Hi all. I currently have a 29 gal tank with one betta and 3 snails. My husband is hoping I will add some more fish so it looks more active. I'm not opposed but I want to be sure I add something in that will work long term. I've been keeping aquariums for many years so I don't mind hard work with them. (I've kept from small 1.5g tanks up to a 75g, both fresh and salt, so I do have experience.)
My husband likes colorful (or shiny), active, fish. He'd love a school of neons. I do not want neons. I'm not a fan of tetras in general. So what would work?
Bioload of course. I do already have 3 apple snails (I love snails).
Territory. My betta has been the only fish in this tank for a week now. I'm a little worried he'll be territorial if/when I add anything new. How can I do this without stressing him out or causing him to attack the new fish?
Price. I hate to have to say it but I really can't afford to buy really expensive fish. If I buy expensive fish then my fish budget is limited for a while and if I need to buy meds or something like that until I can replenish I'd be screwed. So I'd rather stick with less expensive fish.
Water parameters. Obviously needs to be fish that tolerate/prefer the same water as the betta.
Some I'm considering, some I'm not but want to mention so to give an idea of preferences:
I had considered an ADF because I do love them and my husband thinks they're cute too. But I don't currently have a place to qt it for a few months. So that's out.
Loaches. I love yoyo loaches but they really should have a bigger tank, plus they're pretty expensive. I'm not opposed to considering other loaches, but cost is a concern since I rarely see any loaches selling for less than $10 each around here.
Mollies. Well I've had mollies before and I don't care for them (plus the whole fact of preferring brackish/salt water... not a good match).
Platys? I've never kept platys. They are pretty colorful though so my husband might like them. I don't know a whole lot about them though. Do they require a school? Could they be kept in a 29g with a betta?
Dwarf puffers. I absolutely love these guys but they are nippers. BAD choice with a betta.
Guppies. Eh, I've kept guppies before. I've even bred guppies for a local pet store (not that hard since they breed like, well, guppies. lol). They can sometimes be nippy toward other flowing fin fish, but not always. I know they like the same temp range, but I can't remember about the rest of the parameters.
I'm open to ideas, thoughts, suggestions. :) Thanks!