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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I am planning my first planted tank - and while I am a far way off from being anything ready to safely accept fish - I have been contemplating what I want to stock it with.

Conceptually - the tank is a 10 g rimless with driftwood and lightly to moderately planted (but with more of a focus on the wood - manzanita branches arranged in mangrove like-roots). Planning on canister filter (Eheim), Lily tubes and Fugeray light. I am hoping that the light is good enough to grow the plants - but not so bright as that I have to worry about CO2. Maybe on a future tank - but not this one.

I really like the tiny fish that establish schooling/shoaling - although I realize in a 10 g - the behaviors will be more limited due to size constraints.

I would like either one species, or two species that get along well but stay pretty segregated in behavior.

Thoughts?


Update - 1/18/2013

I stocked my tank last week with fish from Frank's Aquarium. I went for a Myanmar biotope with the following fish:

Danio margaritatus (CPDs)
Microdevario nana
Yunnanilus sp. (Burmese Rosy Loachs AKA Petruichthys sp. 'rosy' AKA Tuberoschistura arakensis)


It has only been one week - but so far I am extremely happy with the grouping.

- The CPDs are gorgeous little fish - that transition from being out in the open to darting behind the driftwood and into the background plants. But because they can readily hide behind something, there are always a few of them out and about.
- The M. nana exhibit great schooling behavior even in a small tank (since they themselves are so small - there is a good about of swimming room). Time will tell if they lose that behavior or not. Their subtle iridescence is really nice. I currently have 7 (one jumped out at some point after being startled) - but am looking to add a few more as they seem to be stressed if one individual gets segregated by themselves. This way - they can at least form two small groups if split up.
- The loaches are extremely cool. Hang out on the bottom - occasionally darting up to the midwater and occasionally chasing the CPDs out of their way. Their coloration has greatly increased in the week that I have had them.

Tank parameters - pH 6.6, KH 2-3, GH 5-6, temp 73




 

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In a 10 gallon you can have a school of 12 or so microrasboras (phoenix, chili, maculaus, sparrow, etc, there's a zillion but the chili ones, boraras brigittae, are the most colorful) or microdevario kubotai. Ember tetras are another option if your water is pretty soft. All of these fish are really tiny, under an inch.

You could also do celestial pearl danios but I don't know if they actually school. In general, for fish to school you need to have a bigger fish in the tank. Fish only school when there's some sort of danger present.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the recommendations.

I was considering both Boraras brigittae and Danio margaritatus - although I had read that the CPDs don't really school.

I had not given any thought to a small cory - but that would be cool. Salt and pepper cories (Corydoras habrosus) and the pygmy cories (Corydoras pygmaeus) look like they would be about the right size. Although it looks like the pygmy cories like to use the middle of the tank - would that disturb the rasboras?

Also - what would the recommended numbers be for a 10 g tank (and I realize there are going to be different opinions). I plan to have a nice canister filter - but would prefer to not have to do multiple water changes a week.

Thanks again.
 

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I think chili rasboras and pygmy cories would be great. The pygmy's do like to use the middle of the tank, but they are still mostly chilling on the bottom/

About 8 of each would be okay in my opinion.
 

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Honestly, I think you could do 20ish Boraras brigittae. They are so tiny it's sometimes freaky when you get them for the first time. A dozen show up in the mail and you open up the package to realize they could all fit in a tablespoon.

So probably 20-21 Boraras brigittae and maybe 6-7 pygmies? If you wanted to do things cheaply and see how everything looks first, you could do a dozen B. brigittae at first and add some more later.

They've both got pretty small bioloads so that wouldn't be overstocked and wouldn't look crowded at all.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
How would the corys do with a group of Endler's livebearers? The Endler's won't school, correct?
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
If I wanted to keep fish together from a similar region (not exactly biotope - but not mixing continents) - what options do I have for a small tank like this considering similar water parameters?

Asia - Rasbora sp (chili, phoenix, etc.) - schooling/shoaling - upper portions of tank
Lower portions of tank - What about Hara jerdoni? Or Rosy loach (Tuberoschistura/Yunnanilus sp.)?

South America - Lower portions of tank - Small corydoras species (pygmaeus, hastatus, habrosus)
- Upper portions of tank - Endlers? Small tetra (cardinal, neon)?

Any other ideas? Are any of the aforementioned species really difficult to keep?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Just an update - as I am pretty sure what I decided on for my tank. I am going to try and have a Myanmar-endemic tank:

Microdevario (either nanus or kubotai) - 6-8
Dario erythromicron or margaritatus - 6-8
Rosy loach (Yunnanilus sp AKA Tuberoschistura arakenensis) - 4ish
Possibly 1-2 Burmese mini moth catfish (Hara miniscula)


This is unless Chili rasboras are available when it comes time for stocking and I can't resist them - in which case it will be Chilis and the loaches.


Anyone see any problems with those groupings?
 

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Honestly, I would recommend only having two schools/shoals of 8-10 and maybe a sole, small centerpiece fish. One problem I see in that stocklist in terms of parameters is that the emerald dwarf rasbora and rosy loach are said to like water from pH 7.0-8.0. The yellow neon danio likes 6.0-7.0 and soft water, and probably wouldn't do as well.
 

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Best centerpiece nano fish would have to be the Scarlet Badis.
A small fish only around .5 of an inch but it has a big personality and great color.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks! Where did you get your pH numbers from (not that I doubt you - I just want to compare).

Seriously fish has the following

Microdevario nana - pH: 6.0 – 7.5; Hardness: 18 – 215 ppm
Danio margaritatus - pH: 6.5 – 7.5; Hardness: 90 – 268 ppm
Yunnanilus sp. "Rosy loach" - pH: 6.5 – 8.0; Hardness: 90 – 268 ppm

And the CPDs and Yunnanilus were originally collected at the same type locality.

D. erythromicron is slightly different. pH 7.0 – 8.0 with hardness: 215 – 357 ppm. So I agree, probably not the best choice - although they occur with one of the other microloaches - Y. brevis from what I was reading.

I can't find data for H. miniscula - but H. jerdoni is pH: 5.6-7.6; Hardness 8-15° - which depending on the conversion formula - still fits the range of the top 3.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Best centerpiece nano fish would have to be the Scarlet Badis.
A small fish only around .5 of an inch but it has a big personality and great color.
I'll look into them - so you would recommend one of this as centerpiece with one or the other or either the Microdevario/Loach or CPDs/Loach - but not Microdevario/CPD.
 

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I'm a huge fan of ember tetras. Not sure about the soft water comment. My water sits at 7.4ph and 4dkh and my embers school tightly and display a brilliant red with the females being very very deep red. I had 6 embers and 5 panda cories in a 10g and they were fine for a year or so, now it's 16 embers and 5 pandas in a 40B same water parameters.
 

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I don't know if I would call a scarlet badis a "centerpiece" fish... I find that they like sheltered areas in my tank, so I'm always having to look around for them, whereas my CPDs are always out and about. I love the color and activity of the CPDs, even if they don't school very well.
 
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