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There are so many fish species available in the hobby that it is easy to make the mistake of choosing the ones that are a bit difficult to take care of. If you are just starting out, then you really shouldn’t go for those high-maintenance fish.
Instead, I recommend you to take a look at some beginner-level fish that would be great for a community tank. In case you don’t know where to start, I have compiled a list for you below where you can find some of the nicest fish for a beginner community tank.
The fish you can find below are not only easy to take care of but also compatible with each other. The rule of thumb when collecting fish for a community tank is to look for the ones with a peaceful temperament.
Of course, once you gain some experience in the field, you can start to keep some more aggressive species as well. Until then, choose a few of the fish below that share a lot in common when it comes to water preferences and diet.
1. Guppy Fish
One can hardly make a beginner-friendly list without mentioning Guppies. These little colorful beauties are still popular in the aquarium trade, as they are really undemanding and peaceful tank mates.
The Guppy is also a great starting point for anyone who is about to set up a diverse community aquarium.
There are so many species that they are compatible with and you can find 9 of them right here on my list.
Their diet is also rather simple, as they are omnivores ready to eat just about any fish food you buy at the store. Flakes, pellets, live or frozen foods are all acceptable.
Guppies are the type of fancy fish that are going to be forgiving if you forget to feed them every now and then. They not only got blessed with beauty but with hardiness as well.
2. Molly Fish
The Molly fish comes straight from Malaysia and it is another great addition to your first community tank.
Their ability to adjust to tank mates and water conditions is why this species earned second place on my list.
Mollies are usually available in various colors in fish stores, as they are in big demand among fish keepers.
You are definitely going to love the personality of this species, as they are all playful and quite active throughout the day.
At first, your Mollies are going to be a bit frustrated because it takes a bit of time to acclimatize to a new aquarium.
However, this will only last for a couple of days. From then on, it is going to be easy to take care of them.
3. Swordtail Fish
Swordtails are one of the favorite species of beginner fish keepers. Their long and pointy tail is their trademark, as it is a feature that makes them stand out in any community aquarium.
Male Swordtails are peaceful when kept alone but they can quickly get aggressive and competitive if there is another male in the tank.
They are omnivores that can thrive on a wide range of commercial foods, as they are not picky at all.
Swordtails don’t really care about water conditions as long as the water is decent. Although there can be a conflict between males of the same species, they are peaceful tank mates when it comes to other fish.
4. Platy Fish
Getting a few Platy fish is another way to add some exotic colors to your home aquarium. They not only look stunning but are also easy to take care of and very social.
This is basically everything a beginner fish keeper can ask for, which is why I recommend them without a second thought.
You are going to see your Platies interact a lot with the other fish in the tank, especially if you pick them from my list.
They are very social and also won’t bully any other fish. Platy fish are hardy and they can thrive on a basic omnivorous diet, no fancy foods needed.
5. Cory Catfish
These little Brazilian suckermouths are rather popular among fish keepers for their peaceful temperament and compatibility.
This species is a bottom-dweller that enjoys scavenging for bits of leftover food, although they need a regular feeding schedule as well.
They are rather active swimmers, but this also means that they can hurt themselves with a rough substrate.
Usually, laying down some sand is much better for bottom-feeding fish. The Cory Catfish is going to be responsible for cleaning your aquarium of leftovers and algae, as it is what they do best.
There are many different species of Corys to choose from so you can find some pretty interesting ones in the aquarium trade.
6. Dwarf Gourami
The Dwarf Gourami is decorated with kind of an interesting mosaic pattern. It is a mix of two colors that form lines of various curves on their body. There is high contrast between its differently colored scales and the overall picture is always a unique pattern.
The Gourami is the total opposite of aggressive, being all shy and passive most of the time. An interesting fact about them is that they are one of those species that can breathe air directly. Thus, they need to be able to swim to the surface whenever they need some fresh air.
They are not picky when it comes to food, you just need to buy some decent quality fish food for omnivores and they are going to be fine.
7. Neon Tetra
You can hardly find a more colorful tiny fish for your community aquarium than the Neon Tetra. This one is another species that is easy to feed and has an easy-going personality.
They prefer a well-planted aquarium, which is not going to be a problem for any of the other fish mentioned in this list.
If you want Neon Tetras to quickly acclimatize to your aquarium and feel safe, then buy at least 10 of them. They absolutely thrive in bigger groups and are friendly to every fish around them.
There is barely any responsibility attached to Neon Tetra care except feeding them once, maximum twice per day.
8. Rummy Nose Tetra
The Rummy Nose Tetra can hardly be compared to any other fish when it comes to appearance. Their head is completely red, while a black and white pattern decorates their tail.
This odd combination is why this little beginner-friendly fish is so popular in the aquarium trade.
Rummy Nose Tetras might look fancy but they are actually quite undemanding.
Get a school of these little beauties and you are going to end up with an absolutely stunning community aquarium. This species is also a great indicator when something is wrong in the aquarium.
In case their head starts to lose its color, you need to check the water parameters immediately. If that is not the problem, then maybe one or more of your fish is generating some tension in the tank which caused stress for your Rummy Nose Tetra.
9. Zebra Fish
The Zebra Fish is a horizontally striped little schooling fish that can be found in the Himalayas and the Ganges out in nature.
This species is not sensitive to water conditions at all and can spice up any community aquarium with its zebra pattern.
Moreover, the Zebra is a schooling fish so keep them in a group of 5-6 so that they don’t get stressed and eventually miserable.
Zebra Danios are ideal for anyone who is new to the hobby and has no experience in setting up a home aquarium.
They are probably the easiest schooling fish to keep because of their hardiness. Zebras are also compatible with a wide range of other species, including the ones you can see on this list.
10. Harlequin Rasboras
Here is another tiny schooling fish, this time with a metallic base color and a black triangle-shaped patch on its side.
The Harlequin Rasbora is absolutely unique in its appearance, giving a huge boost of color to your community aquarium when kept in a bigger group.
The more Rasboras you can get, the better because they feel absolutely safe when moving with their school.
Otherwise, they are peaceful fish who won’t bother any other fish in your aquarium. I recommend using some plants in the aquarium for Harlequin Rasboras, as they need plenty of hiding places.
Although starting your first aquarium is going to be a bit of a challenge, it is definitely worth the effort. You can start with any of the fish I talked about below and thus guarantee that there is not too much to worry about when it comes to their care.
You can conveniently pick a few from the list and end up with an exciting community tank, as all of them are compatible with each other. Although they are all beginner-friendly, these are no ordinary fish, as I did my best to choose some of the most decorative fish available in the trade.
Each of them has its own personality and I’m sure that you are going to have a lot of fun watching and feeding them on a daily basis.Fishkeeping