Keeping fishes in a tank may seem easy, but there’s more to it than meets the eye. First of all, what makes a fish “low maintenance?”
Well, they should easily adapt to different water temperatures, be easy to feed, can get along with other types of fish, don’t need a constant watch, and don’t need to adjust to a bigger tank as it grows.
If you’re too busy (or lazy) to do a lot of fish work, you can choose from the list below of low maintenance fishes.
- Cherry Barb
The Cherry Barb originated from the shallow ponds of Sri Lanka. It grows up to be only 2 inches long and has a life span of 5 years. They are peaceful and easy to maintain, but they require a well-maintained tank. Keeping cherry barbs with other males could cause some rivalry, making their colors more vivid.
- Tiger Pleco
They are dubbed “Tiger” Plecos because their stripes are similar to that of a tiger. They are native to the Amazon river, which makes them skilled in swimming against currents. It is advisable to set up an aquarium that provides a similarly powerful current because this is what they enjoy. They love to play hide-and-seek, so set up a tank with accessories that can serve as their hiding spots. This species can become more aggressive as it matures, so you should consider placing them in a large community tank to help lessen their aggressiveness.
Another small fish in our list is a Platy – a small freshwater fish that grows to be only 3 inches. Platies make good companions to other small fishes. They have interesting color patterns that attract many fish breeders. Despite their size, they need to be kept in a big tank, especially if they are kept with other fishes where there is a tendency to be overcrowded. Platies are good jumpers, which means that your tank needs to be covered to keep them from jumping out of the aquarium. They will eat all types of fish food.
Danios is also a small fish that adapts easily to any kind of tank water environment. They originated from Asian swamps which makes them tough and able to withstand different conditions. They are very playful and love to chase their fellow fishes. They are happy with fish flakes or fish pellets, but they should also be given tubifex worms, brine shrimps, or bloodworms from time to time.
- Neon Tetra
Having a lifespan of 5 years, Neon Tetras grow to be only 1.5 inches. They are generally a peaceful breed; they can live in a community tank but they don’t do well with larger fishes. It’s advisable to put them in tanks that are already well-used and has a stable water environment. They eat commercial fish flakes, but you can level up with a brine shrimp or blood worm sometimes.
- Pearl Gourami
Pearl Gouramis are beautifully decorated with pearl-like embellishments throughout their bodies. They grow up to 5 inches and have a lifespan of 5 years. They are native to the warm countries of Southeast Asia, where they thrive in a densely vegetated and acidic environment. What makes them unique is that they can breathe through the air as well, so you will see them come up to the surface for air from time to time.
Betta fish, also known as Siamese Fighting Fish, are native to the harsh environments of Southeast Asia. They are extremely hardy can be considered as survivors because they can withstand flooding and droughts. Just like the Pearl Gouramis, they have the ability to breathe through their gills as well as the air. Male Bettas will fight with each other, but they can be placed in a community tank with other male fish species. Female bettas, on the other hand, can coexist peacefully.
Guppies are small, colorful, freshwater fishes that are very low maintenance. They are so tough that they can survive for a week without eating, but of course, this is not advisable. If you’re not planning to breed them, don’t combine male and female Guppies in one tank or you’ll end up with a handful of baby Guppies in no time.
- Kuhli Loach
The Kuhli Loach is a tiny, eel-shaped fish that is friendly towards other fishes. They have a lifespan of 10 years, so be prepared to take care of them long-term. They grow to be 4 inches long, and they’re more active at night. Some experience is needed before caring for this fish because their lack of scales makes them susceptible to diseases.
- Firemouth Cichlid
This vibrantly colored fish are tough and friendly but have a tendency to be territorial and hostile during mating season. Rivers are their natural habitat, so they are adept in swimming through currents. Male Cichlids are larger than females, growing to be 6 inches compared to females who only grow up to 5 inches. They will eat all types of fish food.
In time you will realize that caring for a pet fish is not any easier than caring for any other pets. They also require attention, cleaning, proper nutrition, and a stable environment.
If this is your first time to own a fish, do plenty of research about the fish of your choice, and be prepared to shell out some cash because their tank and accessories can be quite expensive. All efforts become worth it once you see them all set up and swimming peacefully in a tank.