Stocking 20 Gallon Tank

  1. John235 Initiate Member

    Hello all,

    I'm getting ready to get a 20 gallon fishtank, and I'll fishless cycle it for the next few weeks. I'll also get an Aquaclear 50 without the carbon (extra sponge or bio-ball-things).

    I'm looking at 7 black skirt tetras, 2 dwarf gouramis, and possibly 7 cherry barbs.

    How does this stocking plan sound?
  2. aquatickeeper Fishlore VIP Member

    What are the dimensions? I mostly likely wouldn't do two DGs unless they are females which are rare.

  3. John235 Initiate Member

    I'll probably get a 20 gallon long, so 30x12x12 inches.
  4. MattS99 Well Known Member Member

    I wouldn't do 2 DGs. Females are rare, males will probably kill each other.

  5. John235 Initiate Member

    Okay, I'll go down to one DG. How will the Tetras and Barbs get along?
  6. FishFan123 Member Member

    Cherry Barb's will do fine but I don't have experience with skirt tetras I'm not sure if they will get nipped at
  7. MommaLake Well Known Member Member

    Cherry barbs and skirts get along fine but skirts are somewhat large tetras so I'd only choose one of those schools. You could fit neons(example for size) and cherrys and 1 DG in a 20 long or just skirts and a DG.

  8. John235 Initiate Member

    Thanks all. I'll ask my mom which school she likes the look of better. :). Though the real limiting factor may be what the LFS has...

    MommaLake, I don't think I'd want to do neons since this will be my first fish tank that isn't just a betta. Any other fish that size that would be suitable? I might just add a couple more cherry barbs if I go that route.

    A few other questions:

    1) How much bigger would I have to go to have both schools?

    2) I'm moving to a new house in a few weeks. Can I just put a sponge filter in a bucket, feed the bacteria, and then put the sponge filter in the 20 gallon once it's setup? How would I transfer the BB to the Aquaclear without causing a mini-cycle? Or should I just put some Aquaclear media in the bucket, add an airstone, and move the media to the Aquaclear once I'm ready for fish?
  9. MattS99 Well Known Member Member

    If you don't like neons, look into glowlight tetras. Similar size, hardier, and I think they look better.
  10. JesseMoreira06 Well Known Member Member

    I would suggest

    1 DG
    1 Bolivian Ram
    12 Cherry Barbs or 12 Skirt Tetras
    8 Peppered or Panda Corydoras

  11. MommaLake Well Known Member Member

    1) if you got a 29+ gallon you could do both schools
    8 skirts
    8-10 cherry barbs
    1 dwarf gourami

    2) yes you can run a sponge filter in a bucket and add ammonia and bacteria starter to get the sponge filter starting to cycle. To cycle the aquaclear media you'd need the filter running water through the media not just media at the bottom of the bucket.

    When you get to adding fish just take it slow. I'd do the cherry barbs first. Let it stabilize. Test the water with a liquid test kit: ammonia 0, nitrite 0, nitrate 5-20. Then you can add the skirts. Same thing, let it stabilize then add the DG last.

    Edit: fish that are similar in size as neons, if you wanted to stick with a 20 long:
    1 DG (all levels)
    8 cherry barbs (mid to bottom)
    8 zebra danios (mid to top)

    Or doing one bigger school which I think is a better idea:
    1 DG
    16 cherry barbs
  12. MommaLake Well Known Member Member

    I really like this build but I feel it would be more appropriate for a 29+ than a 20L. It's the DG and the Rams together I think they'd need more separation. Panda cories are my favorite
  13. JesseMoreira06 Well Known Member Member

    IMO I think it'll be fine , it's a 20 long which has 30" of lenght, rams will stay on the bottom while gourami will be top/middle of the tank. 29g has the exact same lenght and width just has the additional heght now in a 20g tall I would not do it since it's only 24" at most in lenght.
  14. MommaLake Well Known Member Member

    No offense intended. I just have kept or still have skirts, cherry barbs, DG and Bolivian Rams. I also had or have tanks those sizes. Certainly no harm in having different ideas to choose from
  15. JesseMoreira06 Well Known Member Member

    none token lol , your totally correct nothing wrong with different ideas. I also currently have them all decides cherry barbs I was maybe thinking them for my new 55g , I no their peacefully for barbs how's the color on them I was looking for something with real pop?
  16. MommaLake Well Known Member Member

    The males are beautiful but can be poo heads at times. Personally I think the females are beautiful too but obviously not as poppy as the males. They look great in planted tanks because of the red against the green.
  17. John235 Initiate Member

    Why? I'll have an air stone to solve oxygenation problems.

    I just went to the LFS and they have the cherries, bsts, and DGs, so I'll see if I can get a 29 gallon while the bucket is cycling. If not, I'll do 8 cherry barbs, a dwarf gourami, and maybe add some panda corries down the road.
  18. MommaLake Well Known Member Member

    Worth a shot. As long as water is flowing through the media it should work.

    The why is if you think of a stationary organism (bacteria once it clings to the media) the food has to pass by it (in the water) for it to have access to it.
  19. John235 Initiate Member

    Oh, that makes sense. I might as well just get a sponge filter then -- and it'll help seed future aquariums. I'll post updates on how the cycle goes.

    Thanks all!