Stocking List For 5 Gallon Nano Aquariums

ashenwelt

Well Known Member
Messages
1,950
Reaction score
1,087
Points
308
So a question that comes up a lot is what can go into a five gallon aquarium. This expects heat and filtration and good water. We have made a list based on what people have been successful with. As such, can you help me expand this list? Please only add if YOU have done it. Here is our list so far.

What can go in a five? Many, many options. Many of which will start arguments. This is a list that people have been successful with. It’s not a guarantee but it is a place to start. Also, please research these fish as many has very specific requirements. Also note that many of these fish would be best listed as fish for "advanced" fishkeepers.

Fish:

Characiformes Characidae:
  • Green Neon Tetra or Paracheirodon simulans - (recommend a minimum of 170 square inches (1096 square cm) of aquarium floor space, with 200+ (1290 square cm) preferred; length is wanted) - Requires 6 in a 5 gallon aquarium
Characiformes Lebiasinidae:
  • Nannostomus anduzei - Requires 6 in a 5 gallon aquarium
Cypriniformes Cyprinidae:
  • Celestial Pearl 'Danio' / Galaxy 'Rasbora' or Celestichthys margaritatus - Requires 6 in a 5 gallon aquarium
  • Strawberry Rasbora or Boraras naevus - Requires 6 in a 5 gallon aquarium
  • Neon blue rasbora or Sundadanio axelrodi - Requires 6 in a 5 gallon aquarium
  • Dwarf Rasbora or Boraras maculatus - Requires 6 in a 5 gallon aquarium
  • Chili rasboras / Mosquito Rasbora or Boraras brigittae - Requires 6 in a 5 gallon aquarium
  • Boraras micros - Requires 6 in a 5 gallon aquarium
  • Boraras urophthalmoides - Requires 6 in a 5 gallon aquarium
  • Ember barb / Dwarf Amber Barb or Barboides gracilis - Requires 6 in a 5 gallon aquarium
  • Barboides britzi - Requires 6 in a 5 gallon aquarium
  • Phoenix Rasbora or Boraras merah - Requires 6 in a 5 gallon aquarium
Cyprinodontiformes Nothobranchiidae [Killifish]:
  • Aphyoplatys duboisi - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Aphyosemion australe - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Aphyosemion aureum - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Aphyosemion bualanum - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Aphyosemion calliurum - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Aphyosemion celiae - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Aphyosemion coeleste - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Aphyosemion exigoideum - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Aphyosemion hofmanni - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Aphyosemion joergenscheeli - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Aphyosemion louessense - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Aphyosemion ocellatum - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Aphyosemion primagenium - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Aphyosemion raddai - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Aphyosemion wachtersi - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Aphyosemion (Chromaphyosemion) species - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Aphyosemion (Diapteron) abacinum - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Aphyosemion (Diapteron) cyanostictum - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Aphyosemion (Diapteron) fulgens - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Aphyosemion (Diapteron) georgiae - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Epiplatys annulatus - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Epiplatys chaperi - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Epiplatys dageti - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Fundulopanchax ahli - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Fundulopanchax gardneri - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.; mature fish can eventually outgrow a 5, but albino and Gold forms tend to stay smaller)
  • Fundulopanchax filamentosa - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Fundulopanchax marmoratum - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable; larger size, but very peaceful fish
  • Fundulopanchax oeseri - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Fundulopanchax scheeli - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
Cyprinodontiformes Poeciliidae:
  • Endler's Livebearer or Poecilia wingei - 1-4M or 2F; swims in all zones; caution breeds prolifically
  • Dwarf Mosquitofish / Least Killifish or Heterandria formosay - 1-4M or 2F; swims in all zones; caution breeds prolifically
Perciformes Elassomatidae:
  • Pygmy Sunfish or Elassoma sp.- 1M or 1F or 1M/1F
  • Banded Pygmy Sunfish or Elassoma zonatum - 1M or 1F or 1M/1F
  • Bluebarred Pygmy Sunfish or Elassoma okatie - 1M or 1F or 1M/1F
