Lesson learned - No Zebra danios with a Betta and here's why

Wendybrass

A while ago I posted here about being given 3 zebra danios as tank mates for a male Betta in a 10 gallon. In summary 3 zebras are not enough to keep them happy, 5 zebras are too many for the Betta. When I had 3, the smallest of the 3 was killed I believe by one of it's own. It was constantly being chased. But, the Betta was of no interest to them, they stayed clear of him and he seemed to enjoy them being there. I added 3 more to make it 5 which calmed them right down. However, 2 of the new ones are very agressive and attacked the Betta daily during feeding, no matter how many tricks I tried to keep them apart, they'd figure it out. My Betta was spending most of his time in his log the last week and hardly swimming around. I was advised on here initially to return the 3 zebras, but they wouldn't accept them back, so I tried to make it work. My Betta through all this was pretty chill. He seemed fine with the little freaks and would swim right up to wherever they were and hang out. It cured his fin nipping (my reason for adding tank mates to begin with) and had I been given better advice and different tank mates all would be well. Fast forward to today - I had to move him to his former 5 gallon home yesterday after witnessing 2 danios attacking him during feeding. This morning I woke up to a lovely big bubble nest in his new/old home. I'm sad he's not in his 10g, home but he's not .
 

nanoist

You did the best you could. It just doesn’t always work sometimes having bettas in community tanks. Perhaps giving him a snail friend or maybe some shrimps in his 5g set up would provide him company to alleviate nipping? Your betta sounds docile enough if he was actually on the receiving end of bullying in his 10g.
 

Fishytales

A while ago I posted here about being given 3 zebra danios as tank mates for a male Betta in a 10 gallon. In summary 3 zebras are not enough to keep them happy, 5 zebras are too many for the Betta. When I had 3, the smallest of the 3 was killed I believe by one of it's own. It was constantly being chased. But, the Betta was of no interest to them, they stayed clear of him and he seemed to enjoy them being there. I added 3 more to make it 5 which calmed them right down. However, 2 of the new ones are very agressive and attacked the Betta daily during feeding, no matter how many tricks I tried to keep them apart, they'd figure it out. My Betta was spending most of his time in his log the last week and hardly swimming around. I was advised on here initially to return the 3 zebras, but they wouldn't accept them back, so I tried to make it work. My Betta through all this was pretty chill. He seemed fine with the little freaks and would swim right up to wherever they were and hang out. It cured his fin nipping (my reason for adding tank mates to begin with) and had I been given better advice and different tank mates all would be well. Fast forward to today - I had to move him to his former 5 gallon home yesterday after witnessing 2 danios attacking him during feeding. This morning I woke up to a lovely big bubble nest in his new/old home. I'm sad he's not in his 10g, home but he's not .
You did the best you could. It just doesn’t always work sometimes having bettas in community tanks. Perhaps giving him a snail friend or maybe some shrimps in his 5g set up would provide him company to alleviate nipping? Your betta sounds docile enough if he was actually on the receiving end of bullying in his 10g.
Good to know and thanks for sharing. I have two female bettas in separate tanks. One has rummynose tetras and Cory’s for tankmates. She puffed up like to attack, but they completely ignored her! She’s been fine ever since. The other I tried to put cardinals in for company and she attacked viciously. She’s alone now, but I was hoping to try either ember tetras or lamb chop rasboras with her. If that doesn’t work, she’ll have to remain a lonely spinster!
 

Wendybrass

Good to know and thanks for sharing. I have two female bettas in separate tanks. One has rummynose tetras and Cory’s for tankmates. She puffed up like to attack, but they completely ignored her! She’s been fine ever since. The other I tried to put cardinals in for company and she attacked viciously. She’s alone now, but I was hoping to try either ember tetras or lamb chop rasboras with her. If that doesn’t work, she’ll have to remain a lonely spinster!
Good luck! They all have such different personalities you just never know.
You did the best you could. It just doesn’t always work sometimes having bettas in community tanks. Perhaps giving him a snail friend or maybe some shrimps in his 5g set up would provide him company to alleviate nipping? Your betta sounds docile enough if he was actually on the receiving end of bullying in his 10g.
Thank you ☺️ Very docile. He'd swim right into the middle of the crazy - they'd just disperse or give him space. He seemed to like the chaos around him. Maybe while I wasn't looking he was laying down the law at the beginning. The 2 new danios however were far more aggressive, if my Betta ever was. He's so content right now though. Maybe what I thought was "like" was him posturing or trying to claim his territory. Who knows. Judging by the bubble nests now he's definitely content. So I'm okay with the 5g if he is.
 

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