What's in your 20 gallon tank?

Discussion in 'Freshwater Beginners' started by Crabbyj, Apr 15, 2006.

  1. CrabbyjNew MemberMember

    Hey all,

    I'm cycling a 20 gallon long tank and looking into fish types. Also I'm a beginner.

    Just curious if any of you have 20 gallon tanks and what you stock in them?

    Or what you would suggest go in one?
  2. GunnieWell Known MemberMember

    I have a 20 gallon long that currently has 3 buenos aires tetras, 4 yo yo loaches, & 5 cory cats. There are so many possibilities with a 20 gallon tank. Is your tank long or high?

  3. CraigWell Known MemberMember

    if u look below thats what i hav in my 20gallon i like 2 buy my fish small and let them grow in2 a 20gallon i plan on gettin a swordtail maybe 1 more platy or an angelfish but careful not 2 overstock ur tank as im probably doin if u do b sure 2 do more frequent water changes i also hav plants and driftwood in my 20gallon with a supply of oxygen through a tetra-TEC air pump hope this helps u

    C W

  4. CraigWell Known MemberMember

    i would suggest u could get maybe 2 guppies a swordtail (or a 2:1 ratio 1 male to 2 female swordtails so the 1 female is not hassled by the male) a platy (ratio apllies 2 platys also if u want 2 get a male and 2 females) i need 2 get another female platy as of the minute i hav a male and female so i expect babies could b on the horizon lol

    cory cats r good fish but buy 3 at least as they r happier in groups i had cories in my last tank set up but they didnt seem 2 last they may do better with oxygen supplied constantly 2 the tank as i did not hav an air pump in my last 20gallon.

    U could buy 1 gourami but do not get a golden gourami as my experience with this fish is that they r very territorial and aggressive towards other fish, the small pearl gourami i hav in my tank is a gr8 wee fish

    I wouldnt suggest that u get a red tail shark as i hav been lucky that the 1 i hav is not aggressive towards the other fish since my platys r nearly full size and its smaller than most of the fish it seems 2 b scared but it doesnt stop him swimmin about with the other fish

    Bristlenose suckerfish or (ancistrus suckerfish as its called) is a gr8 adition 2 a 20gallon and keeps ur tank clean from algae i also feed my 1 a small algae wafer every so often check on the hompage of fishlore and look at fish profiles 2 c more possible fish u could put in but make sure they r all compatible and do not need a bigger tank

    also think about puttin 1 or 2 live plants in2 ur tank i currently hav 3 in mine and im sure it will b 4 soon, if u hav the correct lighting that is HAV FUN STOCKING UR TANK

    C W

  5. CrabbyjNew MemberMember

    My tank is long. I have a few fake plants and 2 caves.

    I remember seeing the buenos aires tetras in the store gunnie. There were so many tetras. I also really like the sparkling tetra and the congo gouramis, but I can't remember if the store had those. I'll be sure to stay away from the golden if it's aggresive.

    I take it that live plants help the oxygen supply in the tank. Where do you get those from?

    I don't recall seeing them in the store. I have flourescent lighting. What type lighting is required for plants?

    My son wants a shark, but the smallest I've found grows to 4 or 5 inches. I'm afraid it would eat the smaller fish like you say Craig. I wish there was a shark that only grows to 2 inches.

    I like a lot of the schooling fish because they are small, but I don't want to get 6 of any 1 kind . I only want 2 or 3 of the same so I can get more variety.
  6. CraigWell Known MemberMember

    i hav flourescent lighting and my plants r doin gr8 ur local fish shop or pet store should hav sum somehwere is the store yes they help with oxygen and also use up ammonia and other chemicals that r dangerous 2 ur fish the shark could constantly annoy ur fish like i said i was lucky with the 1 i got

    C W
  7. ButterflyModeratorModerator Member

    In the 20G long I have six long finned bristlenose juveniles, in another 20G I have half black pastel guppies and fry and the last 20 G has a female marble angel who had her eye damaged and doesn't swim right so she has the tank to herself.
    My 20 G are usually used as breeder tanks.
  8. CrabbyjNew MemberMember

    I like dalmation molly's. Anyone have any experience with those? I've read they can have problems easily. Maybe not so good for a beginner.

    How about the Congo tetras? Anyone ever keep those?

    Also what rule is best used for stocking the tank. The inch/gallon or the surface area rule.
    I calculated both and I get 20" of fish for the inch/gallon and 30" of fish for the surface area.
    I suppose I would be safe if I stayed under 30" of their full grown size.

