Everyone overstocks their tanks

3Truth is, that no matter how long you’ve been in this hobby, everyone has more fish than the rule of thumb would suggest. I have a tank that currently has 6 discus, 11 angelfish, 6 roseline sharks, 6 Siamese algae eaters, 5 clown loaches, 10 harlequin rasboras, 8 cherry barbs, 2 common plecos, 5 rams, 2 bristlenose plecos, 1 royal pleco and a couple of others in it, and they have been in the tank for a little over a year now, with minimal casualties over this time. now here’s the kicker, this tank is a 75 gallon tank and the old way of thinking would suggest that this tank is well overstocked and it is to a certain degree, however this just goes to show that the old advice may have applied back then but now things have certainly changed. My motto is: stock what you’re filter can handle!! That 75 gallon tank has a sump filter on it that filters 800 gallons of water per hour, with enough biological filtration to seed at least 10 other tanks, the fish are fed twice daily and there are plants to assist in the nitrogen breakdown in the system. The point is this: water volume is fine as far as gauging how many or what type of fish you’d like to keep, but the real key to successful husbandry is proper filtration.

As my general rule of thumb, filtration should be 10 times as much as the overall tank volume, this will help in maintenance. Even in overstocked I only perform a water change, once per month, if that. My discus and angels even clear breeding sites from time to time. Fish need certain intangibles that aren’t usually covered in most websites or books. Unfortunately those will have to wait until my next post. See you next time!!!!

Let’s get one thing straight!!!!

I am an aquarium fanatic, but one thing that I really hate is the subscription to the old way of thinking, as we grow in the hobby, our practices grow as well. The reason I’m posting today is because I’ve been trying to gather other people’s opinions as far as what to do with my silver dollars because I’m downsizing and consolidating my tanks. I have a tank with discus and a couple of other fish in it, that I’m considering and I went to the forums for maybe a little reassurance, that was a mistake. If you’ve never done something then how are you in a position to make comments, that’s like a person that’s never been married giving marriage advice.

One thing that really bugged me was the idea that discus would starve if silver dollars are introduced in the tank. Let me give you guys some perspective, discus share waters with caiman, Oscars, piranhas, turtles, otters, angelfish, knife fish, stingrays, various birds of prey and, oh yeah, silver dollars. The idea that these guys are so frail that they’d die because a fish is faster that it is, is ridiculous. I also want to put a black ghost knife in that tank, and that was met with the same type of response, except this time it was the nocturnal nature of the knife fish. However we see continuous tanks being setup with plecos which are nocturnal in nature. This hobby is full of advice, some of it comes from the heart and we need to adhere to it, such as pH values and filtration requirements, tank size and fish size, however compatibility is a little more trial and error. As long as extremes are avoided. I’ve seen tanks with tiger barbs and piranhas in it, I’ve seen largemouth bass and crayfish coexisting for years, I even had a betta thrive in a tank with African cichlids. The point is, try to experience the hobby in your own way, follow advice until it becomes second nature to you, then don’t be afraid to live a little!!!!!!

Welcome to the family!!!

I’m here to educate and inspire, I’ll show you all of my successes and failures, and weed through all of the many misleading information out there, if you have questions feel free to ask, I’ll take your criticism as well as your praise, this blog exists to teach you as well as myself. I have well over 30 years in the hobby but I am no expert, just a man that lives nature. So follow me as I continue to grow in this hobby