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Old 09-02-2013, 05:05 PM   #1 
Cowgirlthing
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Talking My First Fish

Hey everyone! I'm a young adult hoping to purchase a Betta Fish on Friday (August Friday 6th) I'm very new to owning fish, but not to pets in general. I've had several pets, a dog, 3 cats, a finch, 2 hamsters, a horse (I leased), and a hedgehog, but never ever a fish! So I'm very excited, but I haven't the slightest clue where to even begin, I have a bowl already and I plan on only buying one because I know they are solitary fish with little maintenance. But I just have general care questions! I'd be delighted if someone could answer! Once I get him or her I will post pictures and keep you all updated! I know it's "just" a fish but I take pride it caring for all of the animals I had. I know I could ask all these questions to the pet store owners but I'd rather ask people with experience in these fish!

So here are just some general care questions!
- What sort of water do I use? Bottle, Tap, etc.
- How often should I clean out the bowl? And how do I clean it out, transfer the fish, etc?
- Any food suggestions?
- Decoration suggestions?
- Do fish "warm up to you"?
- How should I transfer the first from the bag to the bowl?
- How do I tell a male from a female?
- Any other tips or suggestions for me?

Thank you for taking the time to read this!
Here is the bowl I got for him or her! (It's Cat in the Hat Themed!)
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Old 09-02-2013, 06:01 PM   #2 
MidnightsSong
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I have a feeling that that bowl isn't big enough to safely house a healthy fish. How big is it? Bettas generally need at least a 3 gallon tank that is heated and filtered. If you use a bowl, it'd more than likely have to be cleaned daily and all the water would have to be replaced. In a larger tank, say a three gallon you could change out 30% of the water every other day.
All decor should be soft because if theyre not, betta fins can easily get torn. As a test, you can run a nylon pantyhose over any decor and if it snags it's no good.
When you first get him, id set him and the bag in the tank, let him accumilate to the water. About every ten minutes, add some water from the tank into the bag with the betta. After about an hour you can release him into the tank.
I suggest using tap water but conditioning with Prime.
I use omega one as a food, there is one other good brand, but I can't think of the name. Anyone help with this?
Edit: it just came to me:
The other food brand is New Life Spectrum.

Last edited by MidnightsSong; 09-02-2013 at 06:17 PM.
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Old 09-02-2013, 06:12 PM   #3 
GinjaHaZ
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Bettas require moderate care and extreme care when sick. And by looking at the pic, that bowl seems too small. Is it a 1 gal or a 1/2 gal? And do you have a heater? anything less than a 1 gal is difficult to heat. but to answer your Q's:

Oh and there's a good sticky at the top of this forum. Introduction to betta basics. It has some good info as well.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cowgirlthing View Post

So here are just some general care questions!
- What sort of water do I use? Bottle, Tap, etc. Tap is fine but you have to use a water conditioner such as AquaSafe or BettaSafe. Bottled water lacks the minerals they need.
- How often should I clean out the bowl? And how do I clean it out, transfer the fish, etc? That depends on the size. that's why I asked about the size of your bowl. With a 1/2 gal it would need cleaning pretty much every day bc of ammonia build up. With a 1 gal there are a few ways to schedule cleaning such as:
~Change 10% every day and 100% at he end of the week
~50% half way through the week and 100% at the end
~or 100% every 3 days. (this is how I do it)
But to just clean it, simply run it under warm/hot water. And to transfer the fish you can scoop him/her out with a net or a cup.
- Any food suggestions? New Life Spectrum and Omega One are the brands recommended on here.
- Decoration suggestions? Nothing ragged or pointy. Try the panty hose test. If it tears those, it will tear the fishes fins as well. And make sure to soak decor in water before adding it to the tank. Sometimes it's not made well and the paint can pollute the water. If the soaking water smells like spray paint, it's not safe.
- Do fish "warm up to you"? Yes, in a sense they can.
- How should I transfer the first from the bag to the bowl? let the bag float in the new water for a while so the temps can be the same.
- How do I tell a male from a female? Males are usually larger and have longer fins, but once you are able to post a pic it'll be easier to tell.
- Any other tips or suggestions for me? Try a larger bowl or tank so you have have room for a heater and maybe a filter. (repeating myself. lol) That just makes things easier. lol

Thank you for taking the time to read this!
Here is the bowl I got for him or her! (It's Cat in the Hat Themed!)

Last edited by GinjaHaZ; 09-02-2013 at 06:18 PM. Reason: Extra Info
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Old 09-02-2013, 06:25 PM   #4 
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It's a 1 gallon, at our store we have the Marina Betta Mini Heater which I will purchase for the bowl it heats up to 1.5 gallons and had great reviews. I can easily clean the bowl every 3 days with a water conditioner. Tap water is plenty here, are the directions on the bottle of the conditioner? Also the store houses things called "Live Moss Balls" any knowledge on them?
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Old 09-02-2013, 06:32 PM   #5 
GinjaHaZ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cowgirlthing View Post
It's a 1 gallon, at our store we have the Marina Betta Mini Heater which I will purchase for the bowl it heats up to 1.5 gallons and had great reviews. I can easily clean the bowl every 3 days with a water conditioner. Tap water is plenty here, are the directions on the bottle of the conditioner? Also the store houses things called "Live Moss Balls" any knowledge on them?
I used that heater and it did what I needed it to do. and yes, the directions are on the back of the bottle. I've used the Betta Safe from Tetra so it's 7 drops per gallon.
but I have no knowledge of the moss balls though I have seen them before. Sorry. lol
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Old 09-02-2013, 06:36 PM   #6 
Cowgirlthing
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It's actually a good 4L bowl XD So a little under 1.5 gallons. And alright, as long as there are directions. The people at the store claimed they filter the water a keep it cleaner a little while longer, but I have no idea. :S A Betta and Moss ball only cost 10$ here, so I may give it a try. Just to see.
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Old 09-02-2013, 06:46 PM   #7 
Jdillio1988
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I really think that you should get a larger bowel/tank. Like Midnightsongs said, bettas do best in a 3 gallon or up. THey need heat AND filtration. Bettas can survive in small containers, but they can not THRIVE. It would be like having a horse in a 50x50 corral. They can survive in it, but will never have the room to really live.
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Old 09-02-2013, 06:49 PM   #8 
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You have to remember that once you factor in the displacement caused by the substrate and the decorations, you may end up with less water than a gallon (4L is a gallon roughly).

This is another reason why it is sometimes best to purchase a bigger bowl/tank. Because that way even if you lose some of the water through displacement, you still end up with a suitable environment for your betta.
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Old 09-02-2013, 07:02 PM   #9 
Cowgirlthing
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This is what they are in that my pet store. And those tanks here cost 100$ or more cause my pet store, is a giant rip off.
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Old 09-02-2013, 07:10 PM   #10 
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A betta should not live in a bowl. A large, roomy 2 or 3 gallon tank would be much better.

When using tap water, water conditioner is recommended. Every time you clean the tank, add the water conditioner for a happy, healthy betta :)

I would strongly recommend pellets or flakes as a food. Make sure the pellets are tiny and in the shape of a ball. You can use bloodworms or shrimp as treats for your new fish, not as a regular food though.
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