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Freshwater Fish Fish Types RecommendedSome fish are easier to keep than others, and these fish make especially great pets for first-time freshwater aquarium keepers.

Neon Tetras

Neons generally do best when kept in a species tank over a community tank. They are schooling fish, usually forming groups of six of more. They have an iridescent sheen to their scales and will actually seem to glow if the tank is lit properly. Other related species will generally also make good first-tank residents, such as the Cardinal Tetra, the Glowlight Tetra, and the Black Neon Tetra.


Swordtails grow to be about 4 inches in length, making them good residents for just about any freshwater aquarium. In an aquarium environment, swordtails are generally peaceful, but male swordtails may be aggressive toward each other. Swordtails will breed quite easily and quite prolifically, but the female must be removed in order to allow the young to survive, as female swordtails are well known for eating their young. These active fish will feed on a variety of prepared foods and live foods.


These broad-bodied fish are close relatives of swordtails. Domestic platies come in a wide variety of colors and are fairly easy to breed, as long as they are given enough plants to provide some privacy. Platies are schooling fish, and they generally thrive in small groups of about 5 fish. They will do well in most community tanks, and a group will also make a beautiful single-species tank.