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Old March 14th, 2005, 04:02 PM
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New fish tank. Need help.

I have just set up my 35 gallon fish tank. Right now of course there is nothing in it, I just have it filtering and heating. I was wondering if anyone could give me some suggestions on what kind of freshwater fish I should get. I have a betta and a goldfish right now in another tank and they can be left seperate if need be but I would like to put them into the 35 if possible. I'm not really sure what kind of fish can be put together. I'm not even sure if a betta and a goldfish can go together but these two seem to get along fine, there hasn't been any fin nipping or agressivness that I have seen. I also have a few cleaner fish that will go into the 35 and a couple of fish that I have no idea what they are, but they live well with bettas and goldfish, they are about an inch long. I was looking at some angel fish but i'v heard conflicting things about angels and bettas. I'v read that angels and bettas can live together happily, but i'v also heard that they can't be together because angels are fin nippers. I just want everyone in my tank to get along. Any suggestions on some pretty fish that will get along together would be great. Thanks.
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Old March 14th, 2005, 04:05 PM
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Aren't bettas supposed to kill any fish they encounter? Maybe I'm thinking of a different fish...
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Old March 14th, 2005, 04:06 PM
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I saw a book in the pet store about fish. it explaines what type of fish are good for what reasons. For instance, certain fish are fish that like to be only at the bottom. Others like the top. Aparently you should have a mix of fish that like the top, middle, and bottom.

I also heard that if you are going to get live plants (highly recommended) that you get those first, and I think the fish book I saw talked about plants as well.
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Old March 14th, 2005, 04:23 PM
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Betta fish (males) can only be one male per tank, unless the tank is HUGE - and I mean HUGE. Males will attack and kill each other. They will also attack and try to kill any Betta female if they're not ready to breed. Males will also attack females after breeding has taken place. Many females can be put per tank, but only one Betta fish if it's a male.

Angel fish are fin nippers and will try to nip the fins of any other fish in the tank. Slower fish would be at high risk of being nipped.

Goldfish (in my opinion) are best left to smaller tanks that are easier to clean. Goldfish are known for three things: looking pretty, eating & pooping. Not much else.

If you'd like more information, I can PM you with fish that I'd recommend, and have had great success with in the past. Or, post which fish you'd like more information about and I'll see what I can reply with for you.
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Old March 14th, 2005, 04:25 PM
Lucky Rescue Lucky Rescue is offline
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Bettas are tropical fish that need water that is at least 80 degrees, while goldfish are coldwater fish. They should not be kept together. When the goldfish gets bigger it will likely swallow the betta anyway.

In addition to fiercely fighting each other, male bettas may also attack any other brightly coloured, neon or red fish, like guppies.

When I first started keeping fish I made many blunders that resulted in dead fish. The most common mistake is overstocking a tank.

A 35 gal tank is only big enough for one or two medium sized goldfish. They are heavy feeders and make big messes, and putting more in will result in sickness and eventual death.

If you want a tropical fish tank, don't put goldfish in. There are many suitable tropical fish for a tank that size. Live plants are very difficult to keep alive and healthy and goldfish will destroy them immediately. Realistic plastic plants are better.

Decide what kind of tank you want - single species, community, tropical or coldwater. Then you can make your choices, or we can give suggestions on how to have a nice and peaceful display!!

Last edited by Lucky Rescue; March 14th, 2005 at 04:30 PM.
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Old March 14th, 2005, 04:28 PM
Trinitie Trinitie is offline
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Good point about the warm/cold water factors LR. I completely forgot to mention that. I could talk about aquariums all day if anybody'd listen.
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Old March 14th, 2005, 04:54 PM
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I have a hard time deciding because I hear all sorts of different conflicting things about fish especially bettas. I heard and read that female bettas will kill the males. I also heard that they live in 75-82 degrees F, and read that goldfish can live in the lower end of that temp. I was also told that a good rule is one inch of fish to a gallon. so like a ten gallon could have ten one inch fish or five five inch fish. And sorry i messed up the tank size it's 40gal. I used to keep saltwater fish but maintaining the tank is very difficult so I decided to get freshwater until i move out and then maybe start a saltwater tank. My uncle is a big fish person but really only knows about salt tanks, he used to have two beautiful 155gal built right into his wall, one on top of the other,and one had an amora eel in it. Also my goldfish is only suposed to get to about 2 inches long, right now it's about an inch. is that unusual? is it a drawf goldfish or something? Also I should have specified that my tank is about as long as a 20gal but really deep.
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Old March 14th, 2005, 05:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jackie467
I heard and read that female bettas will kill the males. I also heard that they live in 75-82 degrees F, and read that goldfish can live in the lower end of that temp. I was also told that a good rule is one inch of fish to a gallon. so like a ten gallon could have ten one inch fish or five five inch fish. And sorry i messed up the tank size it's 40gal. Also my goldfish is only suposed to get to about 2 inches long, right now it's about an inch. is that unusual? is it a drawf goldfish or something? Also I should have specified that my tank is about as long as a 20gal but really deep.
Ok....I've actually bred Bettas before and can handle the Betta question.
The male Betta fish is the agressor. The male will attack and try to kill the female if they're put in the same tank....so....don't do it. The male is only socialable with fish from other species. One male per tank, unless you have a massive tank (like Trinitie said before). As was also said...you can have more than one female per tank. They'll establish a pecking order and keep each other in check.

