Keeping an aquarium in your home adds numerous benefits to your health, like reducing stress and lowering blood pressure. Freshwater tanks tend to be easier to care for than saltwater tanks, and its critters are more forgiving to mistakes made by new owners. Freshwater fish has its own beautiful selection of colorful and unique species
Having an aquarium at home brings numerous health benefits, such as reducing stress and lowering blood pressure. Freshwater aquariums are often easier to care for than saltwater aquariums, and their creatures are more forgiving of mistakes made by new owners. Freshwater fish have their own beautiful array of colorful and unique species that make your aquarium come alive.
Whether you’re a new aquarium owner or a veteran, it’s hard not to get hooked on your freshwater fish and their individual personalities. Let’s take a look at the top 10 best freshwater fish for your aquarium.
1. Neon Tetra
Probably one of the best known freshwater species on this list, the neon tetra is a small, slender and easy to care for fish, ideal for new owners. Neon tetra do not grow very large, reaching only 2.2 cm in length! They are known to be a very peaceful and quiet species. They do best when kept in groups and in tanks with rocks, plants and other accessories in which they can hide. Neon tetras are easily recognized by their blue body and bright red stripe along their body.
Guppies are another species of fish that make perfect pets for beginners. They are extremely easy to care for, but tend to breed quickly with each other if the genders are not separated. They come in various colors, with the males being more striking than the females. Guppies also adapt to different water conditions and have a lively personality, which is what makes them so popular. It is important to keep the water temperature constant (around 50 °F – 84 °F (10-29 °C)) so that they can live happily in their tanks.
Small and easy to carry, Mollies are a great freshwater species that are easy to care for. Mollies can grow about 3 to 4 inches long and are omnivores, meaning they can eat plants and other animals. The best thing about this freshwater creature is that it gives birth to its young, unlike other fish. Like Guppies, Mollies love to breed, so if you don’t want too many of these beautiful fish in your aquarium, just keep one gender.
4. Betta Fish
Betta fish, also known as the Siamese fighting fish, are another popular freshwater choice for aquariums. They tend to come in a diverse range of beautiful colors, and are easy to keep … for the most part. Betta fish are known for their highly territorial and aggressive nature with other fish, especially males. If your Betta fish is peaceful enough, you can keep them in a large tank with other species of fish. Avoid placing them in tanks with similar looking fish, such as Guppies. You should also place them in their own tanks, complete with substrate and plants.
Another popular freshwater fish, the Goldfish is a beautiful species that can grow up to 14 inches long in the wild. Some wild goldfish can live up to 25 years or even longer. In captivity, your goldfish will thrive in a tank of at least 20 gallons. These fish need constant maintenance, such as weekly water changes and a filter. Goldfish can come in various shapes, sizes, colors and breeds.
A member of the cichlid family, angelfish are popular freshwater fish that can grow up to 6 inches long and 8 inches tall. They are very beautiful and come in various colors and patterns. They can eat plants and other animals, such as small insects and shrimp, but should be kept away from small fish. Angelfish can be territorial and aggressive (though not to the level of a Betta fish), so it is best to keep them in a tank without many fish.
7. Golden dwarf barbel
The golden dwarf barbel is a lesser-known freshwater fish that is ideal for new aquarium owners. They can grow up to 1.5 inches, and can be easily recognized by their golden yellow colors and black markings on their body. Golden dwarf barbels do best when kept in a planted tank. No more than 5 of these freshwater critters should be kept in a tank.
The rainbow fish is another less common fish that is easy to care for. Their vibrant colors don’t exactly burst forth until they are mature in adulthood. Still, the wait is worth it with proper care and maintenance. These fish can be quite shy, but are usually peaceful with other fish in their aquariums. Rainbowfish get along well with barbel and tetras.
9. Zebra Danios
Platyfish (or Platy fish) are stunning freshwater fish that come in numerous exotic colors. They are typically peaceful fish that thrive well in communities. You may see them socializing with guppies and mollies; they are very sociable! Platies require a mixture of plant-based foods and protein, although they can also eat meat-based foods.
Freshwater fish can be just as flamboyant and colorful as saltwater fish. Most of the time, freshwater fish are hardy, robust little creatures that deserve our love and attention. If you are a new aquarium owner, be sure to regularly care for your fish and learn their personalities. Over time, you will learn to love your friendly and impressive freshwater fish.
Check out our blog, Freshwater vs. saltwater aquariums, to learn how these aquariums differ.