Hi everyone, I've set up and cycled my new 180 liter tank. It has an allpondsollution 600 liter per hour filter, a large bio sponge filter with air line, 2 X airstones and 2 heaters, 150+200 watt so everything has backup. Ornaments, bogwood and slate shale but no live plants. Would I be able to have 5 each gold, serpae, neon, glowlight, and pristella Tetra, 25 in total and would they shoal together or remain separate? Also is there a best or worse way to add them 🐠🐠😀
Assuming that, and only if, you have followed this guide and process for cycling https://www.fishkeeping.co.uk/articles ... hless-cycling-article.htm, then you would be able to add all 25 fish at once. That is about right / a good stocking capacity for your tank size, taking into account that ~10% of the water volume will be taken up with decor, etc.
Many folk come on this forum, believing that they have cycled their tank, having been given shockingly poor advice from pet/aquarium shops that imply that leaving the tank with its equipment switched on +/- some dosing of a "starter bacteria product" for a few days achieves a cycle. The former achieves nothing other than ensuring that the equipment functions while the evidence of effectiveness for the latter is very equivocal at best. Both consequently result in a fish-in cycle and, even with very gradual introductions of fish a few at a time, put the fish under severe stress and risk for their short- and long-term health (if indeed they survive beyond the cycling phase).
If, however, you've properly prepared the filter in advance to be able to process the fish's waste by following the guide's link above, then you could fully stock the tank straight away, assuming you've kept dosing with ammonia every few days and results are returning to 0 for ammonia and nitrite within 24 hours of dosing it. If there is any problem being able to get 25 fish at once, do explain to the LFS the nature of the fishless cycle you undertook and they ought to realise that full stocking immediately is absolutely fine as the filter has been prepared to cope with that (whereas any other attempt to cycle would result in the tank being a deathtrap if stocking fully at the outset).
Most of these fish are advised to be kept in larger numbers for them to experience fewer problems, pose fewer problems for others, and display more natural behaviour, including shoaling. For these reasons, you would be better to increase numbers of each species but have fewer species - e.g. 3 species of 8 fish or 2 species of 12 fish.
Thank you so much for the help, I have several cold or temperate tanks for several years but this is my first venture into tropical fish. I've decided to go for serpae, neon and pristella Tetra and see how I get on. Would I be able to keep shrimp with them or would the shrimp become a light lunch?
I wouldn't trust the serpaes or the pristellas with shrimp. While they *might* be ok with very large shrimp, personally, I wouldn't take the risk. [My own pristellas have always had a strong interest in anything that moves at the bottom - poor cories got their tails bitten frequently - and serpaes are meant to be even more so than this.]
Ok, separate shrimp tank it is! I'm very lucky in that the fish I particularly want happen to require the type of water I have, it comes from a stream in the wesh mountains and all my tests have been spot on for the Tetra, must have been meant 😊