Hi everyone, I got a betta two weeks ago. These are the details of my tank:
- 2.5 gallons
- three small live plants
- sponge filter
- some gravel (not enough to cover the base of the tank)
- pH level around 7.0-7.6 (it varies)
- 11 W lamp
I'm in the process of cycling it right now.
1) I had been using bottled water at first, but switched to tap water when I started cycling because it was more convenient. But I noticed that the nitrite level went up after my first water change (using part tap water part bottled water). I tested my tap water and found it has a nitrite level between 0 and 0.5 ppm (the test kit I have right now only has intervals of 0.5).
Should I switch back to bottled water? The nitrite levels had been 0 ppm when I tested the water while it was still bottled water. Or is there a way to get rid of the nitrite in the tap water?
2) Is 11 W too bright? I don't have a way to adjust the lamp brightness, except by using a translucent paper to cover it. What is the ideal wattage to use for a betta in a 2.5 gallon tank? How many hours per day should I leave it on?
Edit: 3) Because the pH varies (it goes up), when I make water changes, should I align the new water's pH with the current pH of the water in the tank? Or should I make the fresh water a lower pH?