Two small schools vs one bigger school - The Planted Tank Forum
 2Likes
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-04-2019, 04:16 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Feb 2019
Posts: 29
Question Two small schools vs one bigger school

Hi everyone,

So I am setting up a new planted tank with high light and CO2. It's the Fluval Spec 16 gallon. When you the subtract the internal filter space from the tank, the dimensions are 18.25" long x 14.5" high x 11.125" deep (12.74 gal). When you include the internal filter, it brings it up to 14.66 gal. I decided to stock it with 1 male Betta, 9 Green Neon Tetras, and 9 Ember Tetras. This put me at 92% stocking level according to aqadvisor: AqAdvisor - Fluval Spec 16
I really like the idea of having a school of green/blue colored fish with a school of orange/red colored fish, and since they are both Tetras they might school together at times, which I've seen them do on YouTube (It looks awesome!). I also would include my Betta in there to encourage them to school more.
But now my question is, being that it won't change my stocking level, is it a better idea if I just stick with either all Green Neon Tetras or all Ember Tetras and just have one bigger school of 18? Would they school much better if I did that? Let me know what you guys think

EDIT: Also I am considering overstocking by adding a school of Pygmy Cories, do you recommend this or is it better to be understocked?

Last edited by Sanad; 03-04-2019 at 04:18 PM. Reason: Another question
Sanad is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-04-2019, 09:21 PM
Planted Member
 
Cinnamonamon's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Oct 2018
Location: Michigan
Posts: 187
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sanad View Post
Hi everyone,

So I am setting up a new planted tank with high light and CO2. It's the Fluval Spec 16 gallon. When you the subtract the internal filter space from the tank, the dimensions are 18.25" long x 14.5" high x 11.125" deep (12.74 gal). When you include the internal filter, it brings it up to 14.66 gal. I decided to stock it with 1 male Betta, 9 Green Neon Tetras, and 9 Ember Tetras. This put me at 92% stocking level according to aqadvisor: AqAdvisor - Fluval Spec 16
I really like the idea of having a school of green/blue colored fish with a school of orange/red colored fish, and since they are both Tetras they might school together at times, which I've seen them do on YouTube (It looks awesome!). I also would include my Betta in there to encourage them to school more.
But now my question is, being that it won't change my stocking level, is it a better idea if I just stick with either all Green Neon Tetras or all Ember Tetras and just have one bigger school of 18? Would they school much better if I did that? Let me know what you guys think

EDIT: Also I am considering overstocking by adding a school of Pygmy Cories, do you recommend this or is it better to be understocked?
I can't speak to the appropriateness of 2 different Tetra types -- I'd guess whichever is more aesthetically pleasing to you would work though! On the over/under stocking thing -- I don't think you'll ever find a person who will tell you it would be better to overstock (except in cases of overstocking on a specific species to reduce it's aggression). Understocked means less worry about water parameters staying healthy, and fish having plenty of swimming space!
Blue Ridge Reef likes this.

It's not a mystery...snails are the BEST!
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Cinnamonamon is offline  
post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-05-2019, 02:48 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Feb 2019
Posts: 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cinnamonamon View Post
I can't speak to the appropriateness of 2 different Tetra types -- I'd guess whichever is more aesthetically pleasing to you would work though! On the over/under stocking thing -- I don't think you'll ever find a person who will tell you it would be better to overstock (except in cases of overstocking on a specific species to reduce it's aggression). Understocked means less worry about water parameters staying healthy, and fish having plenty of swimming space!
Thanks for the reply Cinnamonamon,

To clarify what I’m asking, would having 18 of one kind of fish significantly improve the directional schooling behavior of the fish instead of having 9 of each kind of fish. I’m hoping they can school just as well with two different types of fish since they are both Tetras of similar size.

