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Old 04-15-2010, 12:48 PM   #31 
Mister Sparkle
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Originally Posted by Kittles View Post
I'd like to clarify that I'm all for practical setups for breeders as long as they're able to meet conditional requirements - which they do. They're kept under said conditions with the intent to sell and / or relocate.

The issue I have is with those advocating these same conditions as a means of permanently housing a betta.
Those are the conditions that they keep their permanent stock in, as well.
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Old 04-15-2010, 01:48 PM   #32 
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As, what I consider, a "serious" aquarist I strive to provide my fish with an optimum "home" so they may flourish and live a healthy, long life. As a breeder, which I'm not, there would have to be a different "approach" to the "business" that is striving to profit and continue operation. No doubt the breeder must maintain favorable conditions for his stock to survive and reproduce...and thereby make a profit! However, is it sensible to believe that our breeder is providing "optimum" living conditions for his ENTIRE farm's stock? Or is the farm using what resourses it has, to be as effective as possible, and still remain profitable? The "serious" aquarist does not operate under "business" parameters...nor does the hobbyist worry about his profit/loss statement!!!! Here comes the corn...but IMO it has truth...Mother Nature put this fish (the wild version, anyway) on earth to roam it's waters freely...we as hobbyists, when providing these animals with "homes" have, IMO, an obligation to come as close to "Mother Nature" as possible, therefore, giving your betta a "larger" space with which to live can only be coming closer to the way Mother Nature intended it. Pint, quart, 1/2 gallon containers and the like "suffice" but are a far cry from optimal! Just an opinion.
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Old 04-15-2010, 02:28 PM   #33 
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I can appreciate your opinion. However, I will say this...I'm not really talking about "farms", which were the origin for a lot of this board's fish. I'm talking about established, reputable, careful BREEDERS, who are selling fish for $25+ each. Clearly, they are going to find the most economical means of providing for all of their stock's needs and for ideal breeding conditions. However, they will not get away with ignoring certain needs, in order to save a buck.

One consistent natural characteristic in nearly ALL betta habitats is water which is basically completely still. I find it ironic that so many people focus entirely on a "need" for space, which is not a major concern to an adult male betta, while seeing nothing wrong with filtering an aquarium w/an external power filter whose outflow current would be considered untenable to a betta in a natural environment. This is to say nothing of undergravel filters, which are just a bad choice in general, and other "current-generators" such as bubbling decorations and air stones. Perhaps, if you provided the former without ignoring the latter, I might just buy into the idea that you really ARE interested in providing an ideal environment for your fish. However, in my opinion, this is rarely the case.
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Old 04-15-2010, 04:30 PM   #34 
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Congratulations, Mister Sparkle, for being able to care for your bettas adequately under the conditions you do as it's something I'm sure most of us here aren't capable of for any number of reasons, myself included. But, realize that you're an exception from the masses of 'hobbyists' who, unaware of proper care, are only exposed to the promoted ideologies of the pet stores they roam, thus lead to believe it's acceptable to emulate the already poorly emulated and misinterpreted "breeder's setup." Clearly a misleading lie, but when fish aren't exactly looked at as equal as far as human pets go, people won't put in the effort to see otherwise and remain sheepish to these misconceptions. After all, it's just a fish.

Big BerkB33 said it well. There's clearly a hierarchy in the realm of fishkeeping, and I don't think the conditions employed by those at the top can be expected to be employed by those that are inferior, if you will. That is, a breeders setup and routine cannot reasonably be (expected to be) done by a college student, or parentally-attached child. This was my unclear implication when I wrote my last post to which you responded that 'Those are the conditions that they keep their permanent stock in, as well.' They being the key word here because I'm assuming you're referring to the breeder or the likes whereas I was originally referring to the more common, everyday 'hobbyist'. The same hobbyist you said "shouldn't try to do what I do" in a separate thread which goes on to prove my point that certain conditions and expectations need to remain separate by hierarchy.

Basically, we the masses must utilize our own conveniences and practicalities. Even if it means a larger tank and a filter, the fish are getting treatment of equal quality when compared to those of a breeder. God forbid they have more room to swim. I also see this in no way being selfish like you'd previously insinuated. It's not about the owner, it's about the betta, and how one may be able to provide the best given their circumstances.

Last edited by Kittles; 04-15-2010 at 04:32 PM.
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Old 04-15-2010, 05:15 PM   #35 
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Originally Posted by Mister Sparkle View Post
Those are the conditions that they keep their permanent stock in, as well.
I completely disagree. I've spoken or read forums to/from betta breeders before. The ones they sell are in clean containers. The ones they have personal interests in do not stay in those conditions, they stay in much larger, permanent (5gallons+ on the norm, give or take a handful of breeders) tanks, well taken care of. Or so I often see. Breeding is all a part of the betta hobby, not job, excluding farms.
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Old 04-15-2010, 05:21 PM   #36 
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By "typical", I mean that the "typical" hobbyist doesn't expect to perform daily water changes. But even a newbie CAN do it! As to uninformed people being sold a setup as "low-maintenance" when it is quite the opposite, I couldn't agree with you more!

Yet, for the person who only decides to get a betta for the REASON that it is possible to keep it in a 1-gallon cube, and they are not in a position to go larger for whatever reasons they might have, it is important that they understand what kind of maintenance that setup will take, rather than to chastise them for that perceived "cruelty".

Saying that the larger aquarium is better for the keeper is not equated to deeming such a move as "selfish", and I'm sorry that you took it that way. Rather, it is about creating a "buffer" for lapses and mistakes that new aquarists are bound to make. If you have space, and you have the desire for a larger aquarium, all signs point to a size upgrade as an ideal move for you. However, why you would opt for an external power filter instead of a less expensive, easier to maintain and more desirable (for the betta) sponge filter slightly modified in such a way as to keep the water still is beyond me. If you are going to go to such lengths to provide more space because it's "about the betta," then why not go one more step and give him standing water such as he is naturally inclined to seek?

