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Old 09-12-2013, 07:11 PM   #1 
MunchMeister
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Newbie going to buy stuff?

So I'm a total newbie, and I've never had a fish before. I've researched on the internet and on here about stuff. I'm wondering what I should get? And note, at least for now, I'll be getting only 1 Betta.

Tank - How large? I don't want it to be too large, but with everything I might have to get a larger tank. Abd for only 1 Betta, it might be too large.

Water conditioner - For sure, since I'll be using tap water from sink.

Fish net - Should I even get this? Could it possibly hurt the slime coating/fins? Should I use a cup instead?

Betta fish food (high in protein) - I'll get a simple fish food for carnivores of some kind, but should I get some bloodworms or something too? If I'm using simple flakes/pellets, should I get a variety?

Gravel/soil/stone/sand - I read before that if I use soil, I need a covering on it so it doesn't mud. I'll be growing plants btw. Should I stick with simple gravel? What about smooth stones?

Ornaments - Definitely, should I get a cave as well? I'll probably get a male betta, so I don't think they'll hide like females. What about toys like hoops? I want to entertain and interact with it maybe.

A water heater with a thermostat - I live in San Jose, CA, so winter and nights might not be very tropical. Should I get it?

A water filter - Definitely

A Betta Fish - Obviously, but should I try getting a baby Betta? Or an older one?

Plants - Duckweed maybe, but it's a floater. Should I get something where my Betta can rest on? Maybe a hygrophilia, or a rosette or rhizome type? And should I limit myself to 1-2 plants for now?

Tankmates - I'm only having 1 Betta, but should I get 1-2 snails too? Or will they just add to biowaste excrements?

---

Is there anything else that you guys would recommend I get as well?

As a last note, is it necessary to have to let my tank run fishless for 24 hours before adding it in? I don't want to resort to bacteria, since I'd rather use plants. I'd prefer to set everything up and put my future betta in all at once.

Thanks for your time.

Last edited by MunchMeister; 09-12-2013 at 07:16 PM.
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Old 09-12-2013, 07:41 PM   #2 
sushiisaboss75
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for a first betta, get an adult they are muchh easier to care for.
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Old 09-12-2013, 08:24 PM   #3 
SurfinCrab
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I have a net. I never use it.
Get an adult.
All my Guys have a Betta Hammock. It costs about $4 or $5 It's a leaf with a suction cup. You place it near the top of the water level. Last night all four boys were sleeping on theirs. My one girl has one and uses it too. My other girl is a cave dweller. My Third girl is a baby and is sleeping in a plant.
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Old 09-12-2013, 09:13 PM   #4 
carrohason
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My boy has a leaf hammock too, but I don't see him on it as often as I see him in his cave. While looking around at decorations, you should get something for him to hide/sleep in.

Some bettas are too...smart (for lack of a better word) for a cup, so I have to use a net every single time to get my boy out.
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Old 09-12-2013, 09:16 PM   #5 
MunchMeister
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Thanks for your replies, but does my list look nice for a beginner? Any suggestions to those and something else? Also, should I get a test kit?
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Old 09-12-2013, 09:19 PM   #6 
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Get as many plants as you want! Bettas LOVE plants! Make him a little jungle! Plants will also do a "silent cycle" and make the tank healthier :) I also think a cave would be a great idea for him! And maybe a Betta Log, my boys are CRAZY for those! They sleep in them every night and every time a walk by they swim out of in at the front of the tank. A heater and a thermometer are a must, as they like 78-82 degrees IMO, but some say as low as 76.

For a tank size I would suggest a 5 gallon if you don't want it to be too big, and down the road you could possibly add a snail or two (unless they hitch a ride on your plants!), but if you want some friends for him like Mystery/Apple snails, a 10 gallon is pretty much the minimum for tank friends. Someone who knows way more than me will come by with their own input, though! Congrats on planning your new Betta tank! I'm sure you'll have over five in six months ;)
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Old 09-12-2013, 09:29 PM   #7 
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So I posted at the same time you did... I'll try and give more exact answers :)

Tank - How large? I don't want it to be too large, but with everything I might have to get a larger tank. Abd for only 1 Betta, it might be too large. Bettas actually love big tanks, but prefer length to height. If you want a tank for just one male Betta that isn't too big, go for a 5 gallon. But if you want tank mates, go for a 10.

