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Old 07-28-2015, 01:34 PM   #1
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Tank Upgrade Advice

My son was given a 5 gallon tank for his first birthday from my parents, and we have loved having it set up for the last 2 years with 3 guppies (all male, one sunrise, 2 cobra) and a little crew of ghost shrimp.

As he gets older, we are looking at upgrading to a larger tank to get a bit more variety for him to enjoy and possibly setting up the smaller tank with a betta when he is old enough to care for it on his own. I grew up in a house with a 30+ gallon freshwater community tank with lots of varieties of fish and would love to have one of my own, but space and cost prohibit us from having something that big.

I was planning to upgrade to a 10 gallon tank and bring over our existing guppies and shrimp, but not sure what other fish could be added. I am also contemplating moving right up to a 20 gallon if we can make it work better.

These are the fish that I really love, but since most of them are schooling and larger sizes, not sure we would be able to have any without overcrowding:
Dwarf Cory Catfish
Neon Tetras
Kuhlii Loaches
Possibly a snail or clam
Sparkling Gourami
Tiger Barb
Bala Shark
Betta

Any ideas for an interesting tank to watch for a little one that would include any of these, or more fish that I haven't thought of yet, either 10 or 20 gallons?
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Old 07-28-2015, 01:45 PM   #2
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Hello! If I were you I would go straight up to the 20g if possible.

Do you know about cycling a tank?

You could easily do a group of Pygmy corys or Kuhli loaches in that tank!

Just cross the Bala shark out of your mind. They get around 10-12 inches and need groups of 5+. As you can guess that needs a much larger tank.


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Old 07-28-2015, 04:49 PM   #3
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Do you know about cycling a tank?
Yes, I did the full cycling when we set up the tank that we have now, so I think that I am set on that piece of setup and on all the necessary equipment for a larger tank. Just undecided about the residents and possibly the decision of sand vs gravel this time around.
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Old 07-28-2015, 05:08 PM   #4
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Yes, I did the full cycling when we set up the tank that we have now, so I think that I am set on that piece of setup and on all the necessary equipment for a larger tank. Just undecided about the residents and possibly the decision of sand vs gravel this time around.

Sand sand sand! I'm biased to it and love it. Bottom feeders certainly appreciate it as well


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Old 07-28-2015, 06:14 PM   #5
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I have to agree with everything Caleb stated above.

1. Forget about the Bala
2. Sand! Sand! Sand! (Especially if you're looking to add some Corys)

But for my two cents. I would definitely say sparkling gourami would work well in a set up you're trying to do. Many livebearers are very good starters as well. (Mollies, Swordtails). Stay away from fin nippers! They'll see your guppies as candy (barbs, serpae tetras, and many larger semi-aggressive fish)
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Old 07-28-2015, 08:49 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Rin2809 View Post
My son was given a 5 gallon tank for his first birthday from my parents, and we have loved having it set up for the last 2 years with 3 guppies (all male, one sunrise, 2 cobra) and a little crew of ghost shrimp.



As he gets older, we are looking at upgrading to a larger tank to get a bit more variety for him to enjoy and possibly setting up the smaller tank with a betta when he is old enough to care for it on his own. I grew up in a house with a 30+ gallon freshwater community tank with lots of varieties of fish and would love to have one of my own, but space and cost prohibit us from having something that big.



I was planning to upgrade to a 10 gallon tank and bring over our existing guppies and shrimp, but not sure what other fish could be added. I am also contemplating moving right up to a 20 gallon if we can make it work better.



These are the fish that I really love, but since most of them are schooling and larger sizes, not sure we would be able to have any without overcrowding:

Dwarf Cory Catfish

Neon Tetras

Kuhlii Loaches

Possibly a snail or clam

Sparkling Gourami

Tiger Barb

Bala Shark

Betta



Any ideas for an interesting tank to watch for a little one that would include any of these, or more fish that I haven't thought of yet, either 10 or 20 gallons?

Possibilities for your 20g:

Obviously your guppies and ghost shrimp.

Neon tetras (5+) can be skittish but a very colorful addition.

All corydora except emerald(they get larger than other corys) (also 5+) very funny and active.

Kuhli loaches (5+) can be shy but very fun addiction. Much prefer sand so they can burrow if needed.

Snails will work fine- you could have a couple easy. Mystery snails are typically active and very easy to care for.

Danios except Giants- look great and active in groups.

Rasboras- look great in large groups.

ADF- can be very shy but funny in groups. Have poor eyesight and often need fed directly.

dwarf/sparkling gourami- great as centerpiece fish.

Cherry barbs- colorful and peaceful.


Caleb
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Old 07-29-2015, 02:33 AM   #7
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[QUOTE=Rin2809;3256221.



I was planning to upgrade to a 10 gallon tank and bring over our existing guppies and shrimp, but not sure what other fish could be added. I am also contemplating moving right up to a 20 gallon if we can make it work better.







Any ideas for an interesting tank to watch for a little one that would include any of these, or more fish that I haven't thought of yet, either 10 or 20 gallons?[/QUOTE]


Sounds like you want a 20!!! Don't blame you. And how much you are willing to work. Little or a lot of?


Sent from my iPhone using Aquarium Advice
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Old 08-26-2015, 10:51 AM   #8
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20 Gallons it is! Found someone looking to sell a 20 gallon with stand and a Tetra 10-30i filter for a ridiculous price, so jumped on it. We set things up with our decor from the 5 gallon, a few new plants/hiding places and sand.

After doing some research on it, gave the cycling a jumpstart with Tetra SafeStart Plus. We lost a guppy since my last post (still in our 5 gallon), so our 2 guppies and 3 shrimp are happily enjoying the extra space in the new tank now. As long as everything checks out with the water quality, we are thinking about starting to slowly stock this weekend.

I used the calculator on AqAdvisor and here is what I have come up with for stocking. I may adjust as we go along (hubby wants some cory cats), but was looking for opinions. Too many bottom feeders? Active enough tank to amuse a toddler?

2 Guppies
3 Ghost Shrimp
4 Kuhli Loach
3 Oto
5 Neon Tetra
1 Mystery Snail

The calculator tells me my filtration is at 105% and tank stock level is 93%

ETA: Any ideas on which of the fish on the list we should add to the tank first?
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Old 08-26-2015, 12:55 PM   #9
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AqAdvisor is pretty lenient. I've done up to what it would consider 130% stocking at been fine. You just need water changes to compensate.

Don't bother with the filtration capacity. You look at your tank and if you don't think it's doing a very good job then you add another filter to compensate. I run 2 filters on almost all my tanks in case one fails.


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Old 08-26-2015, 02:30 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Rin2809 View Post

2 Guppies
3 Ghost Shrimp
4 Kuhli Loach
3 Oto
5 Neon Tetra
1 Mystery Snail

The calculator tells me my filtration is at 105% and tank stock level is 93%

ETA: Any ideas on which of the fish on the list we should add to the tank first?
With the kuhlis and neons the large the number the better. Don't be surprised if you don't see the kuhlis at first; once settled in they're fun to watch, my favorite fish!

Otos should go in an established tank. They can be sensitive. Personally if you want an active tank for your son I'd pass on them and go with cories. Definitely more entertaining in my opinion.

Sounds like it will be a nice tank, make sure to post pics!
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