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post #1 of (permalink) Old 06-11-2019, 02:15 PM Thread Starter
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Location: California for school, Arkansas for home
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10 gallon tank ideas

Ah yes. The 10 gallon tank. The tank that started it all for me. As a college student, I recently got gifted one, which I plan to set up at the beginning of my hopefully senior year of college. It's gonna be an adventure! But...I want this tank to be relatively special. I only plan to be in the area for another year (after this last year, I'm out of this area). And i've spent the past week banging my head against the wall trying to figure out what in the world I should put in the tank.

The last time I checked the water in my area, it was around 7.4 ish, after a night of degassing. I'm planning on making a trip to the fish store to check for all the fun stuff, but I've been making ideas with this parameter in mind, hence all the fish listed do well in this water.

Filtration is going to be a sponge filter. I love the amount of filtration I can get out of them.

I don't plan to use a substrate. I'm aiming for a moss bottom tank, with a few pots of plants here and there. This way I don't have to move 30 extra pounds of gravel at the end of the year. Besides, the sponge filter will provide plenty of surface area for the fish.

I have enough Vallisneria to donate to my now former TA. I also have Hygrophila sp. ????, as well as Rotala. I plan to get red root floaters, and some xmas moss from home, which I plan to attach to mesh, something I've been meaning to do for a while.

But...I'm bored. Endler's have been a thing in my desktop 2.5. So have shrimp. CPD's. Goldring danios. Even a rosy loach! I want excitement, something that will remind me "here's why you became an aquarist." Something that will jazz up my senior year with a tough, but doable project. I'm thinking of a breeding project, culturing microworms and baby brine shrimp. Something that will say "here's something that i can do!" I don't necessarily enjoy growing hard to keep plants, and the tank will be ultra low light for the express purpose of reducing algae.

Maybe I should do a species tank? So far in the queue of thoughts have been the following:

Celestial Pearl Danios: but they're kind of overdone. And they're pricy fish. But they offer a good return if I can get them to breed. Still a viable option though

Danio tinwini: Nope, not happening. They're simply too dull for my tastes at this point. I know that I can keep them, and breeding them would be hard, but I don't think that I'm too interested in them.

Rosy loaches: Interesting. I'm not sure about the price point yet. I don't think there's many documented breeding cases of them, at least enough to make the front page of Google. But I also wonder how in demand they are.

Pea Puffers: only 3 in a 10 gallon tank, and it would have to be heavily planted. While I think breeding them would be cool, there's not enough fish mass for me to want them badly enough.

Doryichthys martensii: The return of the pipefish. I did briefly entertain going into saltwater, but the equipment bill alone is too much of a turnoff for me at this point in time. Freshwater pipefish sound like a suitable adventure, and I could pair them with Oto cats, which I have yet to breed. I think it would be fun to see what I could do with a pair/trio in the tank along with a small shoal of Otos, but this also seems very pricey, as I don't know how much the pipefish sell for in the area, as well as how market saturation might work. Brine shrimp might be a bit of an issue, but I'd love to see if i can train them onto frozen BBS and then frozen mysis. But at the same time, they might be too finicky for my schedule to suitably handle. Also a pair/trio in this size tank might be too big. I even think that the place I'm working at this summer has a Catappa tree that sheds its leaves.

Killifish: Yeah....turns out that I don't think my 10 gallon can handle 30 of any killifish species swimming around the tank. And 30 is around the quantity that I can find on e b a y/aquabid.

Food will be variable on which fish I get. Regardless, I'm getting a brine shrimp hatchery. Two if I get the pipefish. Golden pearls if I get the CPD's. Repashy Gel food if I get Oto cats (Soilent Green/Bottom Scratcher), or Rosy loaches (Grub Pie or insectivore diet).

Part of my decision will be informed by price research. If a pipefish is $50/fish, then I'm obviously not going to buy one. If a CPD is cheaper than a rosy loach, I'll probably get a shoal of CPD's.

At this point, I need some advice. Which fish would you choose? Are there options I'm missing out on? Anything that I should keep in mind?

So many fish to keep, not enough aquaria.
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