A new tank for a newbie.

  1. I

    Ichthyologistinmaking Valued Member Member

    Hello everyone, I'm rather new to this forum, I have already made a couple of posts, while I do know a great deal about fish, and other marine and aquatic organisms, excluding plants and algae, I have very little experience as an aquarist. I have a 10 gallon aquarium, with a layer of gravel just enough to cover the glass, currently I am lacking a heater, but I have an air stone, and filter, and lights. I would like to get plants and fish, but I'm not positive what species to get. I am looking at anubias, and Java fern, though I much prefer eel grass and I also adore lily pads. As far as fish, I am looking for colorful, and relatively peaceful fish, so, what species would be good choices, or should I just hand over the very small amount of funds I have remaining for a heater or request it for my very up and coming birthday (because I can, and people never know what to actually get for me). So, I greatly appreciate recommendations on plants, fish, and invertebrates, as well as if their cold water, I have done research, but I don't know the best about each species behavior and compatiblity, and so I turn to the forums, to people who honestly know. Serious answers only please.
     
  2. SabrinaBrook

    SabrinaBrook Well Known Member Member

    Hi Ich,
    Welcome! If i were you i would go with getting a heater for your birthday and buy some non aggressive tropical fish like Guppies, or perhaps Mollies but they can be a bit nippy. I have a community tropical tank with 1 male dwarf gourami, 5 neon tetras, 4 baby mollies and 2 cory catfish. They all get along just fine and i have never had a issue with them. I also have a tank with guppies in with rosy barbs and white clouds, the rosy barbs are a bit nippy but the guppy and white clouds are very placid fish. Hope this helps a little :)
     
  3. OP
    OP
    I

    Ichthyologistinmaking Valued Member Member

    thanks for the advice, I personally don't want guppies, as my lfs only sells the very inbred for colors kind of guppies, and I am not a big fan of those honestly, I do like barbs, neons are nice, i like corys, and white clouds, i really love danios personally. I realized after posting that the question of heater or no was kind of stupid after posting, even if I dont need it, still good to have. thanks for the combinations you suggested, do you think clouds and maybe danios and corys would be a good combination?
     
  4. Fettuccini

    Fettuccini Well Known Member Member

    You can't go wrong with a school of white cloud mountain minnows. They're a temperate fish, so they do best in room temperature water and don't require a heater. They're good looking, peaceful, they're sold practically everywhere, and they're usually dirt cheap, since a lot of places sell them as feeders. They can also tolerate a huge range of water conditions, so you're very unlikely to have to worry about the ph or hardness of your tap water.

    If you do end up getting a heater, I'd actually recommend some ember tetras instead. They can be hard to find (they are in my area at least), but they're VERY good looking fish. They only get about 3/4 of an inch long and aren't overly active, so you can keep a group of them in a calm and well planted 10 gallon tank. A school of 6-8 would probably be best for that size tank. Any more and they'll be over crowded, less and they'll get stressed out. They need a lot a plant cover, or else they'll get stressed out and lose their color.

    As for corys, most people here don't recommend them for a 10 gallon. they're a great fish, but they need to be in groups of at least 5 or 6 and anything under 20 gallons just isn't enough space for them.
     
  5. OP
    OP
    I

    Ichthyologistinmaking Valued Member Member

    what about danios? they're very active, which is a big plus, and rather hardy. as far as ember tetras, I've never even seen or had heard of them before joining up, so if I get tetras, i may have to settle on neons. I would really like a cory, are there any that do well in groups of 2-3?
     
  6. Fettuccini

    Fettuccini Well Known Member Member

    Danios would be fine too, as long as you stick to the smaller species like zebra or leopard. I've never kept neons myself, but I see a LOT of people here saying they need at least a 20 gallon tank because they're so active. Cardinal tetras look very similar though, and I they can be kept in a 10 gallon. I would avoid mixing danios and cardinals though, since they have different temperature preferences.
     
  7. OP
    OP
    I

    Ichthyologistinmaking Valued Member Member

    an excellent point about temperature preferences, what would you recommend as far as plants? also, i love your profile picture, is it a leopard ctenopoma, and one of your current tank occupants?
     
  8. SabrinaBrook

    SabrinaBrook Well Known Member Member

    Personally yes, danios, cories and clouds would be ok as they can live happy in water of about 22c but no higher for the clouds. I had to turn my heater down for the clouds in my guppy and barb tank and they are all fine at 22c now. But i am no expert on this, i just did a quick research online to check. :)
     
  9. Fettuccini

    Fettuccini Well Known Member Member

    Yep, that's exactly what it is, I have a pair of juveniles in my 90 gallon tank. They're pretty great fish.

    I'm not super knowledgeable on plants, even though I have them in all my tanks. If you don't want to go the route of using CO2 and fertilizers, then you cant go wrong with anubias, java fern, and asian fern. They all have low light requirements and are very, very easy to grow without any special care. If any of the places near you sell pond plants, you might be able to find some floating plants like frogbit or red root floaters for pretty cheap, which are both pretty easy to grow as well, and provide shade that a lot of tetras really like.
     
  10. el337

    el337 Fishlore Legend Member

    Besides ember tetras, none of the fish mentioned are appropriate for a 10g. Danios are even more active than neons. Corys all need to be in a group of at least 6 as with any schooling/shoaling fish. There are dwarf corys but even they need a 15g minimum.

    I would personally get a school of celestial pearl danios. You could get up to 12. Very pretty and colorful fish. Here's a thread for other options.

    https://www.fishlore.com/fishforum/aquarium-stocking-questions/207629-stocking-list-10-gallons.html
     
  11. OP
    OP
    I

    Ichthyologistinmaking Valued Member Member

    Thank you all on the advice, I know some of these fish are very active, I was thinking of using some taller plants around the sides so the fish wouldn't run into the tank glass. By the way, if none of these fish besides embers are appropriate for a ten gallon aquarium, why do so many aquarists own and use a ten gallon aquarium at all?
     
