Stocking that 29

Sel

Active Member
#1
Parameters:
pH 8.0
GH: 5 degrees
KH: 4 degrees
Temperature: 75-76 (totally adjustable, I'm just using a default tropical temperature)
Ammonia: 0
Nitrite: 0
Nitrate: 5-10
Tank: 29 gallon, 30x12x18
Filters: Aquaclear 30, Whisper 30
Plants: Mostly fake, have a ludwigia and a java fern I'm trying out
Gravel substrate
50% water changes every 8 days (I have a weird work schedule)

Current inhabitants: 2 male guppies (bought before I knew my pH did not equal hardness, my water is a bit too soft for them. They will not be replaced when they pass. Tough little fellas though!)
2 ghost shrimp
5 harlequin rasboras

My next addition will be four more harlequins to give them a decent school of nine.

My question: Can I add one more school or is that pushing it? I would like a school that hangs out near the bottom/lower mid range. I don't really want any bottom feeders, since I have gravel that wouldn't suit them and I don't want them to fight with the shrimp.

If a school is too much, I will just add a centerpiece fish and be done with that. I was thinking some kind of gourami (hopefully a pearl). I've had rams/cichlids suggested to me a few times but their sensitivity scares me off, to be honest. :/ This is my first go around doing things the proper way and I'm very scared of messing up, which is why I'm trying to stick to hardier forgiving fish.

Thanks for any input! Appreciate it!
 

NightShade

Well-Known Member
#2
Bolivians would be fine in there! They'd definitely be ok with your water change schedule, I don't think you have to worry there at all.

I'll leave community tank stocking suggestions to others, but I'm definitely following along! :)
 

JeffK

Well-Known Member
#3
Personally, I like the look of a nice sized group of 1 type of schooling fish, and I think Harlequin Rasboras are an excellent choice!
SInce you said you'd prefer to omit bottom-dwelling fish, I'll suggest a compromise: How about a small group of 3-4x honey gourami?
They don't need to be in groups of 6+, but they do prefer a few of their own together. Or you could do the same with 3-4x male platy (there are soooo many color variants). That would IMO provide some nice contrasting colors to go with the harlequins. You could still add a pair of Bolivian Rams (which would stay near the bottom) as a centerpiece - they would do well at your tank temperature.

I thought about a pearl gourami back when I had a 29 gal tank, but it just seemed like there would not be enough room for one in a 29 gal tank. That was just my opinion, though - I know others have done it. Best of luck with whatever you decide, though - I think it'll be a real nice tank!
 

junebug

Chune the Smiter
Staff member
#4
You do have room for another school. They aren't going to be bottom dwellers, though. They'll be mid dwellers, which will look really nice in the tank. You could do a boraras sp, like Chili rasboras. Very low bioload and very nice to look at. Or, if you'd rather keep it at just one school, you can probably keep about 15 harlies in there.

I would do either bolivian rams or a pearl gourami for the centerpiece.
 

Sel

Active Member
#5
I do love the look of chilli rasboras, I would have to find them first though...
I’m not against having honeys either, but where do they hang out? My top section is pretty crowded ;)
When you say a pair of Bolivian rams, what gender?
 

junebug

Chune the Smiter
Staff member
#7
In my experience, Honey Gourami swim all over the tank, but they stay mainly middle to top.
Regarding the Bolivans, a M/F pair.
She doesn't want breeding, so I'd personally do a single male bolivian.
 

Sel

Active Member
#9
So I am at the final part of stocking. A few things have changed:

-Water change schedule: 5 gallons 3 times a week (which equal the 50% but I no longer have to fret so much about the temperature dropping)
-Java moss not doing so well, java fern and ludwigia on the other hand are starting to thrive
-Piece of driftwood with fake soft plant hanging upside down (reaches halfway down the tank) from the surface
-8 Harlequin Rasboras
-2 male guppies, one very small, still kicking despite the softer water
-1 nerite snail
-I have a ten gallon quarantine tank, I QT for a month at least, it has bare bottom and decor/fake plants and a sponge filter ready to go at any time (left running in my main tank when not being used in QT)
-I found someplace local that sells Indian leaves if that is recommended for anyone in my stock
-I am happy with my harlie school (can increase number easily if you guys think I should) and want a bigger and/or pretty centerpiecey fish to finish it off. 1-3 max. I'd prefer if they don't breed due to me lacking space but if nature takes its course than let it be so.

