I will be getting my first Betta soon, not sure when exactly. I've done lots of research on here and have fishless cycled my five gallon tank. However, there are a couple things I wanted to ask. First of all, I have a 25 watt Marineland Visitherm heater (bought online) set to 85 degrees F (for cycling, I will turn it down before adding the fish). The thermometer, which I got from Petco, has been reading at 81 degrees F. This seems like a significant difference, and I'm not sure which one to consider correct. Also, my apartment has been pretty warm, probably almost 80 degrees, so the heater shouldn't be having trouble getting it warm enough.
Also, I was wondering how exactly you guys tend to physically transfer the fish from the cup to the aquarium. For other fish, I've read everything from "Just open the bag and let them swim out" to "Don't let any of the bag water into the tank, net the fish out of the bag and put them in the tank that way". I thought the part about not mixing any of the original water in the tank might not apply since Bettas are kept individually. Also, netting a Betta sounds like a bad idea.
So, how do you transfer new Bettas to a tank?