Suitable tankmates

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PuppetPusher

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Ok, anybody have anything to say on the subject of suitible tankmates for a male crowntail?

I've got a pink guy named Finley who's got first dibs on the 29 gallon my boyfriend and I just got recently. We're discussing what fish we want, and then narrowing that list by whatever won't bother (or be bothered by) Finley. The current plan is to start with a pair of black mollies, and go from there. I'd personally like to choose from the following:
dalmation mollies
neon or cardinal tetras
cory cats and/or upside down cats
dwarf platies
an angelfish or two

The only one I'm not terribly sure of is the angelfish. My store labels them as semi-agressive, while I've seen many others that count them as peaceful community fish . I've even had a customer tell me that his betta and angelfish seem to be almost inseparable friends. But I've also heard of them chasing other fish. Maybe it's one of those "each animal has it's own attitude" kind of things?

Any other suggestions for easily obtainable/suitable/interesting fish with Finley would be appreciated! I'm sure there's plenty out there I haven't thought of or seen yet.
 

chickadee

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Well I have to narrow your list a bit, I am afraid. Mollies are a toss up as they have kind of full flowing fins. The betta may think that the mollies are other bettas and the fight will be on. Neon and Cardinal Tetras (tetras in general) have been known to nip fins. (not good for Finley) Cory cats or upside down cats or Oto cats are perfect for most bettas, but in at least 2 instances here on this forum the Cories were harrassed to death by the betta tank mate. Platies again have fins that could be mistaken for a female betta, you take a chance. Some have had luck with them and some have not. Angelfish I do not know a lot about, but I would hesitate to put a betta into any tank that had another semi-aggressive fish in it.

The thing about Bettas is, they have never learned that other fish have any rights to be around them and in their water. They are only going to leave fish alone who have been out of sight and out of their way. This is why the catfish are the best choice for tankmates as they are mostly nocturnal and will not be out and about during the day all that much while the Bettas are holding court as the tank royalty. Otocinclus catfish are the best fish to keep with a betta. They are not nervous like Corydoras catfish and do not get overly flustered when they get chased. They settle right down when they are left alone and they do not get very intimidated by the bettas antics. After my bettas found out the otos were not impressed with their nonsense they took them in stride. Alexander even sleeps during the day in the corner under the airstone WITH his otos. (see picture of two fish behinds below)

I really hate to be so negative but fish are expensive and it is so good of you to ask before you buy and just assume the betta will accept them. The very best bet would be to get a 5 gallon tank and keep the betta and a couple of otos in there and put the other fish you would love to own in the 29 gallon. If you decide you are going to continue with the plans you have, your chances of getting it to work will increase tremendously if you get all the other fish settled first before adding the betta. He needs to feel like he is going into someone else's home and needs to fit in. If you put him in there first, he is going to go all territorial on you and fight any other fish trying to enter his home. The one exception to this would be the Angels if you are determined to do a Betta/Angel tank, not only would I add them at the same time to put them on the same level of the pecking order; but I would have another tank in preparation in case that pairing does not work. You could find yourself in trouble.

Now, one more thing, it truly does depend on the fish. There is simply no way to tell if Finley or any of the other fish are going to be a match until you try I guess. There have been fish that I would not have thought would handle the tankmates situation and it really worked, BUT some times there was pure chaos. You cannot just put them in and hope for the best, you have to have a back-up plan in case someone needs to be removed in a hurry. (not always the betta)

I hope that this has helped. Welcome to Fishlore.com..we hope to get to know you and Finley better. Finley, welcome to the betta community. We will enjoy seeing you in some pictures if your mommy will send some, we love pictures.

Rose
 

0morrokh

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Dwarf Platys may work as they are (I believe) quite small and short-finned. Mollies could work too maybe but I'm not sure I'd try it. I think upside down cats would be a great choice...I don't think they would bother the Betta nor could the Betta bother them. But do a bit of research on them to make sure. I do know that they need company so you should get at least 2. It is true that Bettas sometimes harrass Cories but I think since you have quite a large tank you could provide a ton of hiding places and it would be more likely to work out ok.
I wouldn't consider Angels or Tetras compatible with Bettas...both are rather nippy and I know if you have a pair of Angels they can be territorial when spawning. Also I should mention that they are not compatible with each other...the tiny Neons especially are likely to end up lunch to the big Angels.
Otos are a great addition...get quite a few in a tank that size and they'll take care of all your algae. You could also try some small loaches...just do some research before buying as there are more large and aggressive loaches than not. I think Kuhlis would be your safest bet...although they haven't been tried with Bettas as of yet (that is until I get my Kuhlis and Betta...).
You could also get a Mystery snail...while they have a reputation for producing a lot of waste, this shouldn't be an issue in a tank of that size. Just don't get more than one or you'll soon have thousands...

Well welcome to the forum, and we all love pics of others' fishies if at all possible (hint, hint ;D)
 

AesSedai

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I was wondering about Plecos. There are some really small ones. They stay on the bottom mostly too. Cory's move around so much that I don't think Zen would like all the activity and they go to the surface often so I'm hoping to get a tankmate or two that doesn't do that.

Thoughts?

((Everyone))

I've never heard anyone mention Plecos as tankmates and yet from what I've read so far, they seem like a real possibility...the small ones of course...some are only 5 cm.
 

Phloxface

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I would definately not put Angelfish in with a Betta. I have read on other forums of several instances where Angelfish have killed Bettas. They are very aggressive. I know it isn't on your list but Gouramis are also out of the question as they are related to Bettas and they will fight.
I agree with Rose that you should probably just put the Betta in a 5-10 gallon tank with a few Ottos and make the 29 gallon tank a tropical community tank. With a Betta you are VERY limited as to what kind of fish are compatible so unless you don't mind seeing a very large tank with only a Betta and a few Ottos or Corries (I'm sure the Betta would love it) then a smaller tank for the Betta would allow you more choices for the large tank.
 

chickadee

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I could add one more:

Dwarf Loaches or Chain Loaches

they are about as sweet as otos and do not move around in any way that should bother a betta. The problem is that they do need to be kept in at least 2's to get the full funny effect of owning them. They are a lot like otos in size and looks but maybe fancier.
If you have a book or want to Google them, it is Botia sidthimunki (Sid the Monkey Loaches, they are called) I have 4 of them and I love to watch them. You will need to get them and let them grow a tiny bit if you are going to put them in the betta tank. I got mine through LiveAquaria.com and they are only about 3/4" long when they get here. I bought 2 and then 2 more so they were a lot more expensive with the $40.00 shipping each time than they would have been if I had used my head and just got them all at one time.

I think that Zen will be cool with Otos or whatever you put in with him, if you got a Bristlenose Pleco you could probably put one of them in the tank. They are so cute, it looks like they have cat's whiskers.

Rose
 

AesSedai

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Ok cool. I have 2 more options...Pleco and Dwarf or Chain Loach. Thanks ((Rose))
 

chickadee

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Just be very careful about purchasing a pleco and get a Bristlenose and no other if you are going after a pleco. The ones you see in the stores that are not Bristlenose can get huge and they are not always labeled correctly. you should be able to tell a Bristlenose by the cute little whiskers.

Rose
 

0morrokh

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While it is true that there are a limited amount of fish you can keep with a Betta, I think you can still get a nice community tank in your 29 even with a Betta. There is much more room so they are more likely to get along since you can have more hiding places. However if your heart is set on the Angels or something then it would be a good idea to get the Betta his own tank and then you can get pretty much anything for the 29.
 
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