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Old 09-30-2010, 03:25 PM   #1 
armywife4
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Hello.

I am very new to this, I just got my first betta. He is blue and named Frankie. We have him in a ten gallon tank with lights, background paper, blue aquarium gravel scattered with green decorative gemstones, a fake plant, a castle ornament with places to hide, and a little turtle decoration.

His water temperature is 73 degrees. I think that is a bit cold? I am buying a heater today, it should be closer to 75-80 right??

I do not have a filter. Do I need one? I do a 50% water change every second day and use tap water with water conditioning stuff, and do a full water change once a week. is this good? I am feeding him Betta flakes that I got at the pet store. I have a turtle too [in a seperate tank, of course] and feed him frozen brineshrimp and bloodworms, but they come in 'individual portion' cubes, which is enough for a turtle but almost half the size of the fish! I could chop them down and give most to my turtle and some to the fish...do you think he would eat these? can I just dop it in, frozen, like I do for the turtle, or should I let it thaw first?

Is 10 gallons too much for one betta? I know people say they live in shallow waters, and I've heard they can drown...the plant reaches to about 2 inches from the water surface and sometimes he rests in it...but I am still worried.

Also, we bought a pleco and he was healthy and active at the store when we got him, then at home he didnt move and then died the next day. is something wrong with my tank that would make the pleco die? I want to house a pleco with the betta but need to make sure it will not die. I had filled the tank with water earlier that day, and realize now that I should have maybe waited for the water to cycle through first...could that be it?

sorry so many questions, I am excited about my new pet and want him to thrive! thank you in advance.
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Old 09-30-2010, 03:53 PM   #2 
Capricorn
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Well I don't know much about plecos, but I can help with the betta part. (:

Yes, you will need a heater- 78-80 is the perfect range for bettas. Filters are nice since you won't have to do 100% changes, but you don't absolutely need one. I'm pretty sure what you're doing now for changes will be just fine. On my ten gallon I have a aquaeon filter that cost about $15.. works nicely, easy to baffle to make the flow easier.

Frozen bloodworms/brineshrimp are great as a treat once or twice a week. I thaw mine before feeding, but if it's a little icy it should melt when it hits the tank water anyway. If you can, I would recommend getting a high-quality pellet instead of flakes.. it's easier to eat/digest and holds more nutrients than a flake. Check the ingredients and try to find one without wheat or something similar in the first couple ingredients. Personally, I feed New Lift Spectrum to mine, though there are others.

Ten gallons is just fine for a betta, don't worry. The only time you would want to lower the water would be if he were sick and unable to swim well.

Make sure to check the plant and decoration for sharp edges.. if you got a plastic plant you may want to replace it with a silk one. Plastic can catch and rip fins.

Congrats on your new fish, pictures? (:
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Old 09-30-2010, 04:38 PM   #3 
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Hi there, welcome to having a Betta fish! To answer a few of your questions:

1. temperature shifts and gets colder at night so I would recommend a heater 50 watts for your 10 gallon tank so that there is consistancy. (Marineland stealth heater is the best IMO)

2. Glad to hear your doing water changes! A filter is not an absolute must because Betta's do not like strong currents because of their beautiful long fins...it makes it harder for them to swim. But there are a few good filters out there and would help maintain water quality to keep your Frankie happy!

3. 10 gallons is great for your Betta. He wouldn't need anything bigger. People do keep them in those 1/2 gallon things and bowls which is almost in my opinion cruel. I wouldn't want to be kept in something like that, nor be able to swim around a lot.

4. Finally, Pleco fish are harder to acclimate than Betta fish and are a little more sensitive. You need to have your tank fully cycled (recommend to do that for all new tanks). This is a great site in more detail about the nitrogen cycle http://www.fishlore.com/FirstTankSetup.htm. When you do get your tank all cycled and everything make sure you have a back up plan. If your Frankie doesn't like sharing his 10 gallon with a pleco then have a tank ready for him. Betta's have different personalities. Plus your pleco can get well over a foot.

