Starting up 29 gallon tank - stocking advice

  1. Joe S Initiate Member

    Hi I am starting a 29 gallon tank (thanks to the dollar-per-gallon sale!) -

    I already have a 10 gallon up and I am planning transferring 3 of the larger fish from that tank to the new one: one electric blue ram, one balloon belly molly (a gift that started my recent entry into fish) and a panda cory.

    I plan on making a cory school of 5-6.

    Any ideas on what to add to this? I'd like some bright colorful fish that will be relatively hardy/low maintenance and that will get along with the fish I already have.

    My local water is pretty hard and relatively high ph.

    I plan on cycling with a combination of safestart and seeded media (is it a good idea to do both?)

    All suggestions welcome!
     
  2. JessH18 Member Member


  3. Phishphin Well Known Member Member


    I think you may have a difficult time keeping the Panda Cory shoal happy with 8.0 ph. I believe they prefer water to be acidic, with their optimal range between 5.8-7.0. It was also my understanding that the electric blue ram preffered ph between 5.0-7.0. Folks will say it is more important to have a stable ph than the exact requirements of the fish (which is true), but I still think this is good to know about your current stock.

    You might add some large (ish) pieces of driftwood, as this can sometime lower your ph by a few points, keeping it stable. While expensive, ADA aquasoil also has some nice buffering qualities.

    To address your question, however, african blue cichlids might work well with your current tap perameters. They just may not work with your current stock...
     
  4. Tian Well Known Member Member

    I think you must consider adding another balloon Mollie or 3. The school of corries sounds good accept for the high ph like phishphin said. You can also consider adding a bottom feeder or 2 cause mollies are quite messy fish

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  5. Coradee Moderator Moderator Member

    If you have a high Ph Panda corys in particular won't like it, nether will they like the Ram temperature.
    Bronze or albino seem to take the higher Ph better than most & won't mind the warmer temp.
     
  6. endlercollector Fishlore VIP Member

    I don't usually tell people that they can keep Softwater fish in hard water, strangely enough, I have had panda, peppered, emerald, Albino, Trilis, and bronze Cory cats in our 7.8+ pH for up to eight years now. I have no idea why they have adapted to our insanely hard water. Not many types of fish do well in it.


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  7. junebug Fishlore Legend Member

    Most livebearers will do well in hard water. If you want other mollies, I suggest sticking only with balloon mollies as they can have a hard time competing for food with other large fish. You could do a school of some of the hardier tetras, depending on your actual pH (hard with high pH isn't very specific - could you give us numbers?) Guppies would go well, as would endlers, as would platies.

    Just make sure you get all the same gender if you get any more livebearers, even if you are mixing types. I would suggest getting all males. Swordtails and platies can interbreed, and guppies, endlers, and mollies can interbreed and that's the last thing you want ;)

    I find that smaller pleco species do well in moderately hard water when properly acclimated, so that might be a substitute for the cories which will likely not enjoy it. You can also look at getting some mystery snails as a cleanup crew.
     

  8. fishingdeep Member Member

    Coradee has brought up a very important fact. Since rams do best at 82 - 84 degrees F. it will cause some stress to the other fish you have. What temp. is your tank at?
     
  9. celizabethh3 Member Member

    endlercollector I too have kept various Corys in a high pH tank, between 8 and 8.2. While it isn't ideal, they are happy and healthy and I'd rather keep them at that pH than try to lower it. :)


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  10. escapay Well Known Member Member

    Is your local water from the city? Because some of the LFS probably use the same water - or very similar. So if they are having luck with their stock, you'll probably be okay with some of the options. Depends though.

    Some of the rainbowfish like Dwarf Rainbows (Melanotaenia praecox) or the Celebes Rainbowfish could work.
     

  11. stearnsjg Initiate Member

    Dwarf rainbow fish would do great in hard water with a higher ph. As has already been stated, your other fish like acidic water aside from the molly. However, keeping fish in a higher pH or in harder water than they're used to is USUALLY ok. It is mostly the breeding of fish that is limited by different water parameters. And if buying fish from a LFS, your fish are likely to already be accustomed to harder water and higher pH. More cories are good. I personally love harlequin rasboras. Other mollies if they are not balloon will likely outcompete your existing one. Other balloon mollies would be ok though. Otos would be a good idea also for algae control.
     
  12. fishingdeep Member Member

    If they can't breed, the water quality is off. What are you saying? They live in water and do what is natural? It really is about water quality and temps, can you share any diffs' ? Thanks
     
  13. Joe S Initiate Member

    Thanks for all the responses!

    With regard to the ph, as of a few days ago it was in the 7.6 - 7.8 range in the currently set up 10g according to the api test. I don't remember the numbers of hardness but I know that it comes up as "very hard" on the test strips I used to use.

    My current tank temp is at 78f. Is that not good for the ram? I thought that Rams were 78 - 80?
     
  14. stearnsjg Initiate Member

    What i ment is that they can adapt to other water parameters, but not necessarily be comfortable enough to breed.
     
  15. Phishphin Well Known Member Member

    I believe the upper limit to maintain optimal comfort is around 78. Anywhere between 72-78F is just fine. If your tank is 80, it won't kill the GBR, but he may behave differently.
     
  16. Joe S Initiate Member

    Would one or two angel fish work in this tank?
     
  17. stearnsjg Initiate Member

    Im pretty sure a pair of angels should work great! And look awesome too!
     
  18. fishingdeep Member Member

    Joe S please know if you add the angels I think your next post may be " my molly has torn fins" and welcome to Fl I missed that.
     
  19. stearnsjg Initiate Member

    Oh yeah, whoops, forgot about the balloon belly. If only it were a regular molly. Then it would've been fine.
     
  20. fishingdeep Member Member

    Nope