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Old 05-09-2013, 10:50 PM   #1 
EmmaBlake
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New forum member & new betta owner, would love some answers to my questions!

Hello, my name is Emma and I've had my new betta for a week. getting him was unexpected, I attended a banquet and they used bettas as center pieces at the tables..(terrible, I know.) they gave them away at the end of the night. They had containers to put them in and gave everyone little envelopes of food (so at least they sent us home with food for the little guys.) so, long story short I just had to save him..he currently does not have a name, I just can't think one because I've been so focused on setting up the tank and making sure I'm doing the right things, I've been stalking this forum for like 4 days trying to soak up as much info as possible!

here is my set up right now --
2.5 gal tank
aquarium gravel
Tetra Whisper 3i filter
Tetra Heater 5-15 (2-15 gal) REALLY wish I had gotten an adjustable heater because this one barely keeps my tank at 76

I bought a log decoration for him to go hide in today because right now the tank is empty beside the gravel, heater and filter and he likes sleeping behind the heater so I know he will love the log. I also bought a Anubias Nana plant today, I had bought the little bulbs you plant in the tank but I am too impatient to wait for the to grow, and I think having a live plant in the tank will help to cycle the tank faster.

Right now I only have Jungle 5 in 1 testing strips, I know they are not very accurate and I am going to get an API master test kit as soon as possible (I am ordering some things online soon.) but for now the strips are saying my Nitrate and Nitrite is 0, my water hardness is either hard or very hard..the colors are so similar I can't tell..I think my alkalinity is in the Ideal color zones but my pH is definitely high.

I am really sorry this post is so long, I've just been killing myself trying to do everything right for my fish and still trying to enjoy the whole process as much as possible, I must say..he is a really playful little guy! here are my questions..

1) How do I introduce the Anubias Nana and the log decoration into the tank, anything special need to be done? Do I just stick the plant in the gravel similar to putting the bulbs in there?
2) related to the plant, how do I make sure I don't get snails in my tank?! the package the plant is in says snail free but I do NOT trust that! and I really really do not want to deal with a snail infestation!
3) How many water changes should I do while cycling my tank? I was doing daily changes of about 40% for 3 days but then I read that changing the water so much can slow down the cycling..(I've read so many different things, bottom line is I want my tank to cycle while keeping my water as safe as possible for my betta.)
4) Is it safe to add water conditioner to the tank while my betta is in the tank?
5) I got the thermometer you stick to the outside of the tank, are those accurate?

I would be so grateful to anyone for reading and replying to this LONG post lol. I would love any information you can give me! Thank you!! Oh I do have pictures of my tank and betta if you'd like me to post them.
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Old 05-10-2013, 12:26 AM   #2 
veggiegirl
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Hi there and welcome to the forum!

Congratulations! You have already given your betta the best start by providing a suitably sized tank and a heater, two important points often overlooked when starting out with bettas so well done on doing your research.

I am no expert on live plants however I believe it would be fine to just plant your plant in the gravel. With the log just give it a good rinse under clean water and pop it into the tank. As to your snail concerns I am not too sure what your could do as I have never had this problem before. Maybe you could put your plant in another tank/clean container for a while and see if you notice any snails after a while? someone else may be able to offer more advice on that. As to cycling I am not sure if you can easily cycle a 2.5 gallon tank..... I think it is more important with larger tanks and as long as you are keeping a regular check on your ammonia and Nitrite levels you should be fine. If they begin to rise then do a water change but again someone else may be able to help you here because I have honestly never cycled a betta tank before and never had any problems as a result. I usually change the water pretty regularly at first though......every 2-3 days for the first couple of weeks (depending on the tank size of course). It is completely safe to add the water conditioner to the tank while your betta is in it. Some conditioners even have the added benefit of containing aloe Vera to help replace the fishes slime coat. It certainly will not harm your betta in any way. I am afraid that the thermometers that you stck on the outside of the tank are not very accurate at all....... the glass internal ones are the best.

Well I hope you find this of some help If you get a chance you should post some photos of your betta we would love to see him!
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Old 05-10-2013, 02:12 AM   #3 
RussellTheShihTzu
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Welcome to the forum!

The only thing I know about Anubis is they grow from rhizomes so must not be planted. You can let them float or you can tie them to something with fishing line but not too tight so it digs into the plant and not so your Betta can get caught in it. I have tied fishing line to a rock and buried it in the gravel so the Anubis sits on top.

Your Betta will love Cabomba. They are bunch plants and grow very well. They usually come with plant weights or you can let them float. Either way, your Betta will sleep/rest in them. Kinda cute.
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Old 05-10-2013, 02:12 AM   #4 
aemaki09
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Welcome! I'm glad that you saved him over someone that'd just keep the poor guy in the container, way to go!

Your set up sounds pretty decent, definitely try to get something for him to hide in/behind as well so if he's feeling shy, he can be shy.

