I have my very first betta (today is 1 week!), a baby of undetermined gender. But I think I've been bitten by the betta bug! I may be picking up a baby soon for my extra tank, but it got me wondering... how do you guys with 5+ fish handle it? I can't even imagine breeding and handling all of those fry, though it's something I'd like to dabble in once I graduate and have the money and resources to devote to it.
Any tips for a new owner? I've spent hours researching proper care, but I'd love to hear any out of the box suggestions too! What do your bettas love? I estimate my little one's age about probably 7 weeks or so, but with its awesome personality, I already find myself very much concerned for his/her well-being.
It's not hard to manage having multiple bettas and tanks. I have one 3 gallon, five 5 gallons, one 6.6 gallon and one 10 gallon tank. I have a water change schedule and feeding schedule that I stick strictly to.
The 5 gallon and bigger only need water changes once a week and the 3 gallon gets a water change twice a week. I do 4 tanks one day, 4 the next and the 3 gallon gets the second change midweek. I have done it enough that I have a system and it takes very little time.
And... It is totally worth it!!!
(I'm enabler, though, so if you want someone to discourage you having more bettas, I am the wrong person. In fact, this is just the wrong forum for that altogether! )
You just go with the flow. I will soon have 11-13 Bettas (oh God did I actually just say that?!), but currently only have four. Along with two divided 10g tanks, one 5g, one 2.5g, one 30g and one .5g... Currently the two 10g's have my Bettas, the 5g has my snails, my 2.5g and .5 are empty, and the 30g has some plants and will soon hold a sorority. SO MANY WATER CHANGES. My Bettas don't like the filters (or I just worry about them getting hurt to much) so I do 10-60% changes every 3 days... They're planted, so now 100%. God, I feel like I'm losing my mind saying all of this! LOL Hopefully you'll be as addicted as the rest of us soon >:D
I just get bigger tanks for less water changes. My girls will be upgraded to a 20-30 gallon at the end of this year...that means I can get more girls. The 10 gallon that they are currently in will be divided for my VT boy & a new boy. I'll still only have two tanks, but lots more bettas!
Bigger tanks, divided, means you can cycle, which means less work, and you can use only 1-2 filters and heaters, so you save a lot of money on heaters and filters. :)
I'm up to fourteen right now, with nine boys and five girls, and 1 ten gal, and 5 20 gals. The 10 gal is just Roslyn, and 4 of the 20 gals are divided in half with two bettas. (I like to have 10 g per fish, as mine are all very large and enjoy the space.) And the five girls are still small and will be sharing the 20 g once they're out of quarantine and ready for their big tank. :)
I do one 25% change per week, and it takes me about an hour to an hour and a half (with six tanks), so it's not bad. Sometimes, I'll admit it, I miss a week and then I'll do a 50% change on everybody. (crazy hospital hours at work)
Gravel vacumns are your friend, as are those 5 gallon jugs you can buy for filtered water at the grocery store. I fill up the jugs in the bathroom, and everybody gets a 5 gallon jug of replacement water after their change. Saves a lot of time in carting water, you just have to do it once per tank. :) The vacumns are great because you can clean the gravel with them, and by the time you've got your gravel clean, you've sucked out the correct amount of water and you're good to add the new water back in. :) Just let the dirty water flow into an empty garbage can or bucket, then just dump the bucket. :)
Thank you for the replies! My baby is picking up things very quickly. As soon as I approach the tank, s/he's staring at me waiting for attention. Today s/he even followed my finger around which was really adorable!
I'm in a small college apartment with limited outlets for heaters/filters and limited space to keep a tank, so for now I have to be content with my 3g and 2.5g (plus my sister's 3g for her betta). I'm definitely already becoming addicted! I planned on heading to Petco today but I'm exhausted after an exam this afternoon, so I'll likely head out tomorrow to buy some type of hiding spot and a filter. My Hydor 7.5w heater never started working despite following all of the directions (my sister's works though), so I have to exchange that anyway.
A friend of mine no longer has fish and gave me her 2.5g tank with a built-in filter. That said, the filter is very strong and I fear for a little betta! I'm really not technologically or creatively talented, so if anyone could explain to me how to minimize the flow in non-fish expert terms, it'd be much appreciated!
It's not easy to NOT get addicted to bettas. :) I have two and am currently taking care of my sister's betta. I've been tempted to get another, as I have the space, but my two bettas might not like giving up some space to add in another. :) I keep restricting myself to a certain price limit when I go to stores, so I can't wiggle a betta in there. Only living things I've allowed myself to buy are plants, snails, and shrimp. It's hard, but doable!
My bettas, especially my little girl, have really quirky personalities. My girl eats off my finger, and whenever I get close to the tank, they both swim up to greet me. My boy flares if I so much as look at him, which is pretty adorable.