Fishies in a Can - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-19-2018, 04:42 PM Thread Starter
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Fishies in a Can

So I have a heavily (like HEAVILY) planted 5 gallon low tech high light tank, and I have kept 9 Neon Tetras, 3 White Clouds, and 1 Dalmation molly fry. Yes a white cloud died, but that was from it jumping out through a small gap between the lid (sigh). So far, my water parameters are perfect - 0 Ammonia, 0 Nitrite, 0 Nitrate (when I feed the fishies, there is less than 5 ppm if any nitrates after 30 or so minutes) but all gone after that. I was thinking of adding more neon tetras. Right now a total fish count of 12 and hoped I could add 3 or 4 more neon tetras. What do you guys think?
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-19-2018, 04:49 PM
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Fishies in a Can

I mean.... I myself have what might be considered a slightly overstocked 5, so I'm a bit of a rule bender. But I to consider my tank heavily planted with a lot of nutrient sucking plants. If anything, maybe add more white clouds as opposed to neons, as I'd assume neons have a slightly larger bioload. As long as fish are happy and water parameters are okay, I wouldn't burn you at the stake. But I don't know if I'd go so far myself to have that many fish in a 5. If you do, you'll probably have to a few large water changes a week.
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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-19-2018, 05:38 PM Thread Starter
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I mean.... I myself have what might be considered a slightly overstocked 5, so I'm a bit of a rule bender. But I to consider my tank heavily planted with a lot of nutrient sucking plants. If anything, maybe add more white clouds as opposed to neons, as I'd assume neons have a slightly larger bioload. As long as fish are happy and water parameters are okay, I wouldn't burn you at the stake. But I don't know if I'd go so far myself to have that many fish in a 5. If you do, you'll probably have to a few large water changes a week.
Hmmm I mean this is a dirted tank (walstad) if that changes anything and I've only done water changes twice every 3 weeks.
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-19-2018, 05:50 PM
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Heavily planted or not, I think you're asking for trouble by adding more fish to your current bio load. You're already over double the "recommended" amount of an inch per gallon.


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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-19-2018, 05:51 PM
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As long as water perameters allow it, and the fish don't get aggressive towards each other over space. I would add them slowly and keep checking, assuming you are going to add them.

But be careful! That is overstocked!

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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-19-2018, 05:59 PM Thread Starter
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As long as water perameters allow it, and the fish don't get aggressive towards each other over space. I would add them slowly and keep checking, assuming you are going to add them.

But be careful! That is overstocked!
Yikes! Alright I am going to think more about adding any more fish. I just felt like the tank needed some variety. Should I go about adding neocaridinias?
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-19-2018, 06:03 PM
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Yikes! Alright I am going to think more about adding any more fish. I just felt like the tank needed some variety. Should I go about adding neocaridinias?
Personally I enjoy a sharp contrast of of the life in a tank to the lush green. I would choose opae ula shimp for their distinct bright red coloration!

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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-19-2018, 08:04 PM Thread Starter
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Personally I enjoy a sharp contrast of of the life in a tank to the lush green. I would choose opae ula shimp for their distinct bright red coloration!
After some research (actually 2 minutes worth of Googling), it turns out opae ula need brakish water - ouch. Would cherry shrimp suffice?
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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-19-2018, 08:58 PM
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After some research (actually 2 minutes worth of Googling), it turns out opae ula need brakish water - ouch. Would cherry shrimp suffice?
You can get high grade cherries or other neocaridina which I think look just as nice. Here is a picture of one of mine:





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ADA mini M low tech with Cherry Shrimp and Dwarf Puffers
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-19-2018, 09:00 PM Thread Starter
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Oh my they are adorable! If have a ton of plants in my 5 gallon (no moss though), would they still need to be fed something? Should I decide to drop a moss ball in there?
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post #11 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-19-2018, 09:36 PM
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All your fish are peaceful. The white clouds probably need to be kept in a group of at bare minimum 4 and prefer slightly cooler water than most tropical fish, most people recommend 6+ so they don’t get stressed. As long as your fish are currently not fighting or tail nipping I wouldn’t worry about territorial related stress. If you have a ton of plants your bio load can be more than a unplanted tank since plants use up the nitrogen so rapidly. What nitrate test are you using? I know the api test bottle #2 must be beaten and shaken for a couple minutes to break the crystals up or it will show a false 0 nitrate reading. Red cherry shrimp breed crazy fast in warmer water. If you get 5, youll have 30-60 within a few months.
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post #12 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-19-2018, 09:40 PM
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Oh my they are adorable! If have a ton of plants in my 5 gallon (no moss though), would they still need to be fed something? Should I decide to drop a moss ball in there?
Red Cherry's are amazing! I wish I had some lol. In my experience they do not need to be fed everyday, they are scavengers (and good at it). They will eat Detritus, left over food, sometimes waste. They have a preference of course but can differ between shrimp. Before deciding if they would need any substantial feeding, I would look at your tank as it is right now. If there are areas that you could maybe scrub some algae away, or see that it could be cleaner, they will do just fine. But of course it cant hurt to blanch either some lettuce, zucchini, even carrots, every few days to supplement and make sure they have enough. Wafers are also a good source of protein for them but honestly if you put a slight bit more fish food in they will eat the left overs.

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post #13 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-19-2018, 09:51 PM Thread Starter
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All your fish are peaceful. The white clouds probably need to be kept in a group of at bare minimum 4 and prefer slightly cooler water than most tropical fish, most people recommend 6+ so they don’t get stressed. As long as your fish are currently not fighting or tail nipping I wouldn’t worry about territorial related stress. If you have a ton of plants your bio load can be more than a unplanted tank since plants use up the nitrogen so rapidly. What nitrate test are you using? I know the api test bottle #2 must be beaten and shaken for a couple minutes to break the crystals up or it will show a false 0 nitrate reading. Red cherry shrimp breed crazy fast in warmer water. If you get 5, youll have 30-60 within a few months.
I am using both the API Liquid test kit and test strips. I do shake the nitrate bottles but not for minutes (uh oh). At least the strips are doing well. Surprisingly not a single one of my fish died (besides one thag flew out of the lid lol) especially the neons.
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post #14 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-20-2018, 12:54 AM
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Where is this tank located? Are you that tight on space? I feel like a 10g takes up no space at all. Pics of tank? How much swim space is really in there between all the plants?
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post #15 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-20-2018, 02:11 AM
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I get that the last thing we all want to hear is to get a bigger tank. Especially with planted tanks where moving plants means shocking them. But youíd be able to fully stock and have cherry shrimp. If you have 50+ cherry shrimp in that 5 gallon tank itís going to be very very crowded unfortunately and you will be removing dozens every other month. 10 gallons I feel would be ideal so you can have more white clouds too. Beware white clouds like temps under room temps like 65f and up to about 72f and your neons like as low as 70f, red cherry shrimp have faster breeding cycles and grow (and die) faster in high temps. 80f for them will make them breed and grow super fast like flies, which causes molting issues for some tanks. They prefer about 72f as well tho.

The api nitrate drop test is weird. Ive literally shaken the bottle hard for 30 seconds, ran the test and came up light orange and beat and shake the test bottles for another minute and end up with bright red for a re-test... As for the test strips, most say they arenít super accurate but If you can confirm their accuracy with the drop test then itís probably fine.
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