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Results 1 to 10 of 32
  1. Default Need help from some who has owned an Electric blue ram.


    0 Not allowed!
    I just got rid of all my fish in my 20 gallon (Dimensions - 24"L and 12"W), And I'm looking to do an aquarium with one or two centerpiece fish, and maybe two different kinds of schooling fish. My plan right now is 1 electric blue ram, maybe 6 or 7 cardinal tetras, and 3 or 4 cory catfish to clean up the place. I know if you go by the gallon per inch of fish rule, my setup would be considered over stocked. But, personally I think because all the fish are at different swimming levels, and the cichlid would have his own territory type area, and the others would school, I think it would work. My only real concern is the ph level for the cichlid. I read that they are a little sensitive to that. I don't really know how to keep it at an exact point, and can't afford to buy chemicals to do it for me every week. I have aslo heard that as long as you introduce them into the correct ph of 6.5, they won't be affected if it slowly makes it's way up to like 7.0. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

  2. #2

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Cleanup is your job, not some fish and besides, cories need bigger groups.

    Some rams will chase cories and cardinals, some will not.

    I think for this idea I'd go for a m/f pair of rams in a well planted tank. Once that's settled introduce a group of pencilfish.

    Do not bother with PH affecting chemicals, pointless at best, lethal in some cases. Start by testing the PH and, most importantly, the hardness of your tapwater after it has been allowed to rest for 24 hours.

  3. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    I know the cories will not eliminate my need to clean it. What I meant was to grab the food the others don't eat and the algae. If I put live plants in the aquarium doesn't that increase the algae levels by quite a bit? When you say "Well planted" does it mater live or fake?

  4. #4

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    0 Not allowed!
    Cories do not touch algae at all.

    Live plants promote algae? Can you shre your reasoning? And what's bad with algae?

    For the fish it doesn't matter all that much if the plants are fake or not. For any fry it will be an issue if it's a sterile tank.

    Best ram and apisto tanks I've seen where partially but densly planted with real plants, had a load of leaf litter on the bottom, some wood and quite a bit of algae.

  5. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Look, I'm not an expert on fish or aqauriums or the plants or anything. So I don't know if they promote algae or not. That's just what I always heard. I personally find algae pretty unattractive if it's on the glass, or has just covered the rest of the tank. I had 2 rubber lip plecos once and loved them! One died after 5 years and the other after 6 years. Would a rubber lip go okay in there with the Electric blue Ram? And if not do you have any other suggestions for something that would nibble on the algae and be peaceful with the cichlid?

  6. #6

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    There are several options here, but first a few questions/issues raised along the way need answering.

    To your initial stocking idea, the fish are generally compatible but temperature will eliminate some (most) cory species. The rams need warmth, around 82F, and cardinals are fine with this but most corys are not. Some are, such as Corydoras sterbai and C. leucomelas, so a group of 5-6 of one of these would work. However, all these fish are lower level swimmers, meaning that they all remain in the lower half of the tank. Some of the pencilfish mentioned by talldutchie would be better as they tend to remain in the upper half. Hatchetfish (those species in the genus Carnegiella only as they are smaller and quieter) are another upper fish. The limited space of a 20g tank has to be kept in mind however.

    The inch per gallon idea can work as a very rough guide, but is nothing more. Many factors figure into stocking, as I recently outlined in another thread. Depending upon the fish species, you can have more fish without issues, assuming other factors like weekly partial water changes, not overfeeding, and live plants which can be as basic as floating which are easy.

    On the pH, it is better to work with what you have in the source water (tap water presumably) and select fish suitable to that; adjusting water parameters is possible but not always easy. And never, never use the chemical products sold to adjust pH. Most won't work, depending upon the GH and KH of the source water, and fluctuating pH is far worse. Also, the GH is as important if not moreso. Do you know the GH (general hardness) and KH (carbonate hardness, sometimes called Alkalinity) of your tap water? These you can ascertain from the water supply people, who may have a website. Once we kow these numbers, we will have a better idea of things. And, what is the tap water pH? When testing tap water pH, remember to out-gas the CO2 by vigorously shaking the water for a few minutes prior to testing.

    Live plants out-compete algae by being faster at grabbing nutrients. There has to be a balance between light intensity (and duration) and available nutrients. I won't go into all this now. Without live plants, there is no problem with algae; in fact, it is good in the absence of plants. Just keep the front glass clean.

    I would not put a pleco in a 20g tank; they add a lot to the bioload. And, any of the so-called "algae" eating species are fussy over what type of algae they will eat, and it is usual that this does not include the "problem" algae types.

