Newbie armed with fish in a ten gallon tank!

AnnaEA

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My tank finally finished it's fishless cycle in mid-april, and my bank balance finally flexed enough to allow me to buy fish last Friday!

I have two white cloud minnows, and the very last Indian Leopard loach that my LFS had. The minnows seem to be as happy as clams - or minnows, but the poor loach was not looking happy when I bought him, and still does not look happy.

What would make a fish have an s curve in their spine? Because this loach does - when I look at him from above he has a little curvature that is there all the time. If you view him from the side he looks like he has a little bump because of the curve.

Anyways, I am very happy to finally have fish! Even my sad little loach.

Anna
 

0morrokh

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Some fish are born deformed. This is not a problem unless you want to breed or it is affecting the fish's vital functions. I don't know anything about the kind of loach you have but I know some loaches are happier kept in groups. Also the White Clouds need to be kept in shoals of 6 or more, just to make sure you know. Just be careful not to overstock the tank. Do you know how big your loach will get? Some can get pretty big (although others don't)...
 
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AnnaEA

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My loach will get to be about three inches at the max -- they are supposed to be happier kept in groups, and certainly when they had a group of them at the LFS they looked much happier. But they only had the one left I had wanted three, but my tank didn't cycle before they were bought out. And they don't know when or if they will get any more in -- apparently it all depends on what their agent in CA picks out of the imports to send them.

I plan on building up a shoal of the minnows two at a time over the next few weeks -- that will let me keep a close eye on the water conditions, and possibly let me over stock the tank slightly if the bio-filter can cope with it. Eventually I'd like six minnows and the loach. 15 inches, which is high for 10 gallons, but they're pretty low bio-load fish - skinny omnivores.

I'm really iffy on the health of the loach -- I've spent a lot of time over the past couple of months watching these guys at the LFS and this one is just not acting like I've come to expect them to act... He swims oddly compared to the way the others swam, and lists slightly to one side.

Another reason I'm limiting myself to the two minnows right now -- if the loach is sick, I'd rather minimize the other fish I'm exposing to him. I figure a week should give me a good length of time to observe him, and figure out if this is just this fish's personality, or something else.

The one good sign is that the loach is eating like gang busters when I drop a pellet for him.... so if he's sick, he's not real sick yet, and getting out of the crowded LFS tank is probably a good move.
 

0morrokh

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Going by the surface area rule, you can have 16.6 inches of fish in a standard 10 gallon. And I also don't see most small shoaling fish as huge waste producers. However, that still is really stocked and you may need to do bigger water changes. My 10 gallon will have 15 inches of fish once the Otos move to the 20 (right now it's not overstocked because the fish are all small), and it needs like 50% water changes.
 

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