Hi, we are the proud new parents of a male Betta named Carlos!!! He is my daughters first pet, although we are doing the care and maintenance of course! As you can see he is very pretty and we really really like him
I had no idea that there was so much to know about these fish!!!!! I admit that we should have done our research FIRST before buying, but we're catching up.
We got him a 1.5 gallon tank that came with a little filter that runs very gently. He has 2 plants and a "Little Mermaid" since my daughter loves the Little mermaid (it was a kit, lol) There is also gravel at the bottom of the tank and it has a light. Should I get him a "hiding place" he likes to go behind the filter, should I get him something more special and secure???
First, I didn't know he needed a heater, or warm water. We thought room temp was fine. We don't have a heater for him, yet he still seems to be perfectly fine. He's social and active and making lots of bubbles. So, do we really need to get him one if he seems happy without it? Our house is kept at 69-71 degrees, but I don't know the temp of the water.
Also, we need to get a water testing kit I suppose, from what i've read on here. Is that very important too? We filled his tank from the tap and let it filter for 12 hours before putting him in. If we get a test kit and the parameters are off then what do we do? Are there kits to fix that?
We put Betta water conditioner in the tank according to the directions when we assembled it.
Third, cleaning the tank. . . . . . . With a filter is it o.k. to clean it once a week? And how in the world do we clean it?!?!? I've read about these 50% water changes but what does that mean and how is it done? It seems like just changing half the water wouldn't clean out the rocks. So when I clean it do i just dump half the water and put new water OR do I clean out the whole tank, rocks, plants and all??? And then once I do that do I have to wait before putting him back in??????? This tank cleaning is the most confusing aspect of care to me, so help is appreciated!!!!! And when i'm cleaning it what do i do with him??? Do I add more conditioner?. . . the questions go on and on.
Also, he came with his top fin curled. I saw a thread about that, is it something i should be concerned with?
I'm sure if I typed long enough I'd think of more but this seems like a bit much already! I HAVE ready the sticky care thread but it still left me with these questions and feeling like I had so much more to learn and that maybe we started out on the wrong foot with our Betta.
He really does seem very happy and social. He seems to get excited when i/we walk into the kitchen (where he currently resides on the countertop) - he swims to the front of the tank and stares at me and flips his fins real fast!!! I am guessing this is normal. . . ?
Oh and one more thing. About holding the mirror up to the tank. . . is that cruel or is it good for them to get some extra excersize and protect their territory??? I did it yesterday and he didn't' seem very aggressive. He puffed up and got excited but kept swimming away, as if being submissive and surrendering! Anyway - just wondering if that is good or bad or indifferent?!?!?!?!?! I don't want him to feel threatened.
I think that's about it for now! Like I said he seems very happy with lots of bubbles around the top of his tank!
Thank you for any and all input you can give me - I appreciate it!!!!!