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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm looking for suggestions for a small fish (3" or less) that will set up little territories and dart in and around the plants. When I first set up this tank (25 gallons) I planned to eventually put Sparkling Gourami in it.

(I know the bottom looks a little bare, I just took out a bunch of plants, and plan on getting a lot more from a swap meet I'm going to this weekend) For various reasons I had not gotten any Sparkling Gourami yet when I had a filter malfunction. The new filter I've put in creates a lot of flow, which makes the plants and all of the current fish so much better, but I'm afraid it won't work out for Sparkling Gourami. So I've decided to instead set up a nano for a pair of them, and figure out a different fish to take their place in this tank.
Current tank residents:
2 Trigonostigma hengeli & 3 Trigonostigma espei all sold as glowlight rasbora
5 Corydoras habrosus
2 Corydoras pygmaeus (I plan on adding more pygmy's soon)
3 Otocinclus
1 Amano shrimp
1 Nerite snail
So far the only ideas I've come up with are a pair of Laetacara curviceps (Dwarf Flag Cichlid) or Tateurndina ocellicauda (peacock gudgeons). If any one has any other suggestions for fish to fill this niche I would really appreciate them.
 

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I can only attest to the peacock, had 2 now just 1. Middle more than low, but stays relatively still. My water is 2-3 both GH and KH and ph is 6.5.

As stated above, I have no experience with the dwarf acara but one site claimed a huge ph range 4.5-7.5 and hardness range up to 280 while another site claimed soft water and low ph.

I also have 3 type of apistogrammas, but again in very soft water. The agassizii stay up high, the cockatoo and panduro stay low and all claim territories. They do move around and reclaim nooks and caves, too. Too many fish to see if they breed but they do flirt.

From my experience, the American Flag Fish, or Florida Flag Fish, may be a better fit. Wide Ph and hardness range but they are all over the place and graze algae like cows. They pick up 1/4" pieces of substrate and rip off the algae by shaking their heads. I have 5.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I can only attest to the peacock, had 2 now just 1. Middle more than low, but stays relatively still. My water is 2-3 both GH and KH and ph is 6.5.

As stated above, I have no experience with the dwarf acara but one site claimed a huge ph range 4.5-7.5 and hardness range up to 280 while another site claimed soft water and low ph.

I also have 3 type of apistogrammas, but again in very soft water. The agassizii stay up high, the cockatoo and panduro stay low and all claim territories. They do move around and reclaim nooks and caves, too. Too many fish to see if they breed but they do flirt.

From my experience, the American Flag Fish, or Florida Flag Fish, may be a better fit. Wide Ph and hardness range but they are all over the place and graze algae like cows. They pick up 1/4" pieces of substrate and rip off the algae by shaking their heads. I have 5.
Thanks for the suggestions. I'm staying away from acara and apistogrammas because of my water conditions. The Greater Chicago Cichlid Association forum says "Laetacara curviceps is easy to keep. Provide regular partial water changes. They will do fine in Chicago hard water, but to breed or raise the babies, soft acid water is very helpful." So I'm not too worried about the water parameters, I'm more worried about them possibly turning aggressive towards the other fish. I've heard that the Florida Flag Fish also turns aggressive as it ages, how long have you had yours?
 

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6 or 8 months. The largest one came down with bloat. I do see mild aggression but nothing to worry about, and it is only to larger fish and not the smaller neons and galaxy rasboras. I think that they may nipped the fins of a few male guppies, but not enough to hold that against them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
You probably would want the dwarf rainbow fish species. They like hard water, plants, and their colors would stand out.
I do love the look of rainbow fish (especially the blue eyes) but everything I've read about them says they are shoaling fish that need 8-10 to be happy. Do you know of any that would do well with a group of only 2-3?
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
6 or 8 months. The largest one came down with bloat. I do see mild aggression but nothing to worry about, and it is only to larger fish and not the smaller neons and galaxy rasboras. I think that they may nipped the fins of a few male guppies, but not enough to hold that against them.
I remembered where I saw the info that turned me off from them
Florida Flag Fish: Florida Flag Fish(or the American Flag Fish) are also often touted as being great algae eaters. Like the SAE, they tend to work on the hard stuff first and work their way down. They are killies, so they'll breed pretty easily. However, like SAEs, if the algae supply gets low (and as they age) they start to munch on stringy plants (like hairgrass) and moss. Also like the SAE, they tend to become more and more aggressive/territorial as they get older/start breeding. People still mention this one from time to time as being a "good" algae eater, but I think most of the hobby has moved on from suggesting this one.
I'm not trying to imply that you should do anything, i just remembered where the info came from and thought I'd pass it along.
 

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I'm not trying to imply that you should do anything, i just remembered where the info came from and thought I'd pass it along.
No worries there, that is why we take the time to offer help and advice to fellow hobbyist. But as the saying goes, "one man's garbage is another man's gold". I like the fish and luckily for them, will never run out of algae.
 
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