    So many questions...
  9. CraigWell Known MemberMember

    inch/gallon is the best i think as 4 the congo tetras my best m8 has 1 but from what i no i think they can get quite big i know his 1 is massive lol just about eats whole algae wafers lovely fish though but possibly maybe 2 big 4 a 20gallon his tank is about 30 gallon or more u c maybe if u got a small 1 and let it grow in2 the tank but im not 100% sure il let the experts tell u whats best but thats what iv experienced with watchin a congo when im at his house

    C W
  10. CrabbyjNew MemberMember

    I've read they get as big as 3 inches. Unless their are different types that get bigger. The ones I looked up online had really pretty fins - they looked soft and flowing. Pretty fish.
  11. CraigWell Known MemberMember

    u may b right there crabby! i would say go 4 it then ! yes their fins r v nice

    C W
  12. 0morrokhFishlore VIPMember

    I just got a 20 long, and I think it will have 4 Otos, 6 Cardinal Tetras, and 4 female Bettas. That's about 30 inches--I use the surface area rule. :)
    If you want only 2 or 3 of a kind of fish, then definately stay away from any shoaling fish--that includes Congos, which by the way might get too big for a 20g anyway. :-\ Some fish that you can keep 3 of are Guppies, Platys, female Swordtails, Mollies, female Bettas, Otos, Cories, and maybe some loaches, I don't know as much about those. But just so you know, 3 female Mollies would take up almost as much room as a shoal of small tetras. The shoaling (schooling) fish can make a wonderful display with their behavior. Oh, and I would stay away from sharks.
    Your lighting is fine for low-light plants like java fern, java moss, Crypt spp., Anubias spp., and a few others.
    Have fun with your tank! :)
  13. CrabbyjNew MemberMember

    I wasn't sure if the Congo was a schooling fish, but since it is a tetra...I'm sure 6 would be too many for a 20 gallon. There are plenty of other pretty tetras and lots that grow to only 1 to 1.5 inches.

    I liked the Dalmation Molly's, but am considerting getting the Dalmation danios instead. I think 6 of those would look neat in my tank. They only grow to 1.5 nches. I definatly want some cherry barbs or platys. I like bright colors.

    It will be so much fun to actually have fish in the tank after waiting for it to cycle.
  14. CrabbyjNew MemberMember

    About the shoaling/schooling fish...

    Do you always have to get 6 or more of those? I've read conflicting information - some sites say 2 or more and others say at least 6.
  15. GunnieWell Known MemberMember

    6 is usually recommended so you can see the actual schooling behavior of some species, and to reduce aggression in species like tiger barbs. There are always exceptions. I had 3 cory cats in a 10 gallon and they did just fine, though they are happier now with 2 more corys and 10 gallons more to swim around in! ;)
  16. CrabbyjNew MemberMember

    Ok, makes sense.

    If I get a school of fish is it supposed to be males and females or could I just get all males. I really don't want any experience with fishy-babies yet because I would have no place to put them and don't want to have any bad experiences for the kids (such as them being eaten by their parents!!!)
  17. CraigWell Known MemberMember

    i love my 20gallon but i would love 2 upgarde 2 a bigger tank 1 day

    C W
  18. GunnieWell Known MemberMember

    Most of your common fish (not including cichlids) usually just spread their eggs around and aren't attentive. They usually get eaten by the other fish. I wouldn't worry about any babies unless you get livebearers. I've had cory cats spawn a few times, but never saw a baby, and all the eggs disappeared within a couple of days. You will probably have good population control as long as you stay away from the livebearers. ;)
  19. 0morrokhFishlore VIPMember

    What are Dalmation Danios? Are those the same as Leopard Danios?
    You know that Cherry Barbs are shoaling fish, right? Platys are awesome. ;) Just make sure you get all females if you don't want fry--or all males, I'm not sure if they will fight like Swords or not...

    The majority of shoaling fish won't breed unless you give them certain conditions...so that's nothing to worry about. A lot of shoalers can't be sexed easily, anyway. And if you can it would be to your advantage to try to get males and females--you will see the best of them with the opposite sex for them to impress! ;)
  20. CrabbyjNew MemberMember

    Oh yes, they are actually Leopard Danios. I called them that because my kids wanted Dalmation Molly's and I told them I found a replacement - Dalmation Danios. But there is really no such fish, lol. Sorry, my error.

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