Stocking Check

RockinRy

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Hello, I wanted to post a quick note on what I am planning to do for stocking and was hoping if you guys could verify I haven't done anything weird. My tank is a cycled 30 gallon, I have an Aquatech 20-40 HOB filter. My tank parameters are 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, and 5-10 nitrates. My pH is on the high side at 8.4, but is stable and temp is 76 degrees. I also do weekly WC probably 30-40%

Currently I have 1 male swordtail and 3 male guppies

My plans are:
* 8 panda cories - or another variety if there is a better species for my tank
* 6 Rummynose tetra - not set on this, but heard they are cool to watch since they are tight schoolers
* 1 BN Pleco - I need to add driftwood first which might help with the pH too.
* Thinking about adding two centerpiece fish either Dwarf Gourami or Bolivian Ram - not sure if I'm overstocking at this point. AqAdvisor puts me at 94% stocked, but filtration is too low.

My questions are am I overstocking or do I have any incompatibilities? Also, I was going to add the cories next, is that a mistake since I hear they are somewhat sensitive and if I do add them next, do you get all 8 at once or is tripling the number of fish in my tank a bad deal.

Thank you for your advice!
 

Heron

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You will be pushing the limits stocking wise but as long as you do regular water changes you will probably be ok. A warning if you go for a dwarf gouramies only have 1. I have a 70G tank and every attempt I have made to keep more than 1 has ended in death.
 

coralbandit

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Rummies are not beginner fish and should be kept over 80f.
Most have die off while trying to achieve the school we all want ..
Pretty sensitive fish .
 
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RockinRy

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Oh alright, I originally thought to go with Neon Tetras, but was told a similar thing about not being a beginner fish. Do you have a recommendation for a cool schooling fish to replace them?

Thanks for the note on the gouramis @Heron I actually only was looking to get one, but I had read somewhere to keep them in pairs. Maybe I mixed that up with the Bolivian Rams. If I go that route I'll definitely drop it to one.
 
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RockinRy

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What about celestial pearl danios instead of the rummynose tetras? Would that be a better choice for a school?
 

Noroomforshoe

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I aggree about neons, and I have heard that about rummy nose before. there are a many many other tetras that are easy and relativly hardy. x-ray and albino x-ray tetras have been the most peacefull and long lived tetra.
I have a fairly high Ph, 7.6, and cories never lasted long in my tank. Have you concidered loaches? They thrive with the higher ph rather them try to addapt to it.
Zebra loaches, yoyos, are my favorite.
The stocking is tight. But not over if you keep up with things.
 
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RockinRy

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@Noroomforshoe, I haven't heard of x-ray tetras, so I just read through their Bio on FishLore. Their recommended temp range is 75-82. Do you think they would be alright if my tank is on the lowerside of their comfortable temp?

I also hadn't considered loaches because I had read Kuhli Loaches are tough to care for since they are prone to diseases. I guess I accidentally ignored all loaches because of that. I'll check out the zebra loaches. I also could probably lower the pH. I am nearly positive mine is that high because I have a piece of coral and a seashell that came with the tank. It is super cool, but I have no doubt it is raising the pH significantly. I kind of had my heart set on some type of cory, so if the pH might be destructive to them, I will consider removing the coral and seeing if I can slowly lower the pH back down. I originally left it in there because most people are saying having a high pH is okay as long as it doesn't swing. If it is going to shorten my fishes lifespan though, I will probably work at slowly removing them and getting the pH to a more acceptable range.
 

coralbandit

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Do you know the pH of your source water ?
I agree the coral and shell may be raising pH but you may just have high source water also .
Knowing what you have to work with is important to keeping things steady .
Take a bucket of water and let it sit for 24 hours and then test it . That is what your water is really like .
What it comes out of tap may not be the same due to things added by our individual municipalities so the 24 hour sit time is important .
 
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RockinRy

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Do you know the pH of your source water ?
I agree the coral and shell may be raising pH but you may just have high source water also .
Knowing what you have to work with is important to keeping things steady .
Take a bucket of water and let it sit for 24 hours and then test it . That is what your water is really like .
What it comes out of tap may not be the same due to things added by our individual municipalities so the 24 hour sit time is important .
I hadn’t tested it after 24 hours. When I did it directly from the tap it was mid 7s like 7.4. I’ll leave some out and test it tomorrow.
 

Noroomforshoe

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The coral and the shell most definitly are raising the PH. I suggest you remove for the fish that you have and for an easier acclimation for future fish. if you do weekly water changes, the Ph should go down gradually enough.

Why do you want to keep the temperature in the lower zone? I dont recomend you keep tropical fish in a tenperature less then 78, whith the exception of a few species, neons, danios, ... I think it increases the possability of ich,

I never herd that about kuhli loaches. I never got kuhli loaches becouse I here they hide all the time. I have yoyo, zebra, and polka dot loaches, they are nocternal, but wake up any time they think there might be food. they are very active little clowns.
 
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RockinRy

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I’ll pull out the coral and shell. For the temp, I guess I was going off of the temp ranges that aqadvisor was giving me. When I put in my previous stocking plan it gave me a range of 73-78 so I shot for the middle. I’ll raise it up to 78. I’m guessing the limiting fish were the cories because the top of their range looks like high 70s.

I had read about that on the Kuhli loaches because they do not have head scales and it makes them more susceptible to disease. That was just in the care guide. Obviously I’ve never raised any so not sure if that is true in real life.
 

Noroomforshoe

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I think all or most cories are fine at 78, i just checked one sight.
All catfish, loaches, pleco are in the same boat, catfish and or scaleless fish, the are sensitive to medicine and salt, and live in the dirtier part of the tank so more susceptable to illness from a dirty tank.
But you keep a clean tank, your good.
some of my loaches are over 7 years old. the longest living fish that i have. It might not be that old compared to some of the other posters fish, IDK
 
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RockinRy

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Great, that is good to know. I appreciate the tip on the temp too. I’ll figure these things out eventually ha. Until then I’ll rely on you guys!
 

Anders247

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Panda cories prefer the temperature under 75 Fahrenheit, 78 is pushing it too much imo. There are different species of cories that should be kept in warmer or cooler temps, they don't all have the same temp range. Aqadvisor is inaccurate.
 
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RockinRy

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I ran pH on my tap water after 22 hours sitting out - kids were napping and the time was now or never so didn’t get the full 24. The pH did go up though. I tested it at 7.4 when I first grabbed it and it is now at 7.9ish - I’ll be honest the 7.8 and the 8.0 look really similar to me on the API test kit. I removed the shell and the coral and will do a few smaller WCs throughout this week and test pH again to see if that made a big difference. Either way, I’m going to start looking for some driftwood to get the pH down a bit more. Thank you @coralbandit for suggesting that. Good to know my tap is on the high side.

Panda cories prefer the temperature under 75 Fahrenheit, 78 is pushing it too much imo. There are different species of cories that should be kept in warmer or cooler temps, they don't all have the same temp range. Aqadvisor is inaccurate.
What do you think about False Julii Cories? The profile here on fishlore and a few other sites gives their upper range at 79. They are pretty cool looking too!
 
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RockinRy

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Great, I’ll make sure to check that site in the future. I appreciate the heads up.
 
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