3.5g community - What is possible? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-07-2017, 07:43 PM Thread Starter
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3.5g community - What is possible?

I have a 3.5g tank, which accounting for substrate and hardscape gives me 2.5g of water. It's is cycled and well planted. It used to be a scarlet badis species tank but I'm ready to move on. I have my setup so that I can change water easily and frequently so that is not an issue. I clean my tank daily as it is a meditative hobby of mine so bioload isn't a huge concern, I'm more concerned about the fish being happy in that small of a space

What is possible in terms of a micro community?

I've been thinking maybe a small school, 4-6, micro rasboras and shrimp.

Or 4-5 CPD's and shrimp, though I think this may be pushing both the bioload and patience of the CPD's to be in such a small space.

Another option is I'd like a Koi betta, but I have a new cat who likes to poach my surface dwelling fish. I can still go this route, but I'd have to figure out a cover/screen situation. Not a huge deal.

All suggestions welcome. I'm willing to experiment
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-08-2017, 06:21 AM
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Some chili rasboras would probably be a better option than the CPDs in such a small tank. Tanks these size can definitely support tons of shrimp though. As far as specific suggestions, I am not that well versed, but just run through Rachel O' Leary's channel and watch a few species spotlights if you are looking to brainstorm haha. Check out my thread in my sig, I have a pair of 2.5s that I have had running for a year now with just shrimp, although I recently added a group of ruby tetras

My 20 Gallon Low Tech

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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-19-2017, 03:25 PM
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I've got a soft spot for the green neon (simulans) tetra, though I've never kept them personally (well, at my store, but not at home) they do well in small groups in smaller tanks.



You could also do the ember (amandae) tetra-



Three to four of them should do well in a densely planted setup so long as you're a very good stickler for water quality...
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-19-2017, 03:51 PM
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I think your better off with Endlers or a Betta or shrimp. Many micro fish are challenging in small setups. Personally i think it's too small for regular schools of neons and the like.
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-19-2017, 06:55 PM
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Boraras hands down. CPD's are way too skittish in my experience. They're great when you manage to get a glimpse of them, but I just want something I can look at.

Least Killifish are too drab for me, but they do add activity if that's all you want.

If you're super diligent about water changes maybe a pea puffer.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-19-2017, 07:09 PM
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One more vote for Endler's in a tank that size.


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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-19-2017, 09:15 PM
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What are the dimensions of the tank? If it's more of a square footprint, I would go with micro rasboras. If it's got a little more length, ember tetras would be good. I've got one of those Petco 6.6 gallon bookshelf tanks that after substrate and hardscape is right at 5 gallons of water. I've got 9 flame tetras, a flame dwarf gourami and two nerite snails. Whatever you go with, I'd suggest getting some sort of top. Cat or not, I wouldn't want to risk anyone jumping and getting out.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-22-2017, 10:15 PM Thread Starter
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I'm going to try endlers or micro rasboras (if they have them this week). I tried a couple in the past and they were very happy until my cat swooped them up.

Here is a pic of my tank for anyone who wants a reference as to what I'm working with

Kyrayne and Kyrayne like this.
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-01-2017, 05:40 AM
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Tank looks nice! Good luck on the fish. If you don't mind me asking, what kind of lighting are you running?


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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-01-2017, 06:58 PM Thread Starter
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I use a Fluval Eco Nano 6.5w. Works very well, though the light comes out in a cone shape and can leave the corners of my tank a bit dark. While the dispersion isn't the best, it creates more contrast areas in the tank. I have another finnex light (whatever the 12" 5w one is) and it has better spread but all the dark areas get a bit washed out and just don't look quite as nice IMO

Fluval Eco Nano Fresh & Saltwater LED Lamp: Aquarium Lighting
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