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Is 10 gallons ok temporarily?

Hi, we bought a baby parrot fish today as company for our adult, we took all the bogwood and caves out, rearranged them and popped the new fish in.  Sadly our original fish wouldn't leave the baby alone, she looked like she was trying to bite him (she hasn't caused any obvious injuries), it might be that she was just pushing him with her mouth, it was hard to tell but he was terrified, she was finding him everywhere he hid and chasing him out.  

So we have temporarily put him in the only other tank I had, a 10 gallon cube, I've made a filter using a bottle, air pump and some f1 media from the original tank, and I added bogwood from the original tank too, so hopefully it's slightly cycled, I have better spare filters, but none that I could put cycled media into. I think the shop will take the little guy back, but I was wondering if he would be ok in the small tank until he's a bit bigger, we could  get a bigger tank sometime in the future, or maybe try him in with the big one again when he's stronger, but I don't want to put him at any risk in the meantime.




Let's start with how big each one is. Then, tell me what other model/brand filtration units you have. 

BTW: It's good you plan to bigger tank... I pushed the limits on what is minimally acceptable in the past, myself, and feel I'm doing it again with my 20-gal. setup, which brings me to the next question: How big is the other (main) tank? 

I'll spare you the lecture on how the largest or longest-established tend to become the Alpha of the tank, and how they tend to be towards any smaller residents.

I do question why you felt it necessary to re-arrange the decor, and suggest this: Have something just large enough for the newcomer fit into, but not the Alpha. Namely, something with some depth, but can easily be seen out of by it's occupant. I've seen this happen with the communities I've kept, and believe me: having somewhere to hide in which the bullies can't reach them is a welcome thing to smaller fish... Especially around predators! You won't believe how many times I've seen Neon Tetras just disappear in sizable numbers, just because they lacked decent shelter! 

The bigger fish, we refer to it as a "her" but in reality she could be either sex is around 7-8", the little guy (also could be either sex) is only maybe 2-3".  The reason I rearranged the decor was as you quite rightly guessed to try to get a few smaller hiding places, but sadly I failed, she could still wiggle in and reach him. She's in a 55g tank, but unless we can get them to get along when he's bigger I doubt we can accommodate a tank that size, although I think we could probably fit in another around 30g.

Filtration wise I have several including several spare fluval hob filters and one external, also some cheaper small filters that I used to use as backups , most will possibly be too high powered for that tank, I thought I might try the U2 and see if it wasn't too powerful for him in such a small tank.

Do you think it could ever work with him being added to the bigger tank?  Also if you think it might be kinder to him to return him, or find him a new home I would rather do it before we get attached to him (he is incredibly cute), the shop we got him from is lovely and very well thought of, so he would be ok going back, but obviously I'd rather not return him.


Just to update, I found a fluval U1in amoungst my spare filters, so I've put fresh media in and popped that in alongside the homemade filter, the flow isn't very strong on either filter so it should be ok.  Also I hadn't realised we had a different size for gallons in the uk, so the tank is actually 12 US gallons in size, not that 2 gallons will make much difference really.  We've talked about returning him, and if can be avoided we really would rather not have to rehome him, but we're going on holiday in two weeks and won't be able to sort out a decent sized tank before then.

He's been hiding since I put him in that tank, but I managed to get him to take a tiny bit of prawn out of my fingers this morning, he wasn't taking any of the pellets from the surface (hikari gold cichlid mini) so I had to remove them, do you think sinking ones would be better?


I'm sorry to hear your newcomer isn't adapting well... even to the smaller tank. And even if you were to reintroduce him to the larger tank, his assimilation to it would stiil take time, even if your placed the larger BP in the smaller tank temporarily. (Something I once tried to break a bully's temperment)

It is good you are feeding the "Newbie" Hakari... but as I have found, the sinking version of Cichlid Gold is preferable. Better still, my entire community loves Omega One's [Small Sinking] Super Color pellets. Even my Tetras can eat them with ease, and my BP has a far-easier time with them as well. Mind you, he is large enough to eat the former--the sinking version--but does struggle with them none-the-less. Hence why now I only feed the community the latter.

So you have a Fluval HOB? If it's the the old AquaClear design, you've made a good choice! I still use mine (I'm using it currently!) after all these years, and wouldn't settle for anything else.

As for the Imperial/SAE difference in gallons: don't worry about it. Although I have yet to see a 12-gal. tank sold 'States-side, a few gallons--or litres, as is said on your side of the pond--won't matter much, as long as it's occupant(s) are comfortable.

I leave you with the decision of whether to keep the newbie or not to yourselves... as only you can decide which is best for him in the end. And BTW: If you feel there's room for a 30 U.S.-gal tank, then a 20-gal will suffice... At-least until newbie has grown enough to handle the Alpha on his own.


Thank you for the advice, I'll get the other food ordered, the little one is eating, but I'd like to make it easier for him.  Next thing is to find a nice tank, something big enough so he can stay in there if necessary, just in case it never works out with my grumpy girl.