View Full Version : What would you do?

01-12-2012, 02:57 PM
I have had a 29 G tank running for several years now. All that remained were 4 Zebra Danios, 1 cory cat, and an albino Pleco. I was looking to build back up my stock. I went to a local store that is known to be quite reputable and (off of a friend's suggestion) spoke to the "fish guy" there. Told him what was in my tank and asked what he suggested. He recommended (in phases) building back up my school of danios, a school of tetras, and pair of dwarf gouramis. OK, so first I bought 2 dwarf gouramis. I told them I had heard the males can be territorial and aggressive with one another. He assured me that in a 29G two would be completely fine since I have a lot of plants for hiding. Within three days one had attacked the other so severely that I returned one of them to the store. They did not issue me a refund on that fish despite the fact that, I feel, I had been given bad advice by them. So a couple of weeks later, went back to the same place (my bad!) because the options are limited where I live. Same guy recommended a school of tetras and I went home with 6 serpae tetras and was assured that they were a peaceful community fish that would do well with what I had. (YOu know where this is going!) Now, 4 days later, my remaining gourami, many of the serpaes, and even a few of my danios have their fins nipped like crazy. What do I do? Do I take them back? Should I demand a refund since I received more bad advice? I, unfortunately, do not have another aquarium to move them to. Will the other fish regrow their nipped fins? Any help would be appreciated!

Fishin Phil
01-12-2012, 03:01 PM
You have just learned a valuable lesson. Do your own research, and never go solely on the advice of a pet shop employee.

I will talk to them and be friendly with them, but their advice has absolutely no bearing on my decisions.

01-12-2012, 03:05 PM
I would take them back and try to get a refund...Serpaes are known for being nippy. When you go back, ask him if he thinks you look violent. When he says no...punch him in the head and tell him he's wrong again. Keep the water very clean while your fish heal. I would also keep a close eye on the fins for any sign of fin rot.

01-12-2012, 03:55 PM
LOL, I will try to return them, maybe minus the punching in the head! I will wait a bit before adding anything else. My first order of business after this would be to build back up my stock of danios and corys, those I have left are from schools I've had for a long time. I might look for one more school down the road...what would you all recommend (Again...I have zebra danios, cory cats, and a Dwarf gourami, albino pleco.) Thanks again!

Lady Hobbs
01-12-2012, 04:21 PM
That tank would have probably been a nice tank had it been dedicated to only the serpae tetra's in a larger school with some corys. (You should have more than one cory.) A small tank with numerous species doesn't work as well as just one of two larger schools. I don't like danio's either. They're also snippy little snots.

Obviously, no point in listening to this guy at the store. He's taking stabs in the dark.

01-12-2012, 04:27 PM
try to do a trade, they be willing to trade, that way that don't lose any money and you still get your fish...

01-12-2012, 04:29 PM
Here is a good thread on fish stores.,


01-12-2012, 04:50 PM
My understanding with schooling fish like tetras is that they CAN be a nice part of a community, but that they must be kept in sufficient numbers to avoid nipping. In a big enough school (usually at least 6-8 individuals) any nipping or aggression is generally contained within the school, and tankmates are not bothered. However, if a school is too small the fish feel insecure, and the agitation becomes bad behavior directed at the poor tankmates. This can vary from breed to breed or based on the individuals involved, but it is a rule of thumb I have heard repeatedly: the more you have, the less they tend to nip others.

Personally, I would first concentrate on building a proper school of corydoras (they are happiest with six or more, though at least with them you do not risk nipping/aggression) and adding a few more danios, to bring that school to six or eight. If you still have room and feel like the tank needs more motion, you might try a good-sized school of either a small tetra (eg, Neons) or other small schooling fish such as harlequin rasboras. Those, as best I know, should be less prone to causing problems for you, especially in the right numbers.

01-13-2012, 12:39 AM
Since nobody's addressed this yet, I'll note that - Yes, the fins will grow back.

good luck rebuilding your tank (again).

01-13-2012, 06:25 PM
The more the better for those fish, I had barbs that were nippy, and adding more solved the problem. As a rule I don't put stuff in my water, but there are medicines made for speedy growth of damaged fins, not expensive, widely available. :fish:

01-14-2012, 10:11 PM
Harlequin Rasbora are great fish. I have 11 of them in my 29g and they are BEAUTIFUL!!! They look sooooooo much different at the store than they do at home. They are GORGEOUS!!!
I have found that schooling fish do better in schools of at least 10.

01-16-2012, 04:54 AM
I also recommend harlequin rasboras. I have a school of 12, and have never seen them bother other fish, or each other. Very peaceful, and very active, fun to watch.

Also, I have had problems with multiple dwarf gouramis fighting with each other. So I stick to just one now.