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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-29-2015, 02:56 AM Thread Starter
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New Aquarium

Hello everyone, I'm new to this forum but not aquariums. That being said, my first and only aquarium was a 40 gallon reef tank. Stunning and so much fun. Anyways, after being out of the hobby I'm beung given a 20 gallon. This time Id like to go freashwater. This tank is currently owned by a friend and stocked with a horrific 130" of fish. Obviously first task is to cut that down. My biggest questions are whatto stock and plant care.

1. Will the dual t5ho light be enough? It has one color max bulb and one 6500K bulb.

2. Which fish should I keep or rehome? He has hatchets, cherry barbs, tigerbarbs?, zebra danios, platys, mollies, guppies, gobies, plecos, and a goldfish.

3. Im well prepared for the maintenance of a high light tank but, not sure of the equipment needed nor parameters.

4. Which plants should I keep and di I need to replace the gravel filter?
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-29-2015, 03:24 AM
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20 high or long?

What wattage is the lighting fixture?

I'd definitely lose the goldfish.. probably the platys and mollies too personally but that still leaves a lot. They're poop machines. Ditch the guppies if you don't want fry in everything all the time too.

If it's high light you'll want a carbon source and fertilizers. Plenty of info here about those.
If you ever ended up going the diy or pressurized CO2 route, yes you'd want to ditch the under gravel filter if it's air lift style. The surface disturbance from the aerators will out gas CO2 faster. Even if it's not air lift plant roots will tangle all in it etc etc.

The biggest secret to a successful planted tank is that black gravel with the bits of neon pink, orange, green etc as your substrate!
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-29-2015, 07:21 AM Thread Starter
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Its a 20 gallon high. Personally Platy fish are my favorite but, you're right about mollies and goldfish. Would the cherry barbs be better than the supossed tigers? I'm not real sure on how any of these fish behave unfortunately.

So for filtration I was thinking a hob style rated for 50 gallons?

Why is this gravel the secret? Lol
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-29-2015, 12:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Alumentum View Post
Its a 20 gallon high. Personally Platy fish are my favorite but, you're right about mollies and goldfish. Would the cherry barbs be better than the supossed tigers? I'm not real sure on how any of these fish behave unfortunately.

So for filtration I was thinking a hob style rated for 50 gallons?

Why is this gravel the secret? Lol
Twas a joke about the gravel, that stuff is hideous!

I have no experience with cherries or tigers personally. If the platys you plan on keeping are primarily in the orange/red range you may want to go with a different fish altogether to contrast. When I kept red wag and orange mm platies I noticed it was just to much red spectrum for my liking.
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-29-2015, 01:15 PM Thread Starter
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I dont care much for the cherry barbs. I do love the tigers although they look odd. I may do the platy fish with the barbs for a gold, red and striped look.

How do you think some galaxy danios and/or a blue gourami would for contrast?

My biggest worry is how the plants will handle the stocking. Do you stock a freshwater tank like a saltwater one?
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-29-2015, 03:28 PM
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I've never stocked a sw tank so idk. The danios are gorgeous I want some myself but can't find them locally. As for gouramis, people like them but personally I've had nothing but bullies when I stock them. I don't like them personally. Plants eat the byproducts of fish so it should be no problem.
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-29-2015, 11:05 PM Thread Starter
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So this is my ideal stocking. Give me your opinions.

Platy- there are already 8 various ones that I'll keep.

Mollies- Im keeping only one sailfin male and his mate. The other 6 are gone.

Pearl danios- I'd like to get a good 10-15 school.

Tiger barbs?- id like to keep the 5 and increase to 10. Just not sure what they are.

Any suggestion for a splash of blue.


As for plants, does anyone have an suggestions for foreground and midground plants? Ive decided on anachris for background.
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-29-2015, 11:54 PM
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That's already like 30-35 fish. Quite a bit considering the live bearers are messy little things and will add to your stock regularly. Anacharis doesn't really play nicely with flourish excel just FYI. Not sure if you're planning on using it.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-30-2015, 01:59 AM Thread Starter
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I havent figured out the fertilazation thing yet. Im actually second guessing the mollies due to the sailfins aggression. I think I may hold of on extra barbs as well since Im not sure what they are.

What sort of fertilizers do plants need? I was mostly looking at java fern, dwarf lilly and maybe some sort of red plant.
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-30-2015, 02:01 AM Thread Starter
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I havent figured out the fertilazation thing yet. Im actually second guessing the mollies due to the sailfins aggression. I think I may hold off on extra barbs as well since Im not sure what they are.

What sort of fertilizers do plants need? I was mostly looking at java fern, dwarf lilly and maybe some sort of red plant.
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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-30-2015, 04:35 AM
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Npk like any other plant really. Most of what you're looking at should do OK without ferts
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