Top 7 Colorful Fish for A 10-Gallon Aquarium


Top 7 Colorful Fish for a 10-Gallon Aquarium

10-gallon aquariums are so popular because of their small footprint and low cost, so what kind of fish can you put in them? As a follow-up to our article on the 7 best fish tank ideas for a 10-gallon stocking ideas, we’ve come up with more suggestions to help you pick the 7 most colorful fish to brighten up your 10-gallon setup.

1. The Killifish Aquarium

Killifish are an underrated, colorful fish that can be kept at temperatures below 78°F (26°C) in unheated tanks. There are hundreds to choose from. To fit into a 10-gallon aquarium, pick a fish that is 3-4 inches or less in length. To prevent them from jumping, keep the tank covered. You should also keep in mind that killifish can be semi-aggressive. They have large mouths that can swallow smaller fish. Keep them in a species-only tank. Killifish enjoy meaty foods of all types and will readily take bloodworms, brine shrimp, and krill flakes.

Red-striped killifish (Aphyosemion striatum)

2. The Betta Fish Tank

How about upgrading your betta fish from a tiny bowl to a 10-gallon paradise? Despite their territorial personalities, Betta splendens can live in a community aquarium if given enough space and the right kind of tank mates. To contrast your red Betta with a peaceful, schooling fish, such as a green neon tetra, or to compliment a blue betta with orange-colored, ember tetras, you can choose one of two options: go with a smaller, more calm, gentler fish, such as a green neon tetra, or with a larger, more active fish, such as a green neon tetra. Bottom dwellers like snails, smaller corydoras, and kuhli loaches would be useful for cleaning up excess food that slips past your betta fish. Your betta may like floating, protein-rich foods such as blood worms or brine shrimps, but micro pellets are best for schooling fish, and sinking wafers to feed the bottom dwellers.

A red betta fish stands out more when placed among green aquarium plants and complementary-colored tank mates.

3. The Nano Rainbowfish Aquarium

Naturally, rainbowfish rank as one of the most colorful fish in the freshwater hobby, but most of them are too big for a 10-gallon aquarium. Pseudomugil rainbowfish are usually less than 2 inches (5 cm) long. Visit your local fish market to check if they carry P. luminatus (red-neon rainbowfish), P. fucata (forktail rainbowfish), and P. gertrudae (“Gertrude’s spotted rainbowfish”). Although they do prefer pH above 7.7 and harder water with mineral, they are very hardy and can be found in all water conditions.

Because of their high energy level, a 10-gallon fish tank can hold a group of 3-5 rainbowfish (of the same species), as well as some bottom dwellers like smaller corydoras or kuhli loaches. You can feed these tiny fish tiny foods such cyclops, daphnia, easy fry and small fish food. Although they have a short lifespan of around 2 to 3 years, dwarf rainbowfish are very easy to breed. So that males can display their best breeding colors, and dance behavior, make sure you get more females than men. For the females to lay eggs, you should provide plenty of dense aquarium plants. For more details, read our forktail rainbowfish care guide.

Forktail rainbowfish (Pseudomugil furcata)

4. The Apistogramma Breeding Tank

These South American dwarfs are well-known for their vibrant colors and unusual breeding behaviors. The easiest ones to breed include the Apistogramma cacatuoides and A. agassizii, and both species come in many stunning color variations. You will need to create a comfortable environment that has a pH between 6.5 and 7.2 and a temperature between 82-84degF (28-30 degC). A girl and a boy can be added to an apisto cave. A balanced omnivore diet includes frozen bloodworms and brine shrimps, Repashy gel foods, sinking pellets, and Repashy food. The female guards eggs and protects fry after the male fertilizes them. You can read the full care guide for more information on apistogrammas.

Cockatoo dwarf cichlid (Apistogramma cacatuoides)

5. The Fancy Guppy Aquarium

Poecilia reticulata is a beautiful, energetic livebearer that comes in almost every color of the rainbow. A trio of one male, two females is a good starting point for beginners. They will produce more babies quickly than a trio. Guppies prefer high GH or harder water, so if you have soft tap water, use crushed coral, Wonder Shell, or Seachem Equilibrium to boost the aquarium’s mineral content. They also eat almost any fish food, whether it is Fancy Guppy pellets, flakes, or frozen foods. If you wish to produce lots of guppies for your friends or local fish store, add plenty of shelter or live plants, such as guppy grass, java moss, dwarf water lettuce, and Pogostemon stellatus ‘octopus’. If your aquarium is overrun by fry, you can simply remove the cover or hide spots from the aquarium. This will allow the adults to help control the population. You can read our complete care guide for guppies to find out more.

Male fancy guppy (Poecilia reticulata)

6. The Cherry Shrimp Tank

Neocaridina davidi can be bred as an ornamental shrimp. This species is very rewarding and easy to reproduce. You can find them in amazing colors like fire red, orange, yellow golden back and green jade. You can easily start with 10-20 shrimp, and they will quickly grow into a colony of 100-200 shrimp in a matter of months. Cherry shrimp are not predated on their offspring. However, for the best survival rate, you should not add any other species to your tank. Keep baby shrimp well-groomed by providing them with powdered food, algae, catappa leaf, and minerals. If you don’t see as many babies being born, sell some of them to your local fish shop and make the money go towards your new shrimp obsession. This detailed article will explain more about freshwater shrimp.

Cherry shrimp

7. The Dwarf-Platy Aquarium

Platyphis grow to 2-5cm (5-7cm) in length. However, the dwarf platy can only reach a little more that 1in (2.5cm) and can live in smaller tanks. While red wag or solid red are the most popular, more colors are likely to be available in the future. For a 10-gallon aquarium, we recommend getting a trio of teacup platys with one male and two females. Males are always looking for mates, so having more females as well as plenty of cover can help keep their attention. Platies will eat whatever fish food or algae they find. There is no need for any extra crew to clean up after them. These livebearers can also eat their offspring so make sure to provide water sprite or moss to the babies. See our platy fish care guide for more details on their care requirements.

Dwarf red coral platy fish

If you enjoyed this article, and want to find more stocking ideas, read our blog post on 7 Best Fish Tank Ideas For A 10-Gallon Aquarium. Best of luck with your fish tank, and enjoy nature daily.