tank mates that act like janitors? plants to process waste? - Betta Fish and Betta Fish Care
 
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 06-16-2008, 08:34 PM Thread Starter
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tank mates that act like janitors? plants to process waste?

I've been having issues keeping my gravel clean since I am handicapped I can't operate those syphons...I found a vacuum that's battery operated but it's still not ideal. Marley is very sensitive to ANY current so I only have a sponge filter and it provides no mechanical filtration.

I was wondering if there are any tank mates for male bettas that might eat some of the detritus on the tank floor....most of it is Marley's poop I think because I use the net to retrive any uneaten food immediately.

Or would live floating plants help process wastes? And would these plants need anything added to the water to keep them alive?

Thanks! Oh and by the way his water parameters are normal so there's no problem of excess ammonia/nitrates...yet. That's what I'm worried about.
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 06-16-2008, 08:39 PM
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I don't think most fish enjoy betta poo for lunch. i use java mass for my betta's filter and it's really good about trapping debri. Java moss is really tough and is perfect for bettas about keeping their space clean. Just wash it out every now and then and just remove parts of it when it starts to grow to big.
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 06-16-2008, 09:13 PM
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How big is the tank you're using, and what kind of substrate do you have? It might be possible to run a reverse-flow undergravel filter along with a power filter. The way this works is, using a reverse-flow adapter on a powerhead, the water is forced down the lift tubes for the undergravel filter and up through the gravel. This will blow any waste in the gravel up into the water column, where it can be removed and filtered out by another filter (like a hang-on-back power filter). The end result is that your gravel stays much, much cleaner and therefore the need to clean the bottom of the tank is drastically reduced.

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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 06-16-2008, 10:27 PM Thread Starter
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It's a five gallon tank with regular old gravel and a few bigger pieces of the river rock type gravel.

I think some of it is algae as well....but most of the 'algae eater' type of fish get to be too large for a five gallon tank.
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 06-16-2008, 10:32 PM
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You could try shrimp. Some bettas have been known to eat shrimp, so I would try ghost shrimp since you can usually buy them cheap (like a quarter a piece or cheaper). Ghost shrimp won't do much for the algae, but they do eat other stuff.

I'm not sure if there's a powerhead "weak enough" for a 5g tank to use a reverse-flow undergravel filter...so I don't think that's really an option. The smallest tank I'd try it on would be a 10g.

As for algae...Oto catfish don't get longer than 2 inches and are compatible with your betta. They can be very difficult to keep alive and many will only eat the algae in your aquarium, meaning that once the algae runs out, they starve to death.

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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 06-16-2008, 10:46 PM Thread Starter
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Marley eats anything you put in front of him, so I'd probably be afraid to try the shrimp...for their sake. I may just try buying a filter made for a 3 gallon aquarium and running it in addition to his sponge filter since he seems to hate the filters made for his size tank....too much current for his lazy butt.

I have been scrubbing the sides a lot and rinsing off the decorations but he's kept in the kitchen and gets light 12 hours a day so the algae is very persistant. I might try the catfish as an alternative to those chemicals that inhibit algae. I believe they make algae pellets and maybe I can use those if they algae runs out so the catfish won't die.
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