Problem with test strips is that they don't test for ammonia, which is the most important test of them all for a tank so small. I honestly think that your filter is kind of pointless as well too as it is pretty hard to cycle such a small tank. Yeah, it may help you get some of the debris out of the tank, but depending on how strong the flow is, the cons may outweigh the pros. (You'll want to do a 50% and a 100% water change every week for that size as well, once you get more plants then you can move down to 2 50%'s.)

1) How do I introduce the Anubias Nana and the log decoration into the tank, anything special need to be done? Do I just stick the plant in the gravel similar to putting the bulbs in there?
Rinse the log, that's all you need to do for that.
For the anubias, make sure that the rhizome (part the leaves grow from) is above the gravel. You can only plant the roots otherwise it'll rot. Those plants ideally should be tied to driftwood, rocks, or other hardscape elements.


2) related to the plant, how do I make sure I don't get snails in my tank?! the package the plant is in says snail free but I do NOT trust that! and I really really do not want to deal with a snail infestation!
Get some algea killer that says it's not safe for snails, do a high concentration of it and let sit for an hour or so before adding to the tank. A better method would be a bleach, copper, or potassium permegranate(sp) dip.


3) How many water changes should I do while cycling my tank? I was doing daily changes of about 40% for 3 days but then I read that changing the water so much can slow down the cycling..(I've read so many different things, bottom line is I want my tank to cycle while keeping my water as safe as possible for my betta.)
I already mentioned this above.

4) Is it safe to add water conditioner to the tank while my betta is in the tank?
Perfectly fine! It's better to add it before so it can get mixed in a bit before going into the tank, but it's fine to add it once it's in the tank too. I do this every w/c because I have an actual water changer that hooks up straight to the faucet so I could eliminate buckets, and haven't had any issues with the fish at all.

5) I got the thermometer you stick to the outside of the tank, are those accurate?
Not accurate at all. They can tell you a range of temp, but since it's on the glass, it's reading partially the glass, water, and outside air temp at the same time. Kind of pointless IMO, best get a glass one that goes inside of the tank.
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Old 05-10-2013, 05:48 AM   #5 
Juditko
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The OldFishLady sticky on water changes will be helpful to you. What kind of water conditioner are you using? Since you're researching cycling, you'll need to add conditioner each time when you do a water change. Many people here like Prime. (Available at Petsmart in my town.) By the way, a little bottle goes a LONG way as you dose it with an eyedropper.

Welcome to the forum. It is a bit overwhelming to come home with a fish and find out what they need...but so many of us did it that way. Sounds like you're off to a great start! Ask as many questions as you need to...the community here has been very helpful to me and many others!
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Old 05-10-2013, 05:59 AM   #6 
VJM
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There seem to be several people on the forum with small cycled tanks. Totally possible.
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Old 05-10-2013, 09:43 AM   #7 
aemaki09
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There seem to be several people on the forum with small cycled tanks. Totally possible.
You are right, it is possible, but a lot of work, easy to screw up, and takes a ton of time to do. Unless you fish less cycle it, with all the w/c's you need to keep the fish healthy, it'd be very hard not to ruin the cycle.
You're going to have to do pretty much the same amount of w/c's per week anyways, so to me it's pointless to try.
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Old 05-10-2013, 01:03 PM   #8 
sunlight
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welcome to the forum. I have a few 2.5 gall tanks and you can just do 2-50% and 1-100% water changes a week. I really think that it better to do it for 2.5 gall tank. Filter might be too strong for this size of the tank and bother your betta.
I am going to give you acclimation instructions if you decide to do regular water changes check page 3 thead #26
http://www.bettafish.com/showthread.php?t=158401&page=3
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Old 05-10-2013, 01:21 PM   #9 
ANHEL123
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I also want to give one link i think it a lot of helpful information there
http://www.bettafish.com/showthread.php?t=142066
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Old 05-10-2013, 07:13 PM   #10 
Backlash
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Originally Posted by EmmaBlake View Post
Hello, my name is Emma

5) I got the thermometer you stick to the outside of the tank, are those accurate?
Hi Emma,

As the others have said, the stick on the outside of the tank thermometers are not that accurate, but they sure are handy to get a qiuck idea of the temperature of your tank..

The internal ones I have are the floating type that have a small suction cup that holds them to the glass.. The problem is that after a few months, the suction cup starts to fail, and the thermometer ususlly ends up floating around the tank and ends up under the filter or in some dark corner of the tank where you cannot read it.. This may not be that much of a problem on a 2.5 gallon tank, but it can be a real pain on a 30 -100 gallon..

So I use the outside one to get an idea of the tanks temperature, and if the temp is not where is should be (excessively high or low), I then use the internal thermometer to get a more accurate idea of what is going on..

Cheers
Mark..

PS.. please post a pic of him, we all love pictures..
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