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Which should I get?

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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Ever since I started fishkeeping over quarantine, I’ve really been bitten by the aquarium bug. I’m currently considering whether or not to give my betta tankmates in his 7G aquarium - if I did, I have a couple options and I’m finding it impossible to choose! What do you guys think?
Options:
1. Otocinclus
I love the way these guys look and they’ll really help with algae maintenance, the cons are that I’ve heard they’re relatively fragile and harder to feed - I also wanna make sure I give them enough space and security.
2. Pygmy corys
Adorable fish and really spunky, but again just want to make sure I give them enough space and let them feel safe
3. Nerite snails (possibly horned)
Helps with cleanup and space is not really an issue - problems are my tank doesn’t have a lid and I’m worried about runaway snails! Also worried about possibility of a snail infestation.
4. Cherry/blue dream shrimp
Beautiful additions to the tank, helps with cleanup - problems are I’ve never kept shrimp before and I want to make sure I give them the best care possible. Also slightly worried about shrimp snipping my betta’s fins when he’s at the bottom of the tank, as well as an exploding shrimp population!
5. Bumblebee goby
I’ve heard about controversy on whether this is a freshwater/brackish fish, being difficult to feed and being territorial; but I’ve also heard that they’re great community fish that live well in smaller tanks.

Let me know your opinions guys! I’ve got about a month to let my tank cycle. It’s a decently planted tank and I’ve never seen my betta be aggressive to any of his former tank mates. But I am aware that it is a small tank and I may want to just keep a single betta in it! Let me know what you think, and possibly how many to get!
 

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I would go with the shrimp!

Both Pygmy corys and otocinclus do best in shoals, so at least 6 other fish. I think it would be pushing it to be in a 7 gallon. I’m not familiar with bumblebee goby but I think the shrimp would be a better option off of the little research I did do. A couple nerites could work but the shrimp or more fun!

I love my colony of cherry shrimp! Make sure your tank is heavily planted so the shrimp have places to hide. I would get 10 shrimp. Just be aware if you mix colors the babies will revert back to their wild color so it’s best to just keep one color.

Keeping shrimp with bettas can be risky, I know some people who have done it successfully, I have not but I have only tried once and my betta is a aggressive active young plakat so it was expected!
 

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3. Nerite snails (possibly horned)
Helps with cleanup and space is not really an issue - problems are my tank doesn’t have a lid and I’m worried about runaway snails! Also worried about possibility of a snail infestation.
The horned ones had never escaped (so far) in my tanks. The Orange Track Nerites did.
All can never reproduce in sweetwater tanks. So that shoudn‘t be a concern.
 

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I say shrimp! Their gorgeous. I wouldn’t recommend otos or Pygmy corys in a 7 gal, they may be small but they prefer to be in schools, which is hard to do in a tank that size. Shrimp are gorgeous and very fun to watch. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I would go with the shrimp!

Both Pygmy corys and otocinclus do best in shoals, so at least 6 other fish. I think it would be pushing it to be in a 7 gallon. I’m not familiar with bumblebee goby but I think the shrimp would be a better option off of the little research I did do. A couple nerites could work but the shrimp or more fun!

I love my colony of cherry shrimp! Make sure your tank is heavily planted so the shrimp have places to hide. I would get 10 shrimp. Just be aware if you mix colors the babies will revert back to their wild color so it’s best to just keep one color.

Keeping shrimp with bettas can be risky, I know some people who have done it successfully, I have not but I have only tried once and my betta is a aggressive active young plakat so it was expected!
Great, thank you so much! I was leaning towards the shrimp as well, but the pet shop people seemed pretty skeptical both because shrimp could damage a betta’s fins, and the betta could potentially see them as food. I will say though that I’ve kept this particular betta with a variety of fish and he’s ignored all of them, he’s pretty peaceful and even timid! I’ll have a think (the tank is gonna take a white to cycle :p) and let you know!
 

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Great, thank you so much! I was leaning towards the shrimp as well, but the pet shop people seemed pretty skeptical both because shrimp could damage a betta’s fins, and the betta could potentially see them as food. I will say though that I’ve kept this particular betta with a variety of fish and he’s ignored all of them, he’s pretty peaceful and even timid! I’ll have a think (the tank is gonna take a white to cycle :p) and let you know!
I wouldn’t worry about shrimp damaging fins, they are very passive and peaceful! You are more likely to be successful because your betta has lived with tank mates before.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
To avoid stress, shrimp should not be added to a tank until it is stable or about two months after cycling is complete. If in with other fish it should also be heavily planted.
That’s what I plan to do! It’s a fairly well planted tank, driftwood, Java fern, ludwigia and Pearlweed so thing are looking good on that front. I’m mainly worried about the risk and compatibility. Let the waiting commence!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Fantastic, that’s really exciting !! Do you know if there’s any difference between red crystals, red cherries and blue dreams, or would they virtually be the same when it comes to compatibility?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
The horned ones had never escaped (so far) in my tanks. The Orange Track Nerites did.
All can never reproduce in sweetwater tanks. So that shoudn‘t be a concern.
Sounds good - if I do pick shrimp, would it be overkill to possibly get snails as well?
 