As far is overstocking goes, I realize it’s probably always better to understock, but at the same time if my focus is to get these fish to school and I can do enough water changes to keep the water parameters in check, would having a school of Cory cats added make the fish feel safer and less likely to hide? Although, now that I think about it, if the result of adding a school of Cory Cats is that the other fish feel safer, I suppose that would make them less likely to school since schooling is a defense mechanism?
Sanad is offline  
 
post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-05-2019, 03:14 AM
Planted Member
 
Cinnamonamon's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Oct 2018
Location: Michigan
Posts: 187
Ahh, that makes more sense, lol. Unfortunately, it's well above my experience level! I would wonder though -- if the Betta was to encourage schooling by making them feel defensive, would having the cory cats to help them feel safe also be counter-productive...?

It's not a mystery...snails are the BEST!
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Cinnamonamon is offline  
post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-05-2019, 04:10 PM
Algae Grower
 
KeroRocks's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Massachusetts
Posts: 61
My ember tetras are great little schoolers. I wish I had gotten more. I have 10 and for the most part they travel around the tank together.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

20 Gallon Long tank journey

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
KeroRocks is offline  
post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-05-2019, 06:32 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
Discusluv's Avatar
 
PTrader: (4/100%)
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Elk Grove, California
Posts: 3,775
With the majority of tetras, the more in a school the more comfortable they feel. This is because of the genetic predisposition of "safety in numbers"- the more fish in a school, the less likely will be a meal of a larger fish.
When comfortable, tetras will display natural behaviors, which includes schooling.

But, there are other reasons a tetra group wont school that doesn't have anything to do with numbers. Black-water species prefer dimly lit aquariums as they come from densely covered streams with tea stained waters.
I have green neon's (Paracheeirodon similans) in my discus tank, these fish do not like bright light and retreat to foliage when have my light at its brightest.

Here is a quote from Simply fish that talks about the areas they are endemic to:

Habitat

Unlike its congeners P. innesi and P. axelrodi this species is an exclusive inhabitant of blackwater environments and tends to be found only in the upper, terra firme, reaches of tributary drainages.

Such habitats typically contain slow to moderately-flowing water with thick, often overhanging, riparian vegetation and sandy substrates covered in fallen branches, tree roots and leaf litter.

The water is typically acidic, of negligible carbonate hardness and conductivity and stained brownish due to the presence of humic substances released by decomposing organic matter.

Although it occurs over a similar range to P. axelrodi the two are not found together and P. simulans also tends to occur in warmer waters.
Paracheirodon simulans ? Green Neon Tetra (Hyphessobrycon simulans) ? Seriously Fish


Need to know about the fish you are considering before can make decisions on stocking. Simply fish is an excellent online resource to do this. Look up the Embers habitat information- see if they can take more light then the green neons. This will make just as much impact in your tank as schooling size

I see no problem with adding 8 pygmy corydoras. But, they need to be in bigger groups I would do no less than 8. You will need to do some weekly water changes- the volume will depend on water parameter tests. If you foresee issues with this obligation, then I would forego the corydoras.


Discusluv is online now  
post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-06-2019, 01:10 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Feb 2019
Posts: 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Discusluv View Post
Need to know about the fish you are considering before can make decisions on stocking. Simply fish is an excellent online resource to do this. Look up the Embers habitat information- see if they can take more light then the green neons. This will make just as much impact in your tank as schooling size

I see no problem with adding 8 pygmy corydoras. But, they need to be in bigger groups I would do no less than 8. You will need to do some weekly water changes- the volume will depend on water parameter tests. If you foresee issues with this obligation, then I would forego the corydoras.
Thanks you for your comments Discusluv.

Looking up the Ember Tetra on seriouslyfish.com seems to suggest they also don't like high light, here's what the website had to say about their habitat:

Little information appears to exist but presumably inhabits minor tributaries, backwaters and oxbow lakes rather than main river channels.

In the Araguaia drainage such habitats typically contain soft, weakly acidic water with the substrate covered by a layer of fallen leaves and branches.


