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Old 08-22-2012, 10:31 PM   #1 
DizzyJenny
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All kinds of confused re: aquarium salt

I am in the process of getting my 10 gallon aquarium set up for my betta, ghost shrimp and possibly neons. My LFS advised me to add aquarium salt (they said they do with all their tanks). Even for a community tank with a beta and neons. So I did. (Only 3 ghosties are in there now)

Got my betta today (gorgeous but $$) and wanted to get my water tested again before I add him, but now I am finding so many conflicting things. Fudge. :(. Is there any true right or wrong answer?

Thanks...
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Old 08-22-2012, 10:57 PM   #2 
Orito
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What's confusing you, I guess would be the best thing to ask. There are people who use aquarium salt in their tanks, if that's the answer you're looking for. If you want to know for sure your water is safe, take a sample to your LFS (in my case, PetSmart does free testing), and ask them to test it, and show you how to test it properly for yourself.

P.S. Watch your "ghost shrimp" closely. [ Read This ]
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Old 08-22-2012, 11:21 PM   #3 
DizzyJenny
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Thanks! And I did read that about the ghost shrimp :) will definitely keep an eye on them!

I guess I am confused as to what's best for the betta. Varying opinions I guess! I did follow the directions on the API box. I will be bringing in another sample for testing tomorrow or Friday. :)
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Old 08-23-2012, 12:13 AM   #4 
Orito
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Well I can't really advise you on a 10 gallon until I get mine set up next week. More then likely I won't be using any aquarium salt, but if I do the research, and it's truly beneficial, then I will. Probably not though.
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Old 08-23-2012, 01:31 AM   #5 
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Used to be that adding a tiny trace of salt (like, 1 tsp per 50 gallons or something) was recommended. It's perhaps not all that bad an idea for large tanks, as osmotic pressure (the difference in a fish's internal pressure to the pressure of the water they're in) can be improved by the addition of a little bit.

But the whole 'salt prevents disease' thing is kind of hit and miss. What you may end up with, depending on how much salt you're dosing and what your water change schedule is like, is a tank with a dangerously high sodium level in a few months, and/or salt of being of no use to you as a treatment, as whatever your fish has will be clearly resistant to it.

IMO it's better, in little betta tanks, to leave salt for:

- the first week of a new pet/LFS store fish in its new tank (I do this to head off any infections/parasites/etc the fish has been exposed to in its manky little store cup, as well as relieve some the ammonia and nitrite damage these fish usually are suffering) after which I do 100% water change and use just very clean water.

- clear signs of the beginning of a disease with which salt can help (fin rot, infection, ich -- not swelling, bloating or internal disorders that are better treated with -epsom- salt and not advanced disease best quickly treated with an appropriate antibiotic or antiparasitic medication).

A better (and unharmful) preventative addition is ketapang (Indian Almond Leaf) which does wonders for betta health by acting as a mild antifungal and antimicrobial, as well as making the water nice and tannin-y, which bettas really like.

Last edited by Aus; 08-23-2012 at 01:34 AM.
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