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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So, I went in to buy a 20-gallon sump to replace my 10 gallon sump on my 13.5 NANO and the guy sold me a complete 20-gallon kit for 25 dollars. I could not resist the urge to add it in my home office.

Anyway, look forward to relearning a lot. Worked in a pet store when I was in college, things have changed. Cycling now.

I was wondering what the consensus was about biological filtration in small tanks? I will eventually add a sump, but for now, what is a good HOB? I don't want a cannister. I am really good about my water changes. The filter that came with the tank does not have any bio medium.

Thanks and I look forward to some good info from you guys.

Some pics. Sorry the tank is cloudy. I swear I rinsed the rocks as much as I could. :roll:
 

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I like the Aqua Clear HOB filters. What fish did you put in the 20G?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
DJRansome said:
I like the Aqua Clear HOB filters. What fish did you put in the 20G?
Looks like some Mbunas a frotosa and on brchardi. They were in a tiny little 6x6 inch tank at WalMart. Probably not the best to start, but I figured they were better off there than at the Walmart. I added the cycling stuff and will add 4 more after the cycle and rearrange the rocks. I live up in the mountains, and I don't get down to town that often.

Tank is starting to clear, Will take a pic then to identify.
 

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I'd rehome everyone but the brichardi. The frontosa needs a 72" tank and most mbuna need a 48x12 tank.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Why would I do that? They are only 1 inch? I like smaller fish. It will take a year for those fish to double in size. At that point I will just pull all the rocks, gravel vacuum and bring the 6-8 fish to the LFS and start over.

I am trying to understand the logic. What is the proper inch per gallon? I see tons of tanks with fish 4-6 inches that are 55 gallon (4 feet long) and most have many more fish as well.

So if you have a 4 inch fish in a 4 foot tank that is twice as egregious as me, no? My fish is 2 feet per inch length and 20 gallons per inch. But a 4 inch fish is 1 foot per inch and 10 -12 gallons per inch.

I am not being glib. I would like to know how many gallon per inch of fish is acceptable? This is interesting to me.

My water quality will be pristine. You can see by my other tank I am no rookie. I will have a HOB until I get a sump built so that isn't an issue.

By your math, you are saying that a 1 inch fish should be be in 48 inches across tank? So then the average three to four inch fish should have 16 feet?

I look forward to your answer.

Thanks.
 

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The inch/gallon rule works for small, skinny fish like neon tetras, but mbuna like Metriaclima estherae are blocky and large. Also territorial, so they want to claim a space on the substrate.

The fish should be 3" within a year and will be spawning by then increasing aggression.

If you are going to trade them in when they are 2" then it's more of a grow-out tank and may be fine.

And yes, a good stocking for a 48" tank (depending on species) would be 15 6" mbuna. But they will live happily in the 48" tank for their 8 year lifetimes.
 
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