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Old 04-08-2013, 11:01 AM   #1 
tinytanker
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Question New Betta Owner Has Some Questions

Hi everyone! I've just received a new betta fish for my birthday. I've had him for two days now, but I've done TONS of research beforehand because I want to give my betta the best home possible. His name is Jack and he's a gorgeous blue crowntail :)

Anyway, the layout of his tank is pretty simple. He's in a 5.5 gallon tank with a low-flow filter and a heater. I have a thermometer in there that reads between 79 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit right now. The tank has a hood with a 15 watt light that I keep on for about 8 hours and then turn off. I'm not really sure if the light is necessary but it helps me see his beautiful colors better so I keep it on.

He has two little cave-like decorations that he swims through and a green silk plant that he seems to LOVE. He swims through it all the time. I got him a silk plant because I know the plastic ones can hurt his fins. I was considering adding a live plant or two, but I have no idea how to go about maintaining them. Since I'm a new aquarium owner, I decided to just stick with the basics and then maybe upgrade to live plants later.

As for food, I have TopFin Color-Enhancing betta pellets (they seemed to have the most protein out of all the other pellets at Petsmart). I've been feeding him about three pellets every day and I plan to skip one day a week as a fasting day. I also have Omega One freeze dried bloodworms and krill. I've been meaning to go out and get some brine shrimp too, so I'll probably do that later this week. How often should I feed him the freeze dried food? I've read soooo many different things online and I just want him to have a healthy, balanced diet.

I guess what I really want to know is, am I doing everything possible to make sure he's happy? Have I done anything wrong or is there something I'm missing? Any other advice would be greatly appreciated :)



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Old 04-08-2013, 12:33 PM   #2 
bniebetta
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KUDOS!!! You arent doing anything wrong that I can see, in fact I really don't have any suggestions other than answers the questions you asked. I usually just feed mine the treats whenever I feel like it, which is about 3 times per week, and I feed them the same amount of pellets as you do. My best advice about feeling is just to know your fish. If he seems bloated or constipates, maybe ease up on whatever you are feeding him. If he gets fat (and it is for sure not the disease called dropsy), lighten up on fatty food such as frozen bloodworms. It will soon become apparent which are his favorites, but don't let him boss you around. Instead of freeze dried you may want to consider just plain frozen because the variation from dry food can help prevent constipation and intestinal upsets. uhhhhhhhh.... oh yeah. The only other thing I can think of is water changes. Have you checked out OFL's (Old Fish Lady) sticky (stickies are posts that are basically saved and anchored to the top of each category because the are really important or frequently used) on water changes? If not, you can find it here: http://www.bettafish.com/showthread.php?t=115758. By the way, you might want to be aware that there is a sever "Betta Virus" going around, in which people find themselves with another betta, and then another, and then another...... Don't say I didn't warn you :pp
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Old 04-08-2013, 12:44 PM   #3 
Auburn Sakura
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I'm new to owning bettas myself. I'd say your set up looks pretty good though. Jack's a lovely fish, by the way.

My set ups for our five betta fish here at my home are pretty similar except that their a bit smaller. (We plan to upgrade to bigger tanks in the future.)

I'm no expert, but I'd say you're doing well with your fish. I don't know much about the frozen foods, so hopefully someone else can answer that question for you.

One thing I might add though would be a live plant or maybe a tank mate. If you get a tank mate you should study up on it as well as it's possible relationship with your betta fish. That's what my mother and I did. As for some tips on that be careful if you get shrimp, they may be eaten by your betta. Also, some catfish should be good tank mates for him. Like Synodontis Nigriventris, which is more commonly known as the upside-down catfish. I have two betta fish who have this as a tank mate and they seem to be doing quite well with each other. It may also depend on your betta's personality though, how agressive he is. We had a pretty docile betta who was calm one second then attacked a shrimp the next second nearly taking it's head off. Poor thing. As for plants, it would be good to study up on them as well. Moss balls might be a good choice as well as some types of ferns. Of course getting more live things such as plants and tank mates will help and not help the water cleaning depending on what you get. So, it would be good to research that as well.

I'm still in the process of learning stuff for our betta fish, so it would be good if some other people commented here. Could always use more than one opinion. ^.^

So far though, I think you're doing great as a betta owner! :)

This site/forum has a lot to offer for information, and I'm glad we can all help each other out in becoming better betta fish owners! :D

So, I wish you good luck and well wishes for you and your betta, Jack! Lol. XD
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Old 04-08-2013, 01:03 PM   #4 
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Oh, Happy Birthday, too! XD Lol.
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Old 04-08-2013, 01:21 PM   #5 
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Tanks mates are awesome!! But let him adjust for a while and get a feel of his personality. A filter would help too because things like snails POOP A LOT. My most docile male brutally murdered his shrimp. So you might want to see how he reacts to a "cheap" tank mate (like a shrimp) before giving him anything expensive or that would be inconvenient to care for should it need to be housed separately if they don't get along. You would also need more plant cover etc if you wanted to give him a tank mate, so you might have to prepare a little while for something like that. I would not give him a tank mate for at least a month though so he doesn't get stressed by territorial upsets in such a new environment :)
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Old 04-08-2013, 01:57 PM   #6 
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I'm not so new to betta keeping or fish keeping in general.

First let me say great tank. Second, if you want live plants just put them in. Plants are no big deal to care for. If you do, I might suggest replacing the bulb in your light with a 10 watt daylight bulb you can pick up at walmart for around $5. It has a better spectrum of light for live plants and will not heat up the water as much as the present bulb.

The only main thing I would advise is get rid of the Top fin food. To say it's like feeding caardboard is an understatement.
We always recommend either Omega One or New Life Spectrum pellets.
If you want to see why, there is an article in this thread calling Food Comparrison. It will show you the ingredients and that these two foods have the best, whereas lesser foods are mostly fillers.
You will see the colors in your betta glow after a few days on either of these!
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Old 04-08-2013, 02:39 PM   #7 
tinytanker
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Thank you guys! He seems to really like his tank. He swims around and it almost looks like he's dancing in the water.

I was considering a tank mate or two but I think I'll wait a bit. Don't want to stress the poor guy out when I've only had him a few days. As for the plants, I'll do some more research on that and see what I can do :)

I feel bad now for getting him the Top Fin food though. After reading that article, I will definitely be switching over foods
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Old 04-08-2013, 02:51 PM   #8 
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I am new to betta care, only had my Sunshine for about 3 months now, and she is my first.

First, great job reading up and keeping him happy! :)

Second, my only advice is to get better food (already said) and to get some plants in there. My betta won't go near anything that is not a plant, as in she won't go near the little cave things or pots or whatever. Your betta isn't as picky, most likely, but you can never go wrong with a plant or two. :) My fish actually sleeps in her plants and does circles around the marimo moss ball when she gets excited for food. :P

I got my plants at Petsmart for like, 2.90, so they weren't bad and they had only a few snails, which I promptly smashed and fed to Sunshine. :P She loved them.
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Old 04-08-2013, 03:05 PM   #9 
Auburn Sakura
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Sounds great. :D I hope he doesn't get stressed out or anything. It sounds like he'll do well though. And I'm sure everyone here is glad for giving advice, I at least hope I can say that. Heh. XD :) ^.^
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Old 04-08-2013, 03:19 PM   #10 
tinytanker
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Has anyone here had experience in planted tanks? I've heard good things about moss balls (as far as maintenance) but I don't think Jack would like that. He needs something to swim in and around :/
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