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Old 06-02-2011, 12:16 AM   #1 
JeanLuc2
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Wink Thinking of upgrading to a larger tank..

Hi,

I have been contemplating the idea of upgrading from my 2 gallon tank which I love to a 5 gallon tank after I get moved into my single room at the dorms in August. I am hoping to give my little boy Jean-Luc some more swimming room and in general more space. He is already going to have his own little area where he won't be getting over-run by the typical mess that tends to take over my desk like last year. So, I have several questions concerning tanks since I am new and already getting purely obsessed with Bettas.

I am thinking of giving my boy a set-up similar to the picture they have for this tank which is too large for the dorms:
http://www.petsmart.com/product/inde...ductId=3804460

I have a rythym to bowl cleanings, and it takes me 10 minutes now. However how do you successfully clean a 5 gallon tank? I don't want any larger than that.


Basically could someone please give me a crash course in 5 gallon tanks?? I am already thinking about that lovely, rather cheap one that is on the WalMart website. Please keep in mind that I am a poor college student.


Thank you for all the advice
=D
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Old 06-02-2011, 01:51 AM   #2 
PewPewPew
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JeanLuc2 View Post
Hi,

I have been contemplating the idea of upgrading from my 2 gallon tank which I love to a 5 gallon tank after I get moved into my single room at the dorms in August. I am hoping to give my little boy Jean-Luc some more swimming room and in general more space. He is already going to have his own little area where he won't be getting over-run by the typical mess that tends to take over my desk like last year. So, I have several questions concerning tanks since I am new and already getting purely obsessed with Bettas.

I am thinking of giving my boy a set-up similar to the picture they have for this tank which is too large for the dorms:
http://www.petsmart.com/product/inde...ductId=3804460

I have a rythym to bowl cleanings, and it takes me 10 minutes now. However how do you successfully clean a 5 gallon tank? I don't want any larger than that.


Basically could someone please give me a crash course in 5 gallon tanks?? I am already thinking about that lovely, rather cheap one that is on the WalMart website. Please keep in mind that I am a poor college student.


Thank you for all the advice
=D
I feel you in the poor college student dept! hah!

I remember when you were new to fish, and your first post... ;P

I have two 5 gallon tanks. They take just the same amount of time to clean, but now, you're gonna need a siphon. 100% changes really arent something you want to do in 50lbs of water! Bah! Get a bucket, too! Walmart sells decent sized blue ones for like $2. Youre gonna need one for new water, too, so it needs to be unused and clean.

I use a simple, cheap siphon from petsmart (though theyre everywhere), from Top Fin. Here ya go:
(its not QUITE this one, but similar, this is fine too)
http://www.petsmart.com/product/inde...ductId=2752298

I have this tank, which is a bit pricey, but a really really good tank! The filter it comes with is BOSS. Its a little hard to baffle because its in a weird spot, but its a strong and effective filter that cycles easily.

Here it is:
http://www.petsmart.com/product/inde...ductId=2752369

Sometimes they have sales on these! Use your petperks card for better savings.

I also own one of the walmart numbers:
http://www.walmart.com/ip/Tetra-Aqua...-Pets/12177653

I like this tank. My only complaint is the filter, though. Its a beast, but not like the other. It's VERY strong on the intake ( it can suck my finger up, yikes) which means it needs to be jammed up a little. An easy fix, but can be annoying.

I also know of these tanks, which are quite good:
http://www.walmart.com/ip/Hawkeye-5-...arium/14660258
(great tank!)

This is a good buy, especially if youve considered getting another fish. 5 gallons is perfect for dividing, and it comes with one just right for the tank:

http://www.walmart.com/ip/Penn-Plex-...c-Pets/9904376

There are lots of others out there, too.

Id aim for a kit with a lid and filter. Sometimes, its way more expensive to buy a 5 gallon lid by itself (gah!) than to buy in a kit. Filters that work well are also a bit of a headache.



In your 5, you might need more substrate, a few more plants, and a new, stronger heater. You're probably going to find that what you have now isnt powerful enough. It will be hard to test now because its summer, but keep that in mind! (You might be able to get away with it for the summer since its warm already)

Consider a few live plants. Many LFS have plants there for good prices. Try an amazon sword, which get big and pretty, and dont need too much fussing over. You would need at least 2-3 inches of gravel, some fertilizer (which isnt expensive) and a CFL bulb, which will run you about $5.

I think you should cycle the 5 gallon, too. It makes for less frequent water changes, which is nice. It means you'll need at least an ammonia test kit, which is a little pricey :c But, its worth it.

Def. get a filter in the new tank to avoid having to do 100% changes. That, combined with a siphoning a few times a week, makes changes pretty darn easy.

Annnd thats it, me thinks.

Hope it helps.
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Old 06-02-2011, 12:47 PM   #3 
JeanLuc2
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Thanks so much for all the information.

I found the tank I currently use on Walmart:
http://www.walmart.com/ip/Hawkeye-Aq...ndingMethod=rr

I really do love it but Jean-Luc has shown to me that he is overtly curious and got himself stuck. He was lucky I had just gotten up when this had happend. So, as a result I have removed the filter and am trying to figure out another way to fix it as the decoration I had glued on top of it fell off.

This 5 gallon that you gave me the link to is exactly what I am looking for:


Ok now for my questions about the various stuff you listed.

