Ok, so its been a while since I've been looking on these forums, and I can see that some things have changed since I've last been here. The biggest thing I've noticed are the differences in recommended water change schedules for uncycled tanks. Let me first say that I've never kept a betta in an uncycled tank. Mine have always been in 5-10 gallon heated, filtered, cycled tanks with and without live plants. I'm certainly not opposed to uncycled tanks, I just found it easier (especially if I'm going to be away) for them to be cycled. However, I'm always meeting people who are under the unfortunate misconception that bettas should be kept in unheated, tiny bowls and I like to at least attempt to educate them on proper betta care.
So, that being said, a few years ago the recommended water change schedule for a one gallon tank was 100% every other day, sometimes even every day. For 2-3 gallons it was around 100% every 2-3 days, and 4-5 gallons it was one 50% and one 100% each week. From reading around here, I've noticed that most people recommend far fewer water changes on the smaller tanks. Now, since I've never kept uncycled tanks I really don't know in reality how fast the ammonia builds up, and I would like to give the best advice possible to people who I meet (I've found that just trying to convince them to buy a heater and do more frequent water changes is hard enough...most times trying to explain the nitrogen cycle just gets me astonished stares
). So, could someone please explain the current recommended water changes to me? Also, how did this schedule get established? Does it keep ammonia at zero?
Thanks in advance!