Stocking ideas for a 3-gallon tank?

goldfish_is_orange

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Work from home might be extended until end of the year, so I impulsively bought the only decent-sized tank that can fit on my work table. It's 35Lx17Wx22H cm. Basically a slim tank with (hopefully) enough length and height for nano fish to swim/dart. It will have a piece of wood or stone/s. It will be planted. It will have a sponge filter. I already have a neo shrimp tank, so I was thinking I could do with some fish in this one. The shop owner suggested a betta, to which I replied a very stern, "No."

Current plant stocking:
Eleocharis acicularis "mini"
Hygrophila pinnatifida
Bacopa monnieri
Cryptocoryne wendtii de Wit
Cryptocoryne spiralis

Livestock ideas:
Golden white cloud minnows?
Tetras?
Endlers?
I'm not really into guppies

Good idea? bad idea? Let me know. Thanks in advance!
 

squidneh

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Personally I would only put a betta in there. Make sure it isn't a "king" or giant betta - I have 2 and they definitely would not fit well in a 3 gallon tank. I have a smaller male Betta in a 3 gallon cube and it seems to fit him well. But I will be upgrading him to a 5 or 10 gallon once I move.

Another fun option would be a shrimp colony, as @HoldenOn suggested. You could have snails as well.

You could potentially have a pea puffer, but 3 gallons is really pushing it.

Those are pretty much your only options - but don't be dismayed...while you can't have schooling fish, shrimps are usually pretty active/busy and fun to watch. Bettas can be very personable and will often greet you at the front of their tank when you enter the room. You can even teach them tricks.

Worth noting is that shrimp can be very delicate. The tank needs to be cycled no matter what you put in it, but shrimp are more susceptible to water quality changes that are common in a new tank. And if you are interested in the pea puffer, make sure you do your research as they have unique requirements, especially when it comes to feeting.

Initially I missed the part where you already said no to a betta. The shop owner suggested a betta because it is practically the only fish that will work for a 3 gallon tank. So if you don't want a betta, either get shrimp...or a bigger tank.
 
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goldfish_is_orange

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I have another tank with some bloody mary neo shrimp, so I don't really want a 2nd shrimp tank.

You could potentially have a pea puffer, but 3 gallons is really pushing it.
I also considered this, but the pea puffer's diet alone makes it a hard pass for me. Maybe some time in the future, though.

Initially I missed the part where you already said no to a betta. The shop owner suggested a betta because it is practically the only fish that will work for a 3 gallon tank. So if you don't want a betta, either get shrimp...or a bigger tank.
Yeah, I said no because I thought I needed a bigger tank for a betta. But then, in one of the local fishkeeping groups, someone posted some juvie bettas for adoption! So I am now reconsidering getting a betta baby. This can be his grow out tank, then I'll upgrade his house after a few months.

Either that or I put my shrimps here and throw out my other shrimp tank. I still have to cycle the tank, so I'll have 4-6 weeks to decide anyway.

Thanks for the suggestions, y'all.
 

Ch4rlie

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Have to agree with other comments that for a 3 gallon tank that your options are limited to 2 options :/

Option one, betta only tank with nice plants and decor.

Option two, shrimp and snails only tank, more densely planted with natural decor.

There are some real neat shrimp and snails only set ups that are very rewarding in their own right.

Here are a couple a pic of my different shrimps and snails only nano tank set ups I have had previously -

98C15CB9-4C8F-4F0F-8C9B-E8D21587EF7F.jpeg
CADB2179-5334-469B-84A7-D7C4EAF1FF69.jpeg
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goldfish_is_orange

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Have to agree with other comments that for a 3 gallon tank that your options are limited to 2 options :/

Option one, betta only tank with nice plants and decor.

Option two, shrimp and snails only tank, more densely planted with natural decor.

There are some real neat shrimp and snails only set ups that are very rewarding in their own right.

Here are a couple a pic of my different shrimps and snails only nano tank set ups I have had previously -

View attachment 117659View attachment 117667View attachment 117670
Wow! the 3rd one looks really nice! thanks for sharing!
 

Wills

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You could try a trio of badis fish - pyjama badis are really beautiful and tiny with big personality! One Male two females would be ok here it’s a decent foot print.

Wills
 

Ch4rlie

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You could try a trio of badis fish - pyjama badis are really beautiful and tiny with big personality! One Male two females would be ok here it’s a decent foot print.

Wills
Pyjamas badis, never heard them being called that before, am assuming you mean tiger badis or darios?
Think they have several different common names.

But anyway, I digress, will these be ok in a 3 gallon tank?

Lovely little fish specie imho

 

Wills

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Yes that’s them but looking at the profile is that water actually possible to do? Ph 7-9 but very soft? I had these for a while in an 8 gal and they did really well had them for about 2 years before I moved them on
 

Ch4rlie

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Yes that’s them but looking at the profile is that water actually possible to do? Ph 7-9 but very soft? I had these for a while in an 8 gal and they did really well had them for about 2 years before I moved them on
Not sure what you mean by very soft but pH 7 - 9 is neutral to alkaline as stated on SF, med to hard water.
Anything less than pH 7 is acidic and softer.

Thats probably just about doable for an 8 gal tank for these darios, but would you put them in a 3 gal tank personally?

Thats why am asking about this as I've never had these species of darios before and with as small a tank as this we've always recommended either just a single betta or just as shrimp and snails only set ups, so if folks asks about stocking for sub 5 gla tanks then we could start recommending these if you think they will be suitable?

But I suppose it would depend on dimensions of the tank, better standard rectangle 3 gal rather than a jar type of thing.
 

Wills

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I think because the tank is quite long it could work, they are not overly active fish but they do patrol the tank investigating everything, they are not active in the sense of a schooling fish or live bearer etc. I would obviously prefer the tank to be a bit bigger.

Wills
 
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