Recommending a larger aquarium to a new betta-owner is just fine. I would just like to see it done for the proper reasons...and "cruelty" is not one of those reasons. Yes, it's cruel to keep a betta in a gallon of water with 2.0 ppm ammonia levels, which will happen if someone doesn't change the water in that small container on a frequent and regular basis. However, if there's no ammonia or nitrite in the water, temps stay in the range of 78-82 degrees, and he has an appropriate amount of food and something to flare at once in a while, there's no REAL reason to view that living space as inadequate, much less to term it "cruelty".

Tell the new betta owner the REAL REASONS that larger aquariums can be better, and that might convince them to upgrade. Don't try to shame them into it. If they are absolutely in love w/ the 1-gallon cube they got at PetCo., then tell them they are going to have to work harder to maintain proper care for their betta and send them my way. We're not talking about a "hierarchy". Any newbie with OCD could do daily water changes...but they wouldn't be "typical".

BTW...if you decide to get a sponge filter, they are CHEAP and readily available online. It really is worthwhile, and I'm confident you'll see an even more content betta in your aquarium.
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Old 04-15-2010, 05:24 PM   #37 
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Originally Posted by Mister Sparkle View Post
I can appreciate your opinion. However, I will say this...I'm not really talking about "farms", which were the origin for a lot of this board's fish. I'm talking about established, reputable, careful BREEDERS, who are selling fish for $25+ each. Clearly, they are going to find the most economical means of providing for all of their stock's needs and for ideal breeding conditions. However, they will not get away with ignoring certain needs, in order to save a buck.

One consistent natural characteristic in nearly ALL betta habitats is water which is basically completely still. I find it ironic that so many people focus entirely on a "need" for space, which is not a major concern to an adult male betta, while seeing nothing wrong with filtering an aquarium w/an external power filter whose outflow current would be considered untenable to a betta in a natural environment. This is to say nothing of undergravel filters, which are just a bad choice in general, and other "current-generators" such as bubbling decorations and air stones. Perhaps, if you provided the former without ignoring the latter, I might just buy into the idea that you really ARE interested in providing an ideal environment for your fish. However, in my opinion, this is rarely the case.
You've seemed to have deviated from the original issue which was whether or not 1/2 gallon "container" was an "optimal" environment for a betta fish. My argument and opinion is that it is NOT. Your last post discusses the amount of water flow suitable for whatever size tank? You have no issue with me...I agree that bettas, for the most part, do not enjoy a lot of water movement. There are ALWAYS individual exceptions.

You also referred to the "serious" aquarist as "focusing entirely on the 'need' for space..." and insinuating that there were no other parameters being met with regard to the rest of the betta's living "requirements." Wrong! Everyone that has communicated with me at this site has the betta's health and well fair as their main concern. For you to join the forum... and on the same day make comments as you have...IMO...is extremely LOW BUDGET! These folks are here trying to enjoy the hobby they've chosen...not be critiqued by a self proclaimed "betta aristocrat."
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Old 04-15-2010, 05:38 PM   #38 
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Mister Sparkle, what you say is very interesting. It's very technical. Lots of what you say are technical aspects of hobbying. Cruelty is a further step, but here it's very common for the poster to be in engaged in pathos-talk, or emotional/persuasive talk. But of course, it's not solely that. There is technical info (infused with pathos, maybe on occasion), but as I can see, it's not technical enough.

I know I prefer persuasive talk over technical talk (but both will always be included, as technical is usually hard-info). I see betta keeping more as a hobby, not as a job to keep on running.
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Old 04-15-2010, 05:49 PM   #39 
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I completely disagree. I've spoken or read forums to/from betta breeders before. The ones they sell are in clean containers. The ones they have personal interests in do not stay in those conditions, they stay in much larger, permanent (5gallons+ on the norm, give or take a handful of breeders) tanks, well taken care of. Or so I often see. Breeding is all a part of the betta hobby, not job, excluding farms.
PetCo's veiltails come from farms. The extremely beautiful and specialized fish that you see on aquabid, from breeders in Thailand for example, are not from farms...NOR are they from hobby-breeders. If you have a male betta, and some females, you can keep them in a couple 5- or 10-gallon aquariums without much difficulty. If you have 50+ breedable male lines, and 250+ females to match them with, that isn't even feasible. They wait for a female to fill up with eggs, match them up with the right male who is making bubble-nests like there's no tomorrow, and then put them both into the same "breeding tank". No sooner are the eggs laid than the female is removed. Until the fry hatch, the male will stay with them. But, once they hatch, back to his 1/2-gallon the pretty boy will go. From the breeding tank, they will be moved to their own containers while they grow their finnage. Most females will be culled. Farms are nowhere near as careful as the creators of the beautiful, award-winning lines are. And they really do make a living out of it.
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Old 04-15-2010, 06:08 PM   #40 
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I agree that a person that gets a betta and keeps it in a small container needs to understand that the water should be changed frequently to keep the fish healthy. As someone who keeps their bettas in smaller containers, I waws criticized, not on this forum but on another one which will remain anonymous. I keep up with my water changes and take the best care that I can of my bettas. I was told that I was abusing my fish! Right now, I keep my females in gallon containers and my males are kept in 1.5, 2 and 2.5 gallon containers. I do believe, however, that they are happier with more space. My Merlot proved that. When I moved him from a gallon container to a 2.5 gallon, he was much more active and built bubblenests.
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