Hello! I am new here and have been reading the forums a bit before posting. I have wanted to keep fish for a long time and am finally getting started with a betta.
After doing some research I went this weekend and bought a 2.5 gal Aqueon Mini Bow. I understand I may need to put pantyhose over the filter intake and do some arrangements with plants to lessen the flow from the filter. I also got some gravel and some flake food to start doing a fishless cycle.
Right now I have set the tank up with its filter and light. I used the Aqueon water conditioner on the water, and I added 3-4 flakes of food and will repeat that twice a day or so. I have read it can take up to a month for the tank to cycle.
I am waiting on the API Freshwater Master test kit to arrive in the mail so I can start testing for ammonia/nitrites/nitrates.
So... I have some questions on where to go from here. I want to add live plants to the aquarium. I have heard Java Moss is good for bettas, and would also like one more "upright" plant. When do I add them? Should I do it while the tank is cycling? Or should I wait, add plants after it's cycled, then monitor the levels some more before adding the betta?
I will be monitoring the water temperature as it cycles and adding a 7.5W heater if necessary (I think it will be.)
The light that comes with this tank is incandescent and I think in the long run that is going to not work out too well so I am thinking of replacing it; any ideas for this specific tank?
And FINALLY... where should I get my betta? On one hand I would rather not buy one from the pet store as I worry they might not be healthy. On the other hand, having one shipped to me would be difficult since I work and could not take a day off to meet the shipment at home. However, I would rather support responsible, healthy betta breeding practices.
OK... that's tl;dr but I hope someone has some advice :)
Here is my tank right now; once I get an extension cord it will be further away from the window: