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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am trying to get ideas on what schooling fish to add to my 140 gallon tank, 5x1.5x2.5 ft^3.

Current inhabitants are swordtails, a leopard ctenopoma, a blue ram, Madagascar rainbows, archerfish and an unknown synondomtis. The leopard ctenopoma rules out anything on the small side.

I was thinking about bala sharks, roseline barbs, Congo tetras, and maybe rummy nose . Given the height of the tank, I am also thinking about a school of cories of some sort, as well as giant danios to get more activity at top and bottom

Other larger schooling fish are not plant safe, like silver dollars.

Would love to hear ideas for larger schooling fish
 

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what about Diamond Tetras? They aren't huge - but are absolutely gorgeous when fully grown
 

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I've had redtail tinfoil barbs before in a 125G, there's 2 types commonly sold in pet stores and could be Altus and schwanenfeldii, where as the latter has the black stripe on the tails other fins and grows bigger than 12"+. The altus stays around 8" full grown.

It might be hard to tell if they are very small because coloration isn't there but the black coloration is a give away if it is already showing it.
 

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How about Tiger Barbs. I have 11 in a 125 and they are very active but mostly amongst themselves. They are one of the best schooling fish I've had. They break up on occasion and there might be a couple on their own from time to time but I'd say 90% of the time they are in a group teasing or playing with each other. The only time they have ever bothered another fish was when I had a female Angel laying eggs. They would really go after the eggs. They don't bother plants that I've noticed and in a larger tank they can get a nice size. They eat absolutely anything.
 

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Columbian tetras are great and a solid 3 inches. Mascara and filliment barbs are active and attractive but might need cooler temps.
Be warned that gian danios are on crack and might drive you and your fish crazy. They go full speed 24/7.
 

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+1 for Tiger barbs. Always attractive and school surprisingly well in larger tanks. I am surprised they arent used as much as rummynose or cardinals... but I think this is due to their aggressive behavior. But I've seen them in community tanks of your size... and WOW
 

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Current inhabitants are swordtails, a leopard ctenopoma, a blue ram, Madagascar rainbows, archerfish and an unknown synondomtis. The leopard ctenopoma rules out anything on the small side.
Ram and Madagascar rainbows require soft acidic water, swordtails prefer hard water, archerfish is brackish! :surprise: IMHO you need to decide first what kind of inhabitants you really want to keep because these will not survive together for long. Then it'll be easier to suggest who you can add.
 

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Some of the fish suggested above are not for planted tanks:
My filimentosa barbs have decimated my 125 gallon.

Ditto Oso Polar's comment:
Which species of Archer do you have? There is one that is not brackish.
Also, research your fish for temperature preference.

Congo Tetras, Roseline Barbs, Red Tail and Rainbow Sharks (research before adding any of the 'sharks'- not all are compatible with each other), other species of Rainbow Fish...
are generally plant safe.
Rummy Nose Tetras will be eaten by the other fish.
There are a few species of Cories and related fish that are larger than average, and might be OK. Do not gamble, though. Most catfish are protected by sharp spines, and if one of your predatory fish tries to eat a Cory, both could die.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Ideally you're right. But I have kept archerfish in my rock hard water for years. The leapoard ctenopoma was an experiment, and is doing well, we'll to the second year, and up to 4 inches at this point.

The swords all do well.

The reality is some fish are adaptable and you can mix water requirements.
 

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Many captive-bred fish are quite hardy as far as water hardness. You'll absolutely want to keep an eye out for any signs of distress, but theoretically most of your stock could do fine in hard water. The Madagascar rainbows might be a bit of an issue, though.
 

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Congo tetras, they are probably the best i reckon large tetra. They school great and their colours are unmatched. Give the males a good diet, and their fins will grow properly and their colours will be amazing.

They are very active, the males will chase each other and flare up. Give them good conditions and they will spawn readily which will mean the males colours will be even brighter.

The only down side is, mine demolished anubias. and i have heard it can be a problem with them. I went away for a couple of days and had a person feed them only small amounts of food. And when i came back, all the new and semi new shoots and leaves were gone and they hd started working on the old ones as well.
 

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Congo tetras , bleeding heart tetras get nice size as tetras go. I have some clown barbs and they get to 4 inches or so. I have a heavily planted tank and those barbs are totally plant safe. Have the tiger barb look to them.
 

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I've always liked Serpae tetras to be honest. They get really pretty white on the fin edges after a while. Makes em look all imperial.

In community tanks (30 gal) they always tend to disperse, so to keep them schooling in the old days I would always house them with something aggressive, a pretty big jack depsy. Eventually the slow ones would get eaten and the fast ones... well they got faster :)


I believe in a larger tank, the open water itself would be enough intimidation to keep them together, and a big enough school would prevent too much aggression from the other fish. Not to mention they can be agile! Took this video while at the store yesterday. I imagine in a 140 you could have almost 25-30 of em easy.

Bump: My VIdeo (mute it):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=subSe-WQgqg

 

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A large school of congo tetras or rainbows is a sight to see. Between these and rummy noses, these are my favorite fish to see schooling.

I'd avoid fish that are really known not to form a tight school when kept in aquariums--unless like the person above mentioned, you're going to have a much larger fish to encourage them too.
 
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