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Old 04-28-2011, 09:32 AM   #1 
sunnydawnie
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Java Moss and newbie questions

Hi, just got my very first betta 3 weeks ago. I cannot believe what fun I've been missing all these years ! I thought he'd just look pretty in the tank and swim around but no, this guy has personality. I swear he wags his tail like a dog at me when he wants fed and watches me as much as I watch him.

Anyway, since this is my first betta I went the easy route and got fake plants and aquarium rocks for my 2 gallon picture aquarium that hangs on the wall. I am so glad to find this site because the fish store told me totally incorrect information. Said I could change 50% water one week and 100% change the next week. They also said I didn't need a heater. Looks like I need a heater AND 100% changes each week. (A little bit more maintenance than hoped for).
I'm glad I found this site - I now know what those bubbles were all about ! I guess he's been happy.

My questions:
1) I was thinking to add Java moss to the tank, but the tank is thin and he'd have to go thru the java moss to swim. I'm afraid he could get caught and drown - does that happen ?

2) Besides being pretty, is there a true benefit to real plants in the tank or does that just mean that the water won't stay as clear and more frequent changes are needed ? I was thinking to get a tiny moss ball too - they said they float to the top and then sink... sounds cool. I'd prefer a low maintenance tank - so if staying artificial is the way to go ?

3) Is there a reason for the one day fast ? The info. on here is completely different from what I got at the LFS (see I learn quickly:). They told me to feed him 2 pellets per day. That's it. I see on here other folks are feeding 2 pellets in the morning and again 2 pellets in the evening... which is better ?

4) I got white painted aquarium rock at Walmart - but it actually seems as though the white is coming off ! When I do a 100% change the water becomes really cloudy with what looks to be white dust. That can't be good for him. The bag does say it's for aquariums so why is it doing this and should I stop using it and use something else ?

5) Can I feed the betta gnats and flies ? Do they have to be alive to catch his interest ?

Thanks all for helping me give the best care possible to Goldie my orange betta.
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Old 04-28-2011, 09:35 AM   #2 
sunnydawnie
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Oh, and about that aquarium rock and the water changes. I've been taking out the rock and fake plants and running hot water over them and mixing the rock letting the water go thru a strainer trying to get any nasties out. Is this the proper way ?
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Old 04-28-2011, 10:33 AM   #3 
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Goldie in Picture Aquarium

I swear I thought I posted a picture so you can see what I'm saying here but it didn't post. Here's Goldie in his Picture Aquarium on the wall. Trying again......
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Old 04-28-2011, 10:46 AM   #4 
denaliwind
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Welcome to the wonderful hobby of betta keeping! :D They are quite unique little fish... definitely more like 'dog' fish, lol.

So, for an unfiltered tank 100% per week with a 50% in between is ideal. Temperature range should be around 78-82, but keeping it stable is ideal, too much temp fluctuation will stress him out more then a stable temp of 76.
Java moss is really easy to keep and you don't need a huge clump of it. You could tie it to something and it will eventually latch on, or you can just let it float on the bottom. If your clump is really big, just break it up and put it in different parts of the tank so that it's not a problem. Small pieces really shouldn't pose a problem. Anubias is another fantastic plant and super easy to care for. You can tie it to something and keep it's roots exposed (burying them will cause rot). Plants are great for the quality of water and in a well planted tank, with thriving plants, you would see a difference in ammonia levels and most likely be able to add an extra day or so in between water changes. I have marimo balls, java moss, anubias and dwarf water lettuce and I see a difference in water quality. :D

When you do water changes you should just swish the gravel around to encourage the unwanted debris to float when you're dumping the water. Or if you have a siphon just vacuum around. Don't wash the plants and rocks, there is good bacteria that develops.


Anyway, welcome! :D

Last edited by denaliwind; 04-28-2011 at 10:50 AM.
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Old 04-28-2011, 10:52 AM   #5 
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You're gonna have enough room for the moss, no worries. Consider finding smaller river rocks and adding them to the tank for the moss to tether onto. Let it grow in a small bowl while it attaches.

As said, anubias is a great plant, but it cannot be buried and would either need to grow on something (like a rock) or float free.

Your tank would fare well with a nice, healthy java moss plant, too. If you can find smaller ones, that'd be even better. Do not bury the rhizome or it will rot, but it can be planted, though rooting like the moss and anubias will prove easiest.

I also have those two larger green plants, theyre nice, arent they?
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