Water conditioner - For sure, since I'll be using tap water from sink. Awesome! You can never have enough water conditioner!

Fish net - Should I even get this? Could it possibly hurt the slime coating/fins? Should I use a cup instead? A cup is a "betta" option (see what I did there?) but a net is definitely a good backup plan and good to get him moving into the cup.

Betta fish food (high in protein) - I'll get a simple fish food for carnivores of some kind, but should I get some bloodworms or something too? If I'm using simple flakes/pellets, should I get a variety? He'll love bloodworms! But only as a treat, as they'll make him bloated. I've also heard that about flakes, and would suggest New Life Spectrum or Omega One Betta pellets- those are claimed to be the best of the best!

Gravel/soil/stone/sand - I read before that if I use soil, I need a covering on it so it doesn't mud. I'll be growing plants btw. Should I stick with simple gravel? What about smooth stones? This area isn't my expertise, but I've heard that capping it with sand is very popular. Hopefully someone who knows more about it than me comes along!

Ornaments - Definitely, should I get a cave as well? I'll probably get a male betta, so I don't think they'll hide like females. What about toys like hoops? I want to entertain and interact with it maybe. A cave would be great! Also a Betta log, as I mentioned above, might be nice. You could get him a "feeding hoop" so he expects to get his pellets from there.

A water heater with a thermostat - I live in San Jose, CA, so winter and nights might not be very tropical. Should I get it? As mentioned above, definitely!

A water filter - Definitely You don't always need a filter, it really depends on your personal preference. I, for instance, don't have them with my heavy finned males but do more frequent water changes. You can get anything from an internal to a hang on the back to a sponge filter- whatever suites your fancy!

A Betta Fish - Obviously, but should I try getting a baby Betta? Or an older one? Since it'll be your first, I would suggest the healthiest looking older Betta you can find.

Plants - Duckweed maybe, but it's a floater. Should I get something where my Betta can rest on? Maybe a hygrophilia, or a rosette or rhizome type? And should I limit myself to 1-2 plants for now? My own personal preferences are Cabomba, Swords, Valisneria and Java Ferns. Those kinds you've listed sound great too! They don't sell them in my area, so someone with experience can give you more advice on them :)

Tankmates - I'm only having 1 Betta, but should I get 1-2 snails too? Or will they just add to biowaste excrements?

---

Is there anything else that you guys would recommend I get as well? You mentioned a test kit above- I suggest the API Master Kit. Works great!

As a last note, is it necessary to have to let my tank run fishless for 24 hours before adding it in? I don't want to resort to bacteria, since I'd rather use plants. I'd prefer to set everything up and put my future betta in all at once. Someone with more experience on cycling can probably help you out here :) I'm not the best at explaining the process, so I think you should wait for a different member on that question.
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Old 09-12-2013, 09:36 PM   #8 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MunchMeister View Post
So I'm a total newbie, and I've never had a fish before. I've researched on the internet and on here about stuff. I'm wondering what I should get? And note, at least for now, I'll be getting only 1 Betta.

Tank - How large? I don't want it to be too large, but with everything I might have to get a larger tank. Abd for only 1 Betta, it might be too large.

What's your size limit? I'd say at least a 2.5 gallon. Or you can go with a 10 gallon that is about the same price, and it will be big enough to split later on if you want another betta or two. And you can get a glass lid for the 10 gallon for only like $13. The 2.5 costs $15 and so does a 10 gallon.

Water conditioner - For sure, since I'll be using tap water from sink.

Fish net - Should I even get this? Could it possibly hurt the slime coating/fins? Should I use a cup instead?

Depends what size tank you get. A smaller tank you could probably just scoop him out with a cup, but I use a net in my 5, 10 and 20 gal tanks.

Betta fish food (high in protein) - I'll get a simple fish food for carnivores of some kind, but should I get some bloodworms or something too? If I'm using simple flakes/pellets, should I get a variety?