Hope this helps! Good luck and welcome to the forum!
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Old 09-30-2010, 04:55 PM   #4 
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I wouldn't recommend any species of pleco for a 10g tank, too small for even the smallest type....
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Old 09-30-2010, 04:58 PM   #5 
Adastra
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I would not get a second pleco--for dwarf plecos like bristlenoses and similar varieties, I would not put them in a tank smaller than 30 gallons. Common plecos get huge--I wouldn't recommend keeping them in less than 55 gallons. They produce a huge amount of waste and get too big for a tank this size. You will have problems and the pleco will not be happy in this tank. If you want some catfish to live with your betta--wait. Get a filter. I use the Tom Rapids Mini Canister on my 10G and I'm very satisfied with it--but you must have a cycled filter if you wish to add anything else to the tank.

Also, aquatic turtles are one of the most abused animals in the pet trade today. Most people simply do not grasp how large these turtles get and how quickly it happens--a 4" baby turtle should have a 30-50 gallon tank to start with, and when they're adults, we're talking about pond size tanks. Are you able to make the commitment to care for an aquatic turtle? It's something you should really think hard about.
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Old 09-30-2010, 07:26 PM   #6 
armywife4
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I would not get a second pleco--for dwarf plecos like bristlenoses and similar varieties, I would not put them in a tank smaller than 30 gallons. Common plecos get huge--I wouldn't recommend keeping them in less than 55 gallons. They produce a huge amount of waste and get too big for a tank this size. You will have problems and the pleco will not be happy in this tank. If you want some catfish to live with your betta--wait. Get a filter. I use the Tom Rapids Mini Canister on my 10G and I'm very satisfied with it--but you must have a cycled filter if you wish to add anything else to the tank.

Also, aquatic turtles are one of the most abused animals in the pet trade today. Most people simply do not grasp how large these turtles get and how quickly it happens--a 4" baby turtle should have a 30-50 gallon tank to start with, and when they're adults, we're talking about pond size tanks. Are you able to make the commitment to care for an aquatic turtle? It's something you should really think hard about.
Actually, I do know how to care for my turtle thank you. I take AMAZING care of him. ... He is in a 75 gallon which is filled with 74 gallons of water right to the top, and I built him an above-tank basking house which is really cool. I take excellent care of him and he is beautiful and happy. I did think about the commitment so I don't see what business it is of yours to judge my ability to care for my other pets. thanks.

Edit: sorry for the rudeness but I took that personally.

My turtle is 8 years old, he is already fully grown. I got him two years ago from someone. It's not like I bought him really small without understanding what goes into it. I know what you mean, a lot of people buy them for their kids and don't understand, they are often abused and it is sad.

Last edited by armywife4; 09-30-2010 at 07:41 PM.
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Old 09-30-2010, 07:39 PM   #7 
armywife4
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Thanks for the replies everyone! :) Went out today and bought a 50 watt heater, says it is good for 2-10 gallons. so I put that in. I will not get a second pleco. Yeah, the plant is plastic, hmm. I should switch to silk maybe then. Thanks for the tip about pellets being healthier for them than flakes, I will switch the food.

Thanks for all the info.

I will post pics later. :)
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Old 09-30-2010, 08:04 PM   #8 
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Originally Posted by armywife4 View Post
Thanks for the replies everyone! :) Went out today and bought a 50 watt heater, says it is good for 2-10 gallons. so I put that in. I will not get a second pleco. Yeah, the plant is plastic, hmm. I should switch to silk maybe then. Thanks for the tip about pellets being healthier for them than flakes, I will switch the food.

Thanks for all the info.

I will post pics later. :)
Welcome to the forum! EXCELLENT job getting the things you need to make your betta happy - he will LOVE living in a 10 gal. tank!

Just one more thing about a pleco (just for future reference) - while bettas prefer still water, plecos like lots of water movement/oxygenation.

One more thing - bettas LOVE live plants & they help keep the tank clean. Some easy beginner low light plants are java fern, java moss & anubius. You can attach them to driftwood, rocks and or decorations since they don't need to be planted in the substrate. Matter of fact, planting them will actually kill them.

Last edited by Lion Mom; 09-30-2010 at 08:08 PM.
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Old 09-30-2010, 08:08 PM   #9 
armywife4
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Someone asked for photos so here they are :D Thanks again for all the advice people. Sorry for unclear pics of Frankie...










if you haveany suggestions on my tank, please let me know! thanks.
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Old 09-30-2010, 08:17 PM   #10 
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VERY pretty boy - looks a LOT like my first ever Betta from years ago named "Bob". :)

Only suggestion I would have is to get rid of the plastic plant and put a multitude of silk and/or live plants in.

Other than that, it's a great lookin' tank, IMO!
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