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Setting up an 11L tank. help?


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Hey fishkeepers/fishies!

I already own a 20L heated, planted, filtered aquarium with a single male betta.

My younger brother has a short, wide (its longer one way than it is wide) octagonal aquarium that holds around 11L from a few years back when he (unsuccessfully) kept a few goldfish in there (poor things - we didn't know any better though).

Anyway, i was thinking of helping him set up a nice little aquarium using the tank. What fish, if any, could i keep in such a small setup (other than a fighter)?

Preferably something simple and affordable..

Edited by mat92
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Small tanks are generally best for small speicies fish. A small air filter, the ones that have a block of foam to trap waste products. Then plants and fish of choice. Tropical fish would require a small heater 25w is about the smallest available put it on the opposite side from the air filter and it should maintain temp. easy. Sitting it alongside the filter will cause the thermostat to misread the temp. causing it to overheat the water.

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11L is a fussy size. I have a few, and coming from bettas it isn't too bad but coming from larger tanks they can be a bit of a hassle. Octagonals in particular can be awkward because there is limited heater and filter space and you can end up with a crowding of equipment. Basically, the more simple an 'old fashioned' you can make the setup, the better IMO.

What sort of fish were you thinking of? What sort of tank are you after?

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I kept a small hex tank ~7L with one of those tiny 3-in-1 filters built in to the lid. I had a tiny anubia on wood, some java moss and a small amazon sword for plants. I was surprised how quickly the tank cycled but you really have to keep an eye on your water quality. For a while I kept a couple of sparkling gouramis, a few glass shrimp, one snail and one small bristlenose. This probably works best if you have small and/or slow-growing species and larger tanks available which you can transfer fish to later on as they grow. As it got towards winter though I had a chance to setup a larger tank and everything got transfered in there so I never had to worry about heating the small tank.

I found plants to be really good in my tank so that the fish and shrimp weren't constantly looking at each other, fish could find somewhere out of the current if they needed to, shrimp had something to feed off and hang on and the plants helped with water quality (gravel and wood also providing extra area for bacteria to colonize).

You might look at killi's. I haven't kept them myself and know little about them but others here might be able be able to chime in here.

HTH :whistling:

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Ok, so Im new here and This is my first real post. But why not some little Danio's. I had some in a small tank for my daughter and she loved them, also you could probably keep 2 or 3 in the tank with a betta if you wanted- that's what we did. The danio's are too fast for the betta's. They are pretty cheap and come with stripes or spots, little and cute. Also do not need a heater.

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Danios would work, but they are fast things with a surprising love of personal territory. They, along with white cloud mountain minnows, are very bossy for their size and have amazing little personalities. You know how Jack Russels always think they are much bigger than they are? these guys are the fish version! Still, you could get away with it if you wanted :photo: I agree that they are totally cute, especially the 'ghost' variety.

I'd probably go with killies (not gold wonders etc, the gardneri and australe types) microrasboras, small shrimp, endlers livebearer males or fry from another tank (you can move them up as they grow and replace with more fry, like Ezza said). You could even go a small yabbie if he's into that sort of thing AND the tank has a good lid. Again, you'd need to trade up to a larger tank, but if you get one that is 2-3cm you should have a good 8-12 months depending on temperature and feeding.

For that size tank, stability will be your main thing. Honestly, this is where a UGF is ideal. It gives you maximum media room to help you process the waste by turning your entire gravel substrate into a biofilter. You'll need as much biofiltration as you can to ensure it stays stable as, almost any way you swing it, there is a good chance it will be overstocked or riiight on the limit and 11L doesn't leave you much room for error if it spins into a cycle. Being a small tank, you can provide a full clean if it requires it, avoiding one of the more common problems that people have with the whole UGF thing. You can get tiny power filters (Palm etc) or HOBs but you may have difficulty figuring out a good flow pattern in an octagonal that won't give you a whirlpool effect should the motor be too hefty.

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