My considerations right now:
-I'm willing to try a ram, even if it is a German ram Cons: Possibly might die on me, gravel not recommended for substrate
-Apistogramma Cons: A little harder to get, gravel not recommended for substrate
-Single angelfish Cons: Will very likely have to relocate the guppies
-Pearl gourami Cons: They don't like being alone, might be a bit crowded since they don't live exclusively near the bottom
-Peacock Gudgeon Cons: No longer available at the site that had them, was mentioned they may get outcompeted for food? Is this something that may happen to any of the above in the list as well?
Dwarf gourami: Cons: While easy to get I really doubt I want the heartbreak, this isn't a likely one I'll be getting due to that stupid virus.
 
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JeffK

Well-Known Member
#10
I may have mentioned this before, but I'd suggest maybe considering a thick-lipped gourami (Trichogaster labiosa) as a centerpiece.
Not as big as a pearl gourami, but about the same size or just slightly larger than a dwarf gourami (and readily
available IME). I kept one in a 29 gal with corydoras, harlequins, and a couple male guppies.

Regarding the peacock gudgeons being outcompeted for food, peacocks are sometimes described as "lazy waiters"
at feeding time. They don't always actively go for the food - they may sit back and wait for the food to come to them - and by
that time more aggressive feeders like harlequins will get most of the food before it ever reaches the gudgeons. I
kept 4x peacock gudgeons in a 15 gal with dwarf cories and 2x male guppies. Sometimes the gudgeons wouldn't
even notice that food was dropped in until they saw the corydoras habrosus starting after the food that slowly sank
to the bottom.

Other considerations for a centerpiece may be a Bolivian Ram or apistogramma cacatuoides (a hardy apisto). Maybe even
laetacara curviceps/dorsigera (if you can find one). I don't know if you've considered a single kribensis? Some people keep
them with similar stocking as yours, while others avoid mixing SA fish with African like a krib. Just my 2 (or 3) cents!
 

junebug

Chune the Smiter
Staff member
#11
For what it's worth, I think you'd be fine with a small, young angelfish (if they grow up with guppies, they're seemingly less likely to eat them as adults) or the peacock gudgeons. My gudgeons competed well for food and actually went up to the top to eat.
 

Sel

Active Member
#12
I may have mentioned this before, but I'd suggest maybe considering a thick-lipped gourami (Trichogaster labiosa) as a centerpiece.
Not as big as a pearl gourami, but about the same size or just slightly larger than a dwarf gourami (and readily
available IME). I kept one in a 29 gal with corydoras, harlequins, and a couple male guppies.

Regarding the peacock gudgeons being outcompeted for food, peacocks are sometimes described as "lazy waiters"
at feeding time. They don't always actively go for the food - they may sit back and wait for the food to come to them - and by
that time more aggressive feeders like harlequins will get most of the food before it ever reaches the gudgeons. I
kept 4x peacock gudgeons in a 15 gal with dwarf cories and 2x male guppies. Sometimes the gudgeons wouldn't
even notice that food was dropped in until they saw the corydoras habrosus starting after the food that slowly sank
to the bottom.

Other considerations for a centerpiece may be a Bolivian Ram or apistogramma cacatuoides (a hardy apisto). Maybe even
laetacara curviceps/dorsigera (if you can find one). I don't know if you've considered a single kribensis? Some people keep
them with similar stocking as yours, while others avoid mixing SA fish with African like a krib. Just my 2 (or 3) cents!
I have considered a Krib but a few in the chat discouraged me from the idea saying they can have nasty attitudes..

A thick lip is also on the table, I just honestly haven’t seen one anywhere :/
 

JeffK

Well-Known Member
#13
I have considered a Krib but a few in the chat discouraged me from the idea saying they can have nasty attitudes..

A thick lip is also on the table, I just honestly haven’t seen one anywhere :/
I have considered a krib many times, but I've still never kept one, either. Strange that thick lips are not easily found in your area -
my Petco has them consistently - and they're one of the few fish from my Petco that actually stay alive!
 
#14
I'll throw zebra hovering loaches (yunnanilus cruciatus ) in the mix just because I want them :) They are not exactly bottom dwellers but stay in the lower part. As for larger 'centerpieces', they might eat your shrimp.
 

Sel

Active Member
#15
I'll throw zebra hovering loaches (yunnanilus cruciatus ) in the mix just because I want them :) They are not exactly bottom dwellers but stay in the lower part. As for larger 'centerpieces', they might eat your shrimp.
Cute fish! And I don't have shrimp anymore, they don't like my softer water. I just have a little nerite now
 
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