10G Stocking - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-18-2017, 12:29 AM Thread Starter
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10G Stocking


I've been stalking this forum over the last few weeks, and finally created an account. I've been into fish keeping for several years, but have never had a planted tank before. My 30G tank with African Shell Dwellers has been set up for 4 years now, and I had an empty 10 gallon I had an itch to use.

After doing some research I decided to go with low tech/low light plants. For plants I currently have a Java Fern, an anubias Nana petite, an anubias coffeefolia, a crypt wendtii bronze and two crypt luteas. I'm also planning on adding some Christmas moss soon once my LFS has it in stock.

My current fish stock is 5 dwarf Corys (c. Habrosus) and 5 red neon blue eye rainbows (pseudomugil luminatus).

I would like to add some neocardina shrimp to the tank (thinking blue velvet or rili), and would also like to add 5 chili rasboras (boraras brigittae).

Is it possible to add the 5 chili rasboras or will this be too much for the bioload? I've read many comments on this forum that the dwarf species have such a low bioload you can usually "overstock" them in a planted tank.
And how many shrimp should/can I start with?

I'm running a Marineland Penguin 75 which I jump started with media from my established tank. Between the filter and the plants I've had 0 readings on ammonia, nitrites and nitrates from day one.

Thanks in advance!
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-18-2017, 12:57 PM
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My concern is that you have two social species already, which can benefit from being in a larger group than what you have. And youd be adding a third social species which could also benefit from a larger group. If you really want to try adding more fish, Id start by looking at the existing groups, in my opinion.

On the filter side, Id definitely consider something bigger if you want to play with overstock. While the plants will help eat the Nitrates and Ammonia, you still need a healthy bacteria colony to help out, and the filter really should be sized to your stocking, and not your tank.

Im not really familiar with with rainbows or shrimp to comment on the stocking beyond that. Hopefully someone has further advice here.

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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-18-2017, 01:57 PM
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Now that you have plants, you don't want your nitrate levels at zero. In fact, you will need to add fertilizer, which will not impact your fish directly. Indirectly, it will affect them by having healthy plants, which will help keep your water clean and 'fresh' for them. So, study-up on macros (N-P-K) and micros (trace) here on TPT. You won't need much of each, but you will need some of each.

Tank capacity for stocking can be expanded by adding oxygen. Aerators don't add oxygen very well. Make sure your filter is creating good ripples on the water surface and/or add a small pump (I like Koralias) that, when pointed at the surface create wave-like rippling. You don't want to break the water's surface, just make it ripple well. This increases oxygen. It also drives of some CO2, which plants need, so you may want to add Excel, by Seachem, to help the plants get the carbon they need.

I have a greatly over-stocked 29-gal and have manged to get away with it for many years. Seachem also makes a good ammonia monitor (Ammonia alert) that attaches to your glass and is very inexpensive. you can then check your ammonia anytime by just looking at it. An increase in ammonia tells you you need to take steps to correct it, which may mean fish load reduction. Another indicator is fish behavior (swimming near the top when they normally wouldn't, little movement and aggressive behavior as they try to stake-out some territory of their own).
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-19-2017, 01:31 AM
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I agree with the previous response, and recommend not adding another species of fish. Adding more of one species will give you a better experience with that fish (maybe 1-2 more rainbows), I believe. The rainbows are really pretty fish, so I wouldn't want some chilis to distract from them.
A bit of overstock can be OK and plants do help, but they don't eliminate need for water change. 10g can go awry quickly. Glad you had cycled media on-hand. It makes MTS so much easier.

I'd like to see your shellie tank, too. Float some plant in there temporarily so it fits in here!

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I can only grow plants when they're completely under water. Everything else is doomed.
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-19-2017, 02:29 AM Thread Starter
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I was a bit hesitant to add another species of fish. I researched my fish options like crazy and wanted the c. Habrosus due to the fact that they are the smallest of the the pygmy Corys, and are also less inclined to schoal, but instead tend to break out into groups of two or three. I figured while more is better, I could probably get away with 5 and still have happy social fish.
My original plan was to also get 8-10 of the chili rasboras to have a nice schoal of them. However, while my LFS does carry them, they haven't been able to get any in for a while, and the last time I was down there I saw the rainbows and was drawn to them... So I bought all 5 she had in stock. I may stick to just adding a few more rainbows when I can get more, then instead of the chilis.

As for 0 nitrates in the tank, it's such a strange thing to see, coming from a fish only tank. I didn't expect the plants to work that well! It's like waiting for the other shoe to drop. I had hoped not to have to add a lot of ferts as it's a low tech/low light tank, but I was beginning to suspect my fish bioload wouldn't be enough. I'll start looking into the Seachem products.

I purposefully went lighter on the HOB filter than I normally would, hoping to create a somewhat "self supporting" system with the filter really just there as backup to the plants and to keep the cycle going when the lights are off. I obviously still plan to do weekly WCs and substrate cleaning. Besides my driftwood is still leaching tannins like crazy... And while I like the natural look of the tinted water, I still need to be able to see my fish!

Thank you everyone for your responses, it's very much appreciated!
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