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Old 09-11-2004, 10:18 PM   #1
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Fish and equipment suggestions for a 30 gal.

I'm new to fishkeeping. I have a empty 30 gal. tank 36x12x16. I ordered a stand today from my lfs. I was wondering what fish and equipment to buy for it. I also have to learn about cycling before getting any fish.

For fish I was thinking of maybe danios, glolight or lemon tetras, harlequin rasboras, corycats. I also don't know how much I would be able to put in my tank. I'm open to suggestions of other good fish for a beginner.

For the filter I was thinking of maybe an emperor or aquaclear but I don't know which size to get.

I don't know how many watts the heater should be or a good brand.

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Old 09-12-2004, 12:30 AM   #2
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Welcome to AA! There is a thread on tank capacity posted today you might be interested in; basically the "one gallon per inch of adult fish" rule is a good starting point for beginners. The fish you've mentioned are all great choices, especially since they're schooling community fish. My danios are a little aggressive but very hardy fish. You could look into loaches as well; they seem to be pretty easy to take care of (I have four) and are very fun to watch. I really like my Penguin Biowheel filter but I'm not really an expert in that area so maybe someone else will help you there. A heater is simple to buy because if you read the heater packages they tell you what size tanks they are made for; brandwise I just bought mid-range priced heaters from the lfs.
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Old 09-12-2004, 06:42 AM   #3
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I would HIGHLY recommend a Millenium 2000 filter for your new tank. I own six Milleniums and they're BY FAR the best HOB filter I've ever used (and I've used them all). Aqua Clears are also great filters but I can't remember what "size" is rated for 30 gallons (although it should be listed on the box).

Whatever you do- DON'T take the cheap route when you purchase a heater: cheapies will not last very long and have a tendency to wipe out tanks full of fish when they do crash. You'll want to invest in a quality, submersible heater: I recommend Ebo Jager: I've got one that's over ten years old and it's still my most reliable and accurate heater. The Deluxe Visi-therms are good choices too. A rule of thumb is 3-5 watts per gallon of water, so a 100 or 125 watt heater would be a good choice for your new tank.

There's lots of options and methods for cycling your tank. Bio-Spira should be coming back out in a week or two and I highly recommend it- it's quick, simple, and works. Otherwise, you'll want to go with either the "fish" or "fishless" methods (there's lots of info on the web for both).

As far as ideal beginner fish, the types you've mentioned are all good choices, although you probably wouldn't want to do a "fish" cycle with the cories, as they're a bit sensitive to water conditions. The danios, most tetras, and the harlequins (my favorite small, schooling fish, by the way) would make an interesting and active community tank.

Good luck and let us know if you need any further info or advice!

Current species:
Neolamprologus multifasciatus
Lamprologus stappersi
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Old 09-12-2004, 12:35 PM   #4
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The 1 inch per gallon rule does not apply to all fish. For instance you could put 10 inches of danios in a 10g which would be roughly 5-6 fish when there full grown. But you could not put a 10 inch oscar in a 10g. Its alright to use it on small fish but you also have to consider behavior, how much waste they produce, swimming space. Danios are very hardy and active fish. My visi-therm deluxe has been going strong without problems since I got it. I think you want a 6x turnover rate per hour (or higher/lower depending on bio-load) so 30 x 6 = 180 gph. An Aqua Clear 200 is rated at 200 gph. Good luck with everything.
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Old 09-12-2004, 09:40 PM   #5
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Thanks to everyone for the responses. I appreciate it and I'll be doing some more research on your suggestions.
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