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Discussion Starter #1
Hello! I am planning my first ever fish tank! The one I’m getting is 58litres / 15ish gallons, and I’m planning on putting in a lot of live plants. Would these fish be suitable in a tank of this size?

- 1 male betta
- 6 harlequin Rasboras
- 8/10 neon tetra
- some ghost shrimp
- maybe a few Corydoras (do they need to live in groups?)

Would these types of fish work together and do you think that would be too many fish for a tank of this size? The exact tank I’m getting is the Ciano aqua 60, but I’m going to replace the filter with a Fluval u2 as I’ve heard the Ciano filter is rubbish. any other advice appreciated, Thankyou!!!
 

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Hi, I would recommend picking the 6 Rasbora or the 8-10 neon tetra instead of both. Cory catfish also like company,4-5 at least and that might be a bit much for your tank if you did all three schools.

I would personally choose the Rasbora.

You might want to consider pygmy Cory catfish which stay a lot smaller. For them you could do 5-8 in your tank.

Live plants are a great choice and having it planted heavily will help the betta feel safer as well as the other fish.
for Cory catfish be sure to use sand as they love it and they do better on it.

A lot of times male bettas will get along with other fish perfectly fine, however occasionally you will find one who will not accept other fish. Be prepared to have a backup tank for the betta if things do not work out ( 3-5 gallons heated and filtered).

Hopefully RussellTheShihTzu will give you some advice about keeping Bettas with other fish as she has many betta community tanks.

Are you familiar with cycling a tank and general tank maintenance?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the reply! Would you recommend only one or the other because they don’t get along or just because the tank isn’t big enough? I kinda have my heart set on the tetras as I love the look of them but if it’s really not a good fit for the betta I will reconsider.

In an ideal world I would like 3 different species in there to liven it up a bit but obviously am not gonna do anything that would be bad for the fish!
The plan is to have a really natural set up with lots of live plants and wood, plenty of spots to hide so they can get away from each other.

I know the basics of cycling and maintenance, I’m not going to actually get any fish for at least a couple of months I’m just doing lots of research and planning at the moment! 🙂 which I’m sure this forum will really help with.
 

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You tank is 23 x 16 x 11 which gives you more options than a taller than long aquarium. Your GPH is 60. You can plug in all the particulars here: AqAdvisor - Intelligent Freshwater Tropical Fish Aquarium Stocking Calculator and Aquarium Tank/Filter Advisor. Keep in mind the site is somewhat conservative. And choose "User Defined" for filter and dimensions.

I always have recommended a minimum shoal size of six. However, when I asked Rachel O'Leary, aka msjinkzed, about shoal size when housing with a Betta she said at least eight but 10+ is better; especially mid-tank and top dwellers. So that is what I would go with.

When planning residents divide by upper (Betta), middle (Neons, Rasbora) and bottom dwellers. You have the first two covered so you can add bottom dwellers. If you want to continue with smaller fish, Habrosus Cory are good. While Pygmy (one of my favorites) and Hastatus are also dwarf Cory they are mid-tank dwellers.

Plugging in the Aqadvisor, the long and short of it:

1 Betta
10 Rasbora
10 Neons or 10 Pygmy Cory (Neons can be nippy if you get a long-finned Betta)
8 Panda Cory

If it is well/heavily-planted, you can add shrimp. But wait at least a couple of months for the tank to mature before you do. Here is this Forum's cycling tutorial to help you make your tank safe for all.

https://www.bettafish.com/99-betta-fish-diseases-emergencies/612810-please-read-before-posting-fill-out-form-so-we-can-best-help-your-betta.html

Begin with just the Betta and add the others after the tank is planted (live or silk) and cycled. To avoid issues, float them in a dark tank and release. Leave the lights off for at least an hour to give the newbies a chance to scope out the tank. Members of this Forum highly recommend using SeaChem Prime as your conditioner and I recommend SeaChem Stability to help cycle and to use when adding new residents.
 

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Thanks for the reply! Would you recommend only one or the other because they don’t get along or just because the tank isn’t big enough? I kinda have my heart set on the tetras as I love the look of them but if it’s really not a good fit for the betta I will reconsider.

In an ideal world I would like 3 different species in there to liven it up a bit but obviously am not gonna do anything that would be bad for the fish!
The plan is to have a really natural set up with lots of live plants and wood, plenty of spots to hide so they can get away from each other.

I know the basics of cycling and maintenance, I’m not going to actually get any fish for at least a couple of months I’m just doing lots of research and planning at the moment! 🙂 which I’m sure this forum will really help with.
Natural setups are always great! What type of live plants do you plan on using?
I recommended picking one or the other for space reasons ( the fish are all compatible, but neon tetras can be nippy at times). Schooling fish need plenty of their own kind, but also plenty of space to swim as one and I think 15 gallons is a bit small for both Rasbora and Neon tetras.
When stocking a tank I tend to try and have a lower stocking level so that the fish have more room and are not as crowded. For your first aquarium having a tank that is less stocked will be a bit easier to maintain.