  • Carolina Pygmy Sunfish or Elassoma boehlkei - 1M or 1F or 1M/1F
  • Gulf Coast Pygmy Sunfish or Elassoma gilberti - 1M or 1F or 1M/1F
  • Okefenokee Pygmy Sunfish or Elassoma okefenokee - 1M or 1F or 1M/1F
  • Spring Pygmy Sunfish or Elassoma alabamae - 1M or 1F or 1M/1F
  • Everglades Pygmy Sunfish or Elassoma evergladei - 1M or 1F or 1M/1F
Perciformes Osphronemidae:
  • Parasphaerichthys lineatus - Requires 6 in a 5 gallon aquarium
Perciformes Badidae:
  • Scarlet Badis or Dario dario - 1M, 3M or 1M/2F, due to aggression and territorial aggression; lower third swimmer
  • Red Dario / Red Melon Dario or Dario hysginon - 1M, 3M or 1M/2F, due to aggression and territorial aggression; lower third swimmer
  • Dario dayingensis - 1M, 3M or 1M/2F, due to aggression and territorial aggression; lower third swimmer
  • Dario kajal - 1M, 3M or 1M/2F, due to aggression and territorial aggression; lower third swimmer
  • Dario urops - 1M, 3M or 1M/2F, due to aggression and territorial aggression; lower third swimmer
  • Black Tiger Dario or Dario sp. 'Myanmar' - 1M, 3M or 1M/2F, due to aggression and territorial aggression; lower third swimmer
Perciformes Osphronemidae:
  • Licorice Gourami or Parosphromenus deissneri - (Debated; Recommend captive bred only, in very soft water; Recommend to focus on breeding) - 1M or 1F or 1M/1F
  • Betta Albimarginata - (Recommend to focus on breeding) - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Betta Brownorum - (Recommend to focus on breeding) - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Betta Channoides - (Recommend to focus on breeding) - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Betta Persephone - (Recommend to focus on breeding) - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Betta Rutilan - (Recommend to focus on breeding) - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Betta sp. Api Api - (Recommend to focus on breeding) - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
  • Betta / Siamese Fighting Fish or Betta Splendens - 1M or 1F
  • Betta Tussyae - (Recommend to focus on breeding) - 1M/1F Pair is preferred, 1M or 1F is not optimal but minimally acceptable.
Perciformes Gobiidae:
  • Stiphodon birdsong - 1M or 1F or 1M/1F
Perciformes Cichlidae:
  • Big-Eye' Lamprologus / Zebra Shelldweller or Neolamprologus similis - (use caution and watch for aggression; recommend a minimum of 170 square inches (1096 square cm) of aquarium floor space, with 200+ (1290 square cm) preferred) - 1M or 1F or 1M/1F, due to aggression and territorial aggression; lower third swimmer
  • Ocellated Lamprologus / Ocellatus Shelldweller or Lamprologus Ocellatus - (use caution and watch for aggression; recommend a minimum of 170 square inches (1096 square cm) of aquarium floor space, with 200+ (1290 square cm) preferred) - 1M or 1F or 1M/1F, due to aggression and territorial aggression; lower third swimmer
  • Multis /Multi-Bar Lamprologus or Neolamprologus multifasciatus - (use caution and watch for aggression; recommend a minimum of 170 square inches (1096 square cm) of aquarium floor space, with 200+ (1290 square cm) preferred) - 1M or 1F or 1M/1F, due to aggression and territorial aggression; lower third swimmer
Tetraodontiformes / Tetraodontidae:
  • Dwarf Puffer / Malabar pufferfish or Carinotetraodon travancoricus - 1 Puffer
Invertebrates:
  • Cherry Shrimp (all varieties) / Neocaridina davidi (up to 12 shrimp)
  • Crystal Shrimp (all varieties) / Caridina cantonensis (up to 12 shrimp)
  • Cardinal Shrimp / Caridina sp. "Cardinal" (up to 12 shrimp)
  • Neocaridina zhangjiajiensis / Snowball Shrimp (up to 12 shrimp)
  • Ghost Shrimp / Paleomonetes sp. (up to 8 shrimp)
  • Amano Shrimp (up to 5 shrimp)
  • Thai Micro Spider Crabs / Limnopilos naiyanetri (up to 3 crabs)
  • Pom Pom Crab / Lybia sp. (up to 3 crabs)
  • Spiki Snail (up to 2 snails)
  • Pond Snail (beware) (up to 3 snails, warning: prolific breeders)
  • Nerite Snail (up to 2 snails)
  • Assassin Snail (up to 2 snails)
  • Mystery Snail (only 1 snail)
  • Dwarf Mexican Crayfish (up to 1 crayfish)
Amphibians:
  • African Dwarf Frogs (please remember these are social and should be 2 in 5 gallons; some research shows that it does best in species only aquariums
As a note, nearly every member of livestock here can and will start an ethics argument.

Remember there are additional concerns when doing this such as: water temp., water type, water quality, plant levels, ground cover/substrate, etc. One of the most important things to remember is that water is inherently less stable in smaller quantities. Yes, this means a 5 gallon aquarium is harder to manage than a 20 gallon aquarium. Additionally, many fish here do require what is referred to as old water. So think an aquarium that has been up for a few months at least.

