Panda Corys

jinnix

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We're looking into adding some Panda Corys into our 20 gallon long. We've got seven danios and ten harlequin rasboras in the tank along with a few nerite snails. I'm hearing that they're very sensitive fish, is this true? We do weekly water changes and vacuum the gravel, but that's about as much maintenance as we do. The tank is set at 76F. Are they too sensitive for this? And if not, how many would you recommend putting in a 20g?

Thanks so much for your help!
 

alink

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Is the gravel you have in the tank smooth or rough? They need smooth gravel or sand.
To my knowledge, Panda cories arent any more sensitive than other cories, but they do come from cooler regions, which means they needs cooler water than other cories. If you reduce the temp to 72-73, they would work. Your Danios would like it cooler as well, and the Rasboras would be fine. Pandas are social and do best when kept in groups of 5 or more. I think 5-6 would be fine in your tank, but that would max you out for stocking.
 
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jinnix

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We have gravel, which looks smooth to me but I'm not a fish so I don't know haha. Before we put the heater in the temperature was around 74-75F, so I can just turn that off. Parameters are 0, 0, 20
 

Coradee

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Pandas aren't especially sensitive as long as your water parameters are good & they're fed the correct diet, they're often thought of as algae eaters which they aren't
I'd drop the temperature a couple of degrees, pandas do best in cooler water
 
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jinnix

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Thank you! As a side note, would it be difficult to replace our current gravel with sand? Would that disrupt the ecosystem to take everything out and start over? Boyfriend is wanting fertilized substrate too, I haven't looked into it but it fertilized sand a thing?
 

Coradee

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Although corys do prefer sand, as long as your gravel isn't rough or sharp & it's kept very clean they should be fine.
If you didn't want to change the whole substrate you could make them a sand area though you'd have to make a barrier to stop the two substrates from being mixed.
 

Anders247

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No, it wouldn't disrupt your ecosystem. I've replaced my gravel with sand before, twice, soon to be thrice, and it doesn't affect it.
Almost all of the important bacteria is in the filter.
 

alink

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Sorry to jump off topic a little bit, but since it was brought up..

Yes, a lot of the bacteria is in the filter, but there is a good amount in the substrate as well. The reason its okay to swap the substrate and not get much or any cycle bumps is because the bacteria in the filter can double in size in 24 hours.
 
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jinnix

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This is a picture of my gravel, is it too rough for them?
image.jpg
 

Coradee

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It doesn't look particularly sharp, rub some between your fingers & see if it feels like it has sharp edges.
The main thing with corys & gravel is to keep it very clean as barbel erosion is more likely to happen on a dirty substrate.
 

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From experience, sand will provide the most amusing and cute antics of corys, especially pandas, as they love pushing the sand around and filtering through their mouths for tasty bits left behind. But in a fully cycled tank of that size 6 sounds like a good number, have to agree with most everyone on that, enough to enjoy schooling activity and not so many you risk overstocking. Though if you're paranoid you could upgrade your filter, not a fix all but helps water quality. I run a fluval 50 on my 20 with 7 pandas and 9 pygmys, they don't seem to mind the extra current either. Really fun fish, hardy once acclimated. Ask the lfs to test the pH in the tank for you and compare to yours than use a drip method depending how far off your ph is, I've had great success this way.
 
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