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Old 04-06-2011, 01:21 AM   #1
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Tetra issues Help!

So I have 5 serpae tetra in a 45g tall tank. I got 3 bleeding hearts yesterday from the lfs. Today I noticed some white on both of the eyes of one of the Bleeding Hearts so I called the store. I plan on taking him back tomorrow but in the mean time I thought I should quarantine him. I have a smaller tank that had 3 guppy and a neon tetra (yes I know I need more than one. He is the last of an old school), So I thought it would be best to move the little guys out of their tank and put them in the big tank for a bit so I could quarantine the Bleeding heart in the smaller tank. The moment I dropped the Neon in the large tank the Serpae starting going at him like crazy. It only took a minute for me to see that I couldn't leave him in there so I took him out and put him back in his tank with the sick fish(I may have stressed him to death). So, now that you have listened to all of that my question is: I was planning on getting 8 or so more neon plus the one I have and adding them to my large tank but now I am worried that I cant do that if the serpae are mean. Can I and a school of neon w/the serpea or is that just going to be a small feeding frenzy again? Also I am planing on adding 2 Blue Rams and 2 Pearl Gourami to that tank. Are the serpae going to stress them out by attacking and nipping all the time?? I am not opposed to finding a different home for the serpae if they are that aggressive. I am not partial to them but my husband likes them. Also I didn't see the Bleeding hearts attacking but will they?

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Old 04-06-2011, 01:35 AM   #2
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Bleeding hearts are considered by some LFS as semi-aggressive... but you also only have 3. I know a lot of people say you need to have full schools for Tetras, but to be brutally honest, it's been a road full of pain and misery for me. Aggression, fin-nipping, and gang assault every time I try to fill out a school of tetras.

I really don't think it would be a good idea to put in a school of neons in with territorial serpaes and bleeding hearts. I have a serpae myself, and I love him, but with the more tetras I add, the more agitated he becomes. Furthermore, I can't recommend adding neons to a tank that you'll be adding Cichlids to.

Just my personal opinion.
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Old 04-06-2011, 03:28 AM   #3
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I would normally say no to neon tetras in together with cichlids, but rams are pretty tame. For cichlids. Most of the time. They can get aggressive though.

I like serpaes, they are great fish, but you can get some mean ones. If they are doing that now, they aren't likely to stop. They look at any new additions as invaders and competition for food. The only way I have been able to make it any better was to move the aggressive fish to another established tank. The new environment can take the wind out of their sails as they are now the new fish on the block. It doesn't always work, but sometimes it will.

What CoyoteWildfire says about tetras is correct too. I found that after a little while an equilibrium can be reached where it all settles down. Unfortunately that can sometimes mean that the low fish in the pecking order can get picked on all the time. With fish like this it is usually best to introduce the group to the tank all at the same time. That way they all start out at the same level.
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Old 04-06-2011, 03:12 PM   #4
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Do you think the tetra will go after the Pearl Gourami, Dwarf G, and Blue Ram? I know they are all larger than the serpaes but I still don't want them to get picked to death. Also do you think it was because I only added one really small neon (like do you think he looked like food)? I also added 3 guppy at the same time and they seem fine. (they also stay at the top out of everyones way) I was thinking of adding a sword tail to "test the waters" with the bullies to see how they react before adding the Pearls. What do you think......

The rest of the fish going in will be Rams, Pearls, Dwarf G, Corys, Loaches, Sword tail and at some point Oto's. Will the tetra terrorise the list of fish I am adding?
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Old 04-06-2011, 03:22 PM   #5
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That's a fifty-fifty chance. It's hard to say before you do. If you added some guppies and they left them alone, you may be OK. Sometimes they will chill out when you add more or bigger fish, too many targets. They might become intimidated and stop, but not always. Since you added just just one neon tetra, he was considered a lone invader and might have looked like an easy target. Adding more may help, or it may not.

The rams will fight back, the dwarf gourami run, the pearls may not tolerate it, and the neons will just scatter. The only way to know for sure is to try it, but I'd say it might be alright. In any case, the addition of more fish to the tank will spread out the aggression and keep them from stressing out an individual.
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Old 04-07-2011, 12:32 AM   #6
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I have a Dwarf Gourami in my tank of four tetras right now and it gets along fine, for what that's worth.

I think Shadow covered most of the bases for you. Since you have quite a while to go before you finish populating your tank, I think you'll find that the more aggressive species adapt well to the tetras you have. I also know that tetras generally keep their aggression amongst themselves.

Even when I had the black skirts in my tank, my girlfriend's three glass cats, my hillstream loach, common pleco, my brother's tiger stripe danio, and my mother's two peacock gudgeons were all completely unaffected by the commotion.

Also, as raven said, sometimes tetras chill out with the addition of a bigger fish. Mine didn't when I added my gourami, but if I didn't have other sensitive fish, I would add a more aggressive species to put them in their place and force them to shoal. Tetras tend to do that when they feel threatened.
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Old 04-07-2011, 12:56 AM   #7
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Thanks guys that is a lot of help. I have had several large tanks but never with tetra and never really a community tank. Always very aggressive fish. So this is a new adventure for me. Thanks again
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Old 04-07-2011, 01:15 AM   #8
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Glad to help! If we've helped you adequately, would you add to our reputations? Just click the under our profile pictures.
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Old 04-07-2011, 05:04 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CoyoteWildfire View Post
Even when I had the black skirts in my tank, my girlfriend's three glass cats, my hillstream loach, common pleco, my brother's tiger stripe danio, and my mother's two peacock gudgeons were all completely unaffected by the commotion.
The fact that you had black skirts in that set-up and the other fish still had fins to swim with is pretty amazing. Good on ya mate!
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Old 04-07-2011, 10:09 PM   #10
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Well thank you very much! Haha, I guess the rest of the community managed fine, but the tetras just didn't get along... Pity too. I think their coloration is really quite gorgeous.
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