5gal fish options? - Betta Fish and Betta Fish Care
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post #1 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-23-2012, 10:10 AM Thread Starter
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5gal fish options?

We have a 5gal tank and not sure what and how many to fit. Considering guppies, cherry shrimp, tetras. Not necessarily all together (unless they can) these are just some breeds my daughters and I have looked at. Any other suggestions appreciated.
Just a note that I don't want to get into breeding. We are familiar with keeping fish,we have had bettas the last few years and this is our first venture into the tropical fish world.
Thank you for your help.

Lilly - pretty white female. She was the smallest betta I have ever seen at PetSmart. Barely an inch long!
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post #2 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-23-2012, 10:54 AM
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Sadly, there are few things besides a betta that can comfortably live in a 5 gal. Upgrading to a 20 gal will give you many many many more options. Tetra are all shoaling fish and need to be in groups of more than 6 to feel comfortable, so this completely rules them out for anything smaller than a 20 gal. The only other thing that might work is a trio of male guppies or endlers (second is better as they are smaller); no females as they will breed. A shrimp tank is another option, tho. Red cherry shrimp are very attractive and look stunning against a black substrate.

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post #3 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-24-2012, 05:07 AM
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Shockingly there really are many different things that can go into a 5g, the only issue is tryin to find them. A dwarf puffer would be really cool, I have one and she is one of the most intelligent fish that I've ever owned. There are ton of different shrimp species, RCS being the easiest but there are other shrimp of the same species that would be just as easy. There are the endlers like stated before that are really awesome. CPDs, chili rasboras, Phoenix rasboras, emerald eye rasboras along with many other more-than-one fish that you could have. Dwarf crayfish are really cool too, especially the orange ones! ADFs are fun to have and watch as well. There are also some native fish that would fit great in the 5g. See there are a lot of different possiblities for a 5g tank!

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post #4 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-24-2012, 07:21 AM Thread Starter
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The puffer fish sounds cool. Are they easy to care for? I guess a 5gal is the smallest it could have. I showed my youngest a picture of one but her tank is only a 2.5gal.

Lilly - pretty white female. She was the smallest betta I have ever seen at PetSmart. Barely an inch long!
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post #5 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-24-2012, 08:18 AM
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Most of the smaller fishes would do better in larger tank.(10 to 20 gal or larger)
Five gallon tank's are much more unstable with regard's to temp,and water parameter's.
Water will alway's be more stable in larger tank's than smaller ones, and water stability weigh's heavy on health of the fishes.
Larger tank's are way easier to maintain than smaller ones, due to larger volume of water not so easily or quickly affected by temp changes, and or organic input ( number's of fishes ,fish poop,fish food's,).

The most important medication in your fish medicine cabinet is.. Clean water.
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post #6 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-24-2012, 08:23 AM
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Originally Posted by WDW Donna View Post
The puffer fish sounds cool. Are they easy to care for? I guess a 5gal is the smallest it could have. I showed my youngest a picture of one but her tank is only a 2.5gal.
They're pretty easy to care for. They like the temperature around 77-82F, for food they're a little pickier though. The like frozen bloodworms-some won't one of mine only ate live blood worms-snails, brine shrimp (frozen or live), and if your lucky some will accept pellets or flakes. They need excellent water conditions because they are a scaleless fish, so also be aware that certain fertilizers for tanks shouldn't be used. A good 50% PWC is needed each week, as well as a filter that runs 10x the amount of gallons of water (i.e 5g tank=50gph filter). The tank needs to be pretty decorated as well. They are smart fish that like entertainment, think of putting a child in a room with only a chair compared to a room with toys. Here are few pictures of my puffer and tank:
Joey:


The tank about a month ago:


I'll give you a picture of what the tank looks like now when I get home. It is much more decorated and grown out. I hope this information helps! Just ask if you have any more questons!

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post #7 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-24-2012, 08:28 AM
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Most of the smaller fishes would do better in larger tank.(10 to 20 gal or larger)
Five gallon tank's are much more unstable with regard's to temp,and water parameter's.
Water will alway's be more stable in larger tank's than smaller ones, and water stability weigh's heavy on health of the fishes.
Larger tank's are way easier to maintain than smaller ones, due to larger volume of water not so easily or quickly affected by temp changes, and or organic input ( number's of fishes ,fish poop,fish food's,).
That's true, but that is where the fun is in having a smaller tank, IMO. The constant upkeep and responsiblity is much more demanding, which is where the fun is. Watching the fish and the parameters are so much more important and give you more experience with larger tank up keeps because you have to in a small tank. There are still so many options, but thy just require a little more work. Plus I end up loving those tanks just a bit more because I'm always working on them:). But that's just me, and I do agree that small tanks usually aren't the safest for fish, especially with certain unresponsible people or certain fish types.

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post #8 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-24-2012, 09:13 AM
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Originally Posted by WDW Donna View Post
The puffer fish sounds cool. Are they easy to care for? I guess a 5gal is the smallest it could have. I showed my youngest a picture of one but her tank is only a 2.5gal.
haha, puffer fish are not easy to care for, IMO. When fully grown, they are highly aggressive(green spot dwarf puffer) and need to be fed live black worms.


Tetras, need ATLEAST a 20 gallon, because they are so active, and they tend to be fin-nippers. Only a betta would really be suitable, unless you wanted to do a shrimp Tank OR if you could find some rosy red mountain minnows(cold water) you could probably fit three.

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post #9 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-24-2012, 02:59 PM
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haha, puffer fish are not easy to care for, IMO. When fully grown, they are highly aggressive(green spot dwarf puffer) and need to be fed live black worms.
The food is the only issue with puffers, besides that they're easy. All puffer fish are aggressive, just don't put them with anything and it'll be all good. The live thing is wrong though, they can be fed frozen. Sometimes it takes a bit of persuading but they will eat frozen. Live worms are great too, but it's a lot easier to have frozen. Just throwing that out there! Yes, I love puffer fish and I think that they're great little buggers that get a bad rep when they really are good fish

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post #10 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-24-2012, 04:20 PM
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Ok, here's the picture of the tank as of right now. I'm currently fighting a battle with some algae, but one that's done I'm going to add a few more plants just to make it extra full:

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