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Patrick_Fish 11-16-2012 09:02 PM

New tank/HELP
 
I am going to get a new 20 gallon top fin tank. Jut wanted some advise on a good fish family that looks good in a tank and how many of them? Also plant live or fake? If live how do you keep them alive because I have never had live plants!

brennae 11-16-2012 09:12 PM

What kind of fish are you interested in? Colors?

I do all live plants. In one tank I have sand substrate and use root tabs from Flourish.
In the other tank I have a dirt bottom with a sand cap. I have had gravel and other substrates and I really prefer the sand but its a matter of opinion. If you use gravel then you will need root tabs at least and possible some liquid fertilizers. I don't use the liquids too often so I can't really speak on them but I really like root tabs.

Are you wanting to go for a natural look? or something colorful or creative? Drfitwood and rocks look nice mixed in with plants if you want to go that route.

Patrick_Fish 11-17-2012 12:03 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by brennae
What kind of fish are you interested in? Colors?

I do all live plants. In one tank I have sand substrate and use root tabs from Flourish.
In the other tank I have a dirt bottom with a sand cap. I have had gravel and other substrates and I really prefer the sand but its a matter of opinion. If you use gravel then you will need root tabs at least and possible some liquid fertilizers. I don't use the liquids too often so I can't really speak on them but I really like root tabs.

Are you wanting to go for a natural look? or something colorful or creative? Drfitwood and rocks look nice mixed in with plants if you want to go that route.

I was looking for a natural look.

brennae 11-17-2012 12:10 AM

Ok, so then I would go with sand or Eco Complete substrate. What kind of light do you have? That will determine what plants you can keep. I recommend Flourish Root tabs and their liquid fertilizer line.

thomasina 11-17-2012 09:33 AM

I started with a 10 g tank in Oct. and decided to get a 20 g last week! So I am in the same spot where you are! I like the natural look too. I got some slate, broke it up and built it up in the tank to make like a fence. On one side I used river rock. The other side I used small gravel, I used white so the fish would really show up. Plants go in the gravel side, and drift wood go on the rocks. The broken slate is working really great to keep things in their spots. As for fish! If this is your first tank, I suggest beginner fish. There are beautiful, colorful male endler live bearers. That is my next purchase. I have 4 red minor tetras, 3 diamond tetras, few glo-danios, that are really bright. Later as your tank cycles, you might want to add some cherry red shrimp, and an retrite snail. They are both great cleaners. Snail does algae and shrimp do the food and stuff on the bottom. Plants... I would wait till, again, the tank cycles. I wish you luck, and have a great time getting it all together!!

K9Kyle 11-17-2012 10:26 AM

If you have lower light, you won't need as much nutrients. Anything under 1.5W per gallon I wouldn't use liquid ferts and root tabs, it's all about a balance. The more light you have, the more fertilizers and CO2 you'll want. But you want to make sure you get the right plants for your light. If you have under 1.5W per gallon, java fern and Anubis does great, i also have Val in my 1.3W per gallon and it does well. Java moss tied to drift wood also looks really cool after a couple months. If you have higher light you could go with pennywort, hair grass, ludwiga, swords, etc.
Good luck!

Rivercats 11-17-2012 11:53 AM

For starters you need to look at as many tanks as possible to get an idea of what you like. Here is a link that has tons to look at... Your Tanks - Browsing.

If you think you want to go with a planted tank I would suggest spending alittle more and getting a commercial plant substrate. Eco-complete is the one I use but there are many brands available. The reason you want a commercial plant substrate is because it has a high CEC, which means the substrate can absorb and hold nutrients from the water and detris and keep them available for plant use.

If you get a "kit" the stock light that comes with them are very low so you will be quite limited to what you can grow. You might want to consider buying the tank, then buying a better light fixture, like a 2 bulb T5HO fixture (which will allow you to grow alot of plants and not limit you like stock lighting will), then you'd need a filter and heater.

If you go with a kit and stock lighting then you will have to limit your plant choices to Anubia's, Java Fern, and Crypts. You might be able to grow water sprite or wisteria but that is a maybe. If you go with better lighting there are all kinds of easy plants you can use. Besides the ones listed above you can use Swords, some Rotala's, some Ludwiga, Bacopa, Vals, Dwarf Sag, Temple plant, Tiger Lotus, and many others.

For a 20g easy fish would be, small tetras such as Cardinals or Rummy nose, Rasbora's, small cory cats such as Panda's, Honey Gourami's, and a few others.

Patrick_Fish 11-17-2012 08:04 PM

What fish do you think I should get?

Shaun82 11-17-2012 08:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Patrick_Fish
I am going to get a new 20 gallon top fin tank. Jut wanted some advise on a good fish family that looks good in a tank and how many of them? Also plant live or fake? If live how do you keep them alive because I have never had live plants!

Hey I just set up my 45 gallon bow front tank with cichlids and it looks amazing!!! I also decided to go with the sand oppose to the gravel ( much easier to clean, as for the plants if you go with cichlids a lot of species will eat or rip apart the live plants, I recommend going fake plants:)
Good luck and enjoy!!

brennae 11-17-2012 08:40 PM

What colors do you like? That will help us suggest the fish.

Patrick_Fish 11-17-2012 08:55 PM

I don't care just any kind what will look good in a 20 gallon tank!

Shaun82 11-17-2012 08:58 PM

20 gallon tank may be abit small for a bunch
Of cichlids but there the next best thing to
Salt water fish :)

brennae 11-17-2012 08:59 PM

I really like emerald corys. Male guppies are nice beginner fish. They come in a huge variety of colors. Endler's are very colorful also. I like colors lol

callisto9 11-17-2012 09:03 PM

I like my peacock gudgeons:
https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-M...on%2520041.JPG

This is a good place to get started with stocking ideas:
AqAdvisor - Intelligent Freshwater Tropical Fish Aquarium Stocking Calculator and Aquarium Tank/Filter Advisor

I have a 20G, too. If you look at the link in my signature, you can see my tank for some ideas.

brennae 11-17-2012 09:46 PM

That is a good looking fish! Are gudgeons hard to keep?

Patrick_Fish 11-17-2012 10:18 PM

What fish are good for a 20 gallon tank from petsmart?

Josie 11-17-2012 10:20 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Patrick_Fish
What fish are good for a 20 gallon tank from petsmart?

Since you're new (like me) look for beginner's fish, those are guppies, Endler's live bearers, bettas (maybe not in a 20...), cory catfish, gourami... there are tons of options! What colors are you looking for: bright and flashy or more neutral tones?

Patrick_Fish 11-17-2012 10:21 PM

Maybe a mixture of them both?

Josie 11-17-2012 10:26 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Patrick_Fish
Maybe a mixture of them both?

Yeah; you can find good community fish easily, and people are going to be jumping onto this thread to give their 2.

Personally, I have 3 little Cory Catfish in a 10-gallon and I wish I had the space to get a shoal of 6. These guys have the cutest little personalities: they follow each other around the bottom of the tank frantically eating anything they can find amongst the sand and gravel. You'll watch them all fall still and think they've fallen asleep or that they're sick, but a minute later they're playing chase with each other along the glass. That's the life of a Cory: frantic bursts of playful energy and then back to being lazy for a few minutes.

A lot of guppies and tetras look really cool in groups. You get 6-10 guppies all shoaling and it's like, "Watch out, we've got some bad mothas up in here!"

Patrick_Fish 11-17-2012 10:29 PM

Are Cory catfish algae eaters?


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