Fish for hard water 2.5 gallon
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Old 01-09-2013, 11:20 PM   #1
FriendsNotFood
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Fish for hard water 2.5 gallon


My mind is blanking on all the nano fish I know of and I need advice.

The setup: 2.5 gallon heavily planted that's been running for a few years.

It had phoenix rasboras but over the years they all died off one by one. I think my water is just too hard for them, even with Aquasoil. Plus I do 30% weekly water changes with tap water and that might be leading to a big weekly swing in pH.

There are pumpkin shrimp in the tank so whatever fish I end up choosing needs to be somewhat shrimp friendly.

My tap water here is hard. Something like 14dH.

What I need: Tiny fish that can handle hard water. Fish that prefer it, even better. Fish that aren't so active they can't be kept in a small tank. Also, they have to be able to eat frozen/flake food. What is this miracle nano fish?

So far off the top of my head the only thing I could come up with is a scarlet badis. But I'd only be able to keep one since it's impossible to find a female and two males would stress each other to death, right? That happened in my 36 gallon so it'd be WAY worse in a 2.5.

I've also considered CPDs and endlers but they seem too active for a 2.5?

What options am I missing?
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Old 01-10-2013, 12:58 AM   #2
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Honestly, a 2.5gal tank isn't large enough for any fish - especially if it's heavily planted. Even Mico Rasboras need swimming room.

Have you considered only keeping shrimp?

Your 30% water change isn't impacting much. It's your hardness you have to worry about, and if it's close to what's in your tank? Then you're set. Tiny pH fluctuations like that aren't a big deal.
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Old 01-10-2013, 01:20 AM   #3
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Yeah... the microrasboras were doing really well in there until I changed out my inert substrate for Aquasoil a year ago. They've been dropping like flies ever since ):

Would tigers do well in water this hard? I have a bunch of OEBTs I could bring in from home (this is a work tank) but my home water is way better (8gH, 4kH).
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Old 01-10-2013, 01:28 AM   #4
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I was going to say endlers myself. They are active, bit they are tiny.....well, the males anyway. If you kept just a few males, I think you would be alright. Without females, they are a bit calmer.
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Old 01-10-2013, 01:32 AM   #5
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Shrimp would be your best bet. Endlers could work as well. Even Least Kilifish.
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Old 01-10-2013, 01:41 AM   #6
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A betta could easily be kept in a 2.5 gallon. But depending on the fish he might not get along with your shrimp.
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Old 01-10-2013, 02:08 AM   #7
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Hah I thought about turning this into my 3rd betta tank but there's so much sharp driftwood in there the betta would impale himself.
Least killies are cute! I used to be all about color but now that I've had this tank for a few years I like the idea of the focus being on plants and shrimp rather than fish. Will the least killifish breed out of control? I don't have anything to feed the fry to :p
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Old 01-10-2013, 03:42 PM   #8
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Maybe a couple scarlet badis or a single dwarf puffer? Not sure about the hard water though.


edit: if there are shrimp in there then the puffer is a bad idea.

Last edited by idleivey; 01-10-2013 at 03:43 PM.. Reason: edit
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Old 01-10-2013, 09:36 PM   #9
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Dwarf Puffers easily need at least five gallons per fish.

Micro Rasboras also do best in 5-6gal+ at minimum. I wouldn't put any fish in a 2.5gal tank - not even a Betta - unless it was merely temporary.

Endlers are an especially bad idea unless you only have 2 or 3 and make sure they're males (as they're smaller) and only keep them in the tank temporarily. They need lots of room to swim and explore, as they're extremely active.

Stick to shrimp.
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