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Old 02-19-2011, 04:29 PM   #1 
gmd1800
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College Betta Owner!

Hi!

I'm rather a novice betta owner. I've owned bettas before but at home. We kept four males in a long tank, separated by glass dividers. They got along rather great, until a catfish (I don't know which one) died suddenly and whatever he was infected with killed the entire tank.

Anyway - so I'm in college and yesterday I bought a kit and a male teal betta (delta tail). My friend is currently taking care of him while my aquarium is filtered and prepared. However, my room's heater doesn't work well and a water heater didn't come with my tank. I'm a bit concerned as I know the temperature has to be 76-85 degrees and my room is 70 at best. Is there a small heater I could buy and install to make the temperature more comfortable for Octavius? I'm in a dorm room, so space is rather limited.

This is the tank that I have - ]http://www.walmart.com/ip/3-Gallon-Aquarium-Kit/13448744?povid=cat202074-env237414-module395372-rLink7

I also bought glass stones from PetsMart. I plan on adding a small cave and some artifical plants for Octavius to hide when he needs to.

I've also noticed that he prefers flakes over pellets. I know he needs some variety in his diet or he'll get bored of his food. Any other suggestions? My old bettas all absolutely hated freeze-dried bloodworms. I'm guessing Octavius will too.

His current food - http://www.petco.com/product/3333/Tetra-BettaMin-Tropical-Medley.aspx?CoreCat=FishFC_FishFood[

I bought him this, but he apparently doesn't like it. He didn't touch it at all every time my friend tried to feed him yesterday and earlier this morning. http://www.petco.com/product/9499/Wa...ta%20Food-9499

I'm also considering a companion for him - a Chinese algae eater. Is there any chance that Octavius would attack/bully him or vice versa? My friend has one in his guppy tank and he looks pretty calm. Is the tank big enough for the two of them (It's a 3 gallon) considering one is a bottom feeder.
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Old 02-19-2011, 04:50 PM   #2 
Oldfishlady
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Welcome to the forum and the wonderful world of Betta keeping.....

I couldn't get the links to come up for me...but it may be on my side...lol...

Sadly, 3gal is not big enough for any other species of fish to add with the Betta and the CAE is not a good choice for them even in the larger tank, they are great algae eaters when young-but as they grow so does their diet...from algae to meat and they love to suck the slime coats of slow moving fish like Bettas and can get rather aggressive as they mature

Great tank mates for your Betta in a 3gal tank would be shrimp and/or snails...with that said....every Betta is different in their tolerance of tank mates....some will tolerate shrimp and snails and other will hunt them down and kill or harass to death.....this can even change from day to day.....our Bettas love to keep us on our toes....lol....

In a 3gal filtered tank-water changes of twice weekly should maintain water quality...1-50% water only and 1-50% to include substrate cleaning by vacuum or stir and dip method....

Remember to keep the water temp within a couple of degrees between new and old water to prevent temp shock and always use a good dechlorinator with any water added to the fish/tank.....

They have both pre-set and adjustable heater that will work fine in a 3gal tank...I would look for a 25-50w heater to maintain a stable water temp in the 76-80F area.

Food and feeding-a good quality pellet- fed in small frequent meals, flakes here and there are good...freeze dried foods should only be fed in small amount as a treat or not at all, frozen foods are good and so are live mosquito larva.....
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Old 02-19-2011, 04:55 PM   #3 
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Ouch - just realized I had a typo in one of my links.

http://www.walmart.com/ip/3-Gallon-A...e395372-rLink7

That's the tank I have now. I might have to downgrade for next year, which I'm hoping won't happen.

Is it okay for Octavius to not have any plants/hidey holes for about a week or so until I get paid?
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Old 02-19-2011, 04:58 PM   #4 
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Don't do the algae eater.

Hydor makes two heater pads that produce a continuous low heat:
http://www.bigalsonline.com/Fish_Tem...2.html?tc=fish
the 7.5 and 15w units. They run continuously and are designed just to push the average water temp up.

Zoo Med:
http://www.bigalsonline.com/Fish_Tem...r.html?tc=fish

Or you can buy a clamp-on heat lamp from pet store.

For the larger tank:
I advise a reliable but cheap brand for the larger tank if you've not gotten one already. When cycling run the new tank warmer by a couple degrees than you will run it for betta. That'll keep the bacteria hopping. (like 82)

I have a http://www.bigalsonline.com/Fish_Tem...2.html?tc=fish in my ten and when I go with the 15R and 30B pair I'm getting a couple more.
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Old 02-19-2011, 05:00 PM   #5 
Oldfishlady
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I am sure he will be fine, however, they are all different in how they respond to more space without a secure spot, but if he acts like he is scared..... put dark paper or something around the tank leaving just a small opening so you can still see him until you get the items for your tank-this should help make him feel more secure in the larger space.....
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Old 02-19-2011, 05:01 PM   #6 
gmd1800
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ANOTHER. typo. Jeez. Second link - http://www.petco.com/product/3333/Te...ishFC_FishFood

What do you mean by having a second tank? So for each water change I move some of the new water from the second tank?

Back when I had the four bettas, we would cycle out the water using an old gallon jug (the kind that milk comes in). Would that be okay to use or is another tank preferable? Remember that I'm living in a college dorm and space is kind of limited.

Thanks!
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Old 02-19-2011, 05:05 PM   #7 
bamsuddenimpact
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Try Aqueon Betta Food. They are really tiny pellets and like 2-3$. My fish love them and they fit in their mouths
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Old 02-19-2011, 05:07 PM   #8 
Oldfishlady
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Since you have a filter and don't need to do 100% water changes-I would not remove the Betta for water changes...the one tank will be fine......using an old clean 1gal milk jug to pre-mix the replacement water with water changes will work fine....
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Old 02-19-2011, 06:34 PM   #9 
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I bought that tank yesterday from walmart, and it is all set up with my fish in it. It works great! I also bought a little tetra heater from walmart it was only 11 dollars, it's for 2-15 gallons and so far it has kept my water at a perfect and steady 78*, If you want to see what it looks like with the heater inside check out my post: http://www.bettafish.com/showthread.php?t=63108
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Old 02-20-2011, 09:57 AM   #10 
gmd1800
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Thanks for that, Briser! I checked my funds and I can afford silk plants, heater, and a hidey hole for him this week. :)

Big move is today!

However, my friend who has been taking care of him texted me this morning to say that Octavius hasn't been eating. As I mentioned, I got pellets and flakes for him. I asked him how often he was feeding and how much, and my friend says he only feeds perhaps twice a day, and a very small amount.

He has never owned a betta before, but he has a guppy tank. He got a betta the same day that I did, and Titus is thriving. We plan on going to PetCo and PetsMart and asking the fish people there what they recommend for bettas. I haven't had much chance to see him, though I do see him every day. My friend says other than not eating, he has been swimming around and looks okay.

Both Titus and Octavius are in the same tank with a divider, and apparently Octavius feels well enough to challenge Titus.

Should I be concerned that Octavius hasn't been eating? He did eat a pellet the day he arrived, and a few flakes yesterday morning.
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