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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have my aquaponics setup almost done and now need some fish to put in it. Since I'm not growing the fish to eat them like some aquaponics hobbyists do, I'd prefer to get fish with the following qualities:

*Freshwater
*Colorful
*Community (non-agressive)
*Will leave my aquatic plants and shrimp alone
*Large
*somewhat high waste producing since I'll need lots of nitrates in the water for the plants in the garden part of the setup.

I'm not a big fan of goldfish and I hear they rip up plants anyway. anyone got suggestions?
 

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Guppies? they can be pretty darn colorful and reproduce like bunnies! So, there is your bioload. They even steal food from plecos' mouths!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Guppies are a thought. I have some feeder guppies in there now to help it cycle, so that may be something to go with. Any ideas on something larger that won't eat the shrimp or hurt the plants?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I suppose I could do 3 schools of fish in there: Zebra Danios, Guppies, and Neon Tetras. My worry with Schools is that with a big school of fish in a big tank, if a fish Dies, I won't know about it and the water will get toxic. Still, if it's only 1 small fish in a tank that big maybe it wouldn't hurt that much and the plants in the Garden section of the tank would enjoy a nutrient spike and suck it all up.
 

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get a few bristlenose plecos in there. They're about the messiest eaters around. They'll keep things a bit cleaner in there (algae wise), and when you get your garden going, you can feed them boiled veg out of the garden itself. (circle of life much? :p )
 

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Almost any fish large enough to get a shrimp in it's mouth will do so. Schools of small fish can be exceptionally colorful and fun to watch IMHO.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
get a few bristlenose plecos in there. They're about the messiest eaters around. They'll keep things a bit cleaner in there (algae wise), and when you get your garden going, you can feed them boiled veg out of the garden itself. (circle of life much? :p )
Yeah, I'd really like to get a clown pleco or two in there too jsut because they're cuter than a bristlenose IMO. I hear they're not as good for the algae as BNs, though.

Almost any fish large enough to get a shrimp in it's mouth will do so. Schools of small fish can be exceptionally colorful and fun to watch IMHO.
Yeah, there is something to be said for schooling. My 4 year old son loves to watch the school of 4 or 5 neons in my wife's cage. he keeps yelling "They're schooling!!" It's pretty cute.

Are you going to have any plants underwater?

I'd get a large cichlid like a carpintis or a group of eartheaters.
Yeah, we're going to try to overstock the tank so that I can have my aquascape in the tank and my wife and I can both have a garden in the grow bed(s) above the tank.

I've never heard of Earth Eaters. I'm tempted by Cichlids because there's something so pretty and graceful about a big, colorful fish (Especially since so many of them have such cartoonish expressions on their faces) and I've never kept anything bigger than a 10 inch Pleco before so I'm curous about trying it. Do you know of any cichlids that leave plants alone?
 

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Earth Eaters (Geophagus) are not good for planted tanks because they get their name because they disturbe the substrate a lot (they "eat" the substrate and spit it somewhere else).

Dwarf cichlids are recommended for planted tanks, a lot of people here have apistos and rams. I think some people have kept africans as well.

Except for Discus and Angelfish, most other cichlids will uproot and dig.
 

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Rummynose Tetras are good schoolers. Nice fish that you appreciate more over time.

Some of the smaller rainbows are excellent. I have some Threadfins that are very hardy, active and tiny - currently one inch, 2 inches max.

Chain Loaches are tiny loaches that live to clean stuff off the substrate. Can do a good job with small snails too. pair them with Otos on the cleanup crew.

Danios are excellent, hardy, active. Take your pick, they're all great.

Many choices. Many "schooling" fish actually just "shoal" whcih mean they stay near each other, but don't really school.

Lots of good choices out there. Have fun.
 
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