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Old 01-02-2010, 05:57 PM   #1 
Kumiko
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5g in Need of Cleaners?

I've had at least one betta for about 6 years now. I've had only 2 bettas though called Marcus and Dragonfly that have passed or have been given up to someone else because of moving to another location.

Right now I have Auron, a crowntail betta with lots of character that I got at Petco. He's in a five gallon with a small filter and fake plants. The filter makes a little current to one part of the tank, but because i gather the fake plants to break some of the current, he doesn't seem to be bothered at all. He can rest in place without being moved in most areas of the tank.

I get this white puffy filament in my aquarium on the gravel (some accrueing on parts of fake plants), I assume it to be algae or a bacteria. It grows more on the gravel than anything else on what I assume to be betta poo.

I was thinking about getting 2 little otos fish to clean up and maybe getting a real plant in there somehow. I never had a real plant before in an aquarium. Would this be good tactics to work against this algae or bacteria? What do you think this fluffy-looking filament is?

Thanks!
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Old 01-02-2010, 11:59 PM   #2 
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I can't help you on the filament but with only 5 gallons its not really a good idea to add two more fish.. one maybe but I think those are schooling fish? so you need more than just one. Think in terms that you only have 3 gallons because your betta is probably about 2inches or so and a fish needs at least 1 gallon per inch of fish.

You might try a mystery snail or other type of snail but I would try to identify the "filament" first as it could be harmful. Got any pics of it?
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Old 01-03-2010, 12:12 AM   #3 
k stiles
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hello and welcome to the fourm
otos don't school, I don't think at least, because you need 6 cories in a ten gallon tank, but only 3 otos in there, but i'm not really educated on them, so, well yeah, other members could help you more than me
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Old 01-03-2010, 02:24 AM   #4 
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according to this ottos won't do well.. they need to be in small schools and get to two inches in size (meaning each fish will need two gallons of water ideally).. plus it says they don't do with overly aggressive tankmates and we all know bettas have their moments ;)

edit.. oops forgot the link.. oh well its late don't blame me ;) http://www.fishlore.com/profiles_otocinclus.htm
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Old 01-03-2010, 10:33 AM   #5 
Kumiko
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Thanks for the advice! The filament mostly accumulates over time. I'm sorry I can't give a picture. I just did a complete change yesterday so it will be a week or so. I do water changes once a month for a filtered tank. Is this good enough for a five gallon? Probably not if I get this stuff in auron's tank. Also, I always give tap-treated water when the tank water evaporates from it's original level in the tank... so I would say I do about 20% water changes every 2 weeks or so.

I've been reading more and more on this betta forum. I need to take my shopiholic skills over to Petco and muster up some much needed necessities.
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Old 01-03-2010, 02:08 PM   #6 
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I had otos with my betta in his 5 gallon, however he thinks he needs to chase them. But I also have them with my girl and she is fine with them. So it really depends on the betta's personality. The otos did a fantastic job cleaning the tank though.

They need to be in at least groups of 3. Groups of 2 will do, but they are much more active with 3 or more.
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Old 01-03-2010, 02:40 PM   #7 
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A five gallon should get a pwc of about 50% weekly with vacuuming. You might be ok with only doing 20-30% pwc weekly (I always do 50% to be safe). The cleaner your water the happier your fish.
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Old 01-03-2010, 09:57 PM   #8 
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I went "shop-happy" today at petco. WHEW!!!
Got a gravel vacum, new wisper filter for 3 gallons, thermometer, aquarium salt, water tester, plant bulbs, tank background... i think that's it. He seems very happy with all his new stuff too!!!!

I felt so embarressed today because I had a Elite Mini as a filter previously. The worker was like "it been more than five years since we carried those." The thing is... i've had it for 6 years so that worker knew his crap! lol

I'm really thinking about a mystery snail though. I think it would improve the cleaniness.
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Old 01-03-2010, 11:40 PM   #9 
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Make sure you don't put the bulbs in until they sprout.. the best way to do it is put a bowl of tank water under a lamp (like desklamp) and put the bulbs in there.. any that don't sink right away throw out.. they're not good. Change the water every other day or so and check the bulbs... once they start to sprout put them in the tank but don't bury them... if you bury them the bulb will rot (which will be really bad).

A mystery snail would be a great addition.. some people say they are messy but I've had nothing but good things and they've kept my tanks pretty clean. Make sure you get some algae wafers to feed 2-3 times a week to supplement.. also cucumber is good too.
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Old 01-06-2010, 11:53 AM   #10 
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I have a crowntail male betta and an octo dwarf pleco in a 5gl and they seem to do just fine. I keep the water level filled to the top so the betta doesn't get upset by the water flow. The pleco actually seems happier with the betta than he did with my danios (who have been transfered). The pleco is out and about all the time (versus hiding with the spazoid danios). The betta eyeballs him but never nips or chases. I would do live plants for sure. I would also suggest getting a small cave ornament for the betta to hide in and make sure your plants are short but slightly dense on the bottom of the tank. Bettas are pond fish, after all, and love to hide. I would also suggest a 50% water change weekly. Even though both fish are hardy, it is a small environment. I would not suggest doing snails without a fish that eats snails unless you only have one. They mass produce.
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