Questions about stocking and lighting my 50 gallon corner tank

  1. abovo Initiate Member

    My 50 gallon corner tank has been setup for about 7 months. Everyone is healthy and happy but I'm looking for some help with stocking and lighting. Here are the specs.

    50 gallon corner tank
    Magnum 350 canister filter with Fluval media
    Air bubbler with 6" bubble bar on a timer with the light
    Single 24" fluorescent bulb fixture
    Small gravel with substrate mixed in and fertilizer pellets
    Live plants

    Light and bubbler are on a timer from 7:30am to 10:30am then off until 1:30pm and on until 7:30pm

    For fish I have

    2 South American Firemouth Cichlids
    4 Tiger Barbs
    7 Gold Barbs
    1 African Leaf Fish
    1 Dinosaur Bichir
    1 Plecostumus
    3 Upside down catfish
    2 blue gouramis
    1 Chinese Algae eater
    4 assassin Snails

    I am wondering what interesting fish I can add to this group. I know the plecostumus is going to outgrow the tank eventually. Everyone seems to get along pretty well. I thought about a crayfish but I think that will do a number on my plants and may go after some of the fish when they sleep. The Firemouths like to sleep in my Sword plants and would be an easy target. Shrimp would probably be eaten along with freshwater crabs.

    I think my lighting is a little weak given the depth of the tank. Some plants do well and others don't last. I have room for another 24" fixture or maybe go for a more powerful or better spectrum light. I know LED is popular but T5 might also be a good option.

    I'll get some pics when I get home Sunday. Thank you all for your advise!
     
  2. Coradee Moderator Moderator Member

    I wouldn't add anything else as imo you're overstocked as it is, even without the plec.
    The Chinese algae eater can get to almost a foot & are quite aggressive as they mature & they stop eating algae & turn to eating the slime coats off their tankmates.
    The birchir depending on the species may also get too big for your tank & will take small fish they can fit in their mouths.
    The firemouths if you have a pair & they decide to breed may cause problems too with aggression.
    Tiger barbs can be fin nippers in small groups & could find the gourami fins tempting, imo a species only tank is best for them.
    You may want to think about rehoming some fish to save any problems in the near future.
    I don't know anything about leaf fish so can't comment on that & the lighting I'll leave for the plant experts.
     

  3. abovo Initiate Member

    Thank you for the info. The algae eater definitely likes to chase the bichir around. I think you're correct that it will also have to be re-homed as it gets larger.

    Although the LFS called the bichir a "dinosaur bichir" I realize that really isn't a species. Based on how it looks I think it's a Senegal Bichir which can get to 14 inches.

    I plan on starting a quarantine tank of some sort if the Firemouths decide to breed. I think one is quite a bit younger than the other.

    The tiger barbs have kept to harassing each other but they could become troublemakers. The leaf fish hasn't been aggressive at all and has been very interesting in the tank.
     
  4. Coradee Moderator Moderator Member

    Have you a pic of your leaf fish? They're not a species I know anything about & never seen one in Lfs in my area.
     

  5. abovo Initiate Member

    It looks like this but they are apparently sold under the common name of African Leaf Fish which is not correct. It is called a Leopard Gourami, Spotted Climbing Perch, or Leopard ctenopoma. Mine has not been territorial and seems to pal around with the larger Firemouth but my tank does have a large number of hiding places where fish can establish their spot.

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Coradee Moderator Moderator Member

    I know what is now you mention it's proper name & I have seen some, still know nothing about them though.
    Very striking looking fish, I'll have to learn more about it :)
     
  7. abovo Initiate Member

    It is definitely fun to watch, mine has a habit of gulping air from the top of the tank like the bichir but the leopard blows bubbles.
     

  8. abovo Initiate Member

    Here's a picture of my Leopard ctenopoma. I'm pretty sure she's a female.

    [​IMG]