- Your shopping cart is empty!
As with other hobbies, fish keeping features a learning curve beginners have to deal with, and they’re bound to make mistakes when they get started. The aquarium hobby not only involves purchasing high-quality fish tank supplies, but also establishing an enclosed ecosystem in places where fish and invertebrate species wouldn’t normally live in. Fish keepers get to learn about biochemistry, marine biology, and aquatic habitats, but they can also make mistakes along the way. For this reason, it’s recommended that they start off with tropical species known for their hardiness and resiliency.
The most ideal situation would be a planted tank that has been gradually established over a few weeks, but even if you’re setting up with bottled bacteria in a few days, you’ll want to start off with hardy species that will be able to survive sudden water condition changes in case ammonia levels start rising. The fish listed below are perfect for new aquariums that are in the process of becoming established but still need bacterial bloom to complete the nitrogen cycle.
Many aquarists agree that Xiphophorus hellerii, a fish native to the Americas, is probably the hardiest species you can stock a tank with. In fact, they’re the most commonly acquired species because they guarantee adequate bacterial bloom and will survive sudden water temperature changes. There are many swordtail variants to choose from, and they can live in 10-gallon tanks as long as you only keep a couple of them.
2. Neon Tetras
Neon tetras are small, colorful, and friendly. A school of about 10 neon tetras is a wonderful way to start an aquarium. This species will thrive in planted tanks.
3. Zebra Danios
Similar to neon tetras, danios are peaceful schooling fish, and they only grow to no more than three inches. If you start out with a 10-gallon tank, you can keep a school of 10 zebra danios without having to worry too much about their health.
American cichlids are hardier and less aggressive than their African counterparts, which is why Oscars are recommended for beginner aquarists as long as they have at least a 30-gallon tank. But just remember any fish that can fit in the mouth of another would be off limits as a tankmate.
5. Red Tail Sharks
These fish are closely related to rainbow sharks, but only their tails are colored. Red tail sharks are hardier than their rainbow cousins, but they’re also more territorial, which means they’ll become aggressive when sharing a tank with red tails or most other fish their size or smaller. Since this fish can grow to six inches, you’ll want to keep it in a tank that can hold at least 20 gallons of water, and don’t get more than one.
Most tropical aquarium species related to catfish are very hardy, but they can be a bit picky with regard to the substrate. A combination of smooth pebbles and sand is perfect for Corydoras, and they’ll get along with nearly all other species.
This is another catfish-like species that looks like it hasn’t changed much since prehistoric times. Similar to Corydoras, this species is a bottom dweller that needs sinking pellets for catfish and occasional live food. The Plecostomus can grow larger than seven inches, which means it should be kept in a 30-gallon tank at the least.
Before you start purchasing fish for your new aquarium, make sure you have all of the necessary supplies on hand to ensure your tank’s inhabitants will remain healthy and happy for many years to come. Whether you need a dosing pump, filtration, heaters or coolers, beneficial bacteria, or any other supply, you can find what you’re looking for at Aquatic Warehouse. Buy what you need from our website, come visit us in person at our store in Kearny Mesa, or give us a call at 858-467-9297 if you have any questions.