Welcome to AquariaCentral.com

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest which gives you limited access to view most discussions and access our other features. By joining our free community you will have access to post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, upload content and access many other special features. You will be entering into a wonderful world of aquatic information, for all aquarists, no matter what their experience level.

Our members will do their best to help you in your aquarium endeavors. We have a vast assortment of Forums to dive into:

-General Freshwater
-Marine and Brackish area
-Terrarium and Vivariums
-Coldwater
-DIY, Classifieds, Members Tanks Photographs and more.

We even have a general area, that is just as much fun as the rest of the Community, for off topic discussions and a real-time chat room for instant advice!

Joining Aquaria Central has numerous benefits, but the best, is our 112,000+ members, helping one another in this fascinating hobby!

Register now, and be sure to check out our scheduled contests with exciting prizes!

Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free so please, join our community today! !

If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact contact us.

Welcome to the Internet's friendliest aquatic forum!

- Team AC

  1. Get the NEW AquariaCentral iOS app --> http://itunes.apple.com/app/id1227181058 // Android version will be out soon!
    Dismiss Notice

Large size community aquarium, should I do it?

Discussion in 'General Freshwater' started by Rafini, Jan 8, 2017.

  1. Rafini

    Rafini AC Members

    Real Name:
    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2012
    Messages:
    183
    Likes Received:
    9
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Last Seen:
    Friday at 10:15 PM
    Hello Everyone I currently have a 20g Planted aquarium, a 75g planted aquarium with sump and a 120 gallon mixed cichlid aquarium (mostly africans but not all)
    I have probably around 15 years of experience in tropical aquaria and I have found myself recently being unhappy with the 120g I have in my room (basement). There is a lot of fighting going on with my paratilapia polleni sitting comfortably at the top but constantly sparring with other fish.
    There are splashes and chasing and its not exactly a relaxing tank to watch. but when I do decide to watch it, the fish will swarm up to me and beg for food.

    the two sources of affordable and interesting Mbuna Species have recently shut down in my city so now my options are driving for 40 minutes to a good store thats very far away, or box chain stores with common species of african cichlids.

    I have a planted 75g that pretty much maintains itself, a beautiful tank that is accented by my single 5" Angulatus (think giant hatchet fish) I like the activity in that tank, the siamese algae eaters are always hovering around, and the black neons are quietly grouping together. I also have a few mature male rainbows that are very colorful.

    My point being that I have found myself being frustrated by colorful non-interesting fish that beat on eachother.
    When I first set up my 120g it was a south american Geophagus tank. I was doing 2-3 water changes a week to keep the geos (suriname and Red Head tapajos) in good health. I have very hard alkaline water and I lost a few of them and it was a lot of work, that is when I shifted to africans. I wanted a colorful tank of fish that were actively breeding, I have lost quiote a few to aggression since I started and I`ve only seen one baby and not since.

    but I miss the feel of a community that tank had, I had activity at all levels and different size and shapes of fish not to mention a few plants here and there.
    I am thinking of changing up my 120g to something a little more relaxing, as I always seem to go for the aggressive cichlids and then end up regretting it. This forum seems to have a lot of people with community type set ups so I feel that this is the best place to ask for ideas.

    I know ultimately it depends on what I like, but I`d like to know what works for other people too in terms of being an interesting community.

    I have always liked Hatchet fish and Gourami`s. I know they are commonly traded and "Boring" by most standards but they have always struck a chord with me. I tend to shy away from fish I like when I see the price of them but I feel like that is why I end up with stock that dissapoints me.

    Bristlenose catfish (I have never kept them)
    Angelfish (I have kept before)
    Glass fish (never kept but always admired)
    keyhole Cichlid (or other dwarf cichlid, not interested in Apisto's)

    Thank you for reading, sorry its a little long but I`m feeling a little frustrated with my set up
    Thanks
    Rafini
     
  2. ProjectMaro

    ProjectMaro AC Members

    Real Name:
    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2007
    Messages:
    120
    Likes Received:
    7
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Last Seen:
    Apr 7, 2017
    I went with mollies gourami for my knew 125 for all the things you mentioned. I can get tons of color, activity, shapes and sizes. I have kids that are also audience, so they had some influence on decision. This is also my first planted tank attempt, so I also didn't want to have a fiasco on my hands with angels if something went bad.
    I also have a BN and some pictus that I had from tank I upgraded from. So far im enjoying the mix of fish.
     