Omega One pellets are sold at petsmart, only like $5 for a small container that will last you a while with one betta. You can get frozen bloodworms if you'd like, but only feed them once a week IMO. You can feed 5-6 O1 pellets per day to an adult betta. And one day of fasting.

Gravel/soil/stone/sand - I read before that if I use soil, I need a covering on it so it doesn't mud. I'll be growing plants btw. Should I stick with simple gravel? What about smooth stones?

It's really your preference. I use gravel in my planted tanks and my plants do fine.

Ornaments - Definitely, should I get a cave as well? I'll probably get a male betta, so I don't think they'll hide like females. What about toys like hoops? I want to entertain and interact with it maybe.

A cave of some sort would be nice, some of my bettas love to sleep under their cave ornaments. Make sure to NOT get any ornaments that have shiny paint. My female bettas don't hide more than the males btw, if anything they are more active!

A water heater with a thermostat - I live in San Jose, CA, so winter and nights might not be very tropical. Should I get it?

Yes, you will need a submersible heater. I live in southern ca and still need heaters! The size wattage will depend on the size of your tank. I use 100 watt eheim jager heaters in my 10 and 20 gals. My 5 gal has a 50 watt heater and my 2.5s have the 7.5 watt mini heaters. They prefer their water to be between 78-82F. I keep all mine at 82, I like my bettas to be nice and toasty. :)

A water filter - Definitely

Depends on tank size. Anything 5+ gallons, I'd definitely have a filter. None of my 2.5s are filtered, they get WCs every 3 days though.

A Betta Fish - Obviously, but should I try getting a baby Betta? Or an older one?

An adult would be easier, and that way you know what you're getting when you buy it. I've never bought a baby betta myself, mostly because they never look very healthy at my LFS. Have you considered buying online from a breeder?

Plants - Duckweed maybe, but it's a floater. Should I get something where my Betta can rest on? Maybe a hygrophilia, or a rosette or rhizome type? And should I limit myself to 1-2 plants for now?

A great floating plant in my experience has been hornwort. My bettas sleep all tangled up in it at the surface and its so cute! I also love duckweed, and water lettuce for floaters. They help with ammonia a lot. A good plant that my bettas love to rest on are anubias. Other plants I have in my tanks are various swords, water sprite, java ferns, and some stem plants that I can't remember the name of...

With live plants, you will be needing proper lighting as well, and fertilizer, I use liquid Flourish. And you'll want a CFL 6500k daylight bulb, they are the same type of bulbs you may use in lamps around your house, so they can be fairly cheap.


Tankmates - I'm only having 1 Betta, but should I get 1-2 snails too? Or will they just add to biowaste excrements?

Again, depends on tank size and what type of snails you're thinking about getting! You can get some ghost shrimp too.

---

Is there anything else that you guys would recommend I get as well?

A test kit, to test ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates. Especially if you plan on cycling your tank, you will need it.

As a last note, is it necessary to have to let my tank run fishless for 24 hours before adding it in? I don't want to resort to bacteria, since I'd rather use plants. I'd prefer to set everything up and put my future betta in all at once.

Running your tank for 24 hours won't cycle it. That takes time. If you keep up with water changes, then there's no reason why you couldn't just put your betta in right away.

Thanks for your time.
Hope to help!
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Old 09-12-2013, 10:26 PM   #9 
MunchMeister
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I return from my textbook and I see all this. Thanks for all of your help! I'm not sure what size of tank I should get, probably just 5 gallon for now.

Also, I forgot to ask a very simple question. How much and often should I feed pellets if I get those?

And is there ever such thing as too many plants in a tank?
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Old 09-12-2013, 10:56 PM   #10 
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Depends on the size of pellets. Omega one pellets, I feed 5-6 each day, and one day of fasting.

No, you can never have too many plants. :) I have a 5 gal hex, and I have 2 java ferns, a huge amazon sword, anubias, hornwort, water lettuce and duckweed. With one male betta, a nerite snail, a ramshorn snail and some ghost shrimp. The nerite will outgrow the tank eventually, they are suggested at one per 10 gallons. So he will be moved some day to a 10 gallon divided tank.
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