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Suitable Native Fish for a 20 gallon Black Water Leaf Litter Setup


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#1 EastFish

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Posted 29 June 2020 - 01:27 PM

I have created a flooded forest floor tank with driftwood and a lot of leaf litter and no plants other than some riparian vegetation that I actually intended for Cardinal Tetra, however all the Cardinal Tetra that I have seen available recently have either been poor quality or at extortionate prices. However, I see similar looking habitats all over the North East in shallow streams and also in ponds and lakes. All the fish I see around here in them are too big for a 20 gallon (Bass, Large Sunfish Species). I was wondering if anyone keeps native fish in this sort of setup? Pygmy Sunfish setups seem to all have lots of vegetation and this tank wasn't going to have any, I am going to order some for a planted 10 gallon I have also setup though.


Edited by EastFish, 29 June 2020 - 01:31 PM.


#2 Joshaeus

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Posted 29 June 2020 - 04:20 PM

If the PH and hardness are not uber low, a lot of natives would probably adjust to that without issue. If I recall correctly, Leptolucania, Enneacanthus, some Fundulus, some Elassoma, and some Pteronotropis can be found in blackwater habitats in the wild; the copious microfauna associated with leaflitter would be a valuable food source for Elassoma and Leptolucania in particular. Enneacanthus species can adjust to neutral or semi hard water but really do best in somewhat soft water.


Edited by Joshaeus, 29 June 2020 - 04:21 PM.


#3 JasonL

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Posted 29 June 2020 - 06:08 PM

Depending on where you live, mudminnows might be an option.



#4 Matt DeLaVega

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Posted 29 June 2020 - 07:37 PM

Depending on where you live, mudminnows might be an option.

Yes. I agree. Joshaeus also had some excellent suggestions.


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#5 EastFish

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Posted 30 June 2020 - 03:16 PM

Seems like most of the fish suggested would be found in heavily vegetated habitats. 



#6 Joshaeus

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Posted 01 July 2020 - 07:50 AM

Seems like most of the fish suggested would be found in heavily vegetated habitats. 

They can be found there also...but they are less concerned with plants than they are with having cover to avoid predators.



#7 EastFish

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Posted 01 July 2020 - 11:00 AM

I think Pygmy Killifish will do well in this aquarium. Would Bluefin Killies go well with them or do they tend to compete?



#8 Joshaeus

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Posted 01 July 2020 - 06:06 PM

I think Pygmy Killifish will do well in this aquarium. Would Bluefin Killies go well with them or do they tend to compete?

I think you would never see the pygmies in that setup...they are quite shy. They are best kept in a species tank, or with equally small fishes like Heterandria formosa or pygmy sunfishes.



#9 EastFish

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Posted 01 July 2020 - 06:55 PM

They are best kept in a species tank, or with equally small fishes like Heterandria formosa

 

That's what I decided on actually.



#10 Joshaeus

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Posted Yesterday, 02:55 PM

 

That's what I decided on actually.

Cool! Hope it works well for you. I myself had thought of keeping a tank with colonies of pygmy killies and pygmy sunfishes, but never got around to actually doing so...



#11 EastFish

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Posted Yesterday, 08:11 PM

Cool! Hope it works well for you. I myself had thought of keeping a tank with colonies of pygmy killies and pygmy sunfishes, but never got around to actually doing so...

 

I was originally going to get the pygmy sunfish but since I've never had native fish before and they're fairly expensive to order I wanted to try some that would live longer than a year if I couldn't get them to breed at first.

 

The sunfish look so cool though so maybe in the future.



#12 Matt DeLaVega

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Posted Today, 02:02 PM

H. formosa and L. goodei are pretty darn easy to spawn. You will enjoy them.


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