20G stocking help/suggestions!

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blaxsun

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Turbos like the sides of tanks, ceriths will always be burried in the substrate, astreas love (just love) rocks and will hardly ever deviate and trochus tend to be all over the place.
 

blaxsun

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For snails to be effective at their job you need a lot of them.
And a lot of fish to keep them satisfied. For a 20-gallon, probably only 1-2 small orange-spotted nassarius snails, maybe 2 cerith snails and 2-4 max trochus, turbo and astrea snails. You'll want a few hermit crabs, too.
 
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yanni

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And a lot of fish to keep them satisfied. For a 20-gallon, probably only 1-2 small orange-spotted nassarius snails, maybe 2 cerith snails and 2-4 max trochus, turbo and astrea snails. You'll want a few hermit crabs, too.
And that amount of snails would be suits for my planned inhabitants??

I thought hermits were bad as they can kill snails for shells, and aren’t reef safe?
 

blaxsun

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And that amount of snails would be suits for my planned inhabitants??
I thought hermits were bad as they can kill snails for shells, and aren’t reef safe?
Yeah, those numbers would probably be on the upper limit of what I'd aim for. You won't necessarily want to add them all at once, as you'll no doubt be slowing adding fish over a period of time. You may also want to add them in stages, ie: trochus and turbo for the sides of the tank to start, then astrea for the rocks and finally cerith for the substrate (as you'll want to make sure there's some nutrients there for them).

It takes a pretty hungry and determined hermit crab to kill a snail - especially since they will be hard-pressed prying most of them off the rock or sides of the tank. If a snail dies they will of course avail themselves of the empty shell, but it's not always necessarily a good fit, either.

I'd get a Halloween hermit crab and a few blue legged hermit crabs (2-3), or maybe a few blue legged and scarlet hermit crabs. The algae eating crabs are cheaper but I find they tend to be more destructive in terms of knocking things around in the tank.
 

srobertb

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What about trochus snails?

I tnjnk even if I got the clowns, goby and pistol, I’d still love a firefish, or something of the like
As someone who has overstocked a tank before…you’re going to have a bad time. Nitrates will make you a slave to water changes. There just isn’t a lot of room in the smaller tanks to fight high nitrates with reactors, refugiums, high efficiency skimmers, etc.

All those fish are really cool! If you want an Anemone (and who doesn’t 30 seconds after seeing clownfish?) then I would keep my bio load low. Especially for the first year or so.

No anemone aspirations? Pistol shrimp and goby followed by other fish every month or two until you’re happy.


I like nassarius snails but as pets. You need to feed them IMO. Turbo snails are my money snail. Get smaller ones and trade them out when they big. Hands down in 10 years the best snail and I’ve tried them all.
 

srobertb

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And that amount of snails would be suits for my planned inhabitants??

I thought hermits were bad as they can kill snails for shells, and aren’t reef safe?
Meh. A healthy snail won’t have a problem with a hermit crab. If a group of hermits is rolling a snail there’s probably something wrong with the snail. I think it’s like when people say a bristle worm ate their fish. No…the bristleworm is eating the carcass.

I have some but they’re for my son’s enjoyment. I don’t think they do much.
 

Sharkbait19

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I have a lot of snails and hermits for my tank. 13.5 gallons with 5-10 astreas, 2 trochus, 5-10 nassarius, 1 cerith, 1 turbo, 8 hermits. Doesn’t feel like too much at all and it keeps the tank spotless. They all clean up after each other with the pistol and emerald crab ruling over all the inverts. Hermit crabs are annoying but haven’t done any damage, they just walk all over the place and eat dead things. Lots of corals too that suck up nitrates. Currently only 2 clowns but looking for a Randall’s shrimpgoby at the moment.
 
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yanni

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Yeah, those numbers would probably be on the upper limit of what I'd aim for. You won't necessarily want to add them all at once, as you'll no doubt be slowing adding fish over a period of time. You may also want to add them in stages, ie: trochus and turbo for the sides of the tank to start, then astrea for the rocks and finally cerith for the substrate (as you'll want to make sure there's some nutrients there for them).

