Stocking question for a planted 10g

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Aquarium Advice Regular
Mar 19, 2023
Hi, just went to my aquarium store to setup a new tank today. The owner helped me pick out the plants and decor, and gave me a few suggestions with how to stock it.

I originally wanted a dwarf gourami, but here's her recommendation:

1 honey gourami
unspecified amount of green neon tetras OR rasboras
unspecified amount of scarlet badis

Would these work well together in my planted 10 gallon?
How many of the neon tetras, rasboras, or scarlet badis should I get?
Would it be considered overstocking?

heres some photos of my new tank :)
its a little cloudy from the benefical bacteria i added
I would avoid dwarf gourami. Its estimated that 1/3 of dwarf gourami sold in the aquatics trade are infected with dwarf gourami disease. Its 100% fatal, no known treatment, and once the disease is in your aquarium the only way to get rid of it is to disinfect everything and start over or you risk fish future fish being infected too. Unless you can quarantine new dwarf gourami for a period to ensure they arent infected its just not worth the risk.

While honey can still carry the disease, its much less common.

Id go with just one of those recommended fish, and a school of 8 fish along with your honey gourami. Any more and you will be overcrowding the aquarium. 10 gallons is a little small for neon tetras, so that would be bottom of my list when choosing.

If you only set up the tank today its not cycled, are you planning on a fish in cycle or fishless cycle? If fish in, dont add more than 2 fish to start with.
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The tank is already cycled! Sorry I didn't specify. It was my bettas tank before I just meant I was changing the decor :)

What are some other alternatives to neon tetras? The owner suggested green neons since they are a bit smaller but i'm open to any small schooling fish that aren't livebearers
How long has the tank not has fish in there? The microbes responsible for the cycle will start to die off once there are no fish in the tank. Its been 6 weeks since you were asking about euthanising the betta. Thats long enough for you to have lost your cycle. If the filtration was turned off, a few days would do it. If the tank was drained and the filter dried out, a few hours can lose you your cycle.

I wouldnt say green neons arent best suited to a 10 gallons because of their size. Its more about giving them enough swimming space. They will live on 10g, but would benefit from more space. Id just put them at the back of my preference list. If they are what you want then give them a try.

There are a few small rasboras that would do good. Galaxy rasboras are nice fish that would be good. I keep some with a honey gourami, although they would do better at s cooler temperature than the honey would prefer.
Just back to the cycling point.

The microbes grow and die off as ammonia availability rises and falls. If you have 1 betta in a tank, the microbes will grow to the amount of waste a betta produces. If you have 10 rasboras then more microbes will grow to the amount of waste 10 rasboras produce. You need more microbes to support 10 rasboras than 1 betta. If you maintained your cycle after you lost your betta, you are only cycled sufficiently for 1 betta, so lets say at an estimate thats 2 rasboras. If you go and add 10 rasboras to the tank, you wont have enough microbes to cycle out the waste, and they will need time to catch up.

You should still add a small number of fish to start with, and gradually increase them over a number of weeks so your cycle can catch up in a safe manner.
Sounds great, I'll look into rasboras. The filter has stayed on for about a week since my betta wasn't in the tank and I had been adding larger amounts of food to try and keep the cycle. I dosed the tank with benefical bacteria but I will stick to just adding a few fish for now, thanks!
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