Need advice: good begginer fish and plants? - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 58 Old 08-21-2010, 11:23 AM Thread Starter
Question Need advice: good begginer fish and plants?

Hi, I've started my first fish - 100L - tank last week, trying a fishless cycle on it with pure ammonia (p.a. grade)

Now I know cycling can take weeks to finnish, I'd like to know a bit bout what fish you'd recommend to a begginer.
I was thinking something along the lines of 1 betta, an algae eating catfish of some sort, and some schooling fish perhaps tetras?
Guppys look nice but I've read they don't go with a betta due to nibbling? Any other ideas would be appreciated.

So far I only have fake plants but I was thinking bout adding one or two live plants.
Preferably long and thin growing ones, not needing lots of light ( I currently have the light that came with my tank set).
Another thing is I have 1-2mm fine gravel and don't intend changing it.

Also, can I add plants while cycling, after cycling, before the fish, after the fish, ...?

Here's a pic of the tank atm, any ideas on positioning the plants or moving the ornaments would be nice

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post #2 of 58 Old 08-21-2010, 11:33 AM
nice tank =) don't know anything about ammonia except there's a spike in the tank in the first few weeks. the betta will be fine alone in that tank.6 cory's will do well with the fine sand. but tetras in there with the better check the fish site of the forum to see what kind you want in there not very advisable in a betta tank though some have done it but umm.... up to you.

5x2x2 aro,highfin bat,fei feng,ST,albino tinfoil,c.perch
4x1.5x1.5 planted tetras,harlequins,
otto,WMM,2 types of celebes rainbows,rcs,amano, bamboo,red ramhorns,MTS
3.5x2.5x2 flowerhorn,pleco
3x1.5x1.5 russel's lion,blue cleaner,sixline and leopard wrasse,maroon clown pair,green chromis,scorpion,tiger cowrie,turbo,lyretail anthias,jewel,anemone,star polyp,marbled and giant green mushi,zoa
2x1x1 nano sw shrimps
22 May 2012
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post #3 of 58 Old 08-21-2010, 12:02 PM
redchigh's Avatar
You can add plants anytime, and they will help with the cycling.

May I reccomend hairgrass? It likes fine gravel.

Actually, many plants would do well in that gravel...
Echinodorus species that are smaller would work... I think Echinodorius Barthii...

Ooh, and Echinodorus Augustifolia var. Vesuvius!

For the foreground maybe hairgrass...

Java Moss loves low light...

What kind of fixture do you have? You might be able to just replace the bulb...

Wait a minute. 100L? That's 26 gallons, give or take, right?

Seems like you'll be severely limited with a Betta... There's many fish that are "easy", and if you cycle first there are dozens more...

If you genuinely like the Betta, then sure... You could get a male and 6-8 small corys or loaches... But tetras could be dangerous.
You could try 8-10 Cardinals, but many tetras will either nip the Betta or get eaten..

Originally Posted by Christople View Post
^^ genius

Soil Substrates Guide:
Part 1
--------- Part 2


Last edited by redchigh; 08-21-2010 at 12:10 PM.
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post #4 of 58 Old 08-21-2010, 12:17 PM
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I agree. Betta is really a stand-alone fish, deserving of its own little home (not too little). Other fish almost always cause trouble, either for the betta or the betta for them. Corys on the bottom are fine with a betta.

That is very nice gravel, with live plants you will have a very beautiful aquarium. I certainly would not change that; good natural colour and small which is excellent for plants.

100 litres is about 25-26 gallons [some of us think better in gallons]. That has good possibility for some shoals (groups of 6+) of small/medium fish like characins (tetra, pencilfish, hatchetfish), cyprinids (rasbora, smaller danio), catfish, even a gourami or pair or a pair/trio of dwarf cichlid for slightly larger centrepiece fish. Depending upon your water parameters (hardness and pH).

Have a browse through our fish profiles (second tab from the left in the blue bar at the top), many suitable species will be under the characins, cyprinids, catfish sections.

And welcome to Tropical Fish Keeping forum.


Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If youíre going to take it under your wing then youíre responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #5 of 58 Old 08-21-2010, 12:32 PM
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Oh I love that gravel. Nice looking tank. If it were me, and it isn't, I would get a half dozen smaller species Cory's and a Betta or skip the Betta and go with a few Rasbora. I would also add some live plants. It is amazing how much different the live plants look in comparison to fake. I started with fake for a few weeks and then changed. I love how the real plants look.
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post #6 of 58 Old 08-21-2010, 02:12 PM
redchigh's Avatar
I'd set up a southeast asian biotope. :P

5-6 crypts (which like low light) and a few shoals of rasboras...

Originally Posted by Christople View Post
^^ genius

Soil Substrates Guide:
Part 1
--------- Part 2

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post #7 of 58 Old 08-21-2010, 02:30 PM
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depending on the fixture, a full spectrum light would not be that expensive, mine was around $10 and corkscrew val is a good plant, just stuck mine in and it went to town...

and loaches are good fishies :D algae eater can get pretty crotchety with age though (at least mine has ) may I recommend mystery snails for algae consumption? (although they don't quite get along that well...or at all with loaches...they turn into dinner...)
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post #8 of 58 Old 08-22-2010, 03:42 AM Thread Starter
Yep 100L is about 26g

Ok, the betta is out of the scenery in that case. Only thought of it since I've seen a set up like that in the store.
I'm looking for a community tank or something peacefull, with non-aggresive fish. How would all- male group of 6-8 Guppys function? Is it even ok to have one-sex only?

I went looking for javamoss, but it's nowhere to be found under that name. Don't know the translation for it. I found 1-2-grow! plant called Lilaeopsis brasiliensis, and planted it on the empy parts of the aquarium. Buying the Vallisneria spiralis 'Tiger' to replace the hugeo-o plant on the left back side of the tank today.

The light i have is a T8 that came with my Capri set, or so this site says...

Ferplast - Capri Aquariums
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post #9 of 58 Old 08-22-2010, 05:48 AM
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Platys are nice colourful fish also gupps are nice, u could have quite a few in your tank. Or something like tetras and some cleaner fish there also a good idea/????
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post #10 of 58 Old 08-22-2010, 08:38 AM
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If you are looking for some non aggressive cleaner fish, I would suggest the Otocinclus. You could have 3-4 in there once you have algae build up. If you don't have algae they might starve. You can also feed them algae wafers, which I did in the beginning until my tank got a bit of algae. They are cute as can be, stay small and are non aggressive. They are busy little cleaner fish and like to be in a group.

Be careful not to mistake them for Chinese or Siamese algae eaters which can get aggressive. Here is an Oto ( Otocinclus)

The Neon Tetra's are very pretty and you could just get a school of those. They stay small are quite colorful and would look amazing in your tank. Where in the world did you find that nice small, light colored smooth gravel? If I could find that, i would have to get a few Cory's.
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