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So I got a free 55 gallon tank and stand off CL.-- FREE.--- ^.^ I'm so excited, I plan on moving the current inhabitants of my 30 Gallon over once it's cycled, but would like to add some, so my current Fish are as follows-
1 Male Betta
3 Bronze Cory
2 Oto catfish
2 nerite snails (1 tiger, 1 olive)
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My 55 gallon has a SunSun HW-505B canister filter (264 GPH)
a 48" FINNEX 24/7 Planted+ LED light ( 46.2 WATT)
a large sponge filter
a Penguin bio wheel HOB (350 GPH)
and a digital heater/thermometer
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So.... my hopes are to add the following-
2 more bronze cory cats
5 Sterba corydoras
about a dozen or so Cherry Shrimp
a school of 12 Neon tetras
3 more Oto catfish
2 more nerite snails- (zebra and black)
1 Singapore flower shrimp

Is this too much? Are they all compatible? My betta is a pretty chill dude, I've had him three years and he's never shown any aggression to his tank mates, I'm a little concerned the neons might be a jerk to him, does anyone have experience with neons in a betta tank?
and Lastly the tank will be pretty densley planted and I already have some nice driftwood and rocks for a hardscape, but what kind of substrate is best? I'm not a fan of the black planted substrates and I love the white playsand in my Flowerhorn tank but I've yet to find any light colored planted substrate. No Co2 on this tank also, just dosing with flourish excel 2x daily. I've heard people have issues with shrimp and iron, any ideas on this? :bounce:
 

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Congrats on the find but be warned, that can have side effects! Things like getting you into trouble by rushing. So first advise-- go slow!
But then I never listened to that advise either so lets look at step one, maybe. The cycle question may not be that difficult. If you move the same fish from smaller tank to larger, you may lose just a small bit of bacteria left in the old tank but at the same time if you move the filter and don't kill the bacteria, moving the filter will move much of the bacteria. The bacteria grow quickly in this situation and the pollution will be much more diluted in more water. A nitrate reading of 40PPM in 20 gallons will be 20 PPM in 40 gallons! Cut the food off a couple days before doing the move. That cut waste. Protect the bacteria and move the old fish to the newer, bigger tank. You don't mention the current filter but if it handles the bio load in 30 gallon it will do the same in 55. The load is the same, just diluted. Feed lighter for a few days while giving the bacteria time to catch up. The fish can go for weeks without food. Far better than a few days with ammonia.
But then it is also always wise to be aware and ready. That means test for a few days to make sure all is well. Watch for ammonia, nitrite or nitrate spikes and have a plan to deal with it IF it happens. Water changes can solve any of those problems.

I like a slightly light look and do not use a solid sand but mostly go with pool filter sand which has become mixed with various all purpose sand, gravel and Flourite. I never see a firm, solid color on the lake or river bottom so I like a mixed bag of several types and let the fish and water sort it where they like.

You have very calm fish so I would wait a few weeks to make sure it is all leveled out again and then feel free to add the others as you find them. Plenty of room for those in 55.

I think of fishkeeping as somewhat like a canoe. You can get by with a lot as long as you don't rock the boat too hard.
 
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