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Old 10-11-2010, 11:38 AM   #1 
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ParisRose's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Omaha

I'm going to upgrade my setup.
I currently have 1 betta.
Do you guys think it would be safe to upgrade his tank to a five gal without cycling?
I considered not cycling because it's so big and he's just one fish. Kinda a how much waste could one fish produce. I wanted other opinions first though.
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Old 10-11-2010, 11:49 AM   #2 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: USA
You can safely cycle the 5g filtered tank with one Betta provided that you are will to make the needed water changes
In that volume of water with a filter-I would make twice weekly 50% water changes-one to include the substrate cleaning/vacuuming if you don't have any water testing products
If you have water testing products for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, pH-I would make 50% water changes any time you have reading of ammonia/nitrite of 0.25ppm or greater-once you have nitrate reading of at least 5ppm-and 0ppm ammonia/nitrite for several days you are most likely cycled and this can take 4-8 weeks.
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Old 10-11-2010, 01:13 PM   #3 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Northern Virginia
I highly recommend cycling the tank--it will provide the fish with a more stable environment and save you a ton of work. :) Even though a betta is only one little fish, the waste they produce builds up really quickly, so you should have no trouble with the ammonia supply for the tank if you choose to cycle using the fish-in method. Personally, I don't think it's practical to attempt a fish-in (or fishless for that matter) cycle unless you have the appropriate testing equipment, I don't feel that it's an option, since you won't know when to make the appropriate water changes and how much needs to be changed. You also won't be able to tell if the tank is cycled unless you take samples of your water to the fish store regularly to be tested.

I always advocate fishless cycling, it's the method I prefer because it takes less effort because it requires less water changes, it's kinder on the fish, and it's faster because you can alter the conditions in the tank to suit the growth of bacteria without worrying about its effect on the fish. If you don't have a test kit and would rather take your water to be tested at a pet store a couple of times a week instead, fishless cycling would be the better option for sure.

Just some things to think about. :)
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Old 10-11-2010, 02:39 PM   #4 
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Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: North Carolina
I'm going to pop in and say ditto to the recommendations to cycle the tank. If you can do it safely (fishless is the best way to go, as Adastra said), then in the long run it's more than worth it, and it can make maintenance much, much easier.
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