Can a tank really be TOO big? - Betta Fish and Betta Fish Care
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post #1 of 36 (permalink) Old 07-21-2012, 10:27 PM Thread Starter
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Can a tank really be TOO big?

I know when people say "too big" it's usually those who think they are happy in half gallon cubes, but I actually want to know. If proper the amount of cover/hideys are used, can a tank be too big (uncomfortable/stressful/etc.) for one betta?

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post #2 of 36 (permalink) Old 07-21-2012, 10:30 PM
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Nope. In the wild bettas have MILES of shallow water.

In a big tank, the betta will stake out a place to build a nest as his territory. Very similar to the wild.

Who am I? Well I am a Junior Member of the International Betta Congress and a breeder of white HMPKs, red dragon HMPKs, black/red dragon HMPKs, metallic multi HMPKs, blue masked HMPKs, and now multi color HMs. Soon to add black HMs. I will be showing in New Breeder class in fall of 2012.
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post #3 of 36 (permalink) Old 07-21-2012, 10:34 PM
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My own experience with just one betta went like this:

He is a very fast swimmer and I had him in a 5 gallon. I thought he was cramped so I was able to get a 20 gallon and thought I'd try a community tank with some neon tetras. He had the tank to himself with an oto and a cory for awhile and seemed to do OK although I noticed he would rest a lot in some floating plants.

Then I got the 8 neons and they ignored him and he ignored them. But within a week they started dying off one by one and by the time the last few died my betta was sick! He recovered in a few days in a "hospital" tank and then I put him in a brand new 6.6 gallon where he is today and he seems to really like it.

So for us the bigger tank led to stress and illness. Your mileage may vary

PS: I am one of those who think bettas should be in nothing less than a 5 gallon.

Last edited by registereduser; 07-21-2012 at 10:36 PM.
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post #4 of 36 (permalink) Old 07-21-2012, 10:39 PM
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I think... Yes and no. Depends on the fish. Mr. V is right, but some domestic fish just might not like it.

I know for me, I'd probably never give a lone betta any more than ten, or a 20 if I started a community, but they'd be able to thrive in almost any size tank when the condition is right.

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post #5 of 36 (permalink) Old 07-21-2012, 10:57 PM
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I'm pretty against putting bettas with anything. They're solitary fish. Many of the "stress" from bigger tanks can be caused by tank mates. A 20 gallon long, with a very gentle sponge filter, live plants, and almond leaves would be paradise for a male betta and would mimic very closely a natural habitat.

Who am I? Well I am a Junior Member of the International Betta Congress and a breeder of white HMPKs, red dragon HMPKs, black/red dragon HMPKs, metallic multi HMPKs, blue masked HMPKs, and now multi color HMs. Soon to add black HMs. I will be showing in New Breeder class in fall of 2012.
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post #6 of 36 (permalink) Old 07-21-2012, 11:15 PM
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I have my large aggressive plakat in a ten gallon. I recently took some bad advice from an LFS (...sods) and ended up with two very small loaches in there as well.

Cole occupies every inch of that tank, patrols it all day, and I should have known better than to think he'd tolerate even peaceful fish in his territory (even if they weren't an entirely stupid choice for that tank). He's killed one already, and as I can't catch the other he hunts it all over the tank, flaring like a maniac.

I honestly feel bad only giving him ten gallons - and do think a planted 20 long would suit him better.

I feel -really- sorry for any fish of his size and disposition stuck in a 1 gallon bowl..

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post #7 of 36 (permalink) Old 07-21-2012, 11:25 PM
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Let me re-word that...
I'd probably never BE ABLE TO give a lone betta more than ten.

If I had the money and space (I'm on the somewhat poor-er side and live in a tiny duplex) I'd find what suited every fish.

I actually think the 20 long idea would be a great tank.

And by community I'd mean my most docile betta and maybe 6 cories in a 20 long, or a sorority (maybe... 55 gallon) with a few cories as a possibility.

Anyway, to stop straying from the topic, I'm pretty sure most bettas could do fine in any well thought out large tank.

Mogar and Monty
SIP: Jazz Sunny Friday
Brynjolf Cicero Vilkas
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post #8 of 36 (permalink) Old 07-21-2012, 11:53 PM
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I feel I should offer the other side to this..

My scrawny, chronically ill HM male flails around in a 3 gallon like something's going to eat him any moment, and is always quite pale in a larger tank. He is overfinned for his size and can't swim very well, so I dare say this does nothing for his self-confidence. He's perfectly happy in a 1.5 gallon with a big ball of peacock moss and some silk plants to hide in.

My little female is happy in her 3.5, though I could see her coping with a ten perfectly well. She is also hyper aggressive, however, and like the plakat is in excellent health.

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post #9 of 36 (permalink) Old 07-21-2012, 11:53 PM
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I can't give my bettas the tanks I'd like. Most go in deli cups and at largest, 1 gallon jars. I am currently building barrack systems.

Who am I? Well I am a Junior Member of the International Betta Congress and a breeder of white HMPKs, red dragon HMPKs, black/red dragon HMPKs, metallic multi HMPKs, blue masked HMPKs, and now multi color HMs. Soon to add black HMs. I will be showing in New Breeder class in fall of 2012.
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post #10 of 36 (permalink) Old 07-22-2012, 12:00 AM
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Yeah Aus, I can see where that totally makes sense. I had a really small crowntail that could've ruled a twenty, but a larger half moon that could barely navigate half of a ten. They're all different.

Oh, and I've seen some betta barracks in videos and such, and they're a pretty great invention. And at least with you, you're great at caring for bettas and I know they're all happy regardless.

Mogar and Monty
SIP: Jazz Sunny Friday
Brynjolf Cicero Vilkas
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