  3. Rafini

    Rafini AC Members

    Real Name:
    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2012
    Messages:
    183
    Likes Received:
    9
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Last Seen:
    Friday at 10:15 PM
    Hey ProjectMaro I actually just read through your thread (all the pages) right before I made this post. Your set up looks awesome and as someone who only started doing plants a year ago (now I have two low tech set ups) I would be happy to give you some of my experience.

    I am a big fan of livebearers too, I had a 10g full of guppy fry for several months and it was more entertaining than my current 120g. Would you recommend BN pleco's?
    I have a pleco in my tank currently and its a colombian variant sailfin pleco. I`ve had him probably for 2 years and hes grown from 1" to about 4.5" he hides all the time and is not particularly interesting.

    I`ve had saltwater, brackish, all kinds of cichlids and I find that I`ve gone back to peaceful community style south american set up about 3 times and I`ve always found them among the most interesting aquariums. I seem to be very bad at filling the benthic zone, none of my tanks ever really have many bottom dwelling species.


    Which gourami species did you go for?
     
  4. OrionGirl

    OrionGirl No freelancing!

    Real Name:
    Sheila
    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2001
    Messages:
    13,444
    Likes Received:
    145
    Trophy Points:
    117
    Location:
    Poconos
    Last Seen:
    Today at 8:27 AM
    Real Name:
    Sheila
    I quite like bristlenose. There are so many species and varieties within the more commonly kept species. They're easy to breed, and you can position the cave so you can watch the male tend the eggs and fry. Most are in the 4-8 inch range, as well.

    Some other affordable options are emperor tetras. They get to be 2-3 inches, are very active, and do well in a community environment. The purple emperors add a nice splash of color. They'll spawn, but in a community setup you're not likely to have much survive.

    There are several species of kribs that do well in communities, and usually aren't too aggressive if given enough space, even if they breed.

    Granted, most of these are smaller fish. I like smaller fish better--it's easier to have a large group, they generally aren't nasty to each other, and the behavior, while different from a larger fish, is still quite interesting.
     
  5. Rafini

    Rafini AC Members

    Real Name:
    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2012
    Messages:
    183
    Likes Received:
    9
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Last Seen:
    Friday at 10:15 PM
    I agree, and although I have never done it I am also quite a fan of large groupings of one species instead of say 10 rummynose, 10 neons, 10 glow lights, I would prefer to have 25 of one but thats just because I like that asthetic. I have probably around 20 Black neons in my 75g and Although I like them a lot they are hanging all over the place and don`t really occupy the same area, whereas the neons in my 20g do stay within a certain proximity of eachother.

    I got to admit, I have always been tempted by Bristlenose. and Corydoras too for that matter, but I did buy a lot of corydoras for a big tank several years ago and I stupidly didnt cover the intake to the powerhead (the tank was 225 gallons) and it sucked in about 7 corys overnight. That was my stupid mistake but that experience caused me to steer away from them.

    How do emperors feed?

    I have rainbows and my Angulatus in my 75g and they are aggressive feeders, I`ll move in my filament barbs from my 120 when I restock so they can be with other aggressive feeders. I would prefer a shoaling fish that will swarm the food (like neons) instead of hogging it all like barbs and rainbows.

    One of the reasons I shy away from bottom dwellers is I usually keep aggressive feeders like cichlids and its difficult to make sure food gets to the bottom dwellers
     
  6. OrionGirl

    OrionGirl No freelancing!

    Real Name:
    Sheila
    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2001
    Messages:
    13,444
    Likes Received:
    145
    Trophy Points:
    117
    Location:
    Poconos
    Last Seen:
    Today at 8:27 AM
    Real Name:
    Sheila
    The emperors behave sort of a mix between neons and rainbows. They're certainly not shy feeders, but they're not as assertive as rainbows. The adults don't keep the young from getting enough to eat, for example.

    There are a couple strategies for feeding bottom dwellers. One is to feed after lights out, since most of them are nocturnal. Another is to feed herbivores vegetables like zucchini, broccoli, squash, etc, that's been blanched and weighted to stay on he bottom, or use something like the Pleco Feeders that hang on the side of the tank. The fish might nibble at the veg, but the herbivore bottom feeders will get most of it. For omnivore bottom dwellers, you can do something similar with cooked shelled shrimp.
     
  7. Rafini

    Rafini AC Members

    Real Name:
    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2012
    Messages:
    183
    Likes Received:
    9
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Last Seen:
    Friday at 10:15 PM
    Thanks for the tips, I have tried blanching zucchini and I couldn't get it to sink fully. What do most people use to weight it down? I suppose nothing is stopping me from using a fork lol.

