04-01-2012, 01:13 PM
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first off welcome to the hobby, it is quite rewarding to have a healthy tank going.
Your 3.5 gallon tank would be fine for the Betta, and maybe a couple snails but thats about it.
If you want to keep other fish you will need a bigger tank, I suggest looking into the fish you want to keep then research what thier requirments are, I love the little cories I have but they need to be in groups of 4-6.
platties also like to have company and you could have 3-4 of those.
I'm not to sure about the tetras.
Alot of people start off with a 10 gallon and soon find out they should have more room, so I suggest starting with a 20 gallon. get itgoing and cycled properly than start adding your fish. Many of us here do not trust the test strips, they are extremely inaccurate, get a API Master Test Kit, you'll get much better results and get many more tests for your money, they run about 30 bucks but shop around, I hear PETMOUNTAIN.COM has some for a good price.You might consider taking the other fish you have back to the petshop untill your tank is up and ready. research the cycling process and follow that, your fish will thank you for it. good luck and welcome.