View Full Version : Red Bettas and Red Platys

11-14-2006, 04:37 AM
Hi all,

New member here and I'm setting up my first tank.
I had the idea to set up a tank with a black background, black gravel and black decor (raw coal and slate) the idea to keep the background dark so the colors of the fish really jump out of the tank. I have set up the tank (20gal.) and it looks great, I added some bacteria and a little food and let the tank run for a couple weeks to get it going a bit before I add any fish. Time for the fish though!

My thoughts are to have, eventually, a school of red wag-tail plays-maybe 7-8, a nice red betta, and maybe a zebra pleco.

Not adding all at once of course, maybe 2 or 3 paltys to start.

I have heard that male Bettas will attack fancy guppies of the same color, mistaking them for other males. Are the platys plain enough (no ornate tails) to avoid being attacked? Will the paltys find safety in numbers?

Sorry for the long post any info would be greatly appreciated.


11-14-2006, 10:38 AM
That sounds like it will be a beautiful tank if all works out with the betta. Bettas are iffy as community fish and each has it's own personality, some work, some don't. I have 1 as a community inhabitant in an understocked tank, their are occasional squabbles, but nothing major. Plenty of room for all to have their own territories. Be prepared to either rehome the betta, which will be quite easy actually because you can clone a new tank from your existing tank, or return it if it doesn't work out. A younger betta may adapt better also.
I do have a few ?'s though about the "readiness" of your tank. I hope that when you added bacteria, and food to feed said bacteria and let it run for a couple of weeks, that you continued to "feed" the bacteria. There is a very good chance that the good bacteria died off if it didn't have a consistent food source for ammonia leaving you with an unstable tank. It sounds like you started out doing a fishless cycle :), but I want to make sure you continued to keep the tank cycled and that most of your bacteria didn't die off, which will create issues for you as you start to stock. Do you have a test kit for ammonia, nitrite and nitrate? If these questions aren't necessary....please ignore them, if they raise any red flags for you, please read up on cycling, and fishless cycling to understand better.
And don't forget to let us know how it works out, and of course get us some pics of what sounds like will be a striking tank!

11-14-2006, 05:03 PM
well, kimmers pretty much said everything that needs to be said. One thing I'm concerned about your stock, though. Zebra plecos are getting to be really tough to find and are usually very very expensive. Apparently their numbers are dwindling in the their natural habitat, and there has been a ban on the export for the moment.

If you happen to find one, don't hesitate to buy it because who knows the next time you'll see one. Also, I hear they are extremely delicate fish, so make sure to read up on them as much as you can first.

Here's one I found for more than I would be willing to spend:

If you want an interesting and different looking pleco, there are a lot of species that stay small like the zebra. These guys' prices seem to be pretty fair, as well:

And good luck with your tank! I like the idea of the red and black, too. :)

11-15-2006, 11:58 PM
Thanks for the responses

I should have clarified, The tank has been up and running for two weeks, basically because I haven't had the proper time to go and get fish for it. I added the bacteria a few days ago, will add some more when I add a few fish and hopefully things will go well, I am not trying to do a fishless cycle. I have test kits and and will be monitoring. This is my first tank but growing up my dad kept marine tanks so I have some indirect experience. When everything is going I'll try to get some pics.

11-16-2006, 04:49 AM
What "bacteria" did you add...and plan on adding again? I have heard wonderful things about biospira, but don't know anyone who has actually tried it personally. Keep waiting to hear more wonderful things!