This forum is very informative for a newbie like myself. We just bought a betta fish for my daughter and have some questions about the tank/filter. We bought an Aqueon 2.5 gallon tank with a filter from PetCo. We followed the directions on how to introduce him to the tank, but it seems like the flow from the filter is too strong, so for now we have him in the tank with the filter off. Is there a way to redirect or lessen the flow? Would there be any benefit in just turning the filter on for part of the day? Or would that scare him? We are going to buy a heater for the tank...it came with a LED light, which I've read he may not need? Any advice on if I should hook up the light for him...the instructions say to have it on 6-8 hrs./day and turn it off at night..THanks
In a tank of that size. A filter would be virtually useless as the lack of surface area, and the O2 content in the water is probably minimal which leaves the nitrifying bacteria in a difficult place to establish, grow and colonize. I would just leave the filter off. And go along with the regular water changes of one 100% and one 50% to keep ammonia minimal. You won't have to worry about nitrite and nitrate poisoning as nitrifying bacteria will most likely not grow strong in this type of habitat, nitrifying bacteria is what oxidizes harmful substances into less harmful ones. This is the main purpose of a filter.
In anything less than 5 gallons you should ideally do 1 50% and one 100% water changes weekly to minimize ammonia, and nitrites content. In a A tank of that size you shouldn't have to worry about nitrate/nitrite poisoning as nitrates/nitrites are both a result of bacteria oxidizing ammonia into those substances. Cycling doesn't occur as much in tanks less than 5 gallons. In a tnk upwards of 5 gallons. It has the ability to hold a stable cycle, and depending on the stocking. You should do 25-50% water changes. As 100% changes can slightly impact the cycle.
In a tank that size, just leave the filter off. The light isn't needed as well.
When you buy the heater, keep a close eye on it, or you could cook Mr/s Betta! Don't forget a submersible thermometer either.
The light is nice, personally i like lights, But the light is optional. Ideally you can keep it on for about 10 hours of the day and turn it off. If you decide to use it, make sure the tank is not in a dark area. When the tank is in a dark area with a light directly overhead, it creats a reflection on the inside of the tank walls, which will cause your betta to flare a lot and possibly rip his fins.
The filter is optional as well. It won't do anything but move the water about and discourage a protein file from developing, so it is completely up to you. If you want to keep it, but slow the flow down, you can use a rubber band to secure a filter media sponge on either the output or the input... Or both. If it has a u tube, just pull that up a bit higher and secure it where the water flow is ideally a slow trickle. Water bottle baffles are not the safest way to baffle filters, there have been members whose bettas have gotten trapped in the water bottle portion and hurt. Betas like slow moving or still water, so whatever you decide to do, try and keep the water movement slow. Be sure to do one 50% and one 100% water change a week.
A heater should be 5 watts per gallon, so about 15 watts for you. A submersible adjustable one would be best. Be sure to buy a cheap glass thermometer as well to help you make sure the water temp stays at a constant 78 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
So the light is on (it DOES look better with the light on). We're off to Walmart to buy heater and thermometer, filter is off. Just so I'm clear, with filter off I need to do one 50% water change and one 100% water change/week. When I do the water changes I have to put in the water conditioner, and reacclimate him to the water. The 50% water change do I leave him in the tank, empty 1/2, then add clean water (with water conditioner), or should I take him out? When I do the 100% water change I clean the stones and plants and his house at that time? And when I do the 100% water change I put him in a bucket in his old water while I clean everything, make sure the temp of the new water is ok, then reacclimate him to the new water as we did when we first introduced him to the tank.
He IS cute, want to do the best for our little guy...
I've managed to baffle the same filter before. you will need a piece of plastic (like from ziplock bags) which you can into a sheet wrap that around the intake and using two small rubber bands tie one on the top and one down thw bottom below the filter intake. now take a pin and poke a few holes into it. do this slowly and test it as you are poking the holes to get the right flow. My betta loved a gentle flow. and the plastic prevented his tail from being aucked up into the tube