I've inherited a betta fish from a family of a gentleman that passed away recently and I am planning on picking him up today. He's been living in a one gallon bowl for 8 months. My plan is to put his bowl inside a three gallon bucket with towels around it to cushion it and reduce as much movement as possible. It's only a one mile drive so I think that will work okay.
I know his water and bowl hasn't been cleaned in a month so I'm wondering if I should chance cleaning the bowl when I get him home? I'm afraid the move and cleaning the bowl would stress him too much and kill him. I want to do right by the little guy and eventually put him in a new home. I've already set up my old five gallon tank to start the cycling process and I seeded it with gravel and filter media from my established tank to help move it along. I still need to get a cave or something for him in the tank but I know it will take a few weeks to cycle so I have time.
The big question here is how to acclimate him to the new water conditions. I know the water he's currently in is only around 70 degrees and it's just tap water with some water conditioner. I have the heater in the five gallon tank set to 76. That's a big difference! I know even the slightest change in temperature can kill him. Any suggestions on how to do this?