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Old 11-29-2011, 11:28 PM   #1 
Moclam
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Question Small tanks vs. Bigger tanks

I'd like to hear everyones opinion on this matter, for everyones answers are diffrent.

A week or so ago, I bought a 5 gallon tank for a new betta fish I got at the pet store. I desided to try out a bigger tank then just the 1, or 2 gallon tanks I normally use. I heat it and everything, however I don't use filters because I've had issues with them in the past. But for the past few weeks, I've been having to take the fish back, because they started freaking out on me after a night, and were this close to death. Now, whenever I have an issue, there's this lady, whom I believe is the best fish keeper in my town. I always ask for advise from her, and she's always helped me out, and have taken the past betta fish and tried to help them this past week. And in her experince, she's found that when she keeps her betta's in anywhere from 1 gallon to 2.5, she's found that they thrived, and lived happy lives. However in bigger tanks, such as my new 5 gallon, they don't tend to do well. And from my experience this past week or so, I'm starting to think tanks bigger then my normal range don't do well with my fish. Because I've had about 28 bettas in my lifetime, and they were so much happier, and healther in smaller tanks.

So I guess my question is, what are you're experiences on this matter? Are big tanks the thing for you? Or do you use smaller tanks that sometimes others frown appon? And what were you're results in the end?
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Old 11-29-2011, 11:49 PM   #2 
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I've read countless experiences of people on this forum and others placing their bettas in all sorts of tanks while I was trying to figure out what size to buy.

Some only did well in smaller tanks, it was just a fact. Some bettas hated 5g+ tanks, and went back to their 1.5-2.5 / 3 gallon and loved it and were happy as ever. It's just a part of the betta I think.

Although, I do I have a 7.5 gallon heavily planted for mine and he loves it. Uses every single inch of it, swims through all the plants and even rests in the melon sword in the back until I can get him some floating plants. Has a filter as well. I think it is kind of preference.
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Old 11-30-2011, 12:40 AM   #3 
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Fascinating...I've known the fact that every betta's different, however I've always wondered if housing was a strong fact as well. With the option of a much bigger tank, one would think it'd be better for there betta. However I'm feeling that is not always the case.
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Old 11-30-2011, 12:43 AM   #4 
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I always recommend bigger for people who are beginners. They are easier to keep clean, you can add more fish, temperature is easier to stabilize, and there is a lot more room for error.
I personally won't go smaller than 2 gallons, I don't like to change the water that frequently (I am a lazy fish keeper).
I think people tend to just "throw" a betta that has been kept in a tiny tank/cup all its life into a large tank and when that fish doesn't do well, blame it on the size of the tank. The fish simply doesn't have the muscle mass to carry around heavy fins in a larger body of water. It has to be built up to that. Also, just because it is bigger doesn't mean you don't have to change the water frequently, especially in the beginning. Just because you have a filter doesn't mean you know what a cycle is or how to do it. It is something you have to research, so it takes a little more effort than just changing a bowl frequently. Brain vs brawn I guess.
For me it is all about water quality. My fish have never been sick in my current set ups, but I know that if I went smaller I would let the water go to long between changes.
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Old 11-30-2011, 02:38 AM   #5 
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I would like to keep rants out of this post if possible. I wish to discuss people's experiences only on the matter I described, and for all those experiences and opinions to be respected.
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Old 11-30-2011, 02:58 AM   #6 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kytkattin View Post
I always recommend bigger for people who are beginners. They are easier to keep clean, you can add more fish, temperature is easier to stabilize, and there is a lot more room for error.
I personally won't go smaller than 2 gallons, I don't like to change the water that frequently (I am a lazy fish keeper).
I think people tend to just "throw" a betta that has been kept in a tiny tank/cup all its life into a large tank and when that fish doesn't do well, blame it on the size of the tank. The fish simply doesn't have the muscle mass to carry around heavy fins in a larger body of water. It has to be built up to that. Also, just because it is bigger doesn't mean you don't have to change the water frequently, especially in the beginning. Just because you have a filter doesn't mean you know what a cycle is or how to do it. It is something you have to research, so it takes a little more effort than just changing a bowl frequently. Brain vs brawn I guess.
For me it is all about water quality. My fish have never been sick in my current set ups, but I know that if I went smaller I would let the water go to long between changes.
+1 to this!!

bettas need to be conditioned to be in larger spaces

i also prefer larger cycleable tanks (i've got 2 boys in their own 10g's and the rest are in their own 5g) so i only have to do water changes once a week .. and in a cycled tank you'll never have to do 100% change .. which saves a lot of time and water .. and since it's cycled you don't have to rinse the gravel .. clean decor .. scrub the tank walls .. etc etc .. with every 100% water change .. that is a lot of work .. it's not so bad if you only have one betta .. but i have 7 boys (9 total in the house) .. each in their own separate tank .. if they were all in 1-2g tanks i'd be doing 14-21 water changes on them a week .. no thanks to that =)

Last edited by HatsuneMiku; 11-30-2011 at 03:03 AM.
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Old 11-30-2011, 03:54 AM   #7 
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Originally Posted by Moclam View Post
I would like to keep rants out of this post if possible. I wish to discuss people's experiences only on the matter I described, and for all those experiences and opinions to be respected.
If you were saying that in reference to the previous post I really don't think it was a rant. She was stating facts, and her own experience. If you don't want her opinion why would you post on the forum?
I have had a 1 gallon for around 2 years. My betta freaked out in the five gallon I upgraded him to recently, but only when I figured out I had the wrong plants and had to replace them. Some fish freak out when going from a cup to a five gallon, they are simple animals and such a big change in surroundings can be overwhelming.
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Old 11-30-2011, 05:26 AM   #8 
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If you were saying that in reference to the previous post I really don't think it was a rant. She was stating facts, and her own experience. If you don't want her opinion why would you post on the forum?
I have had a 1 gallon for around 2 years. My betta freaked out in the five gallon I upgraded him to recently, but only when I figured out I had the wrong plants and had to replace them. Some fish freak out when going from a cup to a five gallon, they are simple animals and such a big change in surroundings can be overwhelming.
My apologies. I was in a distressed state of mind when I commented. And looking back, I'm ashamed I even desided to reply in such a state of mind.
I really do appreciate everyone's comments. I battle with current mental issues, and sometimes they take over.

Last edited by Moclam; 11-30-2011 at 05:42 AM.
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Old 11-30-2011, 05:50 AM   #9 
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@Kytkattin & HatsuneMiku
I see you're points. With many betta fish on you're hands, I can see how that would work for you. I guess I actualy enjoy water changes. Not to mention the fact that it's hard handling some things in my current situations. And I guess with smaller tanks for me, I keep my fish healthier and much happier that way. Them in big tanks, well...I guess they can sence I struggle.
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Old 11-30-2011, 07:02 AM   #10 
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I have one guy who bit off all his fins when I took a nap after a water change and left him in a .33 gallon kritter keeper. Other then that, they don't protest their tank size.

Supposingly if they go straight from being jarred by a breeder to a small cup then into a big tank, they have issues because their muscles are not used to swimming...??

I have noticed they seem more happy with bigger space if there are more decorations and plants in the tank then if there is one tiny plant or none at all.

I have a 1 gallon tank but I dont like to keep a betta in there for long. Currently it's occupied by a teeny tiny female i found at petco.

Last edited by Tikibirds; 11-30-2011 at 07:05 AM.
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