19L Fluval spec stocking.

Tiernie

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Morning all,

First post here I would like some advice please :)

So my 11yr old daughter wants a fish tank for Christmas which is pretty much a done deal, it’s not the first time she’s had one and she knows a little about keeping fish. She mainly wants a single Betta, we will possibly get an Oto catfish for algae control and maybe some shrimp. I don’t have masses of experience in keeping Betta’s So if that stock list sounds do able and humane for the fish will the betta get on ok with the oto and shrimp?

Also I was wondering if Betta’s are quite interactive fish? Is there another type of fish you would consider more entertaining or engaging for a small tank?

We do have experience keeping both marine and tropical fish so will be doing a fishless cycle and testing the water for a minimum of 3 weeks, weekly water changes of 10%, adding live plants and bog wood to oxygenate the water (also are Betta’s prolific plant destroyers?)
But welcome any other advice on keeping nano tanks as we have always had tanks of a larger scale.

Thank you :)
 

Byron

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Welcome to TFF. :hi:

A single male Betta will be fine in a 19 liter (5 gallon) aquarium. They do not bother plants, but they do benefit from having them, especially floating plants like Water Sprite. If you can get floating plants you will not need to "cycle" for a single Betta. Floating plants have been termed "ammonia sinks" due to their rapid uptake of ammonia/ammonium.

I would not recommend otos, as this is a shoaling species that should have a small group, and space is insufficient. Also, the Betta might well decide it wants no otos in its space. Otos would not be much benefit for problem algae anyway; they are great consumers of diatoms and common green algae, but the "problem" algae like brush, beard, etc will be basically ignored.

Shrimp might be OK, I am not very up on shrimp and will leave it to others to say if the Betta will make meals of them or not.
 

Jeremy180

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Agree completely with Byron.
In addition, many of the newly introduced "micro" species of fish in the hobby, which are about the size of a neon tetra, can possibly be eaten by bettas, while any schooling fish (icluding ottos) larger than this would be too large for the tank.

Shrimp smaller than Amano (most of the fancy dwarf species fall in this category) can also become potential prey, depending on the individual betta.

While this is not guaranteed, I think the possibility of your daughter witnessing such an event would make it advisable to not risk it.


As far as feeding goes, it is very easy to overfeed a betta, from everything I have heard online, between 2 and 4 standard betta pellets a day is plenty, And it might be a good idea to remove any leftovers with a medicine dropper, especially in the first month, to help prevent ammonia and nitrite spikes.
 
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Cichlid4life

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some shrimp can go with the betta, but from there we must learn if the betta is ok with shrimp, and i would say one amano, but amano shrimp will walk straight out of water and out of the aquarium and often they can't find their way back to the water, so the amano shrimp dies from falling off of the rim of the tank. Ghost shrimp might be an other option, but it still depends on the betta's personality. For plants i would recommend a few anubias such as nana petite to go into the tank with the betta. Also you will find that the smaller the tank, the harder to maintain and the easier for the tank parameters to be affect by the slightest bit of anything.
 

Jeremy180

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In my humble opinion, one of the best tank mates for a betta in a tank this small would be a single nerite, of her favorite color pattern, but only after the tank has been running a month or two, to allow the filter bacteria to become well established, and also it would be a good idea to wait until a healthy layer of algae builds up, as some can refuse supplemental feeding to the point of starvation.
I also would recommend not getting more than one nerite in a tank this size, as they are so good at eating algae that they can actually run out of enough to eat if too many are kept in a tank.
Additionally, I am fairly certain that when kept singly, they do not lay the dud eggs that some people find unattractive.

Also am in agreement with Cichlid4life on the Amano being good tankmates, they are generally tough enough to survive the occasional peck, as long as they are over an inch or so when purchased.
The main caveats with them is that they also should not be added until giving the good bacteria in the filter a month or two to become established, and they will need a shelter for when they molt, because at this time, thier protective outer shell is soft and vulnerable.

A nice bonus for Amano is they are fairly good at cleaning beard algae, and it was on fact this very thing that made them popular in the hobby, after being used for this purpose by aquascaper Takashi Amano, which in turn made the now common dwarf species popular.

I do not recommend "mystery" aka apple snails for any tank warm enough to accommodate bettas, both because they prefer cooler water than bettas do well in, and in your case, if kept together with a betta, they may affect the water quantity in a tank this small.

Overall, I think for a final stock, one betta, one nerite, and one or two Amano shrimp would fully stock a standard 5 gallon, as long as at least 50% water changes are done weekly.
 
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