    Byron.
    Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
    Vancouver, BC, Canada

    Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]

  7. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Thank you Byron! Very helpful and informative! I found my local utilities website (LCUB.com if you would like to take a look.) and I can't see anywhere where it says my GH, PH, or KH. If I was to take a cup of water straight from the tap and have petsmart do a water test on it, would that work? I also have 2 more questions I should've asked originally. 1, Does it matter in which order I put the fish in? I'm definitely doing Cardinals and the Ram, and was going to put the Cardinals in first but wasn't sure. And 2, would I be able to keep just 1 Electric blue ram or do they need to be a pair?

  8. #8

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by Drew's_Fish_99 View Post
    Thank you Byron! Very helpful and informative! I found my local utilities website (LCUB.com if you would like to take a look.) and I can't see anywhere where it says my GH, PH, or KH. If I was to take a cup of water straight from the tap and have petsmart do a water test on it, would that work? I also have 2 more questions I should've asked originally. 1, Does it matter in which order I put the fish in? I'm definitely doing Cardinals and the Ram, and was going to put the Cardinals in first but wasn't sure. And 2, would I be able to keep just 1 Electric blue ram or do they need to be a pair?
    Unfortunately this is one of the regions that is only concerned with actual contaminants, so GH, KH and pH are not included in their report, which I found here:
    http://www.lcub.com/water/SitePages/ccreport.aspx

    You could call them on Monday and see if they know. I always like to know from the water source what the numbers are as it will be accurate. But you can also take some water to the store. Just make sure they give you numbers when they test, not useless terms like "hard" or "OK." Liquid test kits are best, but they may use strips.

    You should have a pH test kit of your own, the API liquid test is reliable. Testing pH periodically is wise, as is testing for nitrates. A good combo kit is the API Master that contains pH, ammonia, nitrite and nitrate. Well worth having this one. The GH will not change in the tank unless you target it somehow; but pH can and does change, and can be a sign of trouble.

    To adding fish. A single ram is fine, if you already have one. If you do want a pair, make sure it is a bonded pair; not every male will accept every female, and vice versa. I can explain further if asked. Cardinals do not always manage i newer tanks; I would wait to add them. The Ram can be an issue too with this.

    Is this tank cycled? Do you know about the nitrification cycle?

    Byron.
    Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
    Vancouver, BC, Canada

    Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]

  9. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    The tank has been cycled, but I gave it a good cleaning today after getting rid of all my old fish. I took out about 40% of the water. Will it need to be cycled again? The only place that even sells Electric blue rams is selling them for $55 each so I'll probably wait a few months. Maybe take 5 dollars out of my pay check every week until I have $55. I'm going tomorrow to my local Pet store to get a couple of alive plants and some new filter cartridges. If necessary I can wait a few months before I put any fish in. I plan on talking to LCUB Monday. Unfortunately I already dread talking to them from past experiences but I'll suck it up. :)

  10. #10

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by Drew's_Fish_99 View Post
    The tank has been cycled, but I gave it a good cleaning today after getting rid of all my old fish. I took out about 40% of the water. Will it need to be cycled again? Yes - once there aren't any fish providing a source of ammonia to feed the existing bacteria in the filter media for a few days, the bacteria die. To recycle the tank, it's best to do this with pure ammonia, rather than putting fish in there first - there is an article in the beginner's section describing how to cycle without fish in case you've never done that before. Also, the bacteria don't live in the water so saving old water is useless - start with new dechlorinated water.The only place that even sells Electric blue rams is selling them for $55 each so I'll probably wait a few months. Maybe take 5 dollars out of my pay check every week until I have $55. I'm going tomorrow to my local Pet store to get a couple of alive plants and some new filter cartridges. There is no need to get new cartridges - what you already have is fine. Many of us use the same cartridges for several years or until they are falling apart - once bacteria is grown in the media, you can clean them in old tank water (unless you are aware of this already)If necessary I can wait a few months before I put any fish in. I plan on talking to LCUB Monday. Unfortunately I already dread talking to them from past experiences but I'll suck it up. :)
    Please read my comments above - also, make sure your filter is good for at least double the tank size - meaning, a 20gal tank will need filtration for at least 40gal when it's stocked.
    46 gal fw tank with black skirt tetras, neon tetras, spotted corys, cherry barbs, otoclinus, snails & 4 amano shrimp - plastic & live plants
    5 gal QT
    Remember: Our job is to take care of the water our fish live in

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