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Old 08-22-2010, 12:48 PM   #1 
jenniedee
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First Betta Tank, advice welcome

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:
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Old 08-22-2010, 01:33 PM   #2 
jenniedee
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Maybe I should have put this in the habitats section... Sorry if this is the wrong place!
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Old 08-22-2010, 01:46 PM   #3 
prettylittlefishy
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I usually add everything (except the fish itsself) while I cycle.
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Old 08-22-2010, 02:31 PM   #4 
karlhague
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I like to add the plants whilst the tank cycles, Java moss gets the nutriants from the water column.


And it will grow over anything you tie it to.
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Old 08-22-2010, 07:14 PM   #5 
Kokonoko
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Yea, I would add as you cycle. I've never really done a proper cycling yet, but adding the plant in with your cycling couldn't hurt, and would even promote the growth of the good bacteria faster! I would think at least. also, like you mentioned, if you do decide to get plants, you definently might want to replace the current light bulb.
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Old 08-22-2010, 08:00 PM   #6 
badxgillen
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as far as cycling i personaly would recomend placeing plants in as soon as temperature has stabelized.you can utilize someone elses tank and use a portion of there gravel and water to jump start the benificial bacteria...check with you local store to see if they do water tests and if they do see if its reading the same as your kit..when buying a betta have the employee feed the fish and make sure it is eating and is lively asides from that just keep tuned into this sight and you should be fine....ADIOS........
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Old 08-24-2010, 03:12 PM   #7 
jenniedee
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Thanks guys!

I will try to get the plants in soon and then start testing when the test kit arrives. I can't wait to actually get a betta but I really want the tank to be just perfect for him.
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Old 08-24-2010, 03:28 PM   #8 
BlueHaven
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I think it's good to have the plants in while the tank is cycling, it eats ammonia and keeps the tank healthier. It should help quicken the cycle too, but i'm not sure. The amazon sword plant and the anubias nana are nice plants that are pretty easy to take care of. Though I think the amazon sword grows fast.
I have that aquarium too. :)
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Old 08-24-2010, 07:24 PM   #9 
shmifty5
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I would like to add that you should put the food in a baggie or some type of container so it doesn't create that gross sludge in the tank, keeps it cleaner while establishing your tank and no need to clean it up after it's all cycled.
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Old 08-25-2010, 09:18 PM   #10 
zoragen
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Sword plants need more light & will get big.

Java moss & anubias are good low light plants.
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