New 29gal...mollies & platies
Okay, here is the long & short of my mission. I am not new to aquariums, but I am not an expert by any means. During some random surfing on eBay one night, I stumbled across an auction that had six Spongebob aquarium figures and two of the houses (Squidward's & Spongebob's). That is when a bit of inspiration hit me.
The wife & I have two girls (3 & 6), both like Spongebob & both love to ogle my larger aquarium. So, I figured that I could do a smaller Spongebob tank and stock it with mollies and/or platties. I figure that they are small, active, schooling fish...which should prove entertaining for the girls to watch. (Incidentally, we have pretty hard water, and that is also something that I have taken into consideration.)
After watching Craigslist for a few days, I found a decent deal on a 29gal (30"x12"x19" approx.) that came with a Fluval 203 filter. So, herein is where I have some questions...
- How realistic would it be to place both platies & mollies in the same tank? I have seen some information here & there that mollies thrive better in water that has some salinity to it, but I have not seen the same for platies. If that is the case, I suspect that it would be better to stick with one or the other...rather than mixing?
- What media & which order should I be using in the Fluval? I was thinking Pre-filter media topped with foam in the bottom tray and then standard bio-max rings in the upper two trays. (I may top the upper tray off with some form of water polishing media later on.)
- The tank came with the usual undergravel filter plates, a single up-tube, and a Meiko PH-601 powerhead. I have had virtually no luck finding information on this powerhead. No idea what it is rated for...which means no idea of how much flow it provides. So the question here, should I keep it or ditch the entire undergravel filter system & powerhead?
I guess that pretty much wraps it up for now. Back to my tank cleaning...got to get it back into shape so that I can start a fish-less cycle!!
Thanks in advance for any & all input!!
Well, first of all lets start with the UGF. If you are not familiar with them and how to properly maintain them, then you probably should ditch it. However, they are a great filter if used properly and maintained properly as well.
As for fish, you can mix those species, however you may want to look into Platies as they are a bit hardier then Mollies. Salt is not a necessity for either one and all it really does is mask less then ideal water conditions for the fish.
For the media in the filter, I would use a good biomedia like Biomax or Ehfisubstrat. Either of those will provide a great place for bacteria to grow. IMO, the Ehfisubstrat is the better of those 2 products. Then just add the normal filter pads appropriate for the Fluval.
I agree. Mollies and platties are typically fine together, although mollies can be a little more finicky to deal with. You might also want to think about getting a school of corries in there for bottom feeding. They school together which is really fun to watch.
I wouldn't use the under gravel filter, although you might want to hang onto it for later use.
Hope it goes well. I can't wait to see the photos!!
I agree completely with Goldbarb on the salt issue as well as the platys being hardier than the mollys. You could always leave room in the tank to add the mollys once the tank is nice and stable, but you should find enough variety in the platys by themselves. Red Wags , Mickey Mouse and a few Pineapple swordtail platys would have that tank lookin real nice.
Corys would be nice with a sand substrate.... panda corys would make a nice contrast to the platy colors.
I wouldn't mess with the undergravel system either. More trouble than you need plus that fluval should easily handle a 29 gal tank.
Last edited by thrakuarium; 05-02-2009 at 03:56 AM.
5 gallon heat/filtered: Halfmoon Betta - Buddy
3 gallon heat/filtered: Doubletail betta - Dude
3 gallon heat/filtered: female betta - Ruby
10 gallon heat/filtered: Deltatail Betta - Gabriel and 4 juli cory
29 gallon community: 3 Albino Cory,5 Harlequin Rasbora, 6 Platy, 1 Balloon Molly, 1 Dwarf Neon Gourami
38 Gallon S.A. cichlid community hybrid: 7 Bloodfin Tetra,4 Black Skirt tetra, 1 Bronze Cory, 2pr GBR (planned), 1 Angel
Not much to add except that I bought some balloon mollies and am quite enjoying them. If your looking for a bit more fish in the tank, they might be better than standard mollies as balloons don't get anywhere near the 3 to 4 inches that the regulars do.
Note. I have recently moved my three balloons, one platy and one oto into a tank with a good amount of algae. In one and a half weeks , it's all but gone!
Thanks for the replies thus far!
I had been debating on swapping out the previous owner's black gravel for sand. May just head over to one of the local hardware stores to check out prices on playground sand here within the next day or two.
The challenge at hand now is that the tank was put into storage without being fully drained....filter too. I got the canister & filter trays washed out, but the tank grew a ton of black mold/fungus that seems to have eaten into the plastic coating on the inside of the glass.
On the bright side, I got the entire setup pretty cheap...less than the Fluval would have been worth generally. On the downside, I may end up trashing the tank.