1) Is substrate the rocks at the bottom? If so I have about half of the bag left.
2) I had a bad experience with this live plant http://www.petsmart.com/product/inde...ductId=3924459 and am not too keen on live plants now. This plant actually ended up stinking up my room through this bowl so I had to remove it despite the fact that Jean-Luc loved it. Any advice on live plants? Would the amazon sword be better or would it do the same thing?
3) I have got this heater http://www.petsmart.com/product/inde...ductId=4134008 and it isn't the best. It keeps Jean-Luc's bowl steadily at roughly 80 degrees at my parents place and roughly 70 to 75 degrees at my previous dorm room. Would something like this be better http://www.petsmart.com/product/inde...ductId=4455060 ?? Or would I need to look for a different heater?
4) What in the world is a CFL bulb?
5) Where in the world would I find a test kit? I don't really trust PetSmart as much as I go there constantly and own my own PetPerks card.
6) Please explain cycling...

I was actually thinking about possibly getting Jean-Luc a lady friend who would live on the other side via a divider. I'm probably not going to get this lady friend until after I get used to a 5 gallon tank.

Thanks for the huge post; it helps. =D
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Old 06-02-2011, 12:48 PM   #4 
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*This is the 5 gallon tank I really like: http://www.walmart.com/ip/Hawkeye-5-...viewsContainer
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Old 06-02-2011, 01:09 PM   #5 
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I just bought the marineland 5gal Hex tank yesterday to upgrade one of my boys from a 2.5. He LOVES it. Swimming like crazy and I LOVE LOVE LOVE this tank. I baffled it with a sponge and elastic band, and omg it is amazing :) I love the light and it gives him so much more swimming room and he is just overall so much more happier.
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Old 06-02-2011, 02:27 PM   #6 
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1) Is substrate the rocks at the bottom?

Yessir! I dont know quite how much that is, but when you get the new tank, add it in and see if you have at least an inch of gravel. For certain plants, 2-3 inches is best. Also, if you plan to divide, having like 1-2inches is good because it buries the bottom of the dividers. :)

2) Any advice on live plants? Would the amazon sword be better or would it do the same thing?
Whatttt? Really? Java fern's easy! Did you bury the bottom? If so, thats why it died. The rhizome needs to be tethered,not buried. Maybe try again with another, but this time get a small rock and tie the bottom to it with some thread. Amazon sword can be a little trickier than the fern, because it needs quite a decent bit of light and at least 2 inches of gravel to chill in. It gets nice and big, though, which means you'd need only one over time. I say try again. Now that you know, it'll be easier!

I made a thread about easy live plants on here, but I cant find the bugger. This is the same info, but on my* site. I hate when threads disappear D;
http://bettasplendid.weebly.com/easy...ant-guide.html

Anubias and banana plants will be very easy, so try those too. Theyre nice looking and no-fuss.

3) I have got this heater... Or would I need to look for a different heater?

You're gonna need a TOTALLY different one :( The last one is far too weak, and the first wont get good results. In a 5 gallon, youre gonna need a higher wattage. Try creating a thread about what a good, and good priced, heater for a 5 gallon will be :D (Mine are used in a dorm that is always really warm, so I dont suggest what I use in a 5 gal)
I doubt you'll pay more than $20-$25 :D

4) What in the world is a CFL bulb?

Compact florescent light, silly! The spiral/swirly looking ones. If the tank says you can use something besides "non-tubular" bulbs, get one at the right wattage (it'll say XX max watts). OR get a tubular bulb (florescent) bulb, which Walmart has that are great for only $5! Theyre from Lights of America and are sold in the fish section. Theyre 6500K (10W) and they work reaaalllyy well! I have two.

5) Where in the world would I find a test kit?

Test kits are everywhere. The trouble is finding a place with *good* ones. Getting a *liquid testing kit assures better results (sometimes strip kits are very inaccurate) and its a better value. Try to get at least a *liquid ammonia test kit, I like API's kit. Petsmart and Petcos and lots of other places (not Walmart) sell them, usually in a blue box.
A "master test" kit is a good bet, too, but theyre pricey. You need the "nirtate/nitrite" in it, but thats really it. You dont need this as much as the ammonia one.

6) Please explain cycling...

Ill send you a private message about it, one I send to members about cycling (fish-in). In short, is a build-up of bacteria in your filter that makes you need to change the water less, its great.

I was actually thinking about possibly getting Jean-Luc a lady friend who would live on the other side via a divider.

Aw! That sounds nice.I dont know about how well hawkeyes divide, but Im sure other members do. With a female on the other side, its good to make sure they can see each other as little as possible, because they'll both get a bit (extra) stressed from seeing each other. I think getting used to it is a good idea :) Try cycling it first, too!
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Old 06-02-2011, 02:28 PM   #7 
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And ariel, yeahhh! I have the hex, too. Its a great tank! Love that filter sooo much. Its not a great divided tank, though, kinda narrow :C
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Old 06-02-2011, 03:00 PM   #8 
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I have three of those Hawkeye five gallons from Walmart. I LOVES them. The lid flips up and it's wonderfully easy to vacuum. It's a good tank overall.

It would be better to divide the Hawkeye vs. the Eclipse. It's wider then it is tall. The only problem is could see is that the filter lip hangs lower then the top of the tank, so the divider wouldn't be able to go up to the lid. There would be a chance of jumping there. I wouldn't do it but I (personally) don't trust a divided tank situation.

If you do go the dividing route, add some ceramic rings to the filter (just drop them in and let them rest in the bottom of the filter housing) to add some surface area for bacteria to grow (after you've read Pew's cycling pm, you'll understand what I mean). I do this in all my Hawkeyes, even with a single boy in there. I just like having extra surface in smaller filters. More bacteria never hurts.
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Old 06-02-2011, 03:10 PM   #9 
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B: Thanks, I really dont know a whole lot about hawkeyes, other than that theyre well liked.

It doesnