Small Colorful Fish To Add

chadcf

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My 38 gallon tank is currently home to 6 zebra danios, 7 venezuelan cories and 1 twig catfish, plus an assortment of shrimp and who knows how many ramshorn snails.

I know my last addition will likely be a pearl gourami or a pair of dwarf gouramis but next I'd like to add a little more mid / top level color (not that danios aren't nice but they're a bit monochromatic). The options I'm contemplating are:

* harlequin rasbora
* cardinal tetra
* neon tetra
* celestial pearl danio
* emerald dwarf rasbora

I'm most intrigued by the celestial pearl danios and emerald dwarfs, but I've read they can be rather shy. They also seem a bit harder to find and I'd probably have to order them online...

Any thoughts on the pros and cons of these various fish and what might be best? Tank is set at about 75.5 degrees F, is well established at this point, consistently 0 ammonia and nitrites and nitrates run about 10 - 20 ppm (it's about 10ppm out of the tap). PH is around 8 and hardness is around 3.
 

Stryphe89

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I love your stocking list so far!

As far as the DG go, they are great fish, but they can be a bit shy. When I had my pair they chose a corner of the tank and pretty much stuck around that area, away from the more active fishies. If you do decide to get a DG pair, definitely find yourself a good, reputable online source, as these guys can be prone to disease and I haven't had the greatest luck getting them from chains or LFS in my area. I'm sure some of our fantastic members would have some good suggestions for you.

Here are some more suggestions for your other fish, vased on what you already have listed:

I've never particularly been as a huge fan of harlequins, despite them being a community favorite. I really like the fire/pearly rasboras though. They're a bit rare but they fit the parameters of your tank, if you can find them.

Cardinal tetras are fantastic schoolers. I also really love rummy nose tetra, as well as ruby, blue king, and imperial blue tetra. The latter is absolutely stunning, but again, a harder fish to find. All of these would be fine in your tank.

Neon tetra are great, but personally I prefer the colors on the Cardinals. Black, green, and gold neons are quite lovely, although, a bit less colorful. I particularly enjoy the gold neons.

As far as the danios go, fire ring, purple passion, and glowlight danios would be my picks. Take a look! I doubt you'll be dissapointed! I've never kept danios with DG. Danios are incredibly active little guys, so you may want to get a second opinion on keeping them together since DG's are a bit shy, IME. I think they would be fine, though.

And as for your smaller rasbora options, check out Blue Neon Dwarf Rasbora, and Kubotai Rasboras!!

Just thought I'd give you a few more not-so-common ideas. I'm really getting into the rare ones myself lately, and would love to see more of them in the trade!


Good luck! Can't wait to see your finalized list!
 

Mick Frost

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I have cardinals in with my Leopard Danios, and they tend to get pushed down. The Peacock Dwarf Gourami in the same tank doesn't have any issues though.

I would shy away from schools until your nitrite comes down. A couple larger fish may help with initiating a biobloom, but sensitive fish may not survive the process. Or you could try supplementing with a biological booster and see if you can't get stable at 0/0/~20, which would open up some more options.
 
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chadcf

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Stryphe89 said:
I'm really getting into the rare ones myself lately, and would love to see more of them in the trade!
Yeah I also kinda wanted to go with something more uncommon hence my interest in the celestial pearl danios and emerald green rasboras. I've spent some time on youtube though looking at videos of tanks and the one thing that strikes me is that while both those fish look awesome up close, the cardinal tetras really stand out across the room. From my viewing angle I'm a bit further away and feel like they really pop a lot more. Granted I kinda want something more uncommon but I guess the cardinals are so popular for a reason...
 

Culprit

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If you love the cardinals but want something a bit more uncommon check out Green Neon Tetras. They are rarer in the hobby, way better schoolers then cardinal or neon tetras, in fact almost as good as Rummynose, and stay quite small, under an inch. Very bright blue. Also check out chili rasboras as those will stand out across the room. Ember tetras are another good option.
 
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chadcf

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Well I went to the store and looked around at what they had in stock, and ended up with cardinal tetras Ok my desire to be "unique" lost out but hey, they're popular for a reason! When I set up my next tank we'll experiment with some different options. Or perhaps move the cardinals over there, I'd like to do a 75 gallon and stock it mostly with a LARGE school of small fish.

I'm enjoying these guys so far though. They seem very young, they're tiny and I was a little worried about my danios. They're too big for the danios to eat now but I was worried they'd get harassed to death. The danios did give chase at first but they quickly got used to the cardinals and now mostly leave them be and coexist nicely. The cardinals definitely stick together more than my danios did and it makes it fun to watch. Feeding them is slightly tricky because the danios are voracious surface feeders, and trying to soak some NLS small fish formula didn't work so well because they were still a bit too big for the cardinals to get down. I have some Fluval bug bites which are pretty small though, and I have some brine shrimp that they should be able to handle. I've been feeding by pre-soaking in tank water and then using a pipette to shoot the food down to the cardinals so the danios don't just eat it all at the surface.

But so far so good!

I'll let these guys settle in for probably a month or so and then add my last addition. Currently thinking of either a Pearl Gourami or a pair of Peacock Gudgeons.
 
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