I have my new betta, Parli, in a 2.5 gallon heated tank with a live plant. I have a filter, but am loathe to use it since my last betta fish (who was admittedly very sick at the time) got sucked against the filter and died. I suspect the flow was too much for him. Does anyone have recommendations for a very small and gentle filter, yet effective, for a tank this size? I do prefer the filter since I'm a college student and do not have a lot of time. Of course, little Parli is a top priority and I will clean his tank several times a week if I need to, but I would rather minimize large cleanings to once a week with the filter.
The ammonia in the water is safe right now, and upon testing, pH. nitrite, and nitrate are all good. Water alkalinity and hardness are just a speck high.
What filter do you recommend?
What cleaning regimen do you recommend?
Sponge filters are currently getting some really rave reviews, and they're *really* easy to make, they're cheap, and they're gentle. :) Your fish literally *cannot* get hurt with them. :)
The link goes into the DIY, but here's the things you'll need:
air pump (small is great, and should only cost you about five bucks)
air line tubing (cheap cheap cheap)
an air stone
A plastic cylinder about an inch or 3/4 of an inch in diameter. This can be big plastic tubing, it can be PVC, just about anything that's fairly rigid and is aquarium safe.
a car wash or other NON-ANTIMICROBIAL/ANTIBACTERIAL sponge. :) Most of the cleaning sponges have these antimicrobial/bacteria agents in them, and won't work, but just plain old carwash sponges work great. Just cut them to the size you want with scissors. The link has information about sizes.
From there you can follow Waterdog's awesome instructions and information. :)
I don't use a filter on my 2.5g tanks but if I did I would go with a sponge filter.its not impossible to cycle a tank that small but it ain't easy. I prefer to do 2 80% water changes a week with 100% every 3rd-4th water change.
Or, if you want to modify your existing HOB, you can do this.
Take some of that sponge (you can use aquarium sponges, or you can use plain carwash sponges cut to size, they both work) and wrap it around the intake on your HOB (that part that hangs down into the water and sucks), or you can shove the sponge inside. I've done both, they both baffle equally.
This will keep your fish safe.
Now, to reduce the flow, take some more of that sponge, cut to size again, and stick it in the outflow on your HOB. You will probably have to rubberband it on there, just make sure it's tight enough to stay put, and then let the bottom of the sponge hang down into the water a few inches. You may also have to take a second rubberband and fasten the bottom of the sponge (in the water) to the intake tube, to keep the outflow current from pushing the sponge up. This way will make sure that the sponge is absorbing the outflow water instead of letting it cascade into your tank. This will create *zero* water current.
Again, this is absolutely safe for your fish. They cannot get hurt on sponges.
Mine like to swim inbetween the sponge and the back of their tanks, but since it's a sponge and moves/is soft, they've never gotten stuck or had a problem. :) It's just a nice little place for them to hide. :)
I did not come up with this, some fabulous member posted about it quite some time back, and I wish I could remember who it was to give credit...but, whoever they are, they are a genius. :)
You're good except for the airline tubing. What you've got there is huge, like the tubing is a half-inch in diameter...much, much bigger than what you'd need for your sponge filter, and it wouldn't even attach to any air pumps.
The only con is that the filter has been known to not last super long. Maybe a year? Or less?
You might put panyhose or something across the intake if you're still worried. I've watched as my Betta deliberately swims right under the intake and fights the flow for an instant before getting across. I think he's stopped doing it now but he used to think it was interesting.