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Old 12-20-2010, 03:29 AM   #1 
Robyn
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Question A few q's :)

I recently got some money for Christmas (early I know but u see who u see when u see them) and I am planning to get a tank and a betta.
I googled what I should get for it; says 1 gallon/inch of fish and to make sure it has plenty of places to hide and at least one plant with BIG leaves near the surface for it to lay on.
I decided on a 8 gallon; bettas can grow to 3in and i wanted to put nice plants, ornaments, and maybe other fish in there too. Also, I have to have the water a little lower for the surface plants; need a lid because I have a cat that likes fish. :P
I decided on some java moss, african water ferns, water shamrocks, moehlmanni crypt, e.agustifolia, and a tiger lotus (all need low-med lighting at around 20-25 deg C to grow; likely have to mail out to get them too); along with a rock tunnel, some drift wood, and a gargoyle figure my dad gave me (has moss and starfish on it; its for a tank. :P), and a castle, kind've typical. How would I go about cleaning everything before I put them into the tank, and the tank itself? Always a good idea to wash what you buy at any store before use..

I was wondering if anyone knew what gravel or sand I should use? I know I need an 12-16 watt light but will that heat the water up too? I know I need a filter and a buffer for it and I imagine the lights will have to be turned off at some point; probably during the day since there will be a little sunlight.

Bettas are pretty flexible as long as the water is clean arent they? Would it die in these conditions? Also, what type are the betta with tonnes of fins and bright colors? What fish could I put in there with it? Two males would kill each other right? (Wanted to get a light colored and a dark colored; name them Dracula and Alucard. lol)

PS. I know I'll have to cycle the tank for a while; and since my tap water has higher sulfer levels I'll need to condition the water ALWAYS too.

PSS. I'm very sorry I wrote so much!! I'm excited. And very new to fishys. LOL
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Old 12-20-2010, 04:10 AM   #2 
Robyn
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Well; I think I od'd myself with the plants. Actually prob go with a 5gal and just a rock with java moss and the tiger lotus. It'd still need med-low lighting and 20-25 deg C; but the wattage of the light would go down to 7.5-10; gonna be hard to find an appropriate light.

Keeping the gargoyle in there; he'd look funny with the rest of my collection. :P

All the questions remain though. But I think 2 females would get along better, even more than a male and another type of fish, but I'm not sure if they are as brilliant as the males.
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Old 12-20-2010, 04:52 AM   #3 
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Okay don't get two females! One will harass the other to death, you can't keep two of any Bettas together as pets. If you did research and could manage a sorority or something (Warning: don't try this unless you have some good Betta keeping expirience) tham you could get some females (Once again, takes lots of research don't try until research is done) stick with one Betta. In a 5 gallon, you probably shouldn't get any other fish, but maybe you could keep shrimp or something (Though a Betta might consider it a snack!)

I don't know too much about plants or any of your other questions (tired and don't wanna think lol!), but that's my stocking warning for a 5 gal. Good luck!
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Old 12-20-2010, 06:22 AM   #4 
Duncan13
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+1 :)
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Old 12-20-2010, 08:28 AM   #5 
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For the light you'll want a compact fluorescent around the 6500-6700K range. I get mine from walmart. This will not heat the water. You do not want the light to heat the water as it causes temperature flucuations when you turn it on/off... this constant temperature change can weaken the betta's immune system. For the plants, you'll also want to have the light on for about 10 to 12 hours during they day and then shut it off at night.

This being said you will need a heater. Bettas are tropical and need to be kept at a temperature of around 78 degrees. It can be a little lower, little higher, but the important thing is that it is stable. Don't want to get below 70 to 72 degrees.

Agree with the females. A 5 gallon tank will be perfect for one male or female betta. A couple shrimp or snail would be great too.

Gravel or sand is a preference thing. I'd google some images and see which you like better, and then your local pet store should have what you need.

