Originally Posted by kisxena
OMG! Such useful information. I have never had a fish and I was given a betta fish. I was told via the pet store that the betta should be in distilled water. Now, I'm reading that's a definite no no! OY!!!
I have so much to learn and listening to anyone from a chain pet store is the worse thing I can do.
The vase it came in only holds about 1/2 gal of water. I just read that I need to cover it as well since they will jump out. I will have to do a lot of reading on here. I hope it's not too late for my fish. I've had him for 2 weeks now. The first week his water was cloudy because he wasn't eating the pellets they told us to buy. They then said they feed them freeze-dried blood worms. ummmm @_@
He loves the blood worms and the water is still pretty clear. I will be changing it out Saturday. Guess, I will need to do a gradual transition to I guess bottled drinking water. Not sure what I'm going to do with all that distilled water I bought.
A youtube video sent me your way.
Rule one: Don't always trust what pet store employees say. Make sure you do your own research as well.
Most will tell you a 1/2 gallon is too small, and in many ways it can be. You can't use a heater in a half gallon, which you will need since the weather is cooling. A heater in a half gallon will fry the little guy. It is recommended to get at least a gallon.. Kritter Keepers
are cheap and much bigger, easier to heat and decorate. Most bettas do better in medium to heavy planted (real or fake) with a cave of sorts to hide in.
Pellets are pretty much the best staple food. Freeze Dried is recommended only for treats, as long as you presoak them in tank water as they have potential to bloat the fish. 4-6 pellets a day, spread out in 2-3 meals is ideal.
In a half gallon you should be doing every 2 days 100% water change at the least. Being so small, the ammonia and such will get deadly high quickly. Another reason small isn't so good.. you have to do many water changes, which stresses the fish out, and because you are doing so many the fish doesn't have time to build up their immune system to bacteria and other things that builds up in the water because the water is too clean. Make sure you add in the water conditioner every time for the correct dose, regardless how much water you take out/add in. For a half gallon, would be easier to dose for a full gallon.
Don't use bottled water. The best water is plain old tap water. Bottled and distilled water lack the proper nutrients needed that you get in tap. It is filtered for our needs (somewhat), not for a fish's need. So use tap, the temp should be 78-82 since bettas are tropical and need the warmth. Any lower you will be causing him to become lethargic and can become sick easier.
Good luck, welcome to the forums and any more questions just make a thread and ask!