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Discussion Starter #1
I bought a betta from my local pet store a few weeks ago. He went from being in the tiny store bowl to a 1-2 gallon bowl and now I have him in a 10 gallon tank. :)

In the aggressive range, i think he might be a 6 or 7 (10 being the highest). When he was in the 2 gallon bowl I put a male guppy with him and on the second day the poor guppy had a piece of his tail missing. I'm not sure if it was because the tank was too small or if my betta is a tad more aggressive than normal.

But with that said, is it possible to place more fish in with him? And what types of fish? I currently have an oto ( i think, here's a picture: http://i41.tinypic.com/2zyimif.jpg ) in with him. He used to chase the oto around the bowl but he's ignoring now that he's in the bigger tank.

Also, are otos group fish or loners (if that's an oto up there)? I haven't found any information on them.

I want to get like 6 neon tetras and I wanted some cory catfish but if I need to get extra buddies for the oto I don't want to overcrowd my tank with corys and otos. Also, should I buy some more live plants? I tried growing my own but they're not growing at all. I put a lily bulb in the tank today to see if that will grow.

Here's my tank so far if it helps! It has a filter (which I've taped a cut-out plastic cup onto to slow the current down for my betta), a heater, a thermometer, one live plant, a fake alligator skull to hide in, a big seashell that the oto and betta like to hide in, and a soft blue fake plant that glows in the dark. :: pic: http://i41.tinypic.com/15h1rvr.jpg

Thanks in advance for the help! :)
 

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If it's an oto (I can't tell either, lol) I do believe they are schooling fish and should be in groups of three or more. Anyone, feel free to correct me if I'm wrong. Same applies to cory cats. Your tank is big enough to house several of one kind, but I don't think both. Also depends on your betta's behavior which you said is a little aggressive.

As for the neon tetras, I don't think people advise getting them because of their shiny coloration. It tends to provoke bettas and could lead to further aggression. You could also look into a few ADFs, shrimp and / or snails for tank mates.

Should you add more fish, you should probably plant your tank more heavily to provide enough adequate shelter for your betta and the others. They do need to be able to get away from each other every now and then. If you're consistently unsuccessful growing your own, you could buy them already grown from most pet stores. Don't buy the ones in tubes, however, as they're not truly underwater plants. Some stores have tanks dedicated solely to underwater plant growth and it is from there that you should buy yours. I hear Java Moss / Ferns are relatively easy to grow.
 

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Someone else feel free to correct me, but I'm quite sure thats not an otto.....it looks like a CAE(Chinese Algae Eater)to me. Ottos are small and brown with a more pointed nose and a dark black stripe(IME). Head to google and search for pictures of Ottos and compare them to your guy, you'll be able to tell the difference.

You'll want to get rid of that CAE as soon as you can, It'll get huge and kill your betta most likely.

But, yes, Ottos are indeed schooling fish and like to be in groups of 3 or more. With that said, they are also VERY sensitive fish and many will eat algae exclusively....they won't always accept prepared foods and veggies. So you shouldn't add any ottos unless your tank is well established, stable, and has a nice supply of algae.

OR you could try a school of 5-6 neons, but be prepared. Sometimes they go after bettas fins, sometimes bettas goes after them, and other times they're just fine. It all depends on the personality of your betta really. If you want to try, go for it, but just be ready to take the neons back/get your betta another tank if it doesn't work out.

OR Corys do very well with bettas, though they shoal as well and like larger groups, 5-6+ being ideal but no less then 3 or 4. I personally think a 10 isn't enough room for corys, but others would argue with me most likely. So its up to you. But Corys are also very sensitive, so wait a few months until your tank is nice and stable before adding any.

Another option is to divide your tank and get more bettas!! xD Thats my favorite option. You can divide a 10 gallon in half, or even into three sections, and get 1-2 more bettas ;) Just make sure the dividers are nice and secure(some like to glue them down with aquarium silicone, theres lots of stuff about it all over the forum)and your good to go!

So, there are a few options for you to think about ;) 10 gallons are great, lots of flexibility, though theres nothing wrong with having a well planted tank with a single betta. Those can be some of the most beautiful tanks :)

Hope I helped some xD
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thank you dragon! <3

If that's true about the mystery fish I have here, I'll get rid of him as soon as he gets too big for the tank. Maybe the pet store will take him back? I'll search up on google and wikipedia and see what kind of fish this is, and since I'm heading back to the fish store (hopefully today or sometime this week) I can see what he is since they have others like him. Everyone says that otos are sensitive, so this mystery fish i have here might be the chinese algae eater you're talking about. He adapted well to both the little bowl I had him in and the tank, unlike an oto would do? Hopefully not the case, but if I find some real otos I'll trade him in for those. The pet store has a variety of fish so I should find something. :)

Since both corys and otos are sensitive fish, I'll try looking for some shrimp and apple snails, unless they're just as sensitive (I'll do some more research on them) I think they eat the waste in the tank too? I want at least one little creature to have that'll help me keep the tank clean for the rest of them.