Your tank sounds great, but the water must be kept clean or it will affect your betta. You can cycle this tank (if you add a filter). Google the nitrogen cycle to learn about cycling. It will allow you to make less frequent water changes because of a build up of healthy bacteria. Otherwise, you will need to be doing frequent, substantial water changes throughout the week.

This has kind of been covered, but bettas are lone fish that do not work well with their own kind. Female sororities can be made, but you need at least 4 to spread out the aggression. You can achieve this with a 10 gallon tank or larger. In a 5 gallon you really won't be able to add any other fish, but in a 10 gallon you would be able to add a few select species that tend to do well with bettas. These include platys, cory catfish, shrimp, snails, african dwarf frogs (difficult in their own right), possibly some schooling tetras. However, each betta is different and may not be alright with tank mates.

Another option is to get a 10 gallon tank and divide it so you can have two bettas. You can buy or make dividers that will split the tank right down the middle.
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Old 12-20-2010, 09:29 AM   #6 
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Welcome to the forum :D

With the lillies you're getting, you might want to consider getting something like eco-complete substrate so they have the nutrients they need to survive.

I haven't seen you mention a heater. You'll need one to keep them warm. Bettas like temps about 26* C seeing as they are tropical fish :)

Like others have said, bettas are loners. If you insist on tankmates in a 5 gallon, you could go with snails or shrimps.

The bettas with HUGE fins are called Halfmoons, when they flare, their tails spread to a D shape, so even when resting their tails are pretty and bulky. However, with big tails, they have trouble swimming in currents, so your tank should have a very gentle filter.
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Old 12-20-2010, 11:50 AM   #7 
Robyn
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Ah, thanks everyone!
I'd have to cycle for a while; but I'm going to wait till I have the plants because part of the purpose of getting them was for the good bacteria that they'll make.
That being said, it'll likely be about a month before I can get back to the pet store to get a fish; tank should be plenty cycled and the plants would have had time to take to sand or in the case of moss, the rock (read to use a hairnet to provide something for it to grip on).

And I like to watch the fish at night; that's part of the reason I was suggesting night time to turn the lights on, but will that be a bad thing?

I also figured I'd need a heater; 26C would be even better for the plants too.
He doesn't need a tank mate I suppose; just a betta should be fine, any more and I'd prob not be able to keep up with tank upkeep anyways.

What type looks kinda spikey when they flare?
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Old 12-20-2010, 12:52 PM   #8 
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Crowntails. :) if you go here http://www.bettafish.com/showthread.php?t=29868 you'll find all the different tail types and colors.

You can actually start cycling now if you want and toss the plants in when you get them, cycles can be achieved even without plants,
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Old 12-20-2010, 02:37 PM   #9 
Robyn
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yes; but the only tank I have is a cheap plastic 1.25G, and it's not really mine, but my sisters.
Originally I was going to use that for my betta; but after I researched a bit it's actually kinda mean to keep them in such a small tank. I figured I can use it for water changes instead.
Sooo; I'm hoping to go tomorrow or Wednesday to get my tank and hopefully be able to get the plants and such at the same time.
What conditioners and plant vitamins would u recommend I look for?
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Old 12-20-2010, 03:54 PM   #10 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robyn View Post
yes; but the only tank I have is a cheap plastic 1.25G, and it's not really mine, but my sisters.
Originally I was going to use that for my betta; but after I researched a bit it's actually kinda mean to keep them in such a small tank. I figured I can use it for water changes instead.
Sooo; I'm hoping to go tomorrow or Wednesday to get my tank and hopefully be able to get the plants and such at the same time.
What conditioners and plant vitamins would u recommend I look for?
Bettas like other creatures need their darkness/ ligh cycles so keeping the light on all night isn't a good idea. Your plants will need 6-8 hrs of light so you can make a compromise and keep on the little for say,3-9 pm or 4-10 pm. That way you can view the tank at night and your betta gets to sleep at night.
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