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Chuck E

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  1. As it says, I got a male Pearl Gourami for my 29gal tank a few days ago and he acted pretty skittish for the first couple days, but today he's just glass-surfing constantly. He also goes up for a breath often. Tankmates are 2 whiptail catfish 5 nerites 1 mystery snail. Parameters are 0 ammonia 0 nitrites ~10-20 nitrates pH 7.3 GH 7 deg KH 8 deg Tank Description/Setup 29 Gallon Fairly heavily planted, including dense Salvinia w/clear areas, with lots of hiding spots and elevated resting spots. Pretty well-cycled, maybe about 6mo old tank, although I started the cycle with an established filter and driftwood and before getting fish I kept it alive w/aquarium-safe ammonia drops. Natural gravel substrate with lots of bits of catappa leaf bits along the bottom for the whiptails to feel happy. A medium AC sponge filter + an old Quietflow E internal hanging filter stuffed with aquarium sponge, to help with the biofilter and to provide a little bit more water movement/oxygenation for the whiptails at the bottom (being a tall tank). Overhead grow bulbs on an 8 hour timer. Some plants growing out of hanging planters in the top of the tank, including spider plants, basil, strawberry, and "lucky bamboo". A bit of activated carbon in a bag for chemical filtration, and I somewhat recently switched to an AC heater set to 77F, placed next to the sponge filter. Plants are all healthy and the snails feast on various biofilms and algae on the pieces of driftwood, to the extent that I rarely seem them on the glass, except for the mystery snail troublemaker. Whiptails seem happy enough, but it's hard to tell with those things. They mostly just hang out doing nothing while the lights are on, then start swimming around eating every last bit of food and detritus in the tank when they are off. I hope that's enough information. So back to the Pearl Gourami. As I said, he seemed fine for a while, albiet very shy. Now he's kind of freaking out and glass-surfing. He ate pretty well this morning (Xtreme mini floating pellets and some frozen bloodworm) , but then went back to freaking out. Is this just a new-environment response, and he's likely to calm down? Is it possible that he's lonely/scared without other fish around? I know Gouramis aren't terribly social, but maybe some schooling fish or a female or something would calm him? Or is that not likely? Any advice on what I could do? Turning off the lights doesn't help. He only stops spazzing out when he notices us walking around, then he kind of hides a bit and watches, but as soon as we walk away he starts glass-surfing again.
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