon tank with several real plants. I also have driftwood and a couple of small rocks. I have 5 neon tetras, 2 albino corys, 1 panda cory, 2 guppy males, 2 platy males, 1 swordtail male, 1 dwarf gourami male, 1 ghost shrimp, 1 otocinclus , and 1 peaceful betta male. Keep in mind that I'm a beginner but I do know about the nitrogen cycle in case you were wondering. All advice is appreciated, thank you. The ammonia is 0. The tank has a aqueaon filter for ten gallon. I also have a heater and I do 25% water changes every two weeks. please tell me if I have a problem or not. My fish are all swimming well and no disease. I will not add anymore fish. It is a ten gallon long. I also replace the filter cartridge monthly.
  2. DonthemonValued MemberMember

    You are going to need to do water changes once a week. Lot of fish for a 10 gallon.
  3. imbaWell Known MemberMember

    Yes it is overstocked. There will also temperature issues and aggression issues down the line, even tho it looks like everything is doing ok now.

    Are you after advice on possibly rehoming some fish, to avoid future issues? If not, the only advice is to keep up with your water changes. I would say 50% every 3 or 4 days.
  4. FalenaValued MemberMember

    Unfortunately you have lots of issues with this setup, it is indeed overstocked and you have species compatability issues and temperature issues, I dont even know where to start without sounding harsh so apologies in advance. But neon tetras should be kept in groups of 6+, cories should also really be kept in schools of 6+ but the minimum is 3 ,thats the pandas and the albinos seperately. Ottos are also a schooling fish that prefer larger numbers of around 10 and are quite delicate, Bettas and gouramis should never be kept together, they will kill each other eventually and if those guppys are fancy ones they'll probably get caught in the crossfire too. Platy males will fight, swordtails get rather large, both those and gouramis have heavy bioloads to all be kept in a 10 gallon. A ten gallon should have a filter for a 20 gallon especially with the overstocking. Filter cartridges that you swap out don't allow a cycle to be established and a 25% water change evey 2 weeks most deffinitely is not enough.

    So my advise would be, that you need to return or rehome/rehouse (buy more tanks) most of these fish, keep ONE centrepiece (Gourami, Betta OR a single male Platy) and ONE schooling fish that is temperature compatible with your centrepiece (6 neon tetras with gourami OR betta for example)

    Swap cartridges in your filter for biological media, purchase an api freshwater master test kit, seachem prime and cycle your tank

    Then once your tank is cycled perform 25% water changes once a week.

    However if that isn't the advise you wanted to hear then I agree with the posts above, big water changes frequently is all you can do.

    I am sorry to sound so hard, I just want you to be aware of the inevitable problems you will encounter if you dont rethink your plan of action here.
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2019
  5. candiedragonWell Known MemberMember

    Yes, your tank is heavily overstocked and as others have already covered there are issues with your choice in stocks.

    I want to address some of my personal concerns if you can bear to hear out another person explaining your tank situation.

    With a heavy stocking, you are going to want heavy filtration and heavy water change schedule. Filtration, usually you want a gph (gallon-per-hour) rating a bare minimum of 4x your tank's volume, but ideally you want to shoot closer to 10x as most filter manufacturers overrate their ratings. In your case, for a 10 gallon tank you want a filter that will process 100 gph. I personally like the Aquaclear line for hob (hang-on-back) filters, the 20 would be great for your tank. I just like the features of being able to modify the filter media for a more effective filtration, and the fact that you can control the flow power. I can tell you a good way to modify the filter media if you are interested.

    You would probably want to do 50% water changes 1-2 times weekly at this time. This will ensure that you maintain your nitrates at a manageable level for your stock.

    I know people have mentioned rehoming. I for one hate the thought of rehoming though. I'm surprised nobody suggested upgrading to a bigger tank. Personally, I'd say a minimum 29 gallon tank would suffice, the base dimensions shouldn't be too much more than your current tank. This would help dilute your stock and their wastes, and prevent the potential of stunting for your fish. This is a condition, usually telling of deformities like a bent spine or tail, shortened body, when a fish grows in small overcrowded spaces. Just some other options if you, too, dont like the idea of rehoming your fish.

    Your stock, well, maybe you could make it work. But I always say to keep an ever-watchful eye, and should there be the slightest hint that things are about to go south then take action immediately and separate any antagonizers out.

    I do, however, have a concern about your Corys. They can differentiate among themselves and would much prefer being with their own exact species. 5 would be a good minimum, but 8 would be better in my experience. That's just me though. If you can build your cory schools to at least 5 pandas and 5 albinos then your fish will be a little more happier.
  6. fishman44New MemberMember

    So I plan on doing 50% every week water changes and my filter does 100gph. I plan to move the betta to a five gallon. I will also give my swordtail and one of my platies back. is this a good course of action

    Thank you for all your feedback
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2019
  7. FalenaValued MemberMember

    This is certainly a step in the right direction! I'm glad to hear you're willing to attempt to fix this problem or at least make changes to make it slightly safer for your fish, I think it's a brilliant idea to get the 5gal for your betta and return the swordtail and platy, I think the single otto and cories should go too though unless you plan to go bigger and up their schools as candiedragon suggested. You could maybe get away with putting the otto and the shrimp in the 5 gallon with the betta if returning them isn't an option but the cories will be very sad in such low numbers.

    5gal-Betta, the single otto, the single shrimp (Still not ideal but the otto will likely die very quickly in an overstocked uncycled aquarium )
    10gal- The Dwarf gourami, One Platy, The neons, guppies and if you decide to keep them the cories

    You will still be overstocked and have to perform large weekly water changes but I feel this would be safer and more comfortable than the current situation, it really shouldnt be a longterm thing though if you wish for your fish to thrive. You will still need to cycle both tanks too and that itself requires dedication and dilligence when there are fish in the tank. I suggest you read up on fish in cycling
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2019