I personally would still pick either the Rasbora or the Neon tetras. It is your choice which you choose, but if you pick the neon tetras, try and find a betta with shorter fins such as a Plakat or a female betta.

Shrimp and snails are great as well , but be sure to wait to add shrimp as RussellTheShihTzu said! :)
 

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Ahhhh I’m so indecisive this is why I am waiting so long before I actually get any fish! I am now thinking maybe i’ll start with a smaller tank and a single betta. Then maybe down the line get a separate community tank.

My issue is I love both the beautiful long flowy finned Bettas and neon tetras! 😂😂

If I were to go this route, what would be the perfect sized tank for a single male? My biggest problem is I’m reading completely conflicting information from so many sources I don’t know what’s right! Some say the bigger the tank the better, some say Bettas need a smaller tank so they don’t become stressed. I’m so confused!
 

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A single male Betta would be fine in the tank you have! They love having exploring space and plenty of plants for cover! You can always set up the tank and add a betta first and then decide on tankmates later.

I have never had a betta stressed in a 10+ gallon tank. Many of my Bettas In the past went from small environments to large ones and did better in the big area.

I would definitely recommend you use the 15 gallon tank you planned on using even if it is just for a male betta. :)
 

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Ahhhh I’m so indecisive this is why I am waiting so long before I actually get any fish! I am now thinking maybe i’ll start with a smaller tank and a single betta. Then maybe down the line get a separate community tank.

My issue is I love both the beautiful long flowy finned Bettas and neon tetras! 😂😂

If I were to go this route, what would be the perfect sized tank for a single male? My biggest problem is I’m reading completely conflicting information from so many sources I don’t know what’s right! Some say the bigger the tank the better, some say Bettas need a smaller tank so they don’t become stressed. I’m so confused!
If you go with the smaller tank route I would highly recommend a minimum of 5-10 gallons as bettas do better in larger environments as long as they are planted heavily, warm, and clean. The reason some people say bettas are stressed in large environments is because often the tanks are not planted enough, have too bright of lighting, ect.

Setting up a new tank is exciting and fun, there is nothing wrong with taking your time. It is better that way actually instead of rushing things. :)
 

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'Fraid I must disagree with my friend, Animal15. A larger tank is not always the best. Many Betta never adjust from going to a larger (even five gallon) tank from a cup no matter how heavily-planted or lowly-lit.

All of my tanks are heavily-planted and properly lit. Yet I have had many Betta over the years that were never comfortable in anything except a 2.5 gallon (12 x 6 x 8); one didn't stop stressing until, in frustration, I put him in a 1.5 gallon bowl. These Betta fin bit, glass surfed, etc., in a 20, a 10 and even a five.

FWIW, I now start all of my Betta in a 2.5 or one of my vases before I move them to my larger tanks. I have not experienced fin biting or glass surfing since I started this practice. This also quarantines them as my larger tanks are divided.

Enjoy your planning.

BTW, if you don't get the Rasbora, you could have 15 Neons or so in your tank. The larger the shoal the less aggression leaks from the shoal. That's what I'm going to do in the 20 long Betta tank my husband can see. It will have 25 Neons. Not because of the lack of nipping but because he only likes Neons. Since he supports my aquarium habit the least I can do is stock a tank to his liking. ;-)
 

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'Fraid I must disagree with my friend, Animal15. A larger tank is not always the best. Many Betta never adjust from going to a larger (even five gallon) tank from a cup no matter how heavily-planted or lowly-lit.

All of my tanks are heavily-planted and properly lit. Yet I have had many Betta over the years that were never comfortable in anything except a 2.5 gallon (12 x 6 x 8); one didn't stop stressing until, in frustration, I put him in a 1.5 gallon bowl. These Betta fin bit, glass surfed, etc., in a 20, a 10 and even a five.

FWIW, I now start all of my Betta in a 2.5 or one of my vases before I move them to my larger tanks. I have not experienced fin biting or glass surfing since I started this practice. This also quarantines them as my larger tanks are divided.

Enjoy your planning.

BTW, if you don't get the Rasbora, you could have 15 Neons or so in your tank. The larger the shoal the less aggression leaks from the shoal. That's what I'm going to do in the 20 long Betta tank my husband can see. It will have 25 Neons. Not because of the lack of nipping but because he only likes Neons. Since he supports my aquarium habit the least I can do is stock a tank to his liking. ;-)

Its ok I am glad you shared your experience with this!

