New 50 gallon South American Biotop - advice needed

Discussion in 'Freshwater Beginners' started by DrSahl, Jul 19, 2015.

  1. DrSahl

    DrSahlValued MemberMember

    Hi there

    First off.. English is not my native, but hopefully that wont be a problem.

    A few years ago I had a 65 gallon tank with malawi and sadly I had to give it away due to moving into a new apartment. I didnt have room for any proper tanks there :/ But in my new apartment I got room for a new one..

    I want to make a South American biotop and thats not something I have done before, so I would love to hear your advice on my little project.

    The new tank is a 50 Gallon tank.
    I had a setup like this in mind and I want to mimic Orinoco river

    Cleithracara maronii
    mesonauta festivus
    Panaque sp. L204
    Cardinal Tetra (they might be eating by the festivus?)

    In terms of deco. I think I will go with sand and bogwood along with a few swordplants, maybe a Alternanthera Reineckii pink, to get some other colours than green and maybe abit of Vallisneria or lilaeopsis. I also want a flat stone.. I don't want to have to many plants ofc, becuase it will not mimic real life than.

    I am uncertain if I should put clay or a product that contains clay below the sand.. since I didnt have plants before in my last tank (it was a malawi tank, so no need for plants :D)

    I would love some ideas about other setups and maybe what I could swap up with the tetras, since again I am abit scared that they will be eaten.

    Notes - I don't like most of the apistogramma, they are ok, but I much rather have a few bigger cichilds.
    I heard about Thorichthys ellioti and I like it alot. but it seems to be too big for a 50 gallon tank ? it might be agressive towards maronii ? and most certainly eat tetras I guess.. but would love to hear about them from some of you more exprienced.

    Any advice on the fish would be nice.
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2015
  2. jdhef

    jdhefModeratorModerator Member

    Welcome to FishLore!

    Sorry, i can be of no help with your question, but I did want to say that your English is excellent. Had you not stated that English was not your first language, i would never have guess that to be the case.

    Hopefully someone who can help will be along some time soon.
  3. Coradee

    CoradeeModeratorModerator Member

    Welcome to Fishlore, as Jdhef said your English is excellent :)
    I have a similar size tank though not Orinoco based, I do have Keyhole cichlids (cleithracara maronii) & find them very peaceful & will come to greet me if they think food is on offer.
    For a bottom dweller you could look at Corydoras melini or Metae as they're found in the Orinoco, Rummynose tetras are an option & are one of the best schooling fish
  4. OP

    DrSahlValued MemberMember

    #1 Thank you

    Yes I heard alot of good stories about the keyhole cichilds and its also the only fish I am 100% certain I want so far. If I get the Rummynose wont the mesonauta festivus eat them ? incase I get those. I like the look of Melini I wonder if the fish store have them.

    So far I was thinking about a pair each of keyhole and festivus, since I don't want to over crowd the 50 gallon.

    Thank you for your answer, I already look forward to get keyhole cichilds.
  5. Coradee

    CoradeeModeratorModerator Member

    I think you'd be ok with the Rummynose, they're a little bigger than cardinals & the festivus in the main are peaceful fish.
    Look forward to seeing pics when the tank is set up :)
  6. OP

    DrSahlValued MemberMember

    Ohh thats good to hear that will solve my issue with having a schooling fish. I just hope I am able to get it from the fish store..

    When its all ready I will post some pictures in here for sure. I love the threads with all the tanks.
  7. OP

    DrSahlValued MemberMember

    I wonder if this will be overstocking the 50 gallons.

    Cleithracara maronii 2/2
    mesonauta festivus 2/2
    Rummynose Tetra 10
    (undecided) maybe a corydoras, the Panaque sp. L204 or another south american.. a few of those.

    I also heard that liquid plant fertilizers, might be enough if you only have a few plants.. Could I start out with that and then add tabs if needed ?
  8. MtnTiger

    MtnTigerWell Known MemberMember

    Welcome to Fishlore. I would recommend the use of both liquid fertilizer and root tabs.

    Good luck and look forward to seeing your pics.
  9. OP

    DrSahlValued MemberMember

    Thank you for the advice, I guess I will go for liquid and root tabs, seems more easy than all the other stuff..

    Anyone agree with the amount of fish ?? wont be overstocking? I am not buying any adult fish.