Please note there are additional highly debated fish, such as the Danionella Dracula that have wildly differing sources. As such at this time we recommend holding to this list, and avoiding those fish. You may have unexpected and negative consequences for your aquatic pets when moving to those animals.

Contributors from many places but here at Fishlore.com includes:

@Anders247
@BottomDweller
@Bruxes and Bubbles
@Little Tank of Happiness
@Catfish12345
@Kaleb Rinehart
@Coradee
@CROWNTAILBETTA
@fishandle
@scarface
@MrBryan723
@ashenwelt
@TexasDomer
@JRS
@APierce
@beau
@aquatickeeper
@fishychachki
@HappiestCamper
@chromedome52

Thank you all for the contributions!

- List Curated by @ashenwelt

--------

Additional Killifish breeding information provided by @chromedome52

Killies are generally kept as M/F pairs, occasionally M/F/F trios.

Killifish for 5 gallon tanks with difficulty rating 1-5:
1- eats anything, and if you can't get them to spawn, there's something wrong with YOU!
2 - usually adapts to dry/frozen foods, may require some water chemistry adjustment or other.
3 - May eat frozen foods, but to breed live foods are needed. Water chemistry and possibly temperature requirements will have to be met.
4 - Require live foods, may have special spawning requirements or could be a seasonal breeder.
5 - You really have to know what you're doing to keep them alive, and breeding will require some very specific conditions.

Raising fry of killifish in general requires egg removal from parent's tank, though some 1 or 2 rated species might even allow fry to grow up in the tank. However, in a 5 gallon tank it will generally be necessary to remove fry that are seen so as to control population.

I use the terms common, uncommon, and rare. Common fish are species that may occasionally be seen in stores, but are pretty much available through auction sites and AKA show auctions. Uncommon are fish that you might find on auction sites, and have a good chance of finding at AKA shows. Rare is a fish that you will almost never see available on auction sites, and if you find them at AKA auctions, have a very, very deep wallet.

And now, some FISH:
  • Aphyoplatys duboisi - 5 - RARE.
  • Aphyosemion australe - 2 - common
  • A. aureum - 3 - uncommon
  • A. bualanum - 4 - uncommon (subgenus Kathetys, other species with same requirements are dargei, elberti, exiguum, and thysi; last two more uncommon than others)
  • A. calliurum - 1 - uncommon
  • A. celiae - 2 - uncommon (also subspecies A. c. winifredae, same ratings, more color)
  • A. coeleste - 3 - uncommon
  • A. exigoideum - 2 - uncommon
  • A. hofmanni - 4 - rare, I think
  • A. joergenscheeli - 5 - rare
  • A. louessense - 1or2, depending on pop. - uncommon
  • A. ocellatum - 3 - uncommon (highly recommended, but has low temperature requirements)
  • A. primagenium - 3 - uncommon
  • A. raddai - 4 - uncommon?
  • A. wachtersi - 5 - rare (closely related, A. herzogi and A. bochtleri, same ratings)
  • A. (Chromaphyosemion) species - bitaeniatum and some splendopleure populations may be seen in commercial imports, and these are generally rated 1-common. I've even had a very small splendopleure type that had fry with them in a 2 gallon drum bowl. There are a lot of new names in this group, but there are three species that I would not keep in a 5: riggenbachi, known as the Giant Krib; bivittatum; and lugens. Last two have highly aggressive males.)
  • A. (Diapteron) abacinum, cyanostictum, fulgens, and georgiae - 4.5 - uncommon
  • Epiplatys annulatus - 4 - common
  • Epiplatys chaperi - 2 - uncommon
  • Epiplatys dageti - 1 - used to be common, now uncommon
  • Fundulopanchax ahli - 3 - uncommon
  • Fpx. gardneri - 1 - common (limited; mature fish can eventually outgrow a 5, but albino and Gold forms tend to stay smaller)
  • Fpx. filamentosa - 3 - uncommon (along with robertsoni and rubrolabiale, small fish with feathered finnage, usually a substrate spawner)
  • Fpx. marmoratum - 1 - uncommon (larger size, but very peaceful fish)
  • Fpx. oeseri - 1 - uncommon (also larger, but calm species)
  • Fpx. scheeli - 1 - has become common, though better stock is to be found at shows
Final note: Nothobranchius species are sometimes sold commercially, and are quite available via online auctions. Often these are sold as eggs in peat, to be hatched by recipient. Notho males are, by instinct, very rough on females. The sexes can only be put together temporarily for breeding. Males have been kept in community tanks as singles with larger fish, and a single male of pretty much any species will do well in a 5. BUT, in a small tank any tankmates are at risk, whether fish or invertebrate.
 

