Advice for a beginner with a 10 gallon tank

  • #1
Hello all!  I am very happy to have found this website!  I am in need of advise.  I have a 10 gallon tank.  Recently, both of my goldfish have died.  One, (Ben 10 Jr.) was found stuck to the agitator on the filter.   The other goldfish (Fishy) went into hiding, and never came out.  I had a feeling he was sick.  We had him 6 months.   :'(   

I hate the fact that we lost our fish.  This time, I wanted to get new fish, but I wanted to do my research first.  (I guess I will need to buy a new filtering system.)

Can anyone recommend fish for a beginner? Since we have a 10 gallon tank, should I only get 1 fish?

I will greatly appreciate any input.  Thanks!
  • #2
First Welcome to fishlore. We are all here to help you.

U can add a betta in your 10 gal tank it will look nice.
  • #3
There are quite a few fish that you could get for your tank. It all depends on what kind of environment you are looking to create. For starters does your tank have a heater, filter system? Are you llooking for 1 or 2 larger fish or 6-7 small fish? Knowing this will help in designing tghe tank.
  • #4
Welcome to FishLore! It's great to have you with us!

There are many different options you can try with a 10 gallon! If you read some of the older posts in this forum, you will get a lot of ideas. Goldfish are not really a good choice for a 10 gallon. 1 goldfish needs 10 gallons alone, and it's really better to have 20 gallons for the first goldie, and 10 gallons for each additional goldfish, so 2 goldfish should ideally have at least a 30 gallon tank. A betta would be a good choice for your tank, or you could consider getting a larger tank, and using the 10 gallon as a quarantine/hospital tank.
  • #5
Or, you could have a group of smaller and hardy fish (equally beautiful as the larger fishes are) in the beginning. White cloud mountain minnows, for example, are small and very hard - excellent for beginners (but they're by no means the only fish).

You ask what you need to know to get you started on the right track. Unless you already know about it, first you need to learn about the Nitrogen Cycle: You should also read the rest of the articles: After you've read these, you'll know why it's good to have tests for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, and pH. Perhaps you'll also know why all of your fish have been dying. (What I mean is: If you were not aware of the Nitrogen Cycle before, it was the most likely cause for your fish deaths.)

As for filtration, your filter isn't necessarily "bad" because your fish have been dying. You'll know what I mean after you've read about the cycle. Anyway, what filter do you have in your 10 gallon tank? A good external power filter should pump at least 10 times the volume of your tank - so you want a filter that pumps at least 100 gallons per hour (in your case).
  • #6
I think tropical fishes would be hardier than the coldwater variety in a small tank. Some hardy tropical fish are guppies, cories, platies, and cherry barbs.
  • #7
I'm not sure if cherry barbs are that hardy, but I may well be wrong (but I'm sure they're not that "sensitive" either). Zebra danios are also quite hardy, but even though they're small, they're too fast for a 10 gallon tank. If I were to get zebra danios, I'd give them at least a 30 gallon long tank, so that they'd have a lot of space to swim. They need lots of space to swim - such is their temperament.
  • Thread Starter
  • #8
Thank you very much for all the advise! I originally got the first goldfish as a present for my son. I realized after the fact, that we made a bad decision. I had no idea about cleaning the tank. I never knew that I had to test the water. I also did not realize that my tank was too small for the goldfish! (We got the second fish because my husband felt that the fish needed a friend!) I also didn't give my tank time to cycle. So many mistakes.

My filter is the standard that came with the tank. I do not have a heater! (Do I need one?)

I don't think that I am ready for a larger fish tank at this time. (Lots of responsibility!) I do think I would like to have 1 or 2 larger fish.

I am leaning towards the Betta fish. (I thought that they liked small spaces! Why on earth are the Betta fish always housed in these Dixie cups??? ??? Just venting..)

But once again. Thanks for all of your help! I am going to read up on the articles on the Nitrogen Cycle.
  • Thread Starter
  • #9
  • #10
Will an Angelfish be a good choice?

Absolutely not.

a 10 gallon tank is far too small for an angelfish, sorry.

ps: yes you need a heater
  • #11
If you want a larger fish then I reccomend Dwarf Gouramis. They are very attractive and pleasing to the eye. Compatible tank mates with them are platies and cories
  • #12
I would say for starter maybe some platy or molly I had 2 gouramis in my 10 gallon bad idea one gourami almost killed my other gourami...
  • #13
Please note that this thread was inactive since 2006.
  • #14
Please note that this thread was inactive since 2006.

Oh! I'll be deleting my post then...


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