Whoa, i surprised myself. I started out with just one Veiltail in a 2.5 leader bowl, I began to feel sad for my buddy Stinkmeaner, my Betta. So i took advantage of the dollar per gallon tank at petc o and bought a 10 gallon tank. Added my Male to it and some tank mates. At 1st i bought 5 Zebra Danios, they were way hyper but finally mellowed out after a day or so, then i added 5 Neon Tetra, i call them the Mellow Squad. Then my Albino Plecos White Boy Lenny added a touch as his complexion contracts well with my red gravel, then 5 Ghost shrimp named the Janitors. To my surprise, i purchased a curly bamboo stick from petsmart that had 3 snails attached to it from the aquarium it was stored in. So now i got 3 baby snails called the slow pokes. Finally, i added my female Betta as i accidentally knocked her bowl over and she ended up homless for 5 seconds, my only option was drop her in the zen tank risking her safety as my male is in there. They get along fine and actually swim together and hang out. I know people snarl at that idea, but thus far peace is maintained and no incidents. I do plan on removing the Zebra Danios and swapping them out for black neon Tetra to keep the flow mellow and less busy.
Getting your betta a 10 gallon tank is great, but there are a few things you need to know to keep them healthy and, just as important, happy. They live longer, fuller lives alone. It's not something a fish lover wants to hear, that their fish likes being alone, but betta do. That being said, it's fine to put a few things with a betta, but there are guidelines that experienced betta keepers use to keep their fish healthy. And don't worry if you get it wrong the first few times, this is a learning experience for everyone at first.
In general, most keepers on these forums and many other forums like to keep their betta in at the very least 2.5 gallons. This is for a single betta. He/she will get pretty big, some up to 3 inches at full grown, so he needs a lot of room for himself.
Then you have your other fish, shrimp and snails. Schooling and shoaling fish, like most tetras and danios need to be in groups of 6-8 fish to feel safe and comfortable. And each fish needs about a gallon of water to himself. (This is a general rule, some fish get larger then others and require more room per fish.)
Shrimp don't need as much room, but still produce a bio-load, so you want to keep it to no more then 2 shrimp per gallon. (Some people say one per gallon, depends on the person and skill level)
Pleco's are the same way, one-two gallons each. And they do better in groups.
Snails produce a lot of waste and you should keep them to a minimum. If they start breeding, don't be scared to toss extras in the garden.
Of course this is all a general rule, something most people follow, but there are some who do things different. I would suggest these guidelines for you til you've learned more about fish keeping in general.
And then there is the female betta. I know you think they are fine now, but this won't last, and you will loose one or the other betta eventually. You can't watch them 24 hours a day and I would hate for you to wake up in the morning or come home from shopping and find one of your betta shredded and dead. There is also the fact that a betta is a solitary creature and even if they don't kill each other, they're not going to be happy. Neither of them will live long. It's like putting you in a closet with 12 other people and your worst enemy. Sooner or later something's gonna give.
So how do you fix all of this?
Well first off, you need to remove your female fish. She can go into a smaller container for now, give her clean water and set her away from the male. She will show her colors better, will not get damaged fins from the male nipping her and will be, over all, a much happier fish. And happy fish live longer.
Second, look for another tank. If you got another 10 gallon tank you could easily split the fish you have in your current tank between the two, and have two very beautiful tanks.
Third, you do need to change your decor, but really you only need to put more hiding places. caves, thick grass like plants, a betta log or something similar will work. A lot of people use coffee mugs and terracotta pots (make sure it's new and clean, though) for hiding places. This will give your betta a place to hide and calm down if they get scared, and loud sounds, bright lights and movement can all stress a betta.
So in short, get another (10 gallon?) tank, put the girl and half the fish in the new tank, and add some hiding places. Not hard.
You might want to look up cycling your tank, though. I'm not sure if you have or not, but with a 10 gallon tank, it's the best way to go. Without cycling, you need to change your water often. And make sure you have a heater set to 78 degrees (or there-abouts) to keep the fish warm. I can't tell from the pics if you have one or not :)
Sorry about that, I don't mean to lecture, but happy fish make happy owners, right? And just so you know, I love the decor you have right now. I have a few zen themed pieces I want to use in a tank, but not til I set up a new one. I have 6 tanks right now.. hubby cut me off, LOL.
forgot the bamboo! While it is sold as an aquatic plant, it isn't at all. The roots can go in water, but you want to keep the leaves out of the water and watch for rotten spots on the stem. I would suggest finding new plants for the tank as soon as you can. There are very pretty real aquatic plants that would look very nice in your tank.
Last edited by MollyJean; 07-26-2012 at 10:48 AM.
Lol...ok, first off, all decorative pieces bought at petsmart. Hence its safe. I have a Tetra Pf10 filter and Air pump. There is ample hiding places in the tiki statue and behind the ying yang piece. I do 15% water changes weekly and the water is balanced. I admit, the zebra danios need to go. And after speaking with several experience aquarium , the gallon per fish rule is not very accurate at all.
The zebra danios will be relocated as they are too active and even get on my nerves. I vacuum the gravel once a week and the bamboo also is growing as the bioload is assisting in fertilizer. And the Bamboo is quite real and i putting Java Ferns today.
As i mentioned its my 1st tank and the Danios are getting evicted. Which will change the mood dramatically. But other than that, all is well. The shrimp are active in cleaning up scraps, the Plecos is loving it, tetra are mellow and Betta fish are happy as the swim and sleep together. So everybody has a hiding, but once these danios are gone, i anticipate a better vibe in the tank.
It looks deceptive, but there are plenty of hiding places, but ironically u hit it on the head i just bought 3 live java ferns. The heater is set at 78, the tank cycle went on for two weeks and the water is perfect. I actually got these betta from my mother who breeds them, all our betta for the past 15 years lived together actually. Male and female in 10 gallon tanks. Not one incident. They are non aggressive. Not sure, but they are super mellow and friendly. Almost contrary to their reputation.
I have noticed the shrimp eating some of the bioload and they are assisted by weekly gravel vacuuming. But ill admit, i over stocked. The Danios are outta there. My Betta fish color is intense. My female Wanda got more blue and Stinkmeaner the male is still red. Their parents were mellow. But i am definitely hearing u molly. I am upgrading to a 20 gallon later, but for now this Zen Tank will get some minor revisions.
And i literally was raised in and around bamboo. My bamboo is 7 inches above the surface. Roots are exposed. Between the tiki statue and roots in the corner from the cane and new java ferns the shrimp have a few places they enjoy hanging out in hiding. Everybody seems to be pleasant. I am certain now, that i will add 3 tetra and extract these Danios.
I appreciate the tips and points. Life is a learning experience. Learned a bit.
Lmao yesssss!!!! I call meth heads are caffine junkies. They are too zippy dee do da. I don't know what i was thinking. I'm putting them in a Koi pond in my backyard. That thing is 200 gallons and heavily planted. About 4 feet deep, i already have a 12 inch Plecos in there along with the koi. But yes Danios are like the over hyper crowd in. Coffee shop...lol..out they go.
I had a log in there but everybody ignored, the seem to like the statue nooks, the tiki is actually a squidward replica from SpongeBob. The female betta lives there and the Male Betta actually sleeps behind the ying yang house. My tetra love floating in front of the Buddha and in my LED lights that simulates moonlight. But my cochroaches i mean Danios are the only the only out of place items.
I'm religious about watching my tank. I had a bad accident and I am on bed rest. So i needed a hobby and some beauty in my world, i figured i would create something. Hence my Zen Bamboo Garden. But about ghost shrimp, is it normal for them to eat fish droppings as well?