BottomDweller

Fishlore VIP
Messages
9,381
Reaction score
5,884
Points
448
Experience
5 to 10 years
Other neocardinia shrimp will work as well as RCS. Ghost shrimp would also work.

In my opinion no schooling fish should be kept in less than 10 gallons. They are too active and 5 gallons isn't enough room for 8.
 

dcutl002

Well Known Member
Messages
1,409
Reaction score
313
Points
178
Experience
More than 10 years
I see your list and I understand that there is literature out on the net with these species living in a five gallon, but I would say nothing smaller than a ten. That is my opinion. Maybe one Betta for a five...I prefer a ten. calling the experts @Anders247 @TexasDomer
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #5

ashenwelt

Well Known Member
Messages
1,950
Reaction score
1,087
Points
308
Anders247 said:
I would not keep ember tetras, green neons, Apistogramma or shell-dwellers in a 5g. The rest, maybe....
Why not on the Embers? They honestly are probably the top schooling fish in a 5. The rest are like I said in the post... Debated. But normally Embers aren't.
 

Anders247

Fishlore Legend
Messages
30,026
Reaction score
4,190
Points
813
Experience
5 to 10 years
ashenwelt said:
Why not on the Embers? They honestly are probably the top schooling fish in a 5. The rest are like I said in the post... Debated. But normally Embers aren't.
For a 10, maybe they are fine, but in a 5, personally I wouldn't do them. Chili rasboras and CPDs are better, imo.
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #7

ashenwelt

Well Known Member
Messages
1,950
Reaction score
1,087
Points
308
Anders247 said:
For a 10, maybe they are fine, but in a 5, personally I wouldn't do them. Chili rasboras and CPDs are better, imo.
So what would you add to my list?
 

Anders247

Fishlore Legend
Messages
30,026
Reaction score
4,190
Points
813
Experience
5 to 10 years
I can't think of anything else to add, except maybe a pair of licorice gouramis? That is possible in a 5g.
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #9

ashenwelt

Well Known Member
Messages
1,950
Reaction score
1,087
Points
308
Anders247 said:
I can't think of anything else to add, except maybe a pair of licorice gouramis? That is possible in a 5g.
Someone asked me on another board about sparkling gourami. I tend to think no, but figured I would ask?
 

Jennywren

Valued Member
Messages
412
Reaction score
202
Points
88
Experience
5 to 10 years
Anders247 said:
I can't think of anything else to add, except maybe a pair of licorice gouramis? That is possible in a 5g.
Wow, what a nifty little fish! I've never seen them before! <3
 

Anders247

Fishlore Legend
Messages
30,026
Reaction score
4,190
Points
813
Experience
5 to 10 years
I would edit the 'many types of rasboras' part. There aren't that many rasboras that I would think of keeping in a 5g. It's kind of vague.
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #14

ashenwelt

Well Known Member
Messages
1,950
Reaction score
1,087
Points
308
Anders247 said:
I would edit the 'many types of rasboras' part. There aren't that many rasboras that I would think of keeping in a 5g. It's kind of vague.
Can I ask people here to help with that clarification?

Anders, which do you think are the best for it?
 

Little Tank of Happiness

Well Known Member
Messages
511
Reaction score
222
Points
78
Experience
Just started
You can do a multi shrimp tank:

4x amano shrimp
4x ghost shrimp
5x crystal shrimp
8-10x cherry shrimp

Edit: I suggested that because not many people think about it and just think about doing a single shrimp species tank when multiple looks really cool. You'd have to do a lot of moss balls and anubias nana (and any other good loved-by-shrimp live plants) though.
 

BottomDweller

Fishlore VIP
Messages
9,381
Reaction score
5,884
Points
448
Experience
5 to 10 years
Little Tank of Happiness said:
You can do a multi shrimp tank:

4x amano shrimp
4x ghost shrimp
8-10x cherry shrimp

I believe ghosts and rcs crossbreed.

Edit: I suggested that because not many people think about it and just think about doing a single shrimp species tank when multiple looks really cool. You'd have to do a lot of moss balls and anubias nana (and any other good loved-by-shrimp live plants) though.
I don't think ghosts and RCS crossbreed. To my knowledge they are completely different species. Somebody please correct me if I'm wrong.

You could add some crystal shrimp to that stocking, they wouldn't crossbreed with the rest.
 
Toggle Sidebar

Aquarium Calculator

Follow FishLore!





Top Bottom