I have never had bettas act this way personally. I did have one who stressed when I had to give him 5 gallons when he was used to 9. I generally recommend a bigger environment for those new to fish as I know how much easier it is to keep temperature and parameters stable. You made a good point though, maybe a cup to something of a smaller size and gradual introduction to a bigger tank is better.

Maybe having a divider on hand would work? You could give them a smaller area at first and over time move it giving them a tiny bit more space each time? The betta would benefit from the water quality of a larger tank, but would have a slow introduction to a larger environment.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks for all the advice! I’m guessing you guys are from America, I’m aware of stores keeping their Bettas in these cups you mentioned. I’m from England and I have never seen this. All Betta are kept in actual filtered heated tanks over here.
 

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Thanks for all the advice! I’m guessing you guys are from America, I’m aware of stores keeping their Bettas in these cups you mentioned. I’m from England and I have never seen this. All Betta are kept in actual filtered heated tanks over here.
Yes, here in the UK I have only ever seen betta on sale in filtered heated glass tanks of around (I am guessing) 1 to 2 g, or more. Those tanks usually have a plant in each one too. Sometimes they are in larger community tanks too, 1 betta in with rasboras or mollies, or other. The local fish store I often use will not sell you a betta unless you confirm it will be put in a tank of a minimum 5g size, preferably larger, and they check that any other occupants will be peaceful.
 

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Its ok I am glad you shared your experience with this!

I have never had bettas act this way personally. I did have one who stressed when I had to give him 5 gallons when he was used to 9. I generally recommend a bigger environment for those new to fish as I know how much easier it is to keep temperature and parameters stable. You made a good point though, maybe a cup to something of a smaller size and gradual introduction to a bigger tank is better.

Maybe having a divider on hand would work? You could give them a smaller area at first and over time move it giving them a tiny bit more space each time? The betta would benefit from the water quality of a larger tank, but would have a slow introduction to a larger environment.
When the 2.5 has a resident I divide and gradually increase space. However, for some that doesn't work; as with the ones I mentioned.
 

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Lisxjayne and bluesamphire- I wish pet stores sold bettas like that in

America! Sadly here a lot of pet stores will say things like " Bettas

do not need heated water"

or "They come from puddles in the wild so dirty water is ok".


I am sure somewhere they actually keep them in tanks, but typically chain stores keep them in tiny cups. I would spend extra money on a betta if it were taken well care of!
 

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When the 2.5 has a resident I divide and gradually increase space. However, for some that doesn't work; as with the ones I mentioned.
I will definitely be careful of what I post and how it is written from now on! My post especially this part

"The reason some people say bettas are stressed in large environments is because often the tanks are not planted enough, have too bright of lighting, ect. "

came across differently then what I really meant ( I tried to edit right after posting but it did not work). What I said was not directed at you though because I did not even know about the bettas you mentioned.
I know you take great care of your fish and give them everything they need!

I meant to say that sometimes people keep their bettas in 5+ gallon tanks, but do not give enough plants , don't heat the tank, or have bright lighting , which can stress out a betta .


Anyway, I will consider the bettas who need gradual adjustment, or just can not adjust to larger environments when posting from now on!
:)
 

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@Animal15 Never apologize, at least to me, for giving your best advice. I was just giving another perspective on why some Betta do not do well in larger tanks. I did not take anything you said personally. Besides, you were spot on in pointing out that wide open, brightly lit tanks are not good for Betta.

The curse with having had Betta and other fish for so long are the good and bad learning experiences one has cataloged. ;-)
 

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I'm going to have to disagree with the idea that neons are a good idea to house with bettas, for a couple of reasons. The first reason is that they are very likely to nip the long fins on the betta, this is the less important reason. The second reason is that they just aren't temperature compatible. You CAN house neons with a betta, but no matter what temperature you keep your tank at it will always be at the expense of one of the two species. While bettas need to be in the 80-82 degree Fahrenheit range, neons should be kept at 72-75 degrees Fahrenheit. Keeping the two species together almost guarantees problems with the health of your tank regardless of aggression, because no matter what you do one of the species will be pretty far out of their appropriate temperature range, substantially raising the chance of disease and infections.
 

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What I love about this Forum is the right of members to disagree and debate. It gives all something to think about before making a decision.

Most fish have a wide, not narrow, range of proper temperature. According to species profiles/studies Betta temperature range is 72 to 86 F; Neons 70F to 82. We must keep in mind that Neons are no longer wild-caught so pH, temperatures, depend a great deal on spawning water parameters which throws yet another monkey wrench into the equation.

I have always kept my Betta-based community tanks 77-78 with no impact on the health or longevity of any of the species...except when I tried to keep White Cloud Minnows (cold water fish) in a Tropical tank. Learned my lesson. Over the long-term too high temps definitely shortened their lives and quality of life. Poor WCM. :-(
 
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