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Hi everyone, what are your thoughts, opinions, and experiences with keeping peaceful fish from different parts of the world together in a planted tank? Specifically, keeping fish like Ember tetras and Habrosus cory cats with fish like Celestial Pearl Danios and Chili Rasboras? I think they would look really cool together, but I'm kind of hung up on whether to keep fish from different continents in the same tank. I have this underlying urge to keep it Amazonian and just do Ember tetras, Neon tetras, and Habrosus Cory Cats. I think they would all get along just fine but I'm curious to know if people have kept them like this, but also kept them in a species only specific tank, and noticed any differences in behavior or color or anything? Like are the fish gonna be freaked out with all these alien species and not get to their full potential? Never thought of it like that. I don't know where this puritan instinct is coming from. Will someone please tell me to lighten up and just get whatever fish I want/think are cool? It's not like i felt this way buying plants, I got crypts with Anubias and Aponogetons and Crinum like it's always whatever with tropical plants but I don't know what it is about fish! Anyways, not sure there is any validity to this, pretty sure Rasboras and Tetras are all in the same family, Characidae. Would love to know more about their evolution and how they got to Asia vs South America and all that. Sound off in the comments!
 

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No reason why you can't keep community fish from different regions together in the same tank, unless you are wanting to do a regional biotope or the fish have quite different requirements.
 

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Geographic region is pretty low on my list of considerations when I'm stocking a tank. I think keeping fish from the same river basin or whatever is very neat from an intellectual perspective, and there may be some specific instances where there are special relationships between species that would be neat to see in person, but I'm looking more at how they are going to like the water parameters that I'm serving, potential conflicts with my current fish, and just general compatibility with my tank set up.

Predicting how different fish are going to behave in a certain environment is difficult without a lot of experience, I think. I still have a lot of learn, at any rate. Doing lots of research ahead of time is really important, but I've had to get to know each species I've kept on the fly, and even then the dynamics of the tank change as things are added or removed. It sounds like you are looking at a lot of shoaling species though, and I encourage you to be sure you get enough of each species for them to be comfortable, even if that means you have to drop a species or two. Or get a big tank!
 

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Agreed with the above. I think it works for non nano species, since there's greater variety (think: neon tetras, cory cats, and hatchetfish, OR danios, barbs, and loaches). But when you get to nano species, I think it really depends on what you've got going on. For example, my stocking schedule for my build thread is going to incorporate fish from Oceania, South America, and SE Asia, since I want very small fish.

I think it's really fun and a good intellectual exercise to think of scapes that take advantage of species within the same range. But don't get too caught up in all of the super small details. Remember that fish will adapt to their surroundings and fill in similar niches regardless of location. For example, Oto cats and hillstream loaches are both aufwuchs grazers. Snakeheads (Channa) and Pike cichlids are both piscivores with elongate body plans.
 
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