It takes a pretty hungry and determined hermit crab to kill a snail - especially since they will be hard-pressed prying most of them off the rock or sides of the tank. If a snail dies they will of course avail themselves of the empty shell, but it's not always necessarily a good fit, either.

I'd get a Halloween hermit crab and a few blue legged hermit crabs (2-3), or maybe a few blue legged and scarlet hermit crabs. The algae eating crabs are cheaper but I find they tend to be more destructive in terms of knocking things around in the tank.
Ooo good points, I appreciate how well you’ve explained it, it’s truly a massive help! I’ll have to start beginning my research into hermits today I think
 

blaxsun

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I have a lot of snails and hermits for my tank. 13.5 gallons with 5-10 astreas, 2 trochus, 5-10 nassarius, 1 cerith, 1 turbo, 8 hermits. Doesn’t feel like too much at all and it keeps the tank spotless. They all clean up after each other with the pistol and emerald crab ruling over all the inverts. Hermit crabs are annoying but haven’t done any damage, they just walk all over the place and eat dead things. Lots of corals too that suck up nitrates. Currently only 2 clowns but looking for a Randall’s shrimpgoby at the moment.
"Standing room only" in your tank, lol. ;)
 
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yanni

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As someone who has overstocked a tank before…you’re going to have a bad time. Nitrates will make you a slave to water changes. There just isn’t a lot of room in the smaller tanks to fight high nitrates with reactors, refugiums, high efficiency skimmers, etc.

All those fish are really cool! If you want an Anemone (and who doesn’t 30 seconds after seeing clownfish?) then I would keep my bio load low. Especially for the first year or so.

No anemone aspirations? Pistol shrimp and goby followed by other fish every month or two until you’re happy.


I like nassarius snails but as pets. You need to feed them IMO. Turbo snails are my money snail. Get smaller ones and trade them out when they big. Hands down in 10 years the best snail and I’ve tried them all.
An anemone would be cool down the track, after a year or so once my tank has matured. Maybe it’ll be better to stick with clowns, my CUC, and a firefish
 
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yanni

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I have a lot of snails and hermits for my tank. 13.5 gallons with 5-10 astreas, 2 trochus, 5-10 nassarius, 1 cerith, 1 turbo, 8 hermits. Doesn’t feel like too much at all and it keeps the tank spotless. They all clean up after each other with the pistol and emerald crab ruling over all the inverts. Hermit crabs are annoying but haven’t done any damage, they just walk all over the place and eat dead things. Lots of corals too that suck up nitrates. Currently only 2 clowns but looking for a Randall’s shrimpgoby at the moment.
Oh geez, that’s heaps!! Does it feel like they clutter the tank? And how good are they at cleaning?
 
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Sharkbait19

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"Standing room only" in your tank, lol. ;)
The tank is packed. I like it because it had the look of something much larger though. This is it a few weeks ago before I redid the arches and euphillia. Enough open space to swim as well as caves to hide in.
D9E755EB-B97C-48C5-A69F-F09732C55A15.jpeg
 

Sharkbait19

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Oh geez, that’s heaps!! Does it feel like they clutter the tank? And how good are they at cleaning?
The sandbed is pretty clear, mostly because of the pistol. They do a very good job at algae control, but after about a week the algae just explodes in growth on the glass (which I base my water change schedule around). I’m doing 30% weekly, so that helps to keep in check. Never enough to control growth on glass, but there is almost no algae on rocks.
 
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yanni

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The sandbed is pretty clear, mostly because of the pistol. They do a very good job at algae control, but after about a week the algae just explodes in growth on the glass (which I base my water change schedule around). I’m doing 30% weekly, so that helps to keep in check. Never enough to control growth on glass, but there is almost no algae on rocks.
Is it bc the pistol constantly stirs it up?

Oh okay I see, just a simple scrape job?
 
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