Best Freshwater Aquarium Fishes: Top 10 Pet Fish

Having an aquarium in your home provides entertainment and other benefits. Watching aquarium fish brings joy and happiness. There are some common aquarium fish that are best suited for the beginner-level Aquarius.

Some freshwater aquarium fish are easy to take care of and fun to have. Considering several perspectives like these, we have created a list of 10 best freshwater aquarium fish.

This list may contradict with other people, as they may choose different perspectives when choosing the best freshwater aquarium fish. Also, choosing only 10 among all the freshwater fishes is hard.

So, if you don’t find your favorite one here, please don’t be surprised!

We also provided information about the right temperature, environment, and characteristics of these fishes.

Now, let’s see our top 10 best freshwater aquarium fish you can choose for your aquarium.

1. Neon Tetra

Neon Tetra Freshwater Aquarium Fish

A well-known freshwater aquarium fish and. They are available in almost all the aquarium shops around you.

Neon Tetras are small and thin, don’t need to be an expert to take care of them. You will find three different colors- blue, red, and translucent.

Neon tetras can grow up to 3.5 cm. They normally live around 7-8 years, are very peaceful, and are a good choice for community fishing.

Tetras are Omnivores from the Characin family lineage.

The best aquarium setup for Neon tetras is a water temperature of less than 77 °F (25 °C), an Acidity pH level: of 6.0- 6.4, and a Hardiness (KH): of 1.0-2.0.

Using plants, rocks, and other accessories in the aquarium would be best for Neon Tetras. They tend to hide behind those objects.

Their red stripe on the blue body makes it easy to recognize and beautiful.

Per month, an average of 1.8 million Neon Tetras are imported into the United States for aquarium fish lovers. 

2. Guppies

Freshwater Aquarium Guppy Fish

From the Poeciliidae family, live-bearing, colorful freshwater tropical fish Guppy. One of the most popular aquarium pet fish. They are almost in every top aquarium fish list.

Guppies are also known as Rainbowfish and million fish. They are energetic, prolific, hardy, and easily kept pet fish.

Guppies are great beginner-level aquarium fish.

Male Guppy is much brighter in color than the other. The typical growth of a male Guppy is not more than 3.5 cm, while female ones can grow around 3.6 cm.

Guppies prefer har-water with a temperature between 78 to 82 °F, and they can withstand up to 150% salinity in the water (Normal Sea Water).

 They are well-known for their propensity for reproduction. 72 to 73 °F is the preferred water temperature during the female Guppy’s reproduction period.

3. Mollies

Molly Aquarium Freshwater Fish

“Poecilia Sphenops” fish species, also known as common molly or short-finned molly. They are famous for their high growth rate, reproduction, birth size, and brood number. They are hardy and attractive.

Mollies have lots of color variations and different body shapes. Some common mollies are short-finned or common molly, Black molly, White Molly, and Golden Molly. And Dalmatian Molly.

Black Molly is one of the coolest aquarium fish.

The male molly tends to be a little aggressive. Usual Male mollies are 8 cm and females 12 cm long.

They are slightly larger and more energetic than small aquarium fish.

Mollies are omnivores and livebearers, which means they give birth to their young ones. Your aquarium will be full of them before you know it. 

They are also another excellent beginner-level fish like Guppies. Mollies prefer a pH level between 7.0-7.8.

Mollies are a great choice, from freshwater aquarium fish for beginners to expert aquarists.

4. Betta Fish

Aquarium Betta Fish

Betta fish is one of my favorites for its color and an incredible display of its large flowing fins while moving around. Betta is a popular freshwater fish for aquariums all around the glove.

They are known as Siamese fighting fish. Betta fish is one of the prettiest aquarium fish.

Betta is a part of the gourami family. Male Bettas are highly territorial and aggressive.

Putting them in a small tank can cause fight death for bettas. Female Bettas also become territorial against other female ones.

They can grow on about 7 cm.  

The preferred water temperature for Bettas is around 75-85 °F (24-28 °C), though they may survive lowest 56 °F and highest 95 °F.

They are also affected by the pH or acidity level in the water; 7.0 (neutral) is recommended.

Betta lives between 3 to 5 years in confinement, but in some cases, between 7 to 10 years.

They need some caring handling. So, we recommend it to intermediate people. But, some beginners can also handle them.

