Transfering fish to a smaller gallon to lower capacity in my 20 gallon.

Discussion in 'Freshwater Beginners' started by Cmc12991, Jun 14, 2016.

  1. Cmc12991New MemberMember

    Okay, so I finally ran into my first hiccup as a beginner. I wasnt thinking and overstocked my 20 gallon. Well I was thinking, I thought Id have the money to upgrade tanks. Sadly aome financial issues has made that impossible right now. I was able to get a 7 Gallon bowed in the front, tall tank. Right now in my 20 gallon (more tall than long) I have a Powder Blue Dwarf Gourami, 5 lamp eye tetra, two silver tip tetra (which sometimes school with the lamp eye and get along very well), and an Albino BN Pleco. I knew I would have time to xfer since the Pleco is just at an inch. The Gourami is at 2 and 1/2 and the next biggest is one of my lamp eye which is at 2 inches long. They are very haply amd content. However, I know I still am overstocked, especially when they grow. I need to get them xfered before rhere is any damage. I was wondering what would be the best transfer? Should I let my Gourami get a tank of his own or maybe put the 2 silver tip tetras? Once I invest in a bigger tank, a 30 gallon should cover all the fish without exceeding the limit correct? Thanks in advance!

    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 14, 2016
  2. PeacefantasyWell Known MemberMember

    I dont think any of those fish are suitable for a 7g.. TexasDomer?
  3. tokiodreamy

    tokiodreamyWell Known MemberMember

    Unfortunately a 7g wouldn't be able to house any of those fish. I'm pretty sure even temporarily. Even if fish are small, having them in a small tank can stunt their growth and make them stressed.

    I'm not 100% on this, but maybe you can keep them all in the 20 until you upgrade and do larger water changes 2-3 times a week. Someone correct me if this is not the best option.

  4. TexasDomer

    TexasDomerFishlore LegendMember

    Agreed, none of those fish will work in a 7 gal.

    I think the best course of action would be to rehome some of the fish unless can upgrade to a 30 gal within the week. Otherwise rehome them or you're facing the same issue you recognize - always stock for the tank you have, not the one you plan on getting because things happen and you may not be able to upgrade.
  5. BrokerTamaraValued MemberMember

    Good answer and great you are taking action. The 7 gallon would be good for a Betta and that is about it. The change would stress most fish and I would suggest as they did above 2-3 water changes a week.Maybe two smaller ones and a large one. At minimum to changes until you can get a larger tank. The water changes and having places to hide and not over feeding will help a lot.
  6. OP

    Cmc12991New MemberMember

    Thank you everyone! I might get a betta for the 7 gallon. But that might wait. Is there any other fish I can house in the 7 gallon? I figured it might be too small, thats why I posted here before trying to do anything. I feel bad because I accidently overstocked. I wasnt trying to stock for my future tank, I just was under the wrong impression of capacity. The day I posted this was the day I added my silver tips and went over it. But the good news is they are still happy for now and there is no hostility whatsoever. i just wish I didnt add the silvertip because thats what sent me too far over. I want to thank everyone. This forum and webaite has done wondera for me and I've come a long way since I started. This is my first, and hopefully last mistake I make. I've been doing water changes twice a week since I realized I was overstocked. From what I gathered I should do one more. I do 1 large then one smaller (bot too small) water change a week. I'll be sure to do it more often with my current setup. They have plenty of hiding spots. Honestly they stay in the olen with the exception of 2 of the lamp eyed and one silver liking the hallow log with plant life I have in there as the "centerpiece." my BN Pleco doesnt even hide that often. They all get along and swim past each other with not even a hint of hostility which is great but that can change if I dont upgrade fast.

    Also, I was told that the count of inches of each ish's max size added together is my stock. So by that logic I should have at least 30, is that correct? I couldve been told wrong. I just want to know exactly how much over capacity I am at. Since the 7 gallon cant even house the gourami alone, that's why I ask. Maybe there is something else I'm missing with that, though.

    Again this website has been awesome and everyone has been kind and very helpful. I truly appreciate the time everyone takes to help out others and their questions.
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2016
  7. clk89

    clk89Fishlore VIPMember

    The inch per gallon rule is really outdated. Now days people use fish's activity level, bioload (aka poopers), and adult size. I mean according to that rule you could technically put a ten inch fish in a ten gallon, but it may not be able to move at all.

    You could do a lovely shrimp tank in a seven gallon, maybe some rare micro fish, or a betta.
  8. codyrex97

    codyrex97Well Known MemberMember

    Or imagine one 10 inch long fish in a 10 gallon. Nope lol that rule is extremely general and is something you're only gonna hear from a pet store or others that are ill-informed about fish.

    A fish's tank size is determined by activity, waste production, and adult size, not to mention the fish that do best in groups of six or more. You shouldn't keep those fish in smaller groups, so you might as well consider them x6 the amount of room you'd expect, which is why a little Cory cat needs at least a 20 gallon tank, because technically you should be getting him 5 more buddies and Cory cats are super adventurous so need a lot of space to explore.
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2016
  9. OP

    Cmc12991New MemberMember

    I actually figured because I've been taking activity level and such into account. I knew that couldnt be the obly reason. I ask because, just like you mentioned, it was the pet store telling me. I started to ask about a fish's energy and mentioned those reasoninfs and she made me feel silly by saying the one inch thing. Turns out ahe was just illinforming me and I had it more right. Thank you!!! Idk why but I felt kinda dumb and it's reassuring I am better at this than I thought . Thank you.

    Also that's why I got five tetra and the upgrade hapoens tomorrow or the next. Depebds on work hours. In going to add more silver tip so there is at least 5 schooling of each if those fish. But yeah, I'll look into tetras, or maybe shrimp for the seven gallon. I know a betta might do okay but idk if I want to do that. I'll figure iut something!
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 18, 2016

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