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Old 01-13-2010, 07:37 PM   #1 
LisaC144
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Questions on Betta Care

I want to buy a 5 gallon tank for a betta. I wanted to know if the tank needed to be cylcedfor a betta since they breath air and what type of filter is best for them?
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Old 01-13-2010, 07:43 PM   #2 
Romad
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Hi Lisa,

I have a betta in a 5 gallon. I did not cycle it first but keep on top of the water changes and water params. for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, ph. Since you won't have a big load of waste, food, and poop with one fish in that size tank, you should be fine.
Sounds like you already have experience in that field by your signature.

I use an Aqua Clear 20 on my 5 gal. - love love love it. You can adjust the tube to max or minimum flow, it's completely silent, and it's easy to maintain and clean.

Good luck and let us know when you get your new buddy.
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Old 01-13-2010, 08:21 PM   #3 
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If your going to have a filter you might as well cycle.. if not its not really worth the money. The filter really doesn't take out any big particles to make the water cleaner so filter or no filter you will have to do frequent water changes.

If you cycle you'll be looking at 1 20-30% change a week. If you don't cycle you should be doing 2 50% changes a week IMO.

A low flow filter is best but it really depends on your betta.. some don't mind the filter and others need it to be buffered.
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Old 01-14-2010, 08:34 AM   #4 
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I was torn between getting a filter or not a filter. I've seen some 5 gallon aquarium kits where it comes with a filter, but when I kept betta's as a child we never had a filter. That was years ago though, and I now know a whole lot more about fish. Is a filter necessary for a 5 gallon with only a betta?

1fish2fish: How would I buffer the filter?
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Old 01-14-2010, 09:02 AM   #5 
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My opinion on the filter is yes. Why not have a cycled tank to cut down on the amount of water changes? I have 7 tanks so wouldn't even consider un-cycled tanks bc I already spend half a day doing water changes.

Plus, the filter gives the water some aeration so I don't need to put in an airstone. And if you're filter is adjustable for flow, you can judge what works best for your fishie. My guy loves to swim in the stream of water and I have it on medium(ish) flow.
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Old 01-14-2010, 09:35 AM   #6 
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A cycled tank has to have a filter.
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Old 01-14-2010, 11:17 AM   #7 
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How you buffer the filter depends on what type of filter you have. For instance a whisper filter (in tank) can be buffered really easily by simply taking a piece of pantyhose (that includes the toe) and covering the intake. I would say 95% of filters can be buffered using pantyhose

Other ways include cutting plastic bottles and putting it over the outflow and taking sponges and blocking the outflow so it is slowed down to a trickle.

And to address your other question... you don't necessarily NEED a filter for a 5 gallon... but realize you will have to do LARGE (ie 50-100%) water changes 2-4 times a week. It is MUCH easier to cycle a tank 5+ gallons (or smaller)... while the cycle takes a while and can get involved (depending on how you do it) after your tank is cycled maintenance becomes MUCH easier and less time consuming. Almost anyone will tell you its in your best interest to cycle a 5 gallon tank. It is also in the best interest of the fish bc the fewer water changes = less stress on the fish.
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Old 01-14-2010, 01:11 PM   #8 
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The sponge sounds like the best idea. I think the pantyhose might be an eyesore (yes or no?) and same with the plastic bottle method on the outflow..
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Old 01-14-2010, 03:41 PM   #9 
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usually the filter is black.. so you use black panty hose.. my filter is in plain sight but you can hardly tell it has the pantyhose on it.

Don't take this like I'm lecturing or anything.. but stuff like buffers your really going for functionality and the welfare of the fish.. not so much the look. And believe me.. no one is looking at your filter ;)
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Old 01-14-2010, 03:48 PM   #10 
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I like the idea of the black pantyhose. It would blend in better.
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