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Old 06-27-2017, 04:49 PM   #1
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Big Box Chain Store "inch-per-gallon" rule, what do you think?

So today I figured I'd stock my last fish, 1 male platy, to reach the limit for my 10 gallon. I used the aqadvisor calculator to check the accommodations for adding this last fish, which notified me of my 92% stock level and more-than-adequate filtration (I have 2 filters).

Current stock:
2 ADFs
2 male platy (juvenile)
1 dwarf gourami

I went in and picked out a male platy, when the employee asked the size tank I have and current stock, which she then told me I'm overstocked due to the inch-per gallon rule.

Isn't this rule out-dated?


I look around and notice goldfish mixed in with tropical tanks, ich everywhere, fish carcasses, fin rot... I think it's ironic how they claim to care so much about their pets when the fish are kept in these poor conditions and they abide by obsolete information. They're quick to sell fish to people who have no clue about the nitrogen cycle, but refuse to sell because fish have too many inches? And there they keep Bala sharks with their info card reading 'minimum tank size 30g'. She said 'it's not about the filter it's about the space' as she gestures towards the aquariums where hundreds of goldfish are squeezed together. So should I not buy the platy? Is aqadvisor flawed? Should I start following the inch-per gallon rule?
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Old 06-27-2017, 05:13 PM   #2
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I believe depending on the species.. If there is enough filtration it would be fine.. I don't know but don't believe platys are seriously territorial are they?
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Old 06-27-2017, 05:23 PM   #3
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Most people don't have two filters on a ten gallon, so I'm sure you're fine.
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Old 06-27-2017, 05:26 PM   #4
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Sometimes the males will pick on eachother but I started out with small ones and they are pretty docile, occasionally they can peck but I have a lot of hiding space in my tank to alleviate stress from this. They actually like to swim next to each other and it's fun to watch. One time, when I was new to the hobby, I was about to buy a 2.5 gallon when an employee told me 'be sure to cycle your tank first, let it run 48 hours before adding any fish.' What is 48hrs gonna do? Ensure the equipment works? I'm frustrated at the lack of education and bad advice people give when selling fish, in addition to refusing to sell for the wrong reasons. I don't think they're even aware of the max size a bala shark will reach
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Old 06-27-2017, 05:29 PM   #5
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Do not buy a bala shark for a ten gallon tank.
That store sucks and advertises those fish as small with 30g min. This is a lie. They need about 60g minimum. They grow to about 18" long. I have 3 in a 150g and they are beginning to out grow that.
I am very sceptical about the information that the big box store's employees give.
Just my piece of information.
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Old 06-27-2017, 05:33 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaneu View Post
Do not buy a bala shark for a ten gallon tank.
That store sucks and advertises those fish as small with 30g min. This is a lie. They need about 60g minimum. They grow to about 18" long. I have 3 in a 150g and they are beginning to out grow that.
I am very sceptical about the information that the big box store's employees give.
Just my piece of information.


I agree. It's unfortunate that they are the only fish retailer in my town. Next time I go in I'm going to lie about my tank size and stock so they can leave their uneducated opinions to themselves. I'm venting here lol.
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Old 06-27-2017, 05:39 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ashleykw View Post
I agree. It's unfortunate that they are the only fish retailer in my town. Next time I go in I'm going to lie about my tank size and stock so they can leave their uneducated opinions to themselves. I'm venting here lol.
I have actually gone to buying fish online. I have purchased from www.liveaquaria.com
They are great. Fish come in good condition. Ship in the evening, transport overnight and arrive in the morning.
14 day arrive and stay alive guarantee.

Just sucks cause you can't see what you are getting or ask for specific genders.
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Old 06-27-2017, 08:00 PM   #8
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I believe one box store has a no treatment policy (not sure about the other big box store). They are not allowed to treat there fish for diseases corp. policy.
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Old 06-27-2017, 08:57 PM   #9
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I believe one box store has a no treatment policy (not sure about the other big box store). They are not allowed to treat there fish for diseases corp. policy.
I worked for a pet store when I was a wee lad fresh out of high school and they do treat there fish. They have a hospital room with several tanks. So that isn't the issue. (May or may not have changed since then. And this was many years ago)
But I don't know why they don't take care of there tanks.

Because of this I know that [many] PetStore employees are usually very young and unexperienced when it comes to most pets.
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Old 06-27-2017, 09:23 PM   #10
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I believe one box store has a no treatment policy (not sure about the other big box store). They are not allowed to treat there fish for diseases corp. policy.
I work as a aquatics specialist, and it's corporate policy to treat every type of illness we find. They send us multiple types of herbal remedies for everything you can imagine. They also supply isolation kits so we can separate one tank from the rest of the sump to prevent infestation.

But honestly, with any pet store, it's really up to how much that person cares about their job.
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Old 06-27-2017, 09:31 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by RetiredJedi View Post
I work as a aquatics specialist, and it's corporate policy to treat every type of illness we find. They send us multiple types of herbal remedies for everything you can imagine. They also supply isolation kits so we can separate one tank from the rest of the sump to prevent infestation.

But honestly, with any pet store, it's really up to how much that person cares about their job.
Exactly
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Old 06-27-2017, 10:16 PM   #12
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To the poster's original question.... I don't know if outdated is the right term for the 1 inch per gallon "rule", but I would trust aqadvisor over the rule given the sheer volume of information it considers like filters and types of fish.... not just volume of water.
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Old 06-28-2017, 09:31 AM   #13
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You also have to keep in mind the space for the fish to swim in, as in overcrowding. It is not just the bioload a certain tank can hold. The inch per gallon rule still works. Herbal medications that Pet stores sell are a joke and waste of money. It is like snake oil. Look for actual medications once you determine the sickness.
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Old 06-28-2017, 09:30 PM   #14
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Went back yesterday evening and was helped by a different employee. Was able to purchase the platy! Hooray. There are many factors that warrant the use of the term 'overcrowding.' Yes, swimming space is definitely a factor here. My issue was how contradictory the inch-per-gallon rule is when an employee implements this for all species. For ADFs, their card reads 'max size 2", minimum tank size 1gallon.' I was frustrated at the fact that I was refused to be sold a fish after factoring in all attributes of my tank using the more reliable aqadvisor calculator (that considers many other aspects when stocking a tank) due to the 'inch rule' when the first sign the employee went to contradicted that rule and just made her nervous, concluding her defense with "well that's what we do here so...". ANYWAY I got what I wanted so I'm happy now. Thanks everyone for your input!
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Old 06-28-2017, 11:30 PM   #15
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Sorry to say herbal medicine is not going to get rid of saltwater ick before the fish dies. A lot of there fish already have it right out of the bag. The only thing that's going to save those fish maybe would be copper. I purchased my coralbeauty from them with ick on it I knew it had ick when I bought it. They got two in both with ick one was full grown the other a baby. I bought the baby because they take stress better than a older fish. I new the older fish would be dead by the next day. QT the small coralbeauty treated with copper. She is now the boss of a 50 gal . the other one at Pet shop didn't make it through the night. I was told by staff they do not treat there fish. Corp.Policy. Same with fresh water if the fish already has ick it will spread and kill before any herbal has a chance to work! I breed fish. Among other things . I have a lot more volume of water both fresh and salt
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Old 06-28-2017, 11:44 PM   #16
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I think as long as you get good filtration and you do regular water changes you should be fine. I go to a fish only store and I am slightly overstocked on my 20 but have a filter for up to 30 gallons, as long as they have plenty of room to swim you should be fine.
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