Betta Fish Care  
Go Back   Betta Fish and Betta Fish Care > Betta Fish Care
Check out the eBook Betta Fish Care Made Easy
betta fish
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 03-25-2011, 01:25 PM   #1 
RobbieLynnette
New Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
New to betta's please help!

My fiancee and I are thinking about getting a betta but I'm wanting to do a little research first. Sincer we're starting out and don't currently have much room we're wanting to start out small. One fish, and a really simple small set up. Nothing fancy or complex or to big. We really want to start out simple and small! lol I really want to stress that.
Point to all this is that I want imput on what ya'll think and suggestions on how to do this!
Thanks
RobbieLynnette is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-25-2011, 03:13 PM   #2 
BunnyHime
New Member
 
BunnyHime's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Hello! You don't need much room to have a happy betta. ^^ But you do need time to care for it and the betta-keeping hobby can get addicting!
Here are some pointers to start you off on your beta-keeping:

Tank: A 2+ gallon tank would be the best for bettas! Walmart, Petsmart, and Petco usually have sales of nice tanks. Bettas need space to swim and be happy. (: Some sales people actually believe that bettas can live in a small container D:! Don't buy those little plastic cup tanks (a size of a quart) you see at pet stores :(

Heater: Believe it or not, bettas are tropical fish that needs to be in temperatures of 76-80 degrees (correct me if I'm wrong on the degrees), so a heater is needed in their tanks. There are some small ones that can be bought at Walmart too. I use a "Hydor MINI HEATER Aquarium Heater 7.5 Watts for Tanks 2-5 gal" and it keeps my 2 gallon tank constant at 78 degrees. A thermometer is great to keep track of what the temperature is. Remember water temperatures are about 5 degrees lower than air temperatures so if your room is 73, the fish tank's water is probably 68 degrees which is not warm enough! ><

Decorations: In your tank you should get some silk plants and a cave! Bettas need hiding places if they feel stressed or just for a place to nap XD. Some people use coffee mugs in their tanks as caves and it works pretty well! Long silk plants are good too but beware of plastic plants! Betta's fins are delicate and can tear from hard plastic plants. We recommend using a panty hose to run through the plants and if the panty hose tears, so will your betta's fins. So silk plants and a cave! ^^

Water Changes: For small tanks (1-3 gallons), you need to make 50% water change every other day and 100% change once a week. If the water is dirty, bettas can get fin rot and that wouldn't be good! :( Even if the water isn't cloudy by eye, its still dirty and needs to be changed at least once a week. You wouldn't want your betta to be swimming around its own poo all the time right? D:
However there are lots of opinions on how much/when for water changes so if anyone want to correct me, go ahead! XD

Food: For bettas to get the best nutrients its best to give them betta pellets! I feed my betta the "Aqua Culture" brand, purchased from Walmart. Ignore the directions at the back because bettas bloat easily, I feed him 2 times a day, once in the morning(2 pellets) and once at night(2 pellets), so total of 4 pellets a day. I also fast him once a week. Bettas eat like pigs so it'll be tempting to keep on feeding him more and more...however don't over feed! It takes them awhile to go back to normal if they are severely bloated. ):
Other types of food that they eat as treats (like humans eat candy) are freeze dried blood worms, brine shrimps, and some others that I don't know of D:, just don't feed these as their main meal XD. Flakes are okay too but since bettas are carnivores, it doesn't give them the necessary nutrients.


Btw since you mentioned "One fish, and a really simple small set up" I just wanted to say that it's one male betta (longer fins compared to females) to a tank because they will fight and kill each other. And at least 5 or 6 females to a 10+ gallon tank for a sorority (not sure on this).

