I want to add a betta, will it kill my Zebra Danio? Question 

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tatty_kassy

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Hello!
My tank is doing pretty good, levels are doing well, I am trying to decide what fish I would like to add to the tank in the future. I am really liking the brilliant colors and display of the male betta fish. I have enough room for him, but I was reading about them and it says that they are known to attack and kill fish that have alot of fin display as they mistake it for another male betta.
I have a Zebra Danio in my tank that is about 2 inches long and he has much bigger fins then the other danios. Hes the largest Danio, and his underbelly fin (Sorry I don't know all the terminology yet!) is about 1/2 an inch long.

Do you think if I were to get a male betta, that it would end up killing my Danio??

Thank you for your time!
-K
 

Shawnie

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zebras would end up stressing the betta to death.. bettas DONT make good community fish and do much better in their own tank and interaction with humans....
 

Meenu

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I agree with Shawnie. Bettas really do better on their own. Your biggest problem with that setup is that danios are fin-nippers, and would bully the betta. Danios are surprisingly aggressive.

Oh, and welcome to FL, Kass.
 

Prince Powder

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Hello and welcome to Fishlore!

I have to agree with the above posts. Betta fish do best when they are housed alone. If you would like to get a betta perhaps you should look into getting a small 5 gallon set up cycled so you can keep one. Bettas are great fish and are more interactive than most people think. For the tank you have now I would actually recommend waiting a few weeks before adding anything. I see that it was set up previously for over a year, but since you just reset it you'll want to give it a few weeks to stabilize and make sure you don't run into a mini cycle. After that, I would recommend increasing the number of your tetras and ottos rather than getting a different species. Both tetras and ottos prefer schools and do better when they have groups. I think if you up the numbers of the fish you have you will see your tank really come to life!
 

LyndaB

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Tetras are about the best community fish there is, in my opinion. Plus, there are many that are brightly colored or have wonderful patterns. Red eyes, cardinals and serpaes come to mind.

Can't wait to hear what you end up with!
 
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tatty_kassy

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Thank you all for your responses! Its a great board to be apart of!

Perhaps I will not go for the betta then, I just want to have something that is going to be of good size, 2-3 inches or so, vibrant colors and something that isn't going to be bummed out because he is the only one in there.
I don't want to go crazy overstocking it and I feel like if I get a bunch of different types of tetras they may not school well and be unhappy.
Is there a fish that is like I described that would be happy being the only one and hanging out with some tetras and danios?
 

LyndaB

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With a 25 gallon tank, I think you're pretty limited. I'm not that good with sole specimen fish in a smaller tank. I'm sure others with more knowledge will come forth and give you some recommendations.
 
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tatty_kassy

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I am not that experienced with fish, so I am still learning about all the different kinds that live in freshwater tanks and what their behaviors are. I don't know much about guppies, but my female guppy seems to be schooling with my zebra danios. She doesn't do it 100% of the time, but she at least looks like shes got a bit of a social life going on.
I was hoping that there were maybe a variety of fish that would do that, provided that they are with smaller or docile fish.
I'd really like to have a fancy looking guy without it being unhappy.
I hope someone knows of a good one...!

Thanks again!
 

Meenu

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my danios are mean and bullying with my male guppies - not a combo I would recommend.
 
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jdhef

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tatty_kassy said:
Is there a fish that is like I described that would be happy being the only one and hanging out with some tetras and danios?
How about a Dwarf Gourami?
 
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tatty_kassy

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A Gourami? They do not need to be with others like themselves to be happy..? If not, that is definitely an option, they just arn't as colorful as I would of hoped...but I guess for a freshwater tank there's only so much option.

Danios usually attack guppies? I have been watching them for about 4 days now, they sometimes nip at eachother but I haven't seen them go after the guppy. Usually they just swim around together. The guppy doesn't look bothered by them anyway.
 

Craig-D

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I have to disagree with the above opinions that bettas make poor community fish. A blanket statement like that is simply not accurate in all cases. It really depends on the temperment of each individual fish. While it is true that some bettas won't get along well with tankmates, there are many others that will get along well. Better advice would be to warn that it can be a crapshoot and alternate arrangements should be in place in case it doesn't work out and the betta has to be separated. My betta has co-existed with many tankmates for over a year without any problems. You just have to choose tankmates carefully. No gouramis or fish that also have big fins that could cause them to be mistaken for another betta. Many bettas will especially get along well with catfish - which do not share the same areas of the aquarium.

In tatty_kassy's particular situation it's not the danio's well-being I'd be worried about, but rather the Betta's. Danios are notorious fin nippers that will chew up that Betta's huge fins. Add to that the fact that the Betta is too slow of a swimmer to flee from them. So to answer her specific question, no, a Betta is not a good tankmate for zebra danios.
 

Charlemagne

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I'm gonna have to agree with Craig. My betta, Charlemagne, has been in a community tank, and is doing fine. The only prob, is I didn't know that gouramis and bettas would fight, so his fins are a bit damaged from fighting w/ the gourami. I tried taking him out and putting him in a 1 gal. bowl to keep the gourami from shredding him, but he wouldn't eat in there. I ended up having to take the gourami back to the store. I think it does depends on the individual fish, so a betta might or might not get along in your tank.
 
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tatty_kassy

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Do you think if I really observed the fish I was interested in, I could get a good idea if it is overly aggressive or not? If it looks like its pretty calm and otherwise not bothered, could it be worth a try? I would really like to have one with my community......
 

Charlemagne

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Eh, I'm not really sure. It's kinda hard to tell what a betta's personality will be when he's sitting in those tiny little cups. . . . .I don't know, it might be worth a try . . . If you do get a betta though, make sure you have another tank to put one or another of the fish in in case they fight. Good luck!
 

Meenu

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It's not a choice I would make, but if you really want to do it, I read a while back that one way to get an idea of how aggressive a betta is to hold a mirror up to it and see if it flares (at the store).

I agree with others that danios are fin-nippers, and that if you get a betta for your community tank, you need to have a tank prepared as a backup (possibly a hospital tank or something)... but that means you need to keep an extra filter running so that in case of an emergency, you don't have to worry about the betta going into an uncycled tank.
 

Charlemagne

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Um, not exactly sure the mirror thingy would work. Won't a gentle betta flare at his reflection? I'm not really sure about that, so I'll bow to your knowledge and experience, Meenu.
 

rae64

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I personally would not risk it with the betta. Perhaps look into a pearl gourami? They are fine alone, and gorgeous. A 25 gallon should be a fine size for one, and he would make a marvelous centerpiece fish
 

Treefork

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Not necessarily. My betta won't flare at his reflection, or me, or anything. Of course he grew up with cory cats so maybe he thinks he's one.
 

Meenu

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Charlemagne said:
Um, not exactly sure the mirror thingy would work. Won't a gentle betta flare at his reflection? I'm not really sure about that, so I'll bow to your knowledge and experience, Meenu.
No expertise here, sorry. I used to have a betta, and didn't know about flaring until I found FL. This was just based on something I thought I had read.
 
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