I can only tell you that the white clouds will not school with the tetras, at least my white clouds don't school at all with my black neon tetras. It
i've had the temp at about 74 degrees for months and haven't had any problems as of yet.
I have never kept minnows, but from what I have read on the forum, they seem to prefer cooler temperature water than tetras, bettas and other tropical
Just curious, what light/s do you have on the tank (wattage and type of lamp/s)? Also what kinds of plants did you get? Plants do use a small amount
The black pipe acts as your overflow box and got holes or slots in it at the top for water to flow in and then get sucked down through the white pvc pipe