    I`m thinking that if I restock my tank, the water is already about 2-3 years mature so I could start with bottom dwellers. That way I can get my comfort back with them and make sure they are all feeding well before I add any other types of fish.
    I would like to have a nice scape thats interesting to look at with different things going on. Right now I have a big pile of rocks on one side and it looks really cool, but the fish almost never go anywhere near them despite being "Rock dwellers"

    I do really like White cloud minnows and I know they are pretty boring as far as fish go, but ultimately I would rather have something different. They also require lots of flow and cooler temps and none of the other fish would be happy.

    What are some good corydoras and or bottom dwelling species for someone like me who has a lot of experience with fishkeeping but not so much with bottom dwellers?
     
  8. OrionGirl

    OrionGirl No freelancing!

    Real Name:
    Sheila
    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2001
    Messages:
    13,444
    Likes Received:
    145
    Trophy Points:
    117
    Location:
    Poconos
    Last Seen:
    Today at 8:27 AM
    Real Name:
    Sheila
    Look into the Pleco Feeder: http://www.theplecofeeder.com/

    A fork works, but be sure to put a string on it for easy removal.

    Look into bristlenose. There are a huge variety of species, and they're very hardy animals. Put a cave towards the front, where you can see into it, and the male will take up residence. If you have a pair, they will breed.

    In terms of cories, depends on what you like--there are sizes and colors for most every preference. The more common species, like the bronze and salt and peppers, will be fairly hardy. I'm a fan of a close cousin, the aspidoras. Similar shape and behavior, but most species are speckled, and they tend to stay a little smaller than the standard cory, but bigger than the dwarf species.
     
  9. dougall

    dougall ...

    Real Name:
    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2005
    Messages:
    1,819
    Likes Received:
    129
    Trophy Points:
    66
    Last Seen:
    Today at 5:01 PM
    If you want to feed veggies, don't want to use a fork but would like to relish the strange looks you get when you tell people what you use.

    you can try a screwcumber... http://www.screwcumber.com/
     
  10. Rafini

    Rafini AC Members

    Real Name:
    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2012
    Messages:
    183
    Likes Received:
    9
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Last Seen:
    Friday at 10:15 PM
    I like that actuallty it reminds me of a wine opener lol.

    Sorry to write such big responses overloaded with crap I'm bad at being concise.
    I will definately look into Bristlenose, I haven`t seen any specific species just color morphs.
    Are there any cory species that are not Bronze or peppered that are pretty hardy?
    I kept a few sterbai a long time ago and one lived a long time but he lived a lonely life as I could never find sterbai for sale again.

    I had a pretty boring shift last night where no customers came in so I wrote down fish that I am interested in and I will post it here in list form

    120G 4x2x2
    4' Fluval Planted + Light (I know weird for african cichlids, but I couldn`t be bothered to change it because it gives nice algal growth on the rocks)

    Upper Strata -
    Gourami (not sure on species, Pearl, 3 spot, thick lip, honey etc) pref. a species that likes groups.
    hatchet fish
    Festivum

    Middle strata-
    Keyhole cichlid 4-5 juveniles
    Kribensis
    Badis
    Dwarf puffer
    Angelfish
    South american small growing plant friendly cichlids that are NOT appisto`s
    (I like Rams but they will never breed in my hard water and that somewhat kills the challenge of keeping a group of rams)

    Shoaling fish-
    Neons (not if angel)
    Cardinals
    Emporers
    Harlequin (not if angel)
    Lemon Tetra
    Columbian Tetra

    Low Strata-
    Corydoras (Panda, julie, terbai, etc
    Dwarf Corydoras (not common but I used to have a group of 6 in a 10g and they were awesome)
    Bristlenose pleco
    Blockhead cichlid (uncommon, expensive but pretty neat)
    weatherloach? ( prefers cooler water, had one as a kid and thought it was pretty neat.


    In terms of scape, I really just need some inspiration, I have mostly rocks. A lot of rocks. A long 3` or so stick shaped piece of driftwood and a smaller wider piece.

    Substrate is a combination of gravel and sand, it actually looks quite natural and would please most species.

    plants - I might aswell have some if I have a planted plus and plants I can use from other tanks. I really like the idea of making a single species or just 2 species of plants. As this looks a lot more natural.
    I have a lot of christmas moss, I literally rip it out and feed it to my africans. grows very well
    Lymnophilia grows very well for me and I am tempted to have something like hornwort or cabomba. I never have much luck with stem plants.
     

Share This Page

zoomed.com
hikariusa.com
aqaimports.com
Store