I would not put a goldfish in a heated tank. Since goldfish are cold water fish, the heat can cause them stress and make for an unhealthy fish.

You're right about the 1 inch of fish per gallon, but don't fill up your tank right away. Don't get an algea eating fish yet....there's nothing for them to eat. Well...I guess you could get algea tablets if you really wanted to.

Your type of tank (tall and a bit narrow) is perfect for fish that live at different levels. Go to the library and take out some books on tropical fish....or do some online research. Many fish websites will give advice on what types of fish can live with each other. I've had Angels before.....and you don't want to see what they can do to other fish...trust me!!!

Your goldfish isn't a dwarf....they grow slowly, and only to the size their tanks will allow.

If you need any more help....feel free to PM if you want.
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Old March 14th, 2005, 05:27 PM
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Thanks for the help. I don't plan on getting any other bettas male or female anyway, I just heard that and now i know better. I'll just keep my goldfish by it's self then in the other tank. The little card that came with the goldfish said it would only get to be 2 inches. i'll have to find the card and read the technical name of the species of goldfish, it was long and hard to say so i don't remeber it. The algea eaters will be able to go in the big tank by the time i have it ready to be inhabited I think, I'll see closer to the time wheather or not there is enough algea. I let my tanks run with nothing in them for a week before I put something in with the light on during the day and off at night to promote algea growth. I should have clarified it's been running for about 5 days now (so i didn't really just put it up, but it was put up recently) I think I want to set it up as a tropical tank. right now the temp is about 80 degrees F, and the PH is about 6. I have one side of the tank pretty well covered with fake plants and rocks and the other side has some but not quit as dense. First thing i'm looking for is a harty tropical fish that I can put of few of in to help acclamate the tank before I put anything delicate in. I like just about all kinds of fish, which makes it hard for me to make up my mind lol. What kind of tanks do you guys have?
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Old March 14th, 2005, 08:12 PM
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Quote:
I was also told that a good rule is one inch of fish to a gallon. so like a ten gallon could have ten one inch fish or five five inch fish
That is a very loose rule, and depends on the type of fish you have. For example, Tin foil Barbs cannot be kept in a home aquarium when grown, no matter if it's 100 gallons.

Be careful with the algae eaters. There is a type that only eats algae when young, and becomes aggressive upon maturity. For a peaceful type, get a Siamese Flying Fox (Crossocheilus siamenis) but get only one.

Fairly hardy fish are barbs and some tetras. I like cherry barbs, although it's hard to get nice ones. 1 male and 3 or 4 females is good. Rosy barbs and Gold barbs are also very nice and usually peaceful. Always get only one male to several females. Other types of barbs (tiger, green) can be fierce fin nippers, as can many types of tetras.

Never get less than 5 of small schooling fish, or less than 3 of larger ones or they will be stressed and not show their best colours or behaviors.

A very tall tank is good for angel fish. The specimens I see lately are rather small so you may be able to have a pair.
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Old March 14th, 2005, 09:51 PM
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Just another little piece of advice for a new tank : you should get your water right before putting your fish in. You can buy a liquid bacteria formula (I can't for the life of me remember the name..all I remember is that the bottle is white!!) that will help get your water ready. This concentrated bacteria liquid gives your tank a jump start at becoming it's own little eco-system.