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Fantastic, that’s really exciting !! Do you know if there’s any difference between red crystals, red cherries and blue dreams, or would they virtually be the same when it comes to compatibility?
So there are 2 types of shrimp, neocaridina and Caridina. Generally, neocaridina are hardier and easy to care for. Cherry shrimp and blue dream are both neocaridina. There are so many colors of neocaridina, yellows, oranges, blues, reds,greens. Crystal reds are caridina. They are a color variant of the bee shrimp. Just like blue dreams are a color variant of cherry shrimp! If I were you I would look into the cherry shrimp. You can look into the different color variations. In my experience they are much hardier and you can find some beautiful colors!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
So there are 2 types of shrimp, neocaridina and Caridina. Generally, neocaridina are hardier and easy to care for. Cherry shrimp and blue dream are both neocaridina. There are so many colors of neocaridina, yellows, oranges, blues, reds,greens. Crystal reds are caridina. They are a color variant of the bee shrimp. Just like blue dreams are a color variant of cherry shrimp! If I were you I would look into the cherry shrimp. You can look into the different color variations. In my experience they are much hardier and you can find some beautiful colors!
Sounds great, excited already! There are a couple of shrimp breeders where I live and I know they’ve got some amazing shrimp. I think I’ll be looking into the blue dreams as they’ll look great with my blue betta! Or the red cherries for a contrast ... hmmm. Excited either way :)
 

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If you go by species profiles there are few fish that can do well in a 16" tank except the smallest of the Nano fish. Shrimpers advise if you are going to try shrimp with other fish the tank should be 3/4 planted. It should have plenty of "hides" for the shrimp to molt without the Betta being able to enter. Here, the Neocaridina run $3+. Since 10 would be a minimum that's one expensive dinner. Like shoalers, they also need the security of many of their kind. Stable parameters are needed because even .25 ppm Ammonia can compromise or even kill shrimp. That's why it's stressed the tank should be 2-3 months past a completed cycle.

I imagine your fish store people are thinking of Clawed shrimp that can harm other fish. They sometimes mistakenly shipped with Ghost shrimp. They can wreak real havoc on a tank.

Have you looked into Cambarellus crayfish? IME, they are good tank mates in a well-planted tank. They are only about 1"-1.5" so are not large. You'd need the same amount of planting as with shrimp. The downside, and I only had it happen once, is if the Betta annoys them they might grab a caudal fin.

What about African Dwarf Frogs? You could have three in your tank. I've been waffling what to do in my 10 gallon and have decided on ADF. I'm waiting for the store to confirm theirs are tank bred..Since I feed almost totally frozen, I've not had any issues with feeding. Some on the FB Group to which I belong use a pipette or turkey baster to direct the food into a dish. You do need to be careful feeding frozen Bloodworms as those are very fattening. They also make aquatic frog pellets which my ADF ate but the Betta have ignored.
 

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Sounds good - if I do pick shrimp, would it be overkill to possibly get snails as well?
Not an overkill for the tank but maybe for the shrimp if your Betta is munching on them.
 
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
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If you go by species profiles there are few fish that can do well in a 16" tank except the smallest of the Nano fish. Shrimpers advise if you are going to try shrimp with other fish the tank should be 3/4 planted. It should have plenty of "hides" for the shrimp to molt without the Betta being able to enter. Here, the Neocaridina run $3+. Since 10 would be a minimum that's one expensive dinner. Like shoalers, they also need the security of many of their kind. Stable parameters are needed because even .25 ppm Ammonia can compromise or even kill shrimp. That's why it's stressed the tank should be 2-3 months past a completed cycle.

I imagine your fish store people are thinking of Clawed shrimp that can harm other fish. They sometimes mistakenly shipped with Ghost shrimp. They can wreak real havoc on a tank.

Have you looked into Cambarellus crayfish? IME, they are good tank mates in a well-planted tank. They are only about 1"-1.5" so are not large. You'd need the same amount of planting as with shrimp. The downside, and I only had it happen once, is if the Betta annoys them they might grab a caudal fin.

What about African Dwarf Frogs? You could have three in your tank. I've been waffling what to do in my 10 gallon and have decided on ADF. I'm waiting for the store to confirm theirs are tank bred..Since I feed almost totally frozen, I've not had any issues with feeding. Some on the FB Group to which I belong use a pipette or turkey baster to direct the food into a dish. You do need to be careful feeding frozen Bloodworms as those are very fattening. They also make aquatic frog pellets which my ADF ate but the Betta have ignored.
I can totally understand that! I was always leaning more towards the shrimp, especially after my tank is cycled fully. My tank is by no means 3/4 planted yet, but that can be achieved once the plants I have grow out a bit, and I get a couple extra plants. Shrimp go for much less where I am so it’s much more affordable even if things go wrong!
I’ve never heard of the crayfish but they look adorable. I’ve never seen them stocked at any or the stores near me though :( same goes for ADFs and as I understand it their feeding requirements are a bit finicky which isn’t great for when I’m not home! I’ve got 2 months to see how the tank goes, I’ll do more research in the meantime to see how I can make it more comfortable for a possible shrimp colony.
 

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I wouldn’t worry about shrimp damaging fins, they are very passive and peaceful! You are more likely to be successful because your betta has lived with tank mates before.
But will a Betta be peaceful?
Story from a few weeks ago: one of my two Nerites decided to clean the filter air line. Eventually he fell off and landed on his side on top of the sponge filter. My Betta swam over, thoughtfully looked the situation over carefully and then helped the Nerite off the filter, grabbing him by the foot and shaking him like a Great White. The Nerite flew out of her mouth and landed on the rocks below and looked pretty freaked out for a few hours. That pretty much settled any thoughts on swimming tank mates in her territory :eek:
 

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But will a Betta be peaceful?
Story from a few weeks ago: one of my two Nerites decided to clean the filter air line. Eventually he fell off and landed on his side on top of the sponge filter. My Betta swam over, thoughtfully looked the situation over carefully and then helped the Nerite off the filter, grabbing him by the foot and shaking him like a Great White. The Nerite flew out of her mouth and landed on the rocks below and looked pretty freaked out for a few hours. That pretty much settled any thoughts on swimming tank mates in her territory :eek:
Betta are individual and do not always react the same. That's why it's recommended to always have a back-up plan. Thanks for reminding us to add that bit of advice.
 
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