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  1. Default DK's 36GAL Tropical Community

    0 Not allowed!
    So, I've been debating this since I joined the forum, but I think I'm going to try and maintain an aquarium journal, see how I do with the fishes. I've kept aquariums in the past, But never really chronicled their success. This will be a community tank, planted, with a South American focus. I haven't completely decided on the end all stocking, but we'll see what happens as we go. I can at times get a bit overexcited and move too quickly, but so far this has not burnt me too badly.

    The aquarium is a topfin bowfront aquarium with an aqueon 40 filter. The filter currently generates stronger current than I am used to seeing, so I may be swapping filters soon. Water parameters are all currently in acceptable levels, although water is on the hard side.

    1.5 weeks ago: added 3 plants, 6xneons (2 neons died within 48 hours, the rest have done well)
    1 week ago: added 4xSterbai Cory (the ones I have are on the larger side, which is a little disappointing as I enjoy watching my fish grow. I want to get more, but LFSs never seem to have any. I bought the last 4 that my local one had and they have yet to restock on them.)
    Yesterday: Added a mostly seasoned/cured piece of Mopani wood (no staining today so I'm assuming it won't stain the water at this point).
    Today: Added 6xneons IOT get the full schooling effect, bringing total to 11xneons, 4xSterbai Corys.

    Thus far, the Corys have been an excellent choice. I really like the Sterbai patterns (I've kept peppered/spotted corys in the past, but I find I like the sterbai pattern more). They are extremely active, even in a group of 4. The neons, because there were only 5 of them have largely hung out in the back corner. In the last 30 minutes since the introduction of the second round of neons they have become much more active and adventurous.

    Thanks for taking a look, thoughts, opinions, and suggestions are welcome. I believe I have room to add either a couple of tetra schools at the middle/top of the tank, or a top strata group with a "center piece" type fish. I haven't decided which I want to do yet.

  2. #2


    3 Not allowed!
    The more you add, the happier they seem to be. I've got neons, black neons & julii corys in my SA tank, and the more I add the more active they seem to get. As they settle in, you'll see their typical schooling behaviors more and more...

    Good luck!

  3. Default

    2 Not allowed!
    Yeah, I've enjoyed the pictures of your Juliis. My Sterbai have done that same, ducks in a row thing along the bottom a couple of times already. I almost bought Juliis tonight when I got the neons (because they're that juvenile size that I like) but I am going to hold out and get 3-4 more Sterbai once the LFS restocks or I find a reputable online dealer.

  4. #4


    1 Not allowed!
    Slaphppy7 has sterbai as well; I believe he ordered his from TWS. Perhaps he'll chime in at some point and confirm...

  5. #5


    1 Not allowed!
    Seems you are off to a good start. Would love to see a pic of your set-up! Welcome!
    DM's 20g high - journal

  6. #6


    1 Not allowed!
    Yep, I have 6 sterbai and 6 metae (bandit) sterbai are a bit shy, and hide alot...until feeding time, of course
    10 Gallon Beginner Tank... Journal
    40 Gallon Breeder: ... Journal
    29 Gallon: ... Journal

  7. #7


    0 Not allowed!
    Welcome to AC! Good luck!

  8. #8


    2 Not allowed!
    Welcome to the AC, and good luck with the tank! You seem to be off to a good start. Since you have a south american theme, have you considered Rummynose tetras? A school of them would look awesome.

  9. Default

    2 Not allowed!
    I'm still learning and haven't quite mastered the art of posting. I should be able to put up a couple of pictures this weekend when I have a little more time.

  10. Default

    0 Not allowed!
    Update: One of the neons appears to be sick. I will probably find him floating in the morning. His red has turned pink and he appears to be twitching more than swimming. Checked the parameters and there doesn't appear to be any issues beyond the water being hard.

    Found some Sterbais at another LFS a couple of towns over, but elected not to buy them. I'm considering a filter replacement, seems like the fish are working a little harder than they should to swim on the side of the tank with the filter. The Auqueon I have is not an adjustable speed, so I wonder if that might be having a deterimental effect on the tank. The Cory's all seem ok, and all but the one neon is fine.

    Any suggestions for a replacement filter/pump set up? I need a tank hanger, guy at the store recommended considering fluval, but I haven't started doing the research yet. Next water change is saturday, between between 25-35%. Pictures coming soon.

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