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Old 01-27-2013, 08:03 PM   #1 
Skyewillow
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Planning a "Biotope"

I always love to see things in their natural habitats, and it's been a dream of mine for the last few years to build a Biotope tank for my bettas.

I only have one problem:
I can't seem to find any pictures of a betta's natural habitat, and which kinds of plants (beyond rice lol) would be growing there. I know it's a blackwater habitat, and would like to follow that. I'm planning for a few smaller tanks to pull this off in, I'd like to try it in my 5.5 at first. Once I can ensure that I'm not a plant killer, I plan on upgrading the set up to my 10 also.

If I can get it down pat, then eventually, I'll set up my 50 gal in the biotope theme with a sorority.

Pictures and suggestions on the plants and other defining characteristics of the natural habitat of bettas would be appreciated.
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Old 01-28-2013, 11:43 AM   #2 
waterdog
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Bettas are not only found in rice fields. They live in shallow streams. Often they get in the rice fields when they are flooded using water from these streams. Blackwater is made from an excess of leaf buildup along with decaying plant matter.

Last edited by waterdog; 01-28-2013 at 11:50 AM.
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Old 01-28-2013, 11:49 AM   #3 
Olympia
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I don't think bettas live in the amazon. :/
LittleBettaFish has lots of natural looking tanks for her wild bettas.
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Old 01-28-2013, 12:11 PM   #4 
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Blackwater isn't only found in the Amazon. It's any river, lake, stream, or pond that has a lot of decaying plant matter. The tannins from the driftwood or leaves turn the water into tea. The two biggest areas known for blackwater are the Amazon, and Southeast Asia. That's why IAL help the bettas.

Waterdog, your post DID give the me the idea to look up "Southeast Asian Blackwater Biotope", hopefully I can get some more conclusive information! Thanks

Last edited by Skyewillow; 01-28-2013 at 12:27 PM.
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Old 01-28-2013, 12:13 PM   #5 
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I've found this, just in case anyone else was interested. The website is URL'd at the bottom. ^_^

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Southeast Asian Blackwater Pool
++++++++++++++++++++++++++++


Southeast Asian Biotope Aquarium
Click to enlarge

>
Borneo pool
Click to enlarge

>
Kinabalu, Malaysia
Click to enlarge

>
Kinabalu, Malaysia
Click to enlarge



Creeks and streams originating from deep in the rainforest are often blackwater.
With decaying plant vegetation and few, if any, mineral sources, the water is acidic and very soft.
This environment provides a home to many species of plants and fish.

WATER:
pH 5.5-6.5, 0-4 dH, 81-84 F (27-29 C)

TANK:
The tank should be densely planted with a fine gravel or clay substrate.
Use wood to create hiding places and use peat filtration.
There should be little surface current.

PLANTS:
Cryptocoryne, Nymphaea, Eleocharis

FISH:
Gouramis, Bettas, Rasboras, Loaches, Glass Catfish, Cyprind sharks, Flying Fox

PHOTOS:
Blackwater creek: Borneo creek, Borneo creek
Clearwater forest pool Borneo
Read more at http://fish.mongabay.com/biotope_se_...AuwZPrXKGTr.99
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Old 01-28-2013, 12:20 PM   #6 
Olympia
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Just so you know waterdog's original post said the are found in the amazon. It was edited out.
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Old 01-28-2013, 12:26 PM   #7 
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(I didn't see that part lol I fixed mine as a little informative blurb for those who didn't know about blackwater)
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Old 01-28-2013, 12:51 PM   #8 
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Old 01-28-2013, 12:57 PM   #9 
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Thank you, Eatmice!! That first tank is awesome. And that irrigation ditch shows just how DARK the water is where they're from!

I think it's important to remind people that this is where they come from. Not perfectly crystal clear waters (as attractive as colorless water in a tank can be).
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Old 01-28-2013, 01:00 PM   #10 
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Quick question, does anyone know if a small school of glass cats would be compatible with a sorority of bettas? or even just one betta? They're from the same area.
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