  12. el337

    el337 Fishlore Legend Member

    My opinion is that new fishkeepers choose a 10g because they think it's easier to manage than a bigger tank, not realizing the stocking limitations that come with it. It's also appealing because most of them come as starter kits that include everything you need to set up a first tank, albeit most of the equipment is junk or does the bare minimum and you wind up upgrading anyway. I'm definitely speaking from experience, btw. ;)

    That being said, there are actually lots of different stocking options for a 10g as you can see from that list. I know many are not as commonly sourced but there are definitely a lot of possibilities.
     
  13. codyrex97

    codyrex97 Well Known Member Member

    What a 10 gallon CAN be is a great Betta tank, or a great shrimp-only tank. Or even a spacious quarantine or hospital tank!

    As said, beginners think it's easier to manage, but discover that if you're wanting a schooling fish tank or gourami or cichlids then the 10 gallon is way too small for many of the popular options.
     
  14. Dave125g

    Dave125g Fishlore Legend Member

    A 10 gallon is a good tank to start the hobby off with,but it greatly limits your stocking choices. Then when you upgrade you got yourself a good QT
     
  15. Imtryingmybest

    Imtryingmybest Valued Member Member

    Hi, I'm also a beginner with a few ten gallon tanks (my family got into fish when i did, then got tired of them and gave me their tanks), so I'd like to think that i know a little about stocking those little guys ;). If you want colourful peaceful fish, I'd recommend platies. You can keep a couple of them in a ten gallon tank, and they come in all different colors so you can mix and match. They are beautiful, personable fish that will swim around the entire tank, not just the top or middle!
     
  16. Bellatrix

    Bellatrix Valued Member Member

    I have a 10g with six White Clouds and an Amano shrimp all living very happy together. I don't have a heater either and they do just fine without one, the water always hovers between 20-21c and they are thriving!

    White Clouds are lovely fish, they're peaceful and cheeky, my big female will eat from my hand. I highly recommend!

    I got the shrimp to help with tank cleaning and he/she (I'm not sure ) gets along swimmingly with the White Clouds.

    Personally I see no issue with keeping a little group of 6-8 White Clouds in a 10g.

    Good luck!
     
  17. Sarah73

    Sarah73 Fishlore VIP Member

    Okay I am going to but into this thread. First, Sabrina Brook you need to have at least 6 cories and I would add 2 or more tetra's. Second, Fettuccini you can't have white cloud minnow because they are to active for a 10gal. Ichthyologistinmaking no danios for a 10gal. They are way to active for a small tank like this. Cories are also a big no no for a 10gal because you need 6+ for them to be happy and a 10g isn't big enough. Like codyrex97 said, a beta with some shrimp and snails is a good stock or even a shrimp tank only. Or even a hospital tank. Bellatrix you should have clouds in your 10g because they are very active for that small of a tank. Imtryingmybest keeping a few platies in a 10gal isn't a good thing. Platies poop a lot and unless the OP wants to do water changes everyday I won't suggest getting some.
     
  18. el337

    el337 Fishlore Legend Member

    3 platys are perfectly fine but I would just get males so you're not overrun with fry.
     
  19. OP
    OP
    I

    Ichthyologistinmaking Valued Member Member

    Thank you all on your support, and I know a small tank is essentially to take care of, and you need to be very very cautious, some day I'm looking to get a 150-300 gallon dark reef tank including flashlight fish most likely photoblepharon palpebratum, pineapple fish, squirrelfish, and other nocturnal, small reef fish, but, I'm really about to start my college career, so I don't have space or cash for big tanks like I want, if I could, I'd have started with a 30 gallon, and lots of different schooling fish, but the largest I could afford was a ten, what I want is a heavily planted tank with a dense back and side foliage with open water in the middle and front, from what I've seen and read about fish keeping, this is best for small fish, I want house a decent number of fish, and a couple invertebrates so I always have something to look at, and they won't run into the sides because of the cover, I have lots of tank ideas, but not enough money to make them happen yet, so, please don't just be like "there's nothing you can stock in that tiny tank! >:c" if people have species that could be stocked, and would be able to help me locate some for my aquarium, I would appreciate it extremely. Again thank you guys on your suggestion, I really appreciate them, and I really look forward to becoming more involved in this hobby, but as stated, not much experience, I've had guppies (lasted forever, even though we weren't taking very good care of them I'm a bit embarrassed to admit), goldfish in a 4 gallon (yes I know it was not good for the fish, there were 6, and I was all of 7 years old, and 10 when we got the guppies), and I was in possession of 3 pumpkinseed sunfish for a while, one for a year, also in the four gallon (I was brought them by a friend, I was looking for a new home for the fish, it was found shortly after joining this forum yesterday, and they have been picked up already and taken care of). The point of all of this is, I really love fish, and i really want to be able to take care of them, so, please, help a kid out, I know my options are limited, I understand the difficulties of a small tank, I know generally how to feed, check for disease, change the water, o2 requirements, fish anatomy, how to do research, and I know I don't know everything. But with help I will learn, all I need is a start here, a place to firmly plant my foot in the hobby, so I can grow, and hopefully, some day, become one of the "experts" and help the hobby, and new hobbyists grow as well...
     
  20. codyrex97

    codyrex97 Well Known Member Member

    I'd say options are,
    Betta+shrimp
    Shrimp only
    Ember tetra and some shrimp
    Celestial pear danios (dunno if they're compatible with shrimp but if so you could probably have a fairly lively tank)
    Snails would probably go with any of those.
    Keep us posted and good luck!