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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I have a 20 gallon long, heavily planted, stocked with 2 nerite snails, 12 pseudomugil luminatus, and 8 endlers (though my goal is 10, waiting for a certain type of endler strain to get into stock). Before I got this tank, I always owned bettas. I had good luck with the temperment of bettas I bought from Thailand, while the betta I got from Petco was the most aggressive guy ever (ate food like he was a piranha and hunted shrimp).

I know I'm likely to get a resounding no but I'm wondering if a female plakat betta would work with this tank, provided her temperment was good? If she started bullying fish, I'd remove her from the tank, and either set up my 5 gallon or rehome her. Though if her very presence made my nano fish constantly hide, then I'll forego the idea altogether. I love my fish, I just miss having a betta.

I'd be okay with another type of centerpiece fish, but I don't think there would be many that would be alright being the only one of its kind, in hard water, colorful, and (hopefully) peaceful.

 

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I added a female betta as an afterthought a couple of weeks ago. At first I was worried about the betta. Now she seems to be holding her own. I can't tell which way it's going to go. She's definitely asserting herself with the two honey gouramis. I'm kind of afraid she's going to make the Angelfish mad someday. The Angelfish is still small. Will they get along like my dog and my cat? Like you, I'm ready to snatch her out of the tank if things get bad. The Angelfish is in a hospital tank for a few weeks so the betta has the run of the tank for the time being with three other fish. Yeah, hopefully peaceful or maybe not. Neither fish seems to have it in their genetic makeup to back down.
 

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I've kept both male and female betta in community tanks. Do long as you're adequately planted with plenty of hiding places usually there's not a problem. A 20 gallon is actually a great tank size for a community betta tank with a single "mellow" betta. This is VERY reliant on the betta, as you know, they are the ones that decide who their tankmates are lol
 

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I've added a couple of random female betta to my guppy tank (guppies and swordtails) and there has been no issues but i've read horror stories. If you can find one that is young it might help as they will grow up with the crowd. In my cases the guppies are prolifically sloppy during feeding time (i.e, bump into everything) and she seems to take it with good nature ignoring them. The fishes i have are a bit larger than yours so not sure how it will go with smaller fishes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I'm starting to wonder if I have the wrong kind of tank for a betta at all. My tank has no lid, and even though the water surface is 1.5" low, bettas can jump even higher. I don't want to use saran wrap, but I don't think I could use a regular lid, glass or screen, because of my lily pipes (and the height with which one of them is sticking out of the tank in order to fit).

I also have a bright light for the plants/CO2 which could bother the fish, and I'm not running a high-tannin or blackwater setup.

I was considering a betta imbellis hybrid but they might prefer softer water like wild bettas, and my water is hard.

I'm not sure I can do any kind of wild betta or hybrid, or even a betta splendens given the lid issue.
 

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I've kept splendens in open tops without problems- the longer the fins the better. Imbellis, smargdina and I forget the other common wild type name but there's 3 that are wild types that are commonly sold that are jumpers. I'd avoid the wild or plakat style splendens. A mellow male long finned splendens might work, but then it's the trial and error of "is he truly mellow". Betta communities are fun but they are a little extra work in picking the right betta for the set up. Good luck!!
 
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