20 Gallon Fish Tank Ideas: Fish Types, Decorations, Plants,Etc

Almost every fish lover wants to provide their pets with the best water conditions. Unfortunately, not everyone has a lot of room in the house for a large aquarium.

However, many people want to get aquarium fish, because they help create comfort in the house and calm the nervous system. An excellent solution to this problem can be a small aquarium of 20 gallons.

Let’s begin with the setup process and then we will talk about the best fishes you can keep in your 20-gallon tank.

Organization of Space for fish

Small aquariums are great for small spaces. But even they have their drawbacks.

2 main problems of small aquariums:

1- Unstable indicators of water quality – It can be very difficult to create suitable conditions in a 20-Gallon fish tank.

It is difficult but possible.

Water quality is influenced by factors such as the correct number of inhabitants and feeding patterns.

2 – Providing fish with the necessary oxygen – With a large number of fish in a small space, oxygen reserves exhaust themselves very quickly, and fish suffer from oxygen starvation. Putting a regular filter for large aquariums will not work.

After all, it takes up a lot of space, is too powerful, causes whirlpools, and can damage plants or take away fish. The correct solution to this problem would be to create an air-lift filter with your hand.

Plants for 20 Gallon Fish Tank

No need to rush to populate the fish in the aquarium. For starters, you should create a microclimate for them, using all the rules for starting an aquarium.

To do this, plant several types of plants.

The following types of plants are best suited for a 20 Gallon fish tank:

  • Java Fern
  • Wisteria
  • Cryptocoryne
  • Anubias nana
  • Other plants with small leaves.

To populate such an aquarium, you can use vertebrates, invertebrates, and mollusks. Even all three classes can be combined in a vessel with the right approach. Besides, by tradition, it is necessary to populate small fish or one medium fish in a small aquarium.

Fishes To Keep In Your 20 Gallon Fish Tank

20 gallons is very little space, so you should consider the nuances in choosing fish for a small aquarium. All of the following fish are perfectly combined, except only Betta Fish:

Guppy Fish: These fish are perfect for beginners “aquarium” business. Guppies are small and peaceful individuals (male maximum 2–5 cm, female 3–7 cm). They are completely unpretentious, and even a child can take care of them.

This type of fish is viviparous, so the number of offspring often exceeds the desired. It is necessary to prepare for the fact that once a week 3-4 females will bring ten fry. At first, it’s amazing, but after a while, it can get bored and start to annoy.

A comfortable temperature for this type is considered to be from +24 to +26 degrees Celsius, but they perfectly live at +18.

Betta Fish: Very common due to the amazing color and beautiful fluffy tail. In a small aquarium of 20 gallons, you can keep 1 male or 2-5 females. Saturation of oxygen is not so important, because Betta fish can breathe ordinary air. However, you need to be careful with the temperature outside the aquarium.

Neon Tetra: A small flock of 5 or more individuals will perfectly complement the coloring of a small aquarium. Neons are completely picky about leaving, perfect for beginner aquarists. The size of individuals does not exceed – no more than 4 cm.

Zebrafish: Small (up to 4-5 cm) fish living in flocks. Perfectly tolerate the temperature in the vessel from +15 to +30 degrees. In an aquarium of 20 Gallons, you can get up to 20 fish.

Cory Catfish: Individuals have small antennae serving as organs of touch. Corydoras do not like to swim alone. Therefore, 4−5 fish get along well in a small space.

Small Rasboras: Looking at its small size (about 2 cm), we can say that they are designed for small aquariums. Microassembly is not important to water temperature. But unfortunately, they are rarely found in pet stores because of the low cost.

Shrimps You Can Keep In 20 Gallon Fish Tank

Yes. You can keep some freshwater shrimps also in your 20 gallons fish tank along with some small or medium-sized fishes.

Some freshwater shrimps:

Cherry Shrimp: A good choice for a small aquarium. Small in size (up to 3 cm), reproduces well in captivity.

Japanese Pond Shrimps: They can grow up to 6 cm, have a grayish color, and help cope with unnecessary algae.

Cardinal Shrimp:  It is one of the most beautiful freshwater shrimp. But suitable only for breeding by professionals, because its price is high. Rarely found on sale and finicky in care.

Yellow Shrimp: This type of shrimp is small, not very whimsical to care for. But inconsistent feeding is not allowed. Starving a yellow shrimp leads to eating plants.

To determine how much shrimp can be contained in a 20-liter vessel, their size must be considered. For example, 45-50 cherries perfectly coexist in 20 liters of water.

Fish can be kept in a limited number (15−20 individuals). Shrimps do not get along with medium and large fish, as they will become food for them. The best combination: 7-10 cherries and 5-8 small fish.

And to decorate the aquarium, you can add there a few small streets. They will also help to keep the walls of the vessel clean. For a comfortable living for all the inhabitants of the aquarium, it is necessary to change 1/5 of the volume of water in it once a week.