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Old 01-24-2023, 01:22 PM   #1
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Stock Ideas for New 29 Gallon Tank

First-time aquarium person here! I'm buying a 29-gallon tank and plan to have it heavily planted. I'm reading all the guides and using AqAdvisor, but wanted people's advice on my current stock ideas. Currently thinking of the following:
  • 3 Peacock Gudgeon (1M/2F)
  • 2 German Blue Ram (1M/1F)
  • 1 Rubber-lipped Pleco
  • 3 Ramshorn Snails or Nerite Snails (Can't decide which)
  • Cherry or Amano Shrimp (maybe 5 to start with?)
The above list should put me at around 75% capacity.

I would prefer Cherries over Amano shrimp since the Amano don't breed well, but I'm worried the Cherries might get eaten by the Peacocks/Rams. I'm also not certain about the German Rams and was maybe thinking of a couple of blue Dwarf Gourami instead. If you all have any other suggestions I'd love to hear them!

Currently, I'm trying to plan out my stock for the 29-gallon tank, then I'll move on to making an aquascape with lots of foliage. Then I'll do the nitrogen cycling and slowly introduce my fish after that. Let me know if you see any issues with species compatibility or have any general tips. Thank you!

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Old 01-24-2023, 01:33 PM   #2
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I would say the upper temperature for the pleco and gudgeon doesn't overlap with the lower temperature of the german blue rams.

Blue rams like the water hot, much hotter than most community fish are good at. 28c would be my minimum, 30c would be better. The upper temperature for the pleco and gudgeon would be around 26c. You could go for a compromise of 26 to 28c, but you are then more likely to see health issues with all your fish over time.
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Old 01-24-2023, 01:43 PM   #3
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You are so right! Initially, I was thinking 25.5c but upon further research, the German Blue Rams definitely struggle at that temp as you said. I'll definitely look at a different fish then.

Dwarf Blue Gourami seems to have a more comparable temperature range to the other fish. Do you think 23 to 24c would be decent if I used Dwarf Gourami instead of German Blue Rams?
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Old 01-24-2023, 02:31 PM   #4
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Just be aware that dwarf gouramis are often infected with dwarf gourami disease which is fatal and untreatable.
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Old 01-24-2023, 06:28 PM   #5
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Hi and welcome to the forum

Any idea what species the rubber lip pleco is?

What are the tank dimensions (length x width x height)?

What is the GH (general hardness), KH (carbonate hardness) and pH of your water supply?
This information can usually be obtained from your water supply company's website or by telephoning them. If they can't help you, take a glass full of tap water to the local pet shop and get them to test it for you. Write the results down (in numbers) when they do the tests. And ask them what the results are in (eg: ppm, dGH, or something else).

Ramshorn snails can breed out of control and become a pest species. Netrites might breed but the babies won't survive. Sometimes their eggs don't hatch and you get white things everywhere.

Avoid dwarf gouramis (Colisa lalius) and all its colour forms (cobalt blue, flame, etc). These fish are regularly infected with the Gourami iridovirus and or Fish Tuberculosis, neither of which can be treated and once the disease/s are in the tank, they remain there until you disinfect everything. There are plenty of other small gouramis that aren't normally infected, so maybe look at them instead.

Buying 2 blue rams and putting them together doesn't always get you a pair. Rams like to choose their own partners and the best way to get a breeding pr is to put 8-10 fish in a tank and let them pr off naturally. Then move the pairs into their own tanks. If you can't do this, look for 2 fish that are staying next to each other in the tank.
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Old 01-24-2023, 07:24 PM   #6
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Hi! The Rubber Lip Pleco is a suckermouth catfish. I think they are super cool and this is one that does not get gigantic and should fit fine is a 29-gallon tank (I believe). The tank is 29 gallons 30" wide x 12" deep x 18" tall.

I'm getting this tank once I move to a new location in about a month, so I don't have the ability to test the water yet. I looked on the website and it lists the GH at 170 ppm, the other two are not listed.

I'll probably go with Nerites so I don't need to worry about population control. I'm also avoiding Dwarf Gouramis for the reasons you listed. I don't want to financially promote a specific that has such a deadly and fairly common disease. So thanks for the info on that.

Thanks for the German Blue Ram tip. I'm not going to pursue that though after the previous poster corrected me on the required temperature for those.
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Old 01-24-2023, 10:13 PM   #7
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The biggest suckermouth catfish you want in that size tank should grow to no more than 4 inches.

Suckermouth catfish need driftwood, algae and biofilm (slime on the glass). You can get driftwood from pet shops, online or possible your backyard if you have hardwood trees that drop the odd branch. Just make sure the branch is dry before adding it to the tank and remove any bark. Don't use softwoods (pines) for aquariums.

If you want a pair of dwarf cichlids for the tank, maybe check out Apistogramma species. Something like Apistogramma cacatuoides is commonly bred in captivity and will be fine in cooler water than rams, and you generally get a pair when you put a male and female together, they aren't as fussy as rams when it comes to partners.

The GH of 170ppm is at the upper end of soft water and is fine for suckermouth catfish, South American dwarf cichlids and gouramis.

Since you haven't bought the aquarium yet, how about going for a 3 foot tank?
It would give you more room for more variety of fish, and it would only take up another 6 inches of space. But a 3 foot long x 18 inches wide x 18 inches high aquarium would make a nice show piece and give you a decent footprint for a variety of fish.
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Old 01-24-2023, 11:24 PM   #8
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I want to do driftwood as a centerpiece so I'm definitely good with that. I'll probably look into a couple of other smaller pleco algae eaters then, as I think the rubber lip can get to 6 inches or so.

Thank you so much for suggesting Apistogramma cacatuoides, those look absolutely gorgeous. I'll definitely research those some more.

I'm renting a place and they say the maximum is a 20-gallon tank, I'm pretty sure I can get away with my 29 gallons, but 50 would be too much. Definitely looking to get a bigger tank a few years from now though because there are many cool fish that you just can't house in a 29-gallon.
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