Although, I have seen videos of both Green Neon Tetras and Ember Tetras schooling in what seems to be a high light tank. I have also seen them school at my LFS in fairly bright tanks. Being that I plan on it being very heavily planted, I figure that should make them feel safe. But, I'm worried my high lights will just cause them to keep hiding within the plants.

I was also considering a school of 7 Neon Tetras with a school of 7 Lambchop Rasboras, but I was reading on seriouslyfish.com that they need a tank that is a minimum of 24 inches in length, so I was afraid my 18" long tank would be too small for them. The Green Neon Tetras and the Ember Tetras, on the other hand, require a tank that is a minimum of 18" of length according to seriouslyfish.com, so I figured they would be a better fit.

Has anyone else who owns Green Neon Tetras or Ember Tetras noticed diminished schooling behavior in a high light tank?
Sanad is offline  
post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-13-2019, 04:26 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Feb 2019
Posts: 29
Bump

Is anyone keeping Green Neon Tetras or Ember Tetras in a high light heavily planted tank? Do they still school in such an environment or are they always hiding?

Also if I can get more recommendations on whether to have 9 Embers and 9 Green Neons or just get 18 of one species instead.

Thanks.
Sanad is offline  
post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-13-2019, 05:34 AM
Planted Tank Enthusiast
 
cl3537's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Montreal, Quebec
Posts: 639
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sanad View Post
Is anyone keeping Green Neon Tetras or Ember Tetras in a high light heavily planted tank? Do they still school in such an environment or are they always hiding?

Also if I can get more recommendations on whether to have 9 Embers and 9 Green Neons or just get 18 of one species instead.

Thanks.
I don't find neons or cardinals are great schooling fish they group together but not as tightly and not as often as true school species. I have high light and Co2 in a 17g 6 neons and 6 espei rasboras.

Espei rasboras are much better schooling fish and rummynose tetras(too big for your tank). If you really want schooling get one species and that will maximize the chances. My espeis school together very well and are small you could probably have 20 in your tank but they are an orangey bronze color which you may not want. Sometimes the neons and the Espeis group together and swim r but not often and not as tightly as the Espei Rasboras alone.
Discusluv likes this.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
cl3537 is offline  
post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-13-2019, 02:20 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Feb 2019
Posts: 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by cl3537 View Post
I don't find neons or cardinals are great schooling fish they group together but not as tightly and not as often as true school species. I have high light and Co2 in a 17g 6 neons and 6 espei rasboras.

Espei rasboras are much better schooling fish and rummynose tetras(too big for your tank). If you really want schooling get one species and that will maximize the chances. My espeis school together very well and are small you could probably have 20 in your tank but they are an orangey bronze color which you may not want. Sometimes the neons and the Espeis group together and swim r but not often and not as tightly as the Espei Rasboras alone.
I was actually originally planning on stocking my tank with 7 Neon Tetras and 7 Espei Rasbora, but I read on SeriouslyFish.com they require at least 24” of tank length and mine is only 18” long. I read several people suggesting the Neon Tetras and Espei Rasbora weren’t really suitable for Nano tanks. I’m also able to stock less of them due to their slightly bigger size so I figured it would be better to get more of a smaller species like the Green Neon Tetras and Ember Tetras.
I got the impression from my research that Tetras are the best schoolers so I’m surprised to hear that Rasboras school better. Does anyone know the smallest species that would be considered a true schooling fish?
Sanad is offline  
post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-01-2019, 01:02 PM
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: May 2019
Posts: 10
I have 7 green neon tetras and 7 ember tetras in my 21 gallon tank.... theyíre two of my absolute favorite fish. I find the ember tetras to be a little more shy and donít school as well as the green neon tetras.

I do think itís because the embers are younger and smaller, maybe that is why, but the green neons have schooled since day 1, the second I put them in!

