New year, so figgured I'd start a journal!
This first part will probably be long, since I'll start from the beginning.
Used to really be into fish keeping when I was younger, had a 30 gallon I was always playing around with. Bought TONS of books about everything fish and read them all voraciously. I learned a lot, but only about regular tropical community tanks. I never had a betta though. Maybe I did once, when I was very young, but have forgotten about it.
Many years later, I decided to get back into fish. Budget and space wasn't going to allow me to have a big community tank like before though, so one day when I was picking up some stuff at WalMart, I went to look at bettas. Remy was love at first sight, and though I hadn't planned on doing anything but look, I grabbed him, and bought some basics to set him up.
Remy in his first home:
I didn't have his heater or live plants at first, just a log with a silk plant attached and sand. I joined this forum pretty quickly though, and learned bettas need warm water! Also decided to get some live plants to help with ammonia, something else I didn't know about. I thought you only changed water when it looked dirty. So glad we have so much info here :)
So, Remy started looking rather big for his one gallon, so I went out and bought a 3 gallon kit that was on sale. In went Remy, and he sure used every square inch of that tank! Active guy.
Now, I had a spare tank. We know what comes next, yes? I went to a LPS to see what they had, with the intent to get a sickly fellow who noone would pick and was doomed to death in a cup. Little Wilbur was a sad sight there on the shelf. Tan body, brown fins, no hint of color. To make it worse, his fins were just single skinny spikes no thicker than a pencil lead their entire length. I knew he was the guy I was looking for.
I got him home and warmed him up a little before putting him in Remy's old tank. Within an hour of being in there, he was clearly a solid red veiltail. He didn't swim, just floated on the top with his still spiked fins, uninterested in food. I had doubts he'd make it, but figgured I'd at least make him comfortable til he died.
2 days later, he started trying to swim a little, and ate. Fins were the same, and he'd try really hard to swim to the bottom, but he'd get tired and popped back up like a cork. I was getting hope in his chances though, since he was eating (he was practically skeletal)
On the 4th day, I woke up and saw his fins had almost completely unfurled, and were remarkably undamaged... And he was swimming normal!
It was literally overnight he went from a sickly thing to a normal betta with nothing more than a warm home with room to move.
I don't have pictures of him unfortunately, but he's in Remy's old 1gallon with the old log, plant, and a few sprigs of moneywort. He's doing great, but got moved to the nightstand to make room for the next guy on my desk. I wish I had all 3 right here to watch while I'm on the computer.
So, a couple weeks passed, and I really, really wanted to add a lighter color or marble to my "family"
Petco had a nice looking marble, but he was really quite sickly, and this time, I wanted a healthy one.
Petsmart on the other hand, I found Igavon. Well, he found me, isn't that the way it works? I really couldn't afford another betta and setup, but I was in the throws of the addiction, so I did the best I could.
So now we are at present date, redid Remy's tank a little because I have been so inspired by tanks shown in the big "show your betta's home!" thread, I just needed to add a few things, plus his plants have really grown!
One last thing, about tank mates for Remy. I got 2 super cute whisker shrimp to be janitors. They have soooo much personality, they got named Lenny and Squiggy. They are pretty big, and fearless, which in the end was their undoing. The first few days, everyone was just going about their business, and I was really pleased it was working out. Then for no apparent reason, Remy started tormenting them. He seldom bit, was just "nose herding" relentlessly. I was hoping he'd get over it, but in the end, he exhausted both of them to death :( The shrimp were not smart enough to hide, although they had plenty of cover for it. They'd just scurry around on the bottom or swim merrily through the middle of the tank.
Oh well, live and learn.
Now I am trying out a snail, but it's not looking too good eaither. Remy is such a brat. He's bit off the poor things antannae. I have heard they grow back pretty fast, so have just been letting things run their course, hoping Remy will finally accept him. He's not constantly bugging it, just flares at it now and then with an occasional shell peck. I'd put the snail somewhere else, but they just poop too much for a 1 gallon, so since I'm not as compassionate as if it were a fish, I'll just see how it works out over time. Sorry if someone thinks "You're being so cruel!" But for me, a snail is not like a fish!
That's all for now. I'll update here now and then. it's just nice to have a record of things I think!