I always had very good luck with live plants in my 50 gallon tank (I no longer have my tank running though...). Plus they say that they're good for the fish, since they produce alot of oxygen. I guess I was just lucky...
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Old March 15th, 2005, 12:24 AM
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I'm not sure about live plants yet. I don't have a green thumb at all, much better with animals. somehow even though I do exactly what my mother tells me to with the plants they die, hers never do i just can't understand it. I don't know a lot about plants, any suggestions on kinds? I would love to get a pair of angel fish, but can anything be put in with them? I heard they can be fairly agressive. I know I can't keep the betta with them but i have a two gallon he can go in. Is that big enough for one betta? I bought the book Aquariums for Dummies, it seems to be pretty helpfull. You guys are great, really helpfull. I was going to devote the tank to oscars but then decided I would make this one a community tank and then get a larger one for the oscars. How big does an oscar tank need to be? Just curious. I also like Cherry barbs. Could they go in with Angels? I just don't know a lot about different compatible fish and don't want to find out the hard way.
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Old March 15th, 2005, 12:42 AM
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I kept tropical fish for over 20 years and the one thing I emphasize is research, research, research. Read up on the subject, find out which fish are compatible as far as temperment, environmental needs, and habitat.

I always kept gouramies. They come in a vast range of colors and shapes, and they're pretty mild tempered fish.

Swordtails, platys and mollys are also nice, but the mollys need a special solution in their water if they're going to thrive.

Also, research fish diseases, and stock up on what you need for the most common ailments in advance. It seems tropical fish are always getting some kind of growth, or fungus, or fin rot, or ick. Especially in a new tank. And every time you introduce new fish to the tank, they are likely to get something again, because the fish at the store always have something, and then you're bringing it home to your tank. When I was heavily into tropical fish, I kept a seperate quarantine tank where all my new fish lived for 2 weeks. That way they were treated and cured before they ever joined my 55 gallon community tank.

I'd also like to address the betta issue. I always kept a betta in my tank, a large colorful male. As long as you avoid other bettas and fish with long flowing fins, he should be fine with other fish. I never had a problem with them attacking anything.

There is tons of stuff you need to know to maintain a tank for a long period of time. Far more than I could ever write here. I advise you to get some good reference books about keeping a tank and read up on everything.
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Old March 15th, 2005, 10:27 AM
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well about the live plants , it also depends on what kind of fish you get, I have two oscars in a 65 gallon tank, and the only plant I have is a plastic one, and they are still killing it, poor plant. But I think you should just go to the auarium store and look at different types of fishies, and then ask or do some research about the ones that u like, and deoending on what kind of fish you will get, get the plants, i figured that plastic ones are so much easier to take care off, and they don't look that bad.
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Old March 15th, 2005, 10:58 AM
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I would get the goldfish out of the tank and keep them seperate, not much that goes with them. Goldfish carry a bacteria with them that not many fish can live with, except sucker fish. If you do decide to put them in a another tank, disenfect your big tank or it will likely kill all other fish you put in there.

Also, you can't get live plants with goldfish, unless you want to replace them every couple of weeks, goldfish are vegetarians and will slowly rip apart your precious plants until all that remains are the ugly roots floating in the bottom of the tank (not that I've had personal experience with this )

Also, don't listen when they say goldfish only grow to 2 inches! Ha! I got mine two years ago and they are 5 inches each now. There are two of them plus a two inch sucker in a 5 gallon tank, they keep growing! Goldfish will grow as big as their space allows them, which can be big.

One more little side note. If you're worried about there not being enough algae for your sucker fish, stick a couple a cucumber slices in their until the algae builds up, they love it! Cucumber is also good to throw in their if you go on vacation, most fish eat it.