You have good taste! The green neon tetras look so good under different lighting at different times of the day in a heavily planted tank.
Joeturbo is offline  
post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-13-2019, 06:35 AM
Newbie
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Nov 2019
Posts: 1
I have 6 ember 6 CPDs and Pygmy Cory in a 24 G planted nano.
The Embers started to school together in 6 from first day and it was really fun to watch. The CPDs are 5 male and one female, this the males keep harassing each other. I once saw a Embers got curious on a CPDs and the Larger CPDs shy away. The Pgymy also school together but in a smaller number, mostly 4.
nypapaya is offline  
post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-13-2019, 02:19 PM
Planted Member
 
ustabefast's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Santa Barbara
Posts: 184
I think the Ember/green neon combinaton would look great but adding a school of pygmy cories would be too much. The tank would be cluttered.
I'd go with the pygmies and one of the Tetra species or just the Tetras together rather than all three in there together.
You are also taking a chance including a male betta into the mix.
Do you have a extra tank for him if he does not play well with the others?
ustabefast is offline  
post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-13-2019, 06:24 PM
Wannabe Guru
 
Triport's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: Central Coast of California
Posts: 1,079
Characins are my favorite fish. I get why people choose just one big school as a design choice in a planted show aquarium but IMO it is much more interesting to have multiple schools of fish and watch how they interact with each other. This is actually how you find them in nature (I watch a lot of videos on fish from the Amazon in their natural habitat).

There is a misconception that fish of different species won't school together at all. Definitely untrue in nature and in your fish tank but there are a lot of variables that influence how fish behave in an aquarium setting. In such a small brightly lit aquarium green neons and ember tetras will probably spend much of their time loosely grouped with their own species hiding behind hardscape or plants.

In my 100 gallon I currently have 4 species of tetras in small groups (that I plan on adding to as soon as I have the money and quarantine tank room). I have about 5 cardinals, 4 green neons, 8 embers, and 10 or so reed tetras. They all hang out with their own groups but also often form a loose shoal from time to time. Any time they are spooked (which is any time I walk toward the tank basically) all 4 species (along with a few pygmy Corydoras) form a mega school that flee from me. Very cool to watch. I am looking forward to seeing how they will interact each other once I bolster the number of each species (and maybe add a few different species as well).


ETA: for such a small tank I woulc consider something like micro rasboras as I don't think either species of tetra is that interesting without at least 36" of tank to swim back and forth in. Just my experience keeping them in smaller tanks.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Last edited by Triport; 11-13-2019 at 06:26 PM. Reason: suggestion
Triport is online now  
post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-13-2019, 11:16 PM
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Aug 2019
Location: Michigan
Posts: 63
I have a 24" 17 gallon heavy plants with plants at surface as well with 9 embers, dwarf Cory and cherry barbs. The embers school sometimes, but not always. Do I just need more of them? I was hoping for a big school as well so am debating about what to put in my next tank, same size. Interesting comment by Triport that tetras don't school well in a smaller tank. Anyone else have experience?

I also have a heavy planted 10 gallon cube with 6 Kubotai Rasbora and 6 Chili Rasbora, both school! The Kubotai are so green though they don't stand out as much in the plants, so I tend to like the chili more for the color.

What about the celestial pearl danio?

Fish+Plants thanks you!!
Michigan

Last edited by fish+plants; 11-13-2019 at 11:17 PM. Reason: question added
fish+plants is offline  
Reply

Tags
None

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the The Planted Tank Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Going to attempt a small semi-self-sustaining tank af240 Shrimp & Other Invertebrates 8 05-07-2018 12:58 PM
So, how small are baby pond snails? daylily Shrimp & Other Invertebrates 4 02-20-2013 12:06 AM
My small tank experience Gulfcoastguy Shrimp & Other Invertebrates 8 12-27-2012 08:28 PM
2 Schools of different fish or 1 big school? Bchen7106 Fish 16 08-13-2012 07:16 PM
Another schooling thread. I need a 1" fish that schools tightly! WaterLogged Fish 28 03-16-2011 01:09 AM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome