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Shoaling fish in hard water

parotet

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Thank you for your feedback. It 's going to be a hard decision. Luckily I still have two months to make my mind. Adding a pair of ramirezi would help to make a tight school or will they get used to them ? Anyway I think a group of 10 schooling small fishes and a pair of ramirezi can be too much stocking for 60 litres, isn't it?
 

Andy D

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darren636

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Got a school/shoal of Pygmy Corries in my 3ft high tech London tap tank they spawn frequently, but in retrospect I'd have them in a black water setup can't catch the little buggers no though, fish keeping as well as plant keeping is a giant learning curve.
that is very interesting.
 

parotet

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I don't think Rams will tolerate the hard water. Most fish seem fairly adaptable but Rams seems to be one of the ones that are less tolerant.

Beautiful fish though! - Mikrogeophagus ramirezi – Ram (Apistogramma ramirezi, Papiliochromis ramirezi, Microgeophagus ramirezi) — Seriously Fish

Excellent website, one of my favorite ones... As I mentioned the ph of my tap water is 7.4 but I will have pressurized CO2 in this new tank, so hope it will be a little lower. I also mentioned I have hard water, but probably not that much... I'm around 175 ppm. Too alkaline and hard water for most black water Amazonian species, not bad for most Asian species.

Anyway it was just a though, I don't want my fishes to be stressed all the time. I can always put my hands in the tank and see the shoal for a while! Honestly I did't know that these amazing pics with tight shoaling fishes were done like this, I also though it was a matter of patience...
 

Ravenswing

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In all fairness my lfs were keeping them in hard water when I got them tds of 385 my tank tds of 350 ish by the end of the week.


We sadly lost our pygmies one by one within few months having EC 400-500uS from tap (GH 4-5, KH 3-4, pH 7,2-8), in tank with ferts etc around 600uS before WC. Nowadays rainwater and RO and all dwarf cories doing fine....

Dwarf rainbow (Melanotaenia praecox) is schooling nicely but unfortunately might jump. We had them at first in a tank without glas, lost couple. I found it very nice, attractive and hard fish when water is kept clean enough. Also Indian Glass fish (Parambassis ranga) is shoaling easily, has done well even in our nasty tap water, but no spawning.

pH does not seem to be a big factor for most fish even though it is always quoted.
Totally agree!
 

parotet

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This afternoon I fell in love with a shoal of black neon tetras... soooo beautiful all together! They would fit very well against a green background. I have read in Seriously Fish that they are quite adaptable, even seem to be ok for my hardness and ph.

Miss prefers cardinal tetras... I still have 2 months to discuss it :) I though they were more 'Amazonian', I mean, a more black waters fish demanding low ph and soft waters, but surprisingly Seriously Fish gives the same reference values for cardinals and black neons.

What do you think about it? Both are incredibly beautiful fishes anyway.
Good jumpers?
 

Ravenswing

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We have had Black Neons in our nasty water (pls see my previous post) for a long time without any problems. We have lost our Cardinals twice because of Neon Tetra Disease, Pleistophora. However, BNs dont school when they feel themselves comfortable. They live in a 600-l tank (with Geos and Angels) without glas and no surface vegetation, one has jumped away so I would say go for it.
 

Manrock

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This afternoon I fell in love with a shoal of black neon tetras
I had a shoal of these for several years and they are amazing to watch, especially for an hour or so before lights out when they would shoal tightly and move around the tank in swishes and swirls. I have a 170 litre though and had 25 of them. Not sure you would get the same display with only 10. I then had 25 Cardinals but have been very disappointed with them - they are very shy and I rarely see them. They are beautiful and seem very hardy (shoal is 5 years + old now) but have never shoaled and venture out of the vegetation only to feed. I'm just about to put them in a display tank at my LFS and get a shoal of Rummynose. I do have soft water though.
 

Manrock

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darren636

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Just a thought - have you considered some micro-type fish, like the chilli Raspora or the kubotai. I had a shoal of both (20 chillis in a larger nano) and they looked amazing. Again though you may have to think about softening the water by using some RO or rain water. Your CO2 will bring the pH down quite a bit as well.

Boraras brigittae – Mosquito Rasbora — Seriously Fish

Boraras brigittae – Mosquito Rasbora — Seriously Fish
ph down and co2 won't help the fish in any way. boraras need softer water, 100- 180 ppm for decent behaviour and life span
 

Manrock

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ph down and co2 won't help the fish in any way
Yes they do like soft water - I was just indicating that soft water is usually on the acidic side of neutral and that using rainwater or RO and running CO2 will all help.
 

darren636

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I have found co2 of no benefit for my b. Brigittae. In fact, they detest the extra water flow necessary to distribute co2 effectively , however they lose most natural behaviour at tds 200+ , even if the ph is acidic or neutral, yet display and court at low tds even if the ph is over 8.
 

Manrock

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In fact, they detest the extra water flow necessary to distribute co2 effectively
Interesting - do you run their tank with no/slow flow? The shoal I had were in a quite moderate flow and seemed to enjoy 'playing' in the stream. They did display really intense colours but on the other hand they seemed to live for only about a year and a half. How long should they live for? They never bred either but there were lots of shrimps, and Ottos in the tank too. I assumed they ate any eggs. A really beautiful fish, love to see some photos of your set-up.
 

darren636

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Perhaps mine are just lazy! but yeah, they resent high flow, and as for breeding- there is confusion as to how many species of 'brigittae' there are and even the scientists can't agree on many aspects such as sexing and reproduction. My dominant males dance and display to the females a lot but I have not seen any spawning. I only took one photo of my setup, and since then my tank, plants and inhabitants were partially destroyed in a house move of some violence. Now its back to square one, building up my clan again. this time with a mix of b.merah and b. Brigittae.
 

Manrock

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Now its back to square one, building up my clan again. this time with a mix of b.merah and b. Brigittae.
Well good luck with that. If parotet can get his water soft they would be excellent fish to have in a smaller tank.
 

parotet

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I do have a small group of 8 B. brigittae and 6 B. urophtalmoides in my nano tank with ph 7.6 that seem to do well. Bright colors and nice behavior. Interesting to see how they use different parts of the tank. Urophtalmoides is a shy fish hiding all the time between plants and using the lower parts. Brigittae are always swimming out of vegetation and in the upper part of the water column. No shoaling, but it is a cube tank.

Thank you for the suggestions but I won't chose these species as I already have them. It could be a nice option, I remember to see on YouTube a tank with a big shoal of 50 specimens of brigittae... They looked awesome.
 
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