Problems with Tank Mates for Betta :( Suggestions? - Betta Fish and Betta Fish Care
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-03-2012, 11:56 PM Thread Starter
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Problems with Tank Mates for Betta :( Suggestions?

My little flame, Gyarados, is a really hyper and active fish. However, I was informed that if I wanted to have a community with him, I would have had to make it so that there were already other living things in there like fish, shrimp, frogs, etc.

I first tested out snails. He lives in a Five Gallon with two Nerite Snails, Tiger and Zebra. He barely notices them at all.

Then I tested out ghost shrimp and after two weeks, the three I had in there were dead and I thought it might have been from other causes.

So I got a single Amano Shrimp and put him in. Gyarados chased him and bit him, but didn't penetrate and the Shrimp was fine and after a while, my guy seemed to be bored with him. I named the shrimp Jeffrey. ... Jeffrey died later that day after getting his eyes bitten off. :(

I was having a very crummy day then and decided that Gyarados couldn't handle tank mates. I asked others, including my sister who works at aquariums of what I should do in the future before getting another betta. She suggested to build a community first and THEN put a betta in after.

Gyarados attacked anything in his tank because it was a full 3 weeks that he was in his five gallon before anything else was added in. He sees it as his territory.

But I'm wondering if anyone knows any way I could potentially change this? I don't want to get fish until I have a ten gallon for him, so my only options are either frogs but I'd really like to get a few shrimp in there instead. Is there any way I can subdue him from killing anything that moves in his tank?
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-04-2012, 11:30 AM
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You can add some extra places for the shrimp to hide. Small enough to where your boy can't get in (or STUCK in x3).

Maybe a few live plants or extra decor?

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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-04-2012, 11:53 AM
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I'm wondering if you could take him out while you rearange the decor/plants, put your new fish in then introduce your little guy back in much like you would when putting a female back into her sorority after breeding.

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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-04-2012, 02:31 PM Thread Starter
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I'll definitely need to make some hiding places for them, however, Gyarados is a pretty small guy for a betta and he's full grown. The shrimp are about as big as he is so I think he has access to wherever they go.

I was thinking of that same idea, Sheldon since every time I'll do a 100% change, the only thing new is maybe a plant or two, all the other decorations are in the same place. I might have to test that out in the future.
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-04-2012, 11:18 PM
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yeah try rearranging his decor. i wasn't sure how Swish would react when i put a snail in with him, so i cupped him, moved his stuff, then added the snail, then added him. he picked on her a bit, but then he got used to her. you're right in not adding more fish until you have at least a 10 gallon, but for shrimp and snails, your best bet for their safety would be lots of hiding places and the rearranging trick :)

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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-04-2012, 11:27 PM Thread Starter
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I'll have to find some things before I can make any additional purposes. Anyone have any suggestions on natural decorations I can find outside and what I should do to prepare them for a tank? And thanks again. :)
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-05-2012, 02:32 AM
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My boy chased the Red Cherry Shrimp that I added to his tank, but most have survived. I think the large clump of Java Moss I have in the tank really helped. There are other hiding places, but they can possibly be accessed by my fish. The Java Moss is a place they can wiggle into for safety.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-05-2012, 12:04 PM Thread Starter
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Yeah, my shrimp tended to herd into the java moss too, but it seemed if they dared to venture from it, Gyarados would be like "Oh... Why hello. " Poor shrimp. D:
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-05-2012, 08:27 PM
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I'd try, but be prepared to house them separate.
I have a boy who was kind of a meany, no big deal I though. I moved him to 10 gallons, he would not leave the cories alone. It wasn't just when he saw them, he was actively hunting the fish. I had to move him to 5 gallons divided off (it's a 15 gallon split into a 10 and 5). My newer boy got used to the cories pretty quick. Sometimes he chase them if they're being hyper, but I've caught him laying in between several cories with no problem.
I kind of have a theory that if a betta has been alone for a long time, they'll be less tolerant of tank mates. My first boy has lived alone for several months. My new boy got put into the community as soon as he was good to go out of the hospital tank.

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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-06-2012, 12:52 AM Thread Starter
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Yeah, my Gyarados was in a tank all alone for two months before he got anything. I'll see what can be done, though. You guys have given plenty of good advice to start out on. Thank you again. :)
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