But I'm not entirely sure yet. I really want some more fish for the tank, but I'm hesitant because as I'm typing this I can see my betta following the oto/CAE around a little bit. Not aggressively, but still enough to make me worry about putting more fish buds in. Luckily I still have his bowl, so if he does get aggressive I can put him back in there, although I'd hate to do that!

Nice idea about getting more bettas and adding a divider, but my gramma is getting tired of searching for fish stuff so unfortunately I wouldn't be able to do that. :p
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I bought the neon tetras yesterday! My betta is doing perfectly fine with them and they don't seem to be bothering him. I really want some zebra tetras too. Does anyone have any info on them? I was thinking about getting four of them if it won't overcrowd my tank.

But I'm going back to the pet store wednesday to get a bunch of live plants. :) They were all out. They were out of otos too! They only had one cory catfish left. Probably because of the easter holidays.
 

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Be careful with zebra danios as they can be nippy at you bettas tail. Neons or white cloud minnows are more peaceful.
 

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You'll want to ditch that CAE before it starts to get bigger. The bigger it gets, the more aggressive it'll get, and it can and will kill your other fish. You should be able to bring it back to the pet store, I don't see why they wouldn't take it back.

Shrimp are awesome, but they're also very sensitive and require a stable tank. They have a low bio-load, so you could probably get three or four later on and not over stock. I think they eat algae and uneaten food too, so they're probably the best choice to help keep the tank a little cleaner, but remember, nothing substitutes for your weekly partial water changes! You still always need to keep up with those ;)
Don't know TOO much about snails....but I know they poop a LOT and really do virtually nothing in the way of keeping the tank clean.....some people have them, I don't really like them or recommend them.....

How many neons did you get? You'll want a school of about 5-6(though you can add gradually, a couple every week or so so as not to shock your tank and cause a huge spike in ammonia)to lessen the chances of the neons becoming nippy towards your betta and to make them feel more comfortable, but after that your nicely stocked. You could get a few shrimp later, but thats about it.

I don't know much about plants, but head over to google and you should be able to find some helpful info and pick out what kinds of plants you want.

Oh yeah, and don't forget the pictures when you get it all set up!! We all LOVE to see pictures! ;)
 

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Some very good advice given in this thread by DragonFish.

Just another thought .... In a smaller tank that is too small for a shoal of normal sized cories, I really like pygmy cories (corydoras pygmaeus/ corydoras habrosus) with a male betta. I have two male bettas with these at the moment, and they work great together.

The pygmy cories tend to completely ignore any interest from a betta, and this this seems to make the betta decide that they are not worth bothering with !
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I bought 6 neons. And yeah, I was thinking of giving the CAE back after he got a little too big or if I started to see aggression but I've decided I'll bring him back wednesday when I get the plants. I already saw him nip at my betta's tail-fin. I have it on video actually.

So yep. Not sure about the zebras now. I read on google and wiki that they are more likely to fin-nip so I guess I won't get those. Thanks puddin. :)

The guy who owns the pet store doesn't have shrimp or snails, only the corys, CAEs, and maybe otos, but I'm not sure about the otos. So I'll wait to get anymore "cleaner" type creatures. He said he's going to try getting some shrimp soon. :)

I just read up about "cycling" tanks. Had no clue about that before. I'm extremely new to fish keeping, but I hope my fish will be alright. I only waited 24 hours to let the tank get setup and stuff before adding them. I'll be bringing a water sample to the pet store wednesday though so it can be tested. A little off topic there, but yeah. And thanks hamfist! I'll look into those corys if the guy takes too long to get some shrimp. :p

And pictures will definitely come soon! Along with some videos. :)
 

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Yup, sounds like a good plan. I've heard some CAE horror stories, and have seen a few VERY large ones at my LPS.

Yeah, in your tank now there isn't room for anything more besides a few shrimp, a 10 gallon is too small to have more then one small school of schoolers(which Zebras are). But definitely wait a few months before getting shrimp, and don't get them if they're too expensive.....theres a chance your betta might eat them. Some Bettas leave them alone, but others will go after them in the blink of an eye. but with shrimp, you usually never know what your betta will do until you at them.

Lets se....ah! Here is a good thread on fish-in cycling, very helpful. You'll definitely want to pick up your own test kit, and make sure its the liquid dropper kind, the strips are inaccurate. Its a total must to have a test kit on hand, saves a lot of trips to the pet store during cycling and if something goes wrong you have it right there.....it can be a life saver.

But don't feel bad, I knew nothing about cycling coming into the hobby either xD I'm sure most didn't either, :lol:, but thats what we here on the forum are here for, to help one another ;)

xD Can't wait for pictures and videos!!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Ah, thanks so much for that link! Very helpful. <3 I'll definitely pick up some test kits tomorrow since I'll be going back to get some live plants. :) Which speaking of live plants, I need to do some research on them too to keep them alive!

Thanks everyone for helping me! <3
 
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