Hmm, I think that's about it...lol
It might look like a lot but it's really not! So don't be shocked by this wall of text. D:
BunnyHime is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-25-2011, 03:45 PM   #3 
RobbieLynnette
New Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Thank you so very much for all your help! I do have a question about live plants. Do the rocks need to be rinsed? and if so how does this affect the live plants wouldn't it be bad for them?
RobbieLynnette is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-25-2011, 04:03 PM   #4 
RobbieLynnette
New Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
If any one has anything at all to add, any tidbit or small suggestions please please please post! I've never ever owned a fish before nor has my fiancee
RobbieLynnette is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-25-2011, 04:17 PM   #5 
RobbieLynnette
New Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
also i've noticed that people keep using abbriviations such as VT and DBT what do they mean?
RobbieLynnette is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-25-2011, 04:25 PM   #6 
Tisia
Member
 
Tisia's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Washington state
they're tail types. veil tail and double tail. the betta tails and colors sticky has pictures and abbreviations
Tisia is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-25-2011, 05:20 PM   #7 
LittleBettaFish
Member
 
LittleBettaFish's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Okay, I've only owned bettas for a year now, but here is what I have learned.

1. Generally disregard any 'information' given to you by employees at LFS and petstores. Some are knowledgeable, but often it is not worth your time trying to cherry pick through them. It's great to see someone doing research before purchasing, so pat yourself on the back for that

2. All of my bettas are active fish that like to have their own space to patrol. 'Space' is not a 1/2 gallon bowl with one pathetic plastic plant. My minimum tank size is around 3.5 gallons (I think it measures 31cm x 18cm x 24cm), which leaves room for lots of live plants, as well as a heater and a small filter for water circulation.

3. The three most important things for your betta are:

  • A good brand of heater that has an inbuilt thermostat and doesn't simply heat the water above ambient room temperature.
  • A good brand of dechlorinator that neutralises harmful chemicals such as nitrite and ammonia (Prime is the best for this)
  • A liquid test kit for ammonia and nitrite at the very least. Unless your fish is something highly sensitive and requires a specific pH, fish can adapt to a pH that is 'too high' or a pH that is 'too low'. If you get your water tested from a petstore don't settle for 'good'. Ask the exact levels of ammonia, nitrite and nitrate. If they can't tell you, or suggest you need to use pH up or down because your pH has to be 7, consider that whole exercise a pointless waste of time.
4. Cycling. No this is not something you do on a bike. Rather it's about establishing a colony of beneficial bacteria in your filter (this is where 99.9% of them grow). Never rinse your filter media out in tap water or change it out because it looks dirty. You will have effectively killed your bacteria and crashed your cycle.

It's a fairly complex and lengthy process, and I wouldn't bother attempting it on anything smaller than 3 gallons. Essentially, the beneficial bacteria need a constant source of ammonia (provided by your fish as well as any through rotting plant matter and feces), which in the end, is converted to the safer chemical, nitrate.

This doesn't mean you should ease off water changes and let your ammonia reach anything above 0.25ppm to speed the whole thing up. This will stress or kill your fish, and it is pointless, since the bacterial colonies can survive on trace amounts of ammonia your test kit can't pick up. Nitrite is even more deadlier as poisoning can occur fast and it damages the blood of affected fish. Nitrate, the end product of the cycle, is safe in levels up to and above 40ppm. It is removed from the tank through water changes.

If you want to know about cycling, you can do a google or even forum search for more info. Basically it is ammonia in and nitrate out.

5. Water changes in small tanks, are not something that can be done bi-monthly. Try like twice or sometimes three times a week. A quick search of this forum will provide you with all the information you will need on how to perform water changes and what equipment you should/might need to use.

The most common problem I see on the emergency part of this forum is people not performing a suitable number of water changes for the size of their tank. There's no need for anything to go into your tank except for clean, dechlorinated water. This will keep your betta healthy and alive for longer than any other chemical or medicine would.

