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Old 06-23-2013, 09:03 AM   #1 
TheRozzy
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Rozzy's Betta Journey (take two)

Backstory
Earlier this year I decided to get a fish for my college room. It was something I'd been wanting to do for awhile, and family circumstances meant I wasn't going to be travelling home as much this year so it seemed like a perfect time. A lot of my friends at college had fighting fish (as they are known here in Australia) so it seemed like the obvious choice.

I bought a large, cheap bowl from Kmart, borrowed some gravel and an old plastic plant from my friend and headed to the pet shop with my Nana. I bonded with a beautiful blue crowntail straight away. His regal colouring led me to call him King George. The pet shop guy told me to place his tank in a warm place near an appliance "for a few hours a day".

King George (mobile photo - sorry for poor quality)


After a few days, though, George still wasn't eating. A visit to another pet shop led me to buy a small under-gravel heater for him, and a thermometer. This worked fine until winter really set in - my room (which can only be heated when I am present, because the heater is connected to my keycard) was getting down to 16 degrees Celsius and the bowl heater simply wasn't coping. George lost his appetite and started lying on the gravel, only moving to breathe. Eventually he lost his beautiful blue colouring as well. I ordered a new submersible heater but it was going to take at least a week to arrive. I eventually found a way to heat the bowl back up (by placing it next to the exhaust fan on my laptop and wrapping it in a towel) while I waited for the new heater but it was too late - King George never got better and soon passed away.

I felt so sorry for my little fish. I'd done my absolute best for him but it hadn't been enough. Meanwhile the new heater had arrived and it was clearly too big for the bowl. I decided it was time to do this thing properly.

This journal will document my second attempt at betta keeping. Once I've finished uni for the semester (only a week to go!) I will buy a new 20L tank, set it up and cycle it - then next semester I will choose a new betta. I've been doing all the reading I possibly can on this forum so I'm properly prepared this time, but I'll need all the support I can get!

Plans so far
I've been looking at tanks online (I want to purchase from within Australia) and I've found this possibility - 20L with adjustable filter and light. I checked it out in my LPS and this was the model the staff there recommended too. I think I'll buy it online though - that site gives $7.50 shipping no matter the weight or quantity!

I just need to check that I'm allowed to have a larger tank before I make a purchase. I've chosen some gravel and silk plants online as well, and I'll check out the LPS again for some floating live plants or moss balls. I can't wait to start again!

(By the way, I saw this beautiful boy while I was at the pet shop - I wish I could have bought him!)
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Old 06-23-2013, 11:33 PM   #2 
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I'm sorry to hear about King George's death, but I'm super happy you're going to try at keeping another betta!!

Your plan sounds great! Have you thought about how you're going to do the nitrogen cycle? If you have time and don't mind waiting, I would recommend a cycle that doesn't involve fish, so everyone's safe. Or you could easily borrow some filter media from a uni friend, and you're good to go!

That fishy was really pretty, it's a shame you didn't get it :( When you do have things all set up, please post photos!
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Old 06-24-2013, 02:52 AM   #3 
TheRozzy
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Thanks Mar! I've been reading up on the Nitrogen Cycle on this forum. I'll definitely be doing a fishless cycle - not taking any chances! I'm not sure if any of my friends have filters because they all have small bowls.
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Old 06-24-2013, 03:15 AM   #4 
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No problem. Glad to hear you're doing the fishless cycle. Do you have a heater for that tank yet or did I miss that? :P

When I go to uni, the tank limit is 10 gallons or around 38 litres.
I'm going to bring my 2 five gallon tanks and sneak in a hospital tank :s
I think your 20L should be okay, but it's best to check up
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Old 06-24-2013, 03:22 AM   #5 
TheRozzy
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Yes I have a 25W submersible heater that I ordered when George got sick. The only guidelines we've been given is "a small fish" which is not very helpful!
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Old 06-25-2013, 06:21 AM   #6 
TheRozzy
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So today I spent $250 ordering stuff for the new tank! Cheapest website I could find too :/ Australia is expensive. Can't wait for the new tank to arrive so I can start decorating!
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Old 06-25-2013, 01:54 PM   #7 
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Australia is expensive!! Let us know how it goes
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Old 07-29-2013, 12:14 AM   #8 
TheRozzy
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The stuff finally arrived! I can't believe it took so long. I wish I had time today to start setting it all up. The API master test kit was out of stock though, so I'll have to wait a bit longer for that before I can start cycling...
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Old 07-30-2013, 03:36 PM   #9 
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If you're doing a fishless cycle, I think it's ok for you to go ahead and start the cycle.
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Old 09-01-2013, 05:40 AM   #10 
TheRozzy
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So I finally set up my tank! The filter is now cycling and I'm really happy with how the whole thing looks - I just have to add a hideyhole (the one I ordered failed the pantyhose test). I'm thinking a mug might have to do for now. I also need to baffle the filter.
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