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Old 11-16-2019, 11:29 AM   #1
LLG
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Suggestions for interesting fish

My tank is finally cycled and I'm ready to add fish. I am surprised at how hard it is to choose!
It is 29 gallons, my water is very hard and pH 8.2. It's planted and one of the plants must have brought in pond snails because I keep taking them out but more appear. Algae is starting to grow, too. There are 5 danios that helped to cycle the tank.

I don't particularly like pretty fish. I like interesting fish, either weird looking or with with interesting behavior. I was thinking of shell dwellers, but the LFS told me that they would probably dig up the plants.

The LFS had some suggestions for cool fish including gobies, hillstream loaches and South American Puffers, but they said I would have to change the pH in the tank. I'm not sure I want to do that - it sounds like a lot of work with potential problems.

Any ideas? Should I go with small cichlids, which I've heard have interesting behavior? I will also want something that eats algae, so what could they live with?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 11-16-2019, 12:07 PM   #2
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I'm a SW person but I'm interested to see what is suggested.
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Old 11-16-2019, 12:43 PM   #3
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Albino Cory Catfish - Albino Cory, Corydoras paleatus, Albino Paleatus Cory, Armored Catfish

Dalmatian Molly (and/or a white Balloon Molly too) - very active but peaceful - fun to watch - reminds me of Cookies and Cream ice-cream https://www.liveaquaria.com/product/1058/?pcatid=1058

The dwarf white spotted snowball Pleco - reminds me of a dinosaur fish; weird fish coming from South America, maybe the Amazon; very exotic. Seems it could have lived with Megalodon. https://aquaticarts.com/products/l47...sp-tank-raised
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Old 11-16-2019, 12:54 PM   #4
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They are all pretty interesting. A lot of the decission comes down to what is your water like, what temperature it is at and is this going to be planted and have you decided on plants.
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Old 11-16-2019, 01:15 PM   #5
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Big Norsk:

The temp is 70 - 72 F.
pH = 8.2
KH = 8
Ammonia = 0
Nitrite = 0
Nitrate = trace

It's planted pretty well, with a lot of different plants but I don't know most of their names. A couple of plants didn't make it so I took them out but everything else looks pretty good so far.


What does everyone think about changing (is it fighting against?) the natural water conditions?
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Old 11-16-2019, 01:47 PM   #6
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Donít start by changing the water conditions unless you want to go all the way with reverse osmosis.

You have a lot of options.

Donít know how to advise you without just going to what I think are cool, which would largely be guppies.
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Old 11-16-2019, 05:20 PM   #7
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Thanks, everyone. I'm glad you agree about not changing the water conditions. It seems like a good way for things to go wrong.

I spent the whole day reading online and I am seriously thinking of shell dwellers. The LFS has Multies and they are really cool and there were a lot of babies in there, so they can't be that hard to care for.

I wondered if I can move the plants down to one end of the aquarium and put sand at the other end, with shells etc. In any case, I like floating plants and am trying to start growing plants out of the top of the tank. Maybe I need to go to a cichlid forum to see if there are any fish that stay on the top that could live with them, and any catfish or plecos and/or snails to clean the place.

Davy - I really like that snowball pleco. Looks like something in a child's drawing.
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Old 11-16-2019, 09:17 PM   #8
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There's a pack of 3 for sale right now on Ebay. $22 shipped.
Bristlenose Bushynose Pleco white spots
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Old 11-16-2019, 09:53 PM   #9
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Suggestions for interesting fish

If your going to do multis they will 100% uproot all the plants and would terrorize anything else you add in a 29. They are an amazing fish though. Some of the South American dwarfs, like rams or Apistogramma, would allow you to keep your plants and add other fish. Apistos have great personalities too, mine always comes up to the glass to check out what your doing if you walk up to the tank.
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Old 11-17-2019, 12:49 AM   #10
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I just looked up Apistos. They're gorgeous but I think my water is too hard for them.
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Old 11-17-2019, 02:52 AM   #11
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It is my belief most fish can survive in most water. I also have hard water but am able to keep tetras, bettas,barbs, guppies, shrimp, leaf fish etc. in my opinion itís all in how you transition your fish from the stores water to yours. I drip acclimated all my fish. Some for only one hour others for longer if I was super nervous. This give the fish the chance to adjust to your water. The hill stream loach is an awesome fish and next on my list to buy.
For your tank I would do (4)bleeding heart tetras(awesome), (2)boesemani rainbows(colorful), and a botia loach (snail control). Be careful tho the botia will not usually share itís cave with anyone. So if you go with a pleco for algae control add three caves for plenty of hiding.

This is all just my opinion.
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Old 11-17-2019, 04:08 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LLG View Post
I just looked up Apistos. They're gorgeous but I think my water is too hard for them.
What is your GH?

Your pH isn't too high for Apistos
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Old 11-20-2019, 08:15 PM   #13
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What is GH? Should I take some water to the LFS for a test?
Also - what is drip acclimating?

I can't believe I still haven't decided! I really want to use my water without making changes to it. The cichlids are amazing but I really like plants.
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Old 11-21-2019, 12:57 AM   #14
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General Hardness. You can buy a test kit made by API
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Old 11-21-2019, 01:00 AM   #15
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I don't usually drip acclimate. Once you get the bag with the fish in it, dump out half the water then fill it back up with your tank water. Then float the bag in your tank to temperature acclimate for about a half hour. I use a thermometer and test the bag water. Once the water temp matches within 1 degree I scoop the fish out of the bag and put him in the tank. It's always worked for me.
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