for clown loaches??? a 75g would buy you some time but honestly, they grow to be FEET long. ive seen them, with my own eyes, *cramped* in a 300g tank. they were also over 10 years old so you have some time. loaches are very social fish and having buddies is a great idea.
gouramis are difficult to work with. some are more social than others. having a well planted (fake or real) and uneven numbers really helps out a lot. makingn sure you have plenty of space is also a must. they are large fish with large territories. they are also labyrinth fish who can breath surface air but because they are territorial, they should never be kept with other labyrinth fish such as bettas. there are tons of morphs (color differences) between types of gouramis. for example, opaline, pearl, three spot/blue are all color morphs. there are a few more in that group but thats all i rremember now. all of the 'dwarfs' are different color morphs so keeping uneven numbered groups of them together are ok. i keep sparkling gourami because i have a 'thing' for tiny fish LOL!! and they ARE tiny but also territorial. im able to keep my 5 in a well planted 10g tank. some of the more unusual gourami such as the licorice or chocolate have a very very low pH requirement of which is VERY hard to maintain.
those common plecos folks pick up should never be kept in anythign less than a 55g. they are poor algae eaters, have dietary requirements of which most folks dont know about (such as having wood to chew on, blanched veggies to eat) and also grow to be HUGE quickly... or SHOULD grow quickly but because of the build up of hormones in aquarium water, it stunts their growth. there are some smaller plecos of which are VERY COOL!! such as the rubber lip or clown.... maybe the bushy nose, of which can stay in smaller tanks like a 20 breeder btu again, they are fairly poor algae eaters.
look at some different kinds of shrimp and either a SIAMESE algae eater (not to be confused by a CHINESE algae eater... of which is the most cruel of aquarium fish) or the otocinclus. you can fit 1 per 5g and they eat LOADS of algae. unfortunately they are wild caught and delicate fish. of the 8 ive kept in my fish keeping career, ive only kept 2 alive for more than a few months. usually its internal parasites that takes them out. or possibly the stress of shippign and moving. i havent tried ordering them online but next time i will.
i do NOT have a really huge set up. not yet anyway....
my husband keeps threatening divorce if i get any more fish or tanks.
i currently (perhaps i should update my signature?) 4 plakat Thai bettas, 2m/2f (in separate tanks!!!), in my 20g 4 of those loaches, 1 siamese algae eater and 3 white clouds and a 10g with 5 sparkling gouramis and 1 pea/dwarf/indian puffers(everyone calls them something different!!!). i have aspirations to set up a stupidly large system with discus and cardinal tetras and a spawning pair of scarlet plecos and MAYBE a herd of cory cats. i am currently working with a buddy of mine to build matching display tanks (5g each) for my bettas so they can move from the kitchen to my mantle in the living room (i could look at these guys all day long). id like to find new homes for my loaches and WC's and use that 20T for SW. corals. lots of corals and live rock. fish as an after thought!!
my grandpa has a laser etcher so im still working out what i want to put on my little betta tanks. any suggestions??
im sooooo excited!!!
danae, i kicked you a pm, did you get it??
-ashley the fish dork