Updated: Feb 1
Many beginners are confused as to what to do with a 45 to 50 gallon tank around 170 litres to 180 litres...what type of a setup to go into? What type of fish to put into? Etc...Should i go for planted?, cichlid fish tank...??
I basically tell them to go for a tank which suits their personality..Ask yourself these question:
1)DO I HAVE TO GO FOR A PLANTED TANK? THE COST/MAINTENANCE IS TOO HIGH OUT HERE...I FEEL THE PERSONALITY OUT HERE IS VERY CARING AND LOVING PERSON WHO LOVES NATURE AND GARDENING.
2)SHOULD I GO FOR TETRA TANK ONLY? I THINK TETRA TANKS ARE MOSTLY SUITABLE FOR A COLOURFUL PERSON AND A PERSON WHO IS A TEAM MAN AND WHO LOVES MOVEMENT, FAST SPACE. ETC
3)OR SHOULD I GO FOR AN ANGEL TANK? SUITABLE FOR A PERSON WHO IS CALM AND LOVES TO OBSERVE AND ADMIRE THE BEAUTY OF NATURE In ITS CALMNESS.
4)SHOULD I GO FOR A CICHLIDS ONLY TANK. IF YOU ARE AN AGGRESSIVE PERSONALITY and A COLOURFUL PERSONALITY, A CICHLID TANK IS THE BEST SPECIALLY AN AFRICAN CICHLID TANK...ALSO CONSIDERED AS A POOR MAN MARINE TANK.
A note of caution please do not have mix of the above..A recipe for total destruction.
1) Planted tank is recommended if you have the patience of a gardener and the budget to look into the maintenence and most importantly the time. My early experience was too much of information and disaster..it took for me time to settle down with experiments...if you are going for a planted tank then go with mollies, guppies and even cardinal tetra.Also include the clean up crew such as ottocinclus, siamese algae eater and even nirite snails and atleast one whiptail( royal or red) or bristle nose.for a planted tank you can decide upon your budget what type of plants do you need according to the light and co2 requirement ? Accordingly you can buy the plants? With pressurised co2 the plants grow well...but not needed if you have a low tech tank...for a beginner in planted tank..Go for all Green stem plants or even anubias (low requirement for light and low on co2)...you will require a good filteration, fertilizers from seachem, aquavitro or even tropica etc...as you go on. You can have plants growing on rocks and wood , you can also have plants grown into good quality soil like
, ADA or even eco complete
2) Tetra only tank along with plants will look beautiful for the eyes ...you can decide on just tetra tanks like the cardinal tetra or neon tetra( dont put mix of both), lemon tetra, etc...they are schooling fish...they look very beautiful as they move together...for a tetra tank you should have plants around it..otherwise it will be cruel to put them into bare tank or even more cruel to just have substrate ...you can have cory or even clown loach
3)Angel only tank: This is the most elegant of the tanks...you can have variety of angels and they look beautiful...atleast 8 to 10 Angels will look stunning...for plants have anubias , or even java ferns it will look awesome...please do ot have delicate stem plants...as the angels also nip at the plants. Koi angels or even blue angels look stunning..you can observe the formation of pairs if any among angels...please do not put any neon tetra as I found out that they tend to eat them up...you can put with them rainbows...strictly no guppies and tetras..avoid anything that can fit into their mouth...for compatibility you can have cory or even clown loach as bottom dwellers.
4) African cichlid only tank...
This one is also my favourite as its a poor man marine tank...its colourful and bright. The best thing isnto have atleast 12 cichlid, its better to go for all male tank. Yellow lab is my favourite..there are many type of colourul cichlids.you can also have some tank mates like the clown loaches and even a pleco for them...Avoid plants though few were successful putting plants into their cichlid tank...you can try java ferns.. My experience has thought me to avoid plants for cichlids as they up root it. Cichlids are very territorial and care sgould be taken that you buy all fish of the same size (mainly 2 inchs) together. You can put in some good quality plastic plants...though i would not recommend..rather have plenty of rocks specially for yellow lab. And keep on changing the formations otherwise you will create a bully in your tank who will like to create a territory and then dominate...also have a good filteration for the cichlids.
For all the above setups:
1)Please do have good filteration which can reach every corner of the tank, sonthat you do not create dead spots.
2) Good soil for the plants...I am not the one to have a planted tank with total sand in it. .though you can grow with nutrition tablets inserted into the tank.
Maintenance should be done mostly every week...atleast change 40% of water.
Clean cannister filters every month. And overhead filter atleast in 15 days.
3) Use proper Aquarium lights and have proper light neant for plants to create photosynthesis...always use digital timers.
4) please do not mix the fish species discussed above..never mix african cichlids with the community fish tanks.
5) And never overfeed the fish...once a day is good enough...
6) always keep
WITH YOU and also some medicine from seachem with you like paraguard for external disease like ich...for more information on seachem products visit their website
Oh i forgot the barb only tank...if you want a fast moving fish in your tanks which looks cool is going the barb way like the tiger barb, rosy barb...never mix these variety in your community fish tank..Tiger barbs are very aggressive just like the cichlids...
If you want to put goldfish in your tank...avoid plants...they will eat them up..you can try ferns though or amazonian sword plants...they dig in the soil or substrate..never have fine substrate , they will cloud your water...if you are planning goldfish only tank avoid the above...there are many variety of goldfish to choose from...atleast 8 to 10 average size will look good. Do not overcrowd your tank and have a good filteration.
All the best and have FUN.
Author : Sunil Dcosta from www.aquafishcare.com