Betta’s are popular and well-known aquarium fish.

5. Goldfish

Aquarium Goldfish

One of the most common, popular, and kept fish around the world. It’s hard to find mature people who haven’t heard of the name Goldfish. They remain one of the most common and popular aquarium fish for a long time.

Yes, that’s how popular they are!

Of course, they come in lots of varieties and colors. So, it doesn’t have only bright golden color, and there’re other colors and variations available.

Goldfish are easy to keep. Hence, it’s renowned for beginner-level fish.

In the aquarium, Goldfish can grow up to 15 centimeters (6 inches). Yeah, they are a little larger than common aquarium fish. However, they can be as big as 14 inches in the wild.

Goldfish are omnivores and school fish. So, they are suitable for community fishing.

In keeping, Goldfish can live from 10 to 30 years. They have cognitive skills like distinguishing the owners from different people. Goldfish will act favorably to the owners.

6. Angelfish

Freshwater Aquarium Angelfish

Pterophyllum, also known as Angelfish, is a small freshwater fish from the Cichlidae family.

Angelfishes are deep-bodied and thin with pelvic fins, anal, and elongated dorsal (Varies with different types).  

Marble, koi, zebra, and veil are some common Angelfish varieties.

Angelfish are carnivorous and easy to take care of. They are good beginner-level aquarium fish.

They can reach up to 8 to 10 inches, with and preferred water temperature of around 80 °F and a pH level of 6.5 to 6.9.

Male Angelfish are a little aggressive and territorial, not as much as Betta, though. It’s better to keep only one in a small tank.

7. Rainbowfish

Rainbow Fish

There are more than seventy species of Rainbowfish gathered from different family lineages. They get about 4 to 6 inches long or around 12 cm.

Rainbowfishes are small and thin bodies but have wonderful colors and energy.

Silvery, blue-green bodies with red-orange fins or pink bellies look like a rainbow while swimming around your tank or aquarium. They are energetic and hardy.

Rainbowfish is easy to take care of and another choice for beginners to the intermediate aquarist. They do great in heavily planted tanks and aquariums.

However, you have to remember that their colors start to bloom when they reach adulthood. That is the reason why you didn’t hear much about this fish.

They can live around 4 to eight years or more with better care.

8. Zebra Danios

Zebra Danios Aquarium Fish

The right choice for beginner aquarists, Zebra Danios, grows up to 4 to 5 cm and has a preferred water temperature of 61 to 93 °F. Though, they can handle temperatures from 54.1 to 101.5 °F.

Zebras are schooling fish and go better with a fish combination. They should be in a group; otherwise, they may get depressed.

They are small and have a good temper. Zebra is very popular among the aquarist.

And, yeah. Zebra do look like zebra. Their zebra stripes propelled the name Zebra Danios or Zebrafish.

They are upper-level fish and tend to jump from the water. So, keep your tank covered while keeping them. 

9. Platies/ Platy Fish

Platy Fish

Platies come with lots of color variations and easy to take care of- two of the reasons why people love them.

Platies are excellent community fish; they get along comfortably with mollies and guppies of their peaceful nature.

Platies are one of the best beginner-level fish.

They are omnivores, though they like herbivorous food more than meat food.

 Platies can grow up to 7.0 cm in length, and they are livebearers like mollies and guppies. They can live for around five years.

10. The White Cloud Mountain Minnow

The White Cloud Mountain Minnow

A cold-water fish for aquarium from the Carp family, the White Cloud Mountain Minnows are extremely forgiving and another best choice for beginners.

They are often sold as ideal starter fish. White Cloud Mountain Minnows are shoaling fish and comfortable with community fishing or group five, at least.

Their typical lifespan is five years or more. They are a peaceful and mid-level swimmer.

It can survive at 41 °F, though the preferred level is between 64 to 72 °F. Water hardness should be 5 to 19, and acidity (pH) level 6.0 to 8.0.

They aren’t jumpered types but can sometimes do. So, keep a cover as a precaution.  

Final Words

There are numerous freshwater fish that can be included in a list of the best freshwater aquarium fish. It was tough for us to select only ten among all of them. But nothing can be done. I can’t put every fish in a top 10 list.

Choosing the right fish for your aquarium is an important task. You shouldn’t mess up your fancy aquarium with unknown fish.

Share your ten best freshwater aquarium fish with us in the comment section:


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