Enjoy your new tank, post pics when you got em!
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Old March 15th, 2005, 11:07 AM
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LR is full of wonderful information!!! One caution about live plants though....snails. Those little pests live on the plants in most aquarium supply stores. If you see 1 snail in the pond where you get your plants....guarantee you have about a 100 eggs on the plants. The only way I've ever been able to get rid of them is to use a product called Snail Kill. I don't recommend using it very often as it's pretty stressful on the fish.
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Old March 15th, 2005, 11:18 AM
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Oh....don't forget to get a "hospital tank". The hospital tank should be barren of any rocks, plants or charcoal filters. No light on the tank, a small place...like a small clay pot on it's side....for the fish to hide, but so you can still see it. Not only can you use it to quarantine sick fish and give proper medication, but you can use it to keep new fish in quarantine so you don't infect your existing fish with any disease that they carry from the pet store.
The hospital tank need only be a small one....maybe a 5 gallon.
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Old March 15th, 2005, 11:19 AM
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I started my first aquirium two months ago a 30 gallon tank. I decided to use live plants, so far I'm pretty lucky they are still alive and growing. I bought one plant that looks like a fern and its going like a weed. I leave my aquirium light on all the time, which helps the plants. As for fish, I bought warm water fish, I make sure the tank is at 80 degrees. I bought 2 orange sord tail fish, a dalmation fish, and a big orange fish that looks like a goldfish but not. I also bought a fish that sticks to the side of your tank and feeds off the algee build up. So far, everything is still growing and swimming.
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Old March 15th, 2005, 01:23 PM
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I wouldn't leave the light on all the time. Not only will it burn out your bulbs quicker....it'll confuse the heck out of the fish. Fish also run on cycles according to daylight and night-time hours.
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Old March 15th, 2005, 01:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kayla
Goldfish will grow as big as their space allows them, which can be big.
Goldfish, or any fish for that matter, will grow as big as they are genetically predisposed to grow. It has nothing to do with the size of the tank/bowl. My sister had two small fantail goldfish in a typical bowl. They grew so big, so fast that they started warping. She had to buy a 40gal tank for them PDQ! They finally ended up being so big that when my husband tried to pick one up out of the tank (so my sister could clean it), the belly alone filled the palm of his hand! I used to have an iridescent shark in a 10gal tank, which I had to move to my sister's 40gal (after her goldfish died of old age, of course ) because his back was starting to bow and he would hit the sides when he tried to turn around.
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Old March 15th, 2005, 02:44 PM
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as far as disinfecting the big tank because of the goldfish, there isn't any fish in it yet including the goldfish. I'll keep the goldfish in my smaller tank and move the rest to the big tank when the time comes. I actully have two small tanks and the large one running right now. I have the gold fish and an algea cleaner in one tank, the betta, an algea eater, and I think I figured out what the other two fish are I think they are Platys are in another tank, and then the big tank doesn't have anything in it. so I can keep the fish I have now seperate but the betta and platys I would like to put in the big tank. I'm not sure I will get any live plants, snails majorly gross me out, I can't even look at them, plus the fake plants I have look almost real. Thanks for the help. Anyone know what fish can be combined with angel fish? I'm really taking an interest in them, I know the betta can't go in with them but he can stay in the small tank. Can platys go in with angel fish?
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Old March 15th, 2005, 03:13 PM
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was going to devote the tank to oscars
I would never put two Oscars into anything less than 100 gallons. They grow up to a foot long, and are BIG!

Don't leave the light on all the time! You will be overrun with algae, plus the fish need a "nighttime" to sleep. After all, it's not always daylight for them in nature.

If you want angelfish, here's what you need to do: Get 5 babies, and let them grow. You cannot choose their mates, they must do it themselves. As soon as two pair off, you can either put the rest into another BIG tank, or take them back to the pet store.

You must have other fish in the tank with them as "target fish". When angels spawn, they have a strong desire to protect the eggs. If there is no fish for them to chase off, they may turn on each other.

Get some fast moving fish, like 5 - 7 head-and-taillight tetras as targets. The angels can't catch them, but their need to protect will be satisfied.

Platies and other peaceful fish are okay with angels, although you probably wont' ever see any babies. Any peaceful fish too large for angels to swallow will be okay. Don't get any of the fin nippers, like Black Phantom tetras, tiger barbs or certain kinds of catfish who come out at night and literally eat all the fins off the angelfish.

Two adult angelfish, 5 or 7 larger tetras (like the ones I mentioned) and maybe some bottom feeders like gentle corydoras is enough for this size tank.

I've posted this before, but here are my angelfish just after spawning. (you need to put a slate or something similiar for them to lay on)
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Old March 15th, 2005, 05:11 PM
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Thanks lucky, wonderful angels by the way. I don't really want to breed them, way too many fish for me. Do I have to get a breeding pair? If I do will they eat the babies or will I need to remove them? I heard it depends on the individual fish is this true? so you think the platys would be ok with them, what size fish should I be looking for to put in with them so they don't eat them? sorry so many questions, I just don't want to have fish "disapearing" (into the mouths of others) or have any fights on my hands. oh yeah just a couple more questions how will I know when two pair off? will they just always be together? Do I need to go to a special breeder for the angel fish or can I get them at a petshop? I don't mind paying a little extra, I'm falling in love with this kind of fish and i'm willing to pay a resonable amount for them.
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Old March 15th, 2005, 08:05 PM
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Ask as many questions as you like! I love talking about fish, and if I can keep you from making all the stupid mistakes I did, it's all good!

