So I've QT'd my one boy and I really don't think I'll ever be putting him back into the 10 gallon tank, I'll probably upgrade to a 2 or 2.5 gallon for him. So now I've got 1 betta in a 10 gallon tank and I'm thinking about tankmates?
I'm thinking the small white catfish and/or glowfish.
How many of what can I put into one 10 gallon tank?
And how long do I need to QT for before adding?
And is a 1 gallon ok, just for QT purposes until I move to the 10 gallon?
Also I'm not set around one type of fish...so suggestions are welcome. I want some kind of fish that swims near the bottom and some around the middle/top so there's activity all over the tank. So suggestions would be excellent as to a suitable number of whatever species I can keep without overloading.
To be honest you can only have one type of schooling fish in a 10g. If you're talking about catfish I'm guessing you're talking about Cories?
They're wonderful bottom dwellers and they're peaceful community fish. First off those have Cories though you would need a sand substrate, if you don't have sand as your substrate, tough luck. If you do you could do, Julii Cories, or Pygmy Cories. I'd vote for Pygmy Cories, because they're cute and small, could fit around 10 of those in your tank, with one Betta. Pygmy Cories
If you don't want Cories, Ember Tetras could work, they're small and lovely. :) Could also do around 10 of those also. These guys prefer lower pH, if they live in alkaline conditions they're colors get kinda pale and washed out.
To QT them, I would QT them in the 10g and you could move your Betta in other tank if you want to. But to be honest, I always take the risk and I don't QT plants/fish when I get them.
Actually I have a similar situation. I went into the petstore planning on getting a standard betta in colors ranging from blue to gold... Found myself coming home with a beautiful red and blue crowntail in great shape. He's been in the tank for about a week and LOVES all 10 gallons and having decorations. He swims the whole tank and hides in a ceramic pot in his tank a bunch. He flares and swims and comes to the surface for food when I open the tank lid, just like a proper betta should when they're in the right environment! I do love having him.
I was think of adding a few molly's to the mix. I have a good filter, do water changes, and I can get more decorations. The tank is also heated (though it's off right now because of the summer heat!). Alone in the tank the mollys would thrive with my setup, but do you think if I got some mild-mannered ones they'd do well with the betta? The ones at the petstore are about the same size as my betta.
I have a gravel substrate so I guess the cories are out of the question. About QT though, the last time I added something to my tank, which was 6 ghost shrimp, my fish started getting sick afterwards, so i don't want to take the risk. What happens though if I move my betta to the small tank and let the new fish swim around, and they contaminate the water? Wont' I have to tear apart the 10 gallon?
No, if there's anything wrong with the fish it'll kill them, after 1 ~ 2 weeks depending on long you QT them for. Basically you're letting nature take its course, if they are sick they'll die. Your water will be fine. :) Even if it's parasitic they parasite will die since there's no host in the tank, and will starve. I always handpick my fish, you should do that too, when you go buy your tankmates look for any diseases like ick, or fun rot.
Also that's weird, usually shrimps can't contract diseases that affect fish, invertebrates don't have the same diseases as fish.
Neon Tetras, I've known some people house them in a 10g and they've thrived, the problem is that most people here recommend a larger tank for them with a bigger footprint since they are active fish. They also may nip your Betta since they're quite nippy if kept in a small shoal.
If you'd really want them I'd start off with 8, since some may die off 6 is the minimum to a shoal. If you have a well established cycle in your 10g, 8 Neons and 1 Betta won't be too hard on you, you'll have to do more water changes though, as expected.
But if you can try getting Ember Tetras, they're much smaller and you can house them properly in a 10g, properly 8 of them as well. :)
Also what is your water conditions like? Hardness? pH? I'm asking because Tetras prefer more acidic water, they're colors tend to wash out when kept in water that is higher than a pH of 7.5. Also they prefer hard water, and will thrive in hard water.