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new tank ideas please?

Posted By: Guinevere <natmur@juno.com>
Date: Monday, 22 May 2000, at 12:27 a.m.

Hi all, My friend is selling her 75 gallon tank set up, she wants to start over and try saltwater. Surprisingly, my hubby is not even putting up a fight, I guess he knows its a foregone conclusion, so it looks like a go! She's giving me a good deal, which helps. She already sold her fish, so I get to start fresh. I want to do a loach tank, of course. It'll be in the living room. My current 55 gal is in the bedroom. The new one will be 'prettier' because it'll be seen more. Not that my current one is ugly, I just care more about aesthetics this time around. Still, fish comfort is the first priority, as always. BTW, I've pretty much given up on live plants, it'll be a plastic jungle (ha ha), with the odd live java fern or crypt thrown in. Plus I'll put in new real driftwood (from the lfs), and some caves. What are the BEST loach caves?

Please, please, please tell me what you would do with a new 75 gal tank that you want to be attractive, but primarily dedicated to loaches. Best type of gravel (or sand?)? Best number of fish? Etc., etc., etc. I'd like to get more clowns (of course), maybe some yoyos, a dojo, any other suggestions? What would be good 'dither fish'? I'm thinking of just getting a pleco and a really pretty pair of angels. All the rest just loaches. I'm going to take my time adding the fish, its just a matter of having a plan to pursue. Actually I may not buy more clowns, I may just put my current set of 5 in the new tank and let my modestas have the run of the old one. My old tank has 4 rainbow fish and about 8 various "dither" fish like danios, and a small pleco, and a striped catfish (not a cory, a 'real' catfish) that currently is 4 inches long but I'm sure will eventually have to move out.

If I do that, I'd like to put my set of 5 cories that currently are the sole residents of a 20 gal tank, in the big 55 gal. Will the modestas bother the cories? I'd like to free up the 20 gal as an extra quarantine tank. My thinking is if both types of fish have enough seperate hiding spots, they should be ok. I just want to get a frsh perspective. I usually do 'community tanks', and my next one will be primarily 'Loach Land', though I think a set of angels might be a nice addition for the attractiveness of the tank. (No smaller filler schools of anything else). Plus I had angels as a kid and would like to have them again. Is there a major difference in pH/temp needs? My water tends to be alkaline, and I live in a warm climate, so I rarely use heaters. OK, be blunt, be creative, let me know what I should do and/or watch out for, tips on other things I might consider, other fish combinations, whatever. I'd like tried and true ideas from you veterans because in my excitement in starting a new tank, I don't want to overlook the obvious, and I might get better ideas from what you have done. Books are one thing, hard-won experience is so much more valuable. BTW, I'm getting a set of two large overhang type filters with the set-up, I'll know more specifics later. We're in the early stages of negotiations... Many thanks in advance!!!!

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