You don't "breed" angel fish - they just DO breed, unless you have only one sex,(and should be kept in pairs) and sexing angelfish is not that easy especially when they are babies.

They are faithful to their mates and mate for life. You'll know you have a true pair when you see them together, cleaning a site to lay eggs and chasing the other fish away. But don't worry, it's extremely rare for them to hatch their eggs in a regular home tank set up. They usually spend a day cleaning, fanning and hovering over them, then at night they eat them. If they ever DO happen to hatch any (mine never did) they will not eat them but will take good care of them like all cichlids do.

Platies are fine. They come in many beautiful colours, are very peaceful and are too big for angelfish to eat. I don't really like live bearers and never kept them. It's too stressful watching the males harass the females endlessly, and worrying over the babies - LOL! Never have one platy - have at least 3 females to one male, so the females are not so stressed. The platies' cousin, the swordtail, is also beautiful but the males can be very aggressive!

Anything larger than a neon tetra is okay with angelfish. My angelfish were very big, but as I said, most I see now are small. You can get them at any pet store and they come in many beautiful patterns - half-black, veiltails, marbled, golden etc..

You can't have tons of plants with angels, as they need swimming room. Do not overfeed them ,but give them a good diet of live food, dried worms and flakes, some romaine lettuce or other greens.
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Old March 15th, 2005, 09:15 PM
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What kind of live food do they like? I'm not good with worms, of any kinds. they just gross me out way too much. I really like platys and swordtails, they are beautiful. Can you put swordtails in with Angels? Thanks for all the help. I just love this site everyone is always so helpful.
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Old March 15th, 2005, 09:31 PM
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I'm not good with worms, of any kinds
I'm not real big on worms either..haha!

You can get frozen worms. Frozen bloodworms are a BIG favorite, but don't feed too much of those as the fish will overeat. You must rinse them well in a net first, by holding it under a running faucet of room temp water. The fish will reject very cold food. You can also get freeze dried tubifex worms. For live food, brine shrimp are very popular and it's fun to watch the fish zoom around catching them.

I would not put swordtails in this tank. As I mentioned, the males are too aggressive for a peaceful community tank and may nip the fins of slow moving angels and bully the platies.

Angels are one of the intelligent species called cichlids. They may come to know you, come to the front of the tank when they see you, and even eat out of your hand. I just love them.
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Old March 15th, 2005, 09:46 PM
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Ok no sword tails thats fine, just didn't know much about them. I used to feed brine shrimp to my marine fish, but they were never live only freeze dried. Where would I go about getting live brine shrimp? do they sell live brine shrimp in pet stores? is it something I would give often or only like once a week or something? are groumi's agressive? I really like the pearl groumi and I read that they are the one groumi that is very peacful and can be kept in a community tank. Can they be kept with angels? If so is there any special requirment on how many need to be kept together? Like do they need a shoal? I know that they get about 4 to 5 inches, so I couldn't have many.
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  #28  
Old March 16th, 2005, 12:16 AM
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Jackie467 Jackie467 is offline
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Wow there are a lot of different kinds of angelfish . What kind do you have Lucky? I love the sunset blushing, they are beautiful. Is there a lot of differences between the kinds? I mean other than color, like are some more aggressive? I had no idea there were some many different kinds.
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  #29  
Old March 16th, 2005, 11:57 AM
Lucky Rescue Lucky Rescue is offline
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Most gouramis get quite big - too big for your tank. There is a beautiful dwarf gourami. They are peaceful but can be very territorial during breeding season. The other small varieties are quite rare and /or very fragile and not for first time aquarists. Pearl gouramis are gorgeous and one of the more peaceful of the species. The males are not as violent with the females as most of the others. They may live with angels - I've never kept the two together so am not sure. But 2 angels (who can get to be 6 or 7 inches high) and 2 gouramis is a lot of fish for a 35 gal tank - too many. Plus pearl gouramis may be bullied by the angels during the angels spawning time and vice versa. I would keep either gouramis, or angels but not both in that size tank.

Angelfish are all the same and colour is the only difference. Some, like the marbled, black and regular silver striped are the easiest to find around here. You may get a better variety but all are graceful and elegant.

My angels - the female is the wild type silver and black,and the male was the black lace variety.
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Old March 16th, 2005, 12:37 PM
poodletalk poodletalk is offline
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feeding fish

How often are you suppose feed fish? I feed them twice aday. I use flakes and I have special pellet food for the fish who sticks to the side of the aquirium and eats the algee.
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