Hope that helps you out. Bettas and fish in general are addictive. If you start assessing every flat surface of your house as a possible tank stand, you may just have a problem.
LittleBettaFish is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-25-2011, 05:34 PM   #8 
RobbieLynnette
New Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
wow! Thank you so much! I've been wanting to do this for quite sometime. My fiancee and I almost got a fish a few days ago and then for some unknown reason decided to wait (thankfully) so then I decided to do some research. My fiancee has wanted to do this ever since I've known him (about 6 yrs.). Trust me we already have picked out several spots a fish could happily live. . We have our malamute/husky baby and our baby kitty but really want to add fish to the mix and as we wont be starting a human family for some years really love having our animal friends.
RobbieLynnette is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-25-2011, 05:45 PM   #9 
ollief9
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Bristol, England
Just stressing how rewarding and easy Bettas are to keep, so long as you get the initial setup right.
I don't think it is necessary to cycle a Betta tank to be honest. Bettas produce little waste and 50% water changes every other day for the first week or two will easily establish your tank without going through the whole 'fishless cycle' stages. You can then phase the water changes out to once a week (depending on tank size!). Note: This is only on filtered tanks. You cannot cycle an unfiltered tank - 50% water changes every other day are essential in unfiltered Betta tanks.

I would recommend a 5 gallon tank with a filter and a heater and a few live plants such as Anubias or Elodea Crispa. Smaller tanks are do-able, however I would never put a Betta in anything smaller than 2.5 gallons. Heaters are a must to keep temperatures warm - many people think they can withstand room temperatures, but the truth is, the temperatures they require are actually higher than normal tropical temperatures. If that makes sense

Once you have it all up and running it's a real delight to watch your new Betta swim around and explore his new territory, and it's actually quite satisfying to give the tank a good spring clean every now and then.

There is much more to learn about Bettas, but once you've learned the basics and you have bought a tank and a Betta, you can pick all the little things up as you go along (such as how much to feed them, what food they prefer, etc etc).

Happy fishkeeping.
ollief9 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-25-2011, 07:32 PM   #10 
PewPewPew
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Quote:
Originally Posted by ollief9 View Post
Just stressing how rewarding and easy Bettas are to keep, so long as you get the initial setup right.
I don't think it is necessary to cycle a Betta tank to be honest. Bettas produce little waste ..actually, they produce a normal amount... and 50% water changes every other day for the first week or two will easily establish your tank without going through the whole 'fishless cycle' stages. You can then phase the water changes out to once a week (depending on tank size!). No. It will take much longer for it to establish its cycle, even with plants. Note: This is only on filtered tanks. You cannot cycle an unfiltered tank - 50% water changes every other day are essential in unfiltered Betta tanks. Not true. Tanks under 2.5 gallons require this, tanks above with only a single betta can have slightly less, over 5-10 gallons even less than that.

I would recommend a 5 gallon tank with a filter and a heater and a few live plants such as Anubias or Elodea Crispa. Smaller tanks are do-able, however I would never put a Betta in anything smaller than 2.5 gallons. This is the common recommendation, but with diligent water changes and care, 1-1.5 gallons is usually very much accepted as a good life for the fish. Heaters are a must to keep temperatures warm - many people think they can withstand room temperatures, but the truth is, the temperatures they require are actually higher than normal tropical temperatures. If that makes sense Yes, 76-82' is a must. You wouldnt wanna live in the snow with no coat! Same thing.

Happy fishkeeping.

Not to be a jerk, just wanted to clear those few things up.

And to add, other good, easy live plants are annubias, anarchairs, hornwort, wisteria, java fern, cabomba (in tanks at or under 77') and many others. Stemmed plants are great to have because they eat ammonia like mad.

:p woot woot.
PewPewPew is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Two new Betta's kribensis_2004 Betta Pictures 2 01-31-2011 04:24 PM
How do u keep all your betta's? damo2904 Betta Fish Bowls, Habitats, and Accessories 11 11-26-2009 01:15 PM
I can't Take It! That Betta's Going To Die! GuppyColorMaker Betta Fish Diseases and Emergencies 8 12-29-2008 01:31 PM
BETTA'S NURHAYAL Betta Fish Care 12 07-10-2008 03:02 PM
Do all Betta's eat this much? inspiringmind Betta Fish Care 3 06-07-2008 07:42 PM


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 05:19 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.