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Hi From Melbourne


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Ive been wanting to look after Betta's for a few months now and today my dad come home with a fish tank.

Its is measurements are

L - 45 cm

W - 21 cm

H - 25 cm

Roughly 20 litres.

Ill be looking to buy a heater, filter and minor aesthetics decor very soon.

I plan to make it a mini community tank with a betta, cherry shrimps and some neon tetras.

Thanks for reading !

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Welcome to the forum pepsi. I'd reconsider the shrimps and tetras as tank mates. I've had bad experiences with neons biting the fins of my betta. And the betta may attempt to eat the shrimp. If the tank will be well planted then you should consider a small shoal of otocinclus. Some kuhli loaches might also be suitable although I find they tend to hide a lot of the time. Good luck with the tank. Look forward to seeing some pics of it.

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Cories! you can't go wrong with cories, they're cute and peaceful and never ever annoy my betta (well unless he attempt to take their food). Cories clean up leftover food, are active and most important of all. THEY'RE SO CUTE!!!! sorry, got carried away. But yeah cories are a good tank mate.

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@joan I told you theyre addictive! :P

I wouldnt say put them in a 20l though, seems way too small as youd need at least 4 for the cories to be happy :)

And of course, welcome Pepsi! :D 20l is pretty small to have a community in.. hmm.. but I suppose it can be done :) I cant think of any suitable fish off the top of my head though.. everything I think of are either fin-nippers or too big :blush: Im sure others can help you decide :D

Good luck :D

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Hi there,

Sounds like it will be a lovely tank. I've tried a few different things with them...

- bumblebee gobies ... seem fine I have just been told they are ferocious little nippers as a rule (I have mine in with a girl though, and have not had any probs with this as yet)

- angel fish ... tend to chase each other but none of the other fish in the community tank

- gourami ... one rouge one once killed four of my girls in two days by head butting them

- neon tetra ... have a tank with 3 tetra and a crown tail and they seem OK in this tank, but the boy originally killed two in the first few days and others have had nipping experiences

- bristle nose ... as per Joan's comment

- cherry shrimp ... seem to have disappeared

- guppies ... only with a short tail giant boy that was about ten times their size

I guess the moral of the story is every fish is different and you need to watch them when they are introduced. Also, sometimes for no apparent reason they can turn on each other. I think the key is to provide a good amount of room and appropriate hiding spots for each breed so they can 'stake out' their territory. Even in the girls community tank I have noted some of the more dominant fish have their own 'spots' and guard them fiercely (one guards a hollow in the gravel, LOL)

I would never put in a really nice halfmoon with another fish apart from bristle nose, its not worth the risk with their fins :scared:


Edited by Bec
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Hi Pepsi,

Betta's don't particularly like strong currents, (although I had one who LOVED them) generally filtering the tank capacity 2 - 3 times an hour is plenty. Someone correct me if I'm wrong on this please.

I've kept heaps of different Bettas in community tanks over the years and some do better than others in them. I've kept them with Neons without any issue yet most will say it's a bad idea. I had dreadful problems with what started as a baby Angel and one Black Ghost Knife fish I had loathed my male Betta. I've had one group of Clown Loaches who were FINE with Bettas and another school who pick at them. I usually give things a go but watch carefully and have alternative accommodation at hand just in case.

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I have internal, hang on and sponge in my little tanks and find all are good ...

Sponge is easy and cheap and wont destroy bublr nests but it is the noisiest in terms of the air pump and mechanical noise

Internal is totally quiet but in a smaller tank you often need to add a spray bar to reduce the current (easy to do)

Hang on is easy and I have found the tanks with this sort never give me any problems with spikes but they have a constant trickle noise (aquarium supermarket sells a good quality one for a very reasonable price)

If you have the tank in a bedroom I would go the internal


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The first one you linked to is just a circulation pump, not a filter. The ones you linked to will also be way, way, wayyyy too much current in such a small tank. A sponge filter or small hang-on filter with adjustable flow rate will be your best bet. You want your water capacity being filtered about 4x per hour. So one that does 100l/ph is what you should be looking at.

Large or medium sponge filter



This hang-on filter


If you're using anything other than a sponge filter with shrimp, you will need to buy some kind of mesh/fine netting/ old panty hose over the intake of the filter. I've even found shrimp inside my spray bar on my internal filter. They climbed in through the holes.

Tetra with Betta is a hit and miss. Short finned Betta have a far better chance of escaped un-nipped but it is still not a guarantee, long finned Betta have a very low chance. If you're going to get tetra anyway, make sure you can take them back if they chew your fishes fins before getting them.

Cherry Shrimp are also likely to get eaten, moss field or no. My shrimp tank is very heavily planted (with plenty of moss too) and my Betta always has a fat gut. He's since given up trying to hunt the adult sized ones but he will still hunt the little ones.

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Welcome :D

Its not really the temperment of the betta that matters, its the tetras anoying him that will be the issue they by nature will nip his fins and you cant change that. You can read about a one group of tetras that where living in harmony with one betta http://ausaqua.net/forum/index.php?showtopic=10456 and then see how the betta fared from the experiance http://ausaqua.net/forum/index.php?showtopic=10484 that was a 215L tank and you only plan for a 20L sounds like fin suicide to me.

but yes fish can be different per owner i just dont think you can really change their behaviour that much

Edited by Neffy
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