My husband, as sweet as he is, decided without me to buy my daughter a betta. His name is fishy (named by a 2 year old) He continued this sweet meaning behavior by getting a cool gallon and a half tank with flashing lights and such. Ok now I know as cool as the tank is, it isn't large enough. I do plan on buying a 10 gallon when i get paid in a week.
My question isn't about the tank size. I need to know a few other things. With the gallon and a half tank how often should I be changing it? Right now I'm doing it every 4 days but I do not know if that is enough.
Also I am using reverse osmosis water, I don't know if this is bad or not. If it is fine Do I still need to de-chlorinate it? I know most say use tap water but he spent 5 days in the store cup while I tried to get the Ph of our water right, and it was not turning out well.
The tank he is in is bowl shaped. It seems he is not eating very much food(maybe 4 pellets a day). I am not sure if this is because he can't get to it because of the shape. He always seems to get to the food that drops in the middle. How do I fix this problem? His food is hikari betta bio gold pellets. I bought him dried shrimp and he didn't touch a piece of it and it sunk and dirtied the water. Is he just odd?
Last but not least, he bought a castle and a plastic plant for the tank. The castle works out great he loves swimming in and out of it. He will rest on the plant but I don't know if it should stay because I am worried about his fins being ripped (he is a beautiful halfmoon). The edges don't feel sharp but the do have a slight point on the end. I do plan on buying a real plant for him when he gets a new tank but not sure if i should leave the current plant in the tank also.
I know it's a ton of questions but I would appreciate any help anyone could give me.
For a gallon and a half, I would be changing it every three days.
RO is fine and what many great breeders use. I can only wish that I had a RO system! I'm not familiar with chlorine removal and RO, I would probably add a bit of water conditioner to be safe. Adjusting the water chemistry is not recommended, it makes for an unstable environment.
I would try feeding him omega one or new life spectrum instead. They are more nutritious and palatable.
Take the plastic plant out of the tank, let it dry, and run a pantyhose over the whole thing. If it snags, the fish's fins will too.
If you have anymore questions feel free to ask. :)
And a side note, For now, fishy seems to be pretty happy. He loves to say hello to anyone passing. He "shows off" by spreading his fins way out. He has been blowing bubbles, more so the day after tank cleaning. Please don't bash me and call me horrible for allowing him to live in a small home for now. I spent all the money I had getting him what he has to keep him okay until I can get a bigger tank.
Okay, first off, welcome to the forum and I'm really happy you've looked into proper care!
1. I'd recommend a 50% change every four days, and a 100% change every 3 days.
Thursday - 50% change
Sunday - 100% change
That's what has worked for me, but if you wish to do water changes more often (once a day) feel free to!
2. I've been told not to fiddle with the fish's PH. Most likely, they were born and raised in the area you come from. They are already used to the PH of your city. You can use tap water, just make sure to add dechlorinator.
"Reverse osmosis removes virtually everything from tap water, including essential minerals your aquarium inhabitants need to flourish. Depending on the type of aquarium the RO water is being used for, it may be necessary to add these essential minerals back into the purified water. Most marine salt mixes already contain these minerals and the use of RO conditioners is not necessary."
So if you do decided to use RO water, make sure to add the minerals back. For me, it's way too much work, and I just use tap. My tap water is mountain water so it's pretty good. One of the users here used RO water and added nothing to it. Her betta became quite sick. I think she switched to tap, and it's fine now.
3. Maybe he's feeling lethargic, what's the temp? Maybe he has an internal parasite and simply lost his appetite. Have you noticed the colour of his feces? Or maybe he's just not a piggy betta :p Also, maybe the food doesn't interest him. Bettas can be super picky! I have a crapload of food, because each of my bettas prefer a different brand/type.
4. Just run pantyhose over the plant, and notice if it snags. If it does, you should probably get it out of that tank. If you take away the plant, please get something for him to rest on near the surface so he has a comfy place to sleep.
I'm no expert, and feel free to correct me if I'm wrong about anything!
Also, if your water is really hard, or has a high/low pH, you can try mixing tap water and RO water to create a nice balance.
Yes I forgot to add that I do add salt to the tank also. That I was still unsure of because the dose on the bag was for 10 gallons. So, I made a 5 gallon container and mixed it up.
his temp right now is 80-82
I did try doing smaller changes at first but the water was still coming out not very clear and I ended up changing 100% after 2 more days. May I ask why I would leave some water behind? Is it better for him?
As for color of feces, I'm actually not sure. I have just been dumping the water.
Oh another question, He bought big decorative rocks not gravel, Is that okay or no? I figured when we switched tanks we could use the big rocks to make a little decoration for around the princess castle..
Omega one is three dollars at petco or petsmart. NLS is better for people with more then one betta, the containers are huge.
I don't think you are horrible at all! The container isn't that small, and it is the owner and the care that makes or breaks an animals health, and you are doing pretty well in that sense.
Okay I will get some new food tomorrow. See if it gets him to eat more.
My husband was so proud of the tank he got and thought it was wonderful since the guy at petco said he needed a 1/2 gallon. I face-palmed when I heard that.
My oldest daughter had a betta many years ago and I learned some but we're talking almost 10 years ago.. It lived a year a half before he passed (well he escaped because she forgot to replace the lid) Back then you relied on the guys at a pet store for information. That guy was lucky though because we had a 20 gallon tank doing nothing.