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Small fish are best suited to small tanks. The smaller the better. How about a group of embers tetras? There are also microrasboras that would work for schooling fish. To go with them (8-9) you could do a couple snails and some shrimp.
 
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Small fish would work best or you do like a Betta and some mystery snails in there. Through first we need to know you water hardness and Ph to really recommend what fish would truly work best.
 

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Its not really how many fish.. its how big the fish are... You could have 20 neon tetra;s in a 10 gallon and be fine... or 1-2 big dwarf gouramis... Get smaller fish and as long as you actually do weekly water changes youll be fine
 

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20 neons in a 10 is way too much, and 2 dwarf gouramis in a 10 is a disaster waiting to happen.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
newbie

What do I use to test the PH of the water? We live in hard water territory. We put 1 neon tetra in a one gallon tank with an apple snail a few months ago and he lay down and died the same night. The snail did okay after that. :| Thanks again.
 

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My best advice - Don't worry too much about pH. Trying to change it will do more harm then good. Many tropical fish can adjust to a higher pH as long as they are acclimated correctly. If you can, do a slow drip acclimation so that the pH is risen slowly, along with the temperature. Just floating the bag only regulates the temperature. In 10 gallon tank, definitely stick with smaller fish. Neon Tetras are not hardy cycling fish, and if you haven't cycled the tank yet, stay away from them. Try a hardy fish for cycling, but keep up with your water changes. Try maybe some danios, rasboras, or if your set on Tetras maybe, try a couple Serpae Tetras or two Columbian Tetras.

Back to the original question - a 10 gallon tank should only house 4-8 small fish, even less if you are less familiar with water chemistry. The more fish you have, the more attention you will need to pay to water quality.
 
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Try a hardy fish for cycling, but keep up with your water changes. Try maybe some danios, rasboras, or if your set on Tetras maybe, try a couple Serpae Tetras or two Columbian Tetras.
I really wouldn't recommend using any of these to cycle a 10 gallon, even if they are hardy enough for it. All of them require more room even if you add to the shoals later on after the cycle. Best case scenario is that the fish-in cycle goes according to plan, but you're left with fish that need a bigger aquarium. Any of the rasboras or danios that are suitable for a 10 gallon are going to be nano species and those are all pretty susceptible to chemistry swings and therefore not a good choice for a fish-in cycle.
 
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