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Stocking Options for Fluval Flex 32.5


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I've recently ordered a Fluval Flex 32.5 gallon and am FINALLY thinking about my stocking options. I do intend to go fairly heavy on the low- to medium-level plants, but I do want to make sure I have plenty of swimming life, too. Do people have recommendations on stocking options? I'd love some schools, or maybe one big school or something, and of course a show fish. Thanks in advance!

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Thanks for the initial input! What's the "max" amount of fish I could look to add? I understand the 1" to gallon rule, but it's a loose rule. Just to give myself an idea!

I had an initial list of:

M/f pair of pearl gouramis

8x phantom red tetra

8x harlequin rasbora

6-8 panda cory

I do know this would be overstocking, but maybe not? I thought about removing the corys and putting in shrimp instead, especially if I wanted something like dwarf hairgrass in the tank.

Edited by zpayne10
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On 11/17/2022 at 12:04 PM, Levi_Aquatics said:

I would go with a group of corydoras of your choice, a bristlenose, and a school of guppies or other livebearers.  For a show fish I think a dwarf gourami would be a nice addition.

I would not recommend a dwarf gourami.  It's difficult to find one that's healthy and won't kill everything else in the tank.

On 11/17/2022 at 12:44 PM, cavdad45 said:

instead of pearl ghouramis, look at  honey ghouramis for a lighter bioload, as well as playing well with others

I don't disagree with honey gouramis for the centerpiece, but pearl gouramis are rarely aggressive toward other species if they're kept in groups instead of single.

Here's my recommendation:

  • For the centerpiece, 3 pearl gouramis or 5 honey gouramis, with females outnumbering males.
  • Ten or so of your favorite mid-size rasbora, tetra, etc.  I'm a big fan of serpae tetras, especially in planted tanks, but there are many good options.  I also like black neon tetras, lemon tetras, and pristella tetras, and they have been pretty much trouble free for me.
  • 6-8 of one of the smaller Corydoras species


  • a pair of Bolivian rams for the centerpiece, skip the corys (since the rams spend most of their time near the bottom), and up the mid-size shoaling fish to 15 or so.
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On 11/17/2022 at 2:13 PM, zpayne10 said:

@JettsPapa I love the recommendation! I had never considered the rams, but a quick search...wow! They look incredible. Is it pretty easy to sex them to get a pair?

I believe it's somewhat difficult when they're young, but much easier when they approach maturity (much like most gouramis).

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