Almost ready to add fish. Beginner fish suggestions?

The friendliest place on the web for anyone with an interest in aquariums or fish keeping!
If you have answers, please help by responding to the unanswered posts.


Aquarium Advice FINatic
Jan 4, 2005
My 55 gal will soon complete it's cycle. I'm considering my first two fish. I would like non-predators that are reef safe. Eventually, I'd like to add some corals.

Any unique suggestions? Links to pics would be nice too. TIA
Do you know of any fish that you'll want eventually? If so then you can take them and work backwards from there on the compatibility chart. Then you can decide which of the fish you're planning on keeping will be the easiest ones to care for. We used the fish lists here: to decide which fish would make good candidates for our tank and then we trimmed our list back to as close to 1" per 5g as we could manage. The info at live aquaria will help you to keep your list to only fish that will do well in a 55 or less. We started with Green Chromis and PJ Cardinals for our 120. With 55g to work with you'll want to make sure that you know what you want before you get anything because those adult inches add up fast!
It was suggested to me to add Damselfish so I have. 2 Yellows which seem to be doing well. Watch out for intraspecies aggression and they will do best with a steady specific gravity and low ammonia. Introduce them carefully (no light stress, drip acclimation, and regular feeding). It's been almost a week and I have had a positive experience -- so far. $3.00 a piece at the fish store.

Perhaps another choice would be Green Chromis -- I've lost 2 of 3 due to improper care. Be careful. $3.00 a piece at the fish store.

After this, you could add Long-Nosed Butterflyfish which are a good second choice -- hardy and eat well and will calm down the aggressive damselfish.

Take your time -- this is only 1 idea.
damsels, if not the full pastel blue color, are hardy but yet aggressive fish, they will eventually give you trouble when you try to add, say a pair of clowns.
Could go with a Royal Gramma but they are like 10 dollars demsils are great too but I found 3 of mine to be nippers the 4th however is good.
You could start with a few Blue Green Chromis. Not the prettiest of fish but very active and out all day. They are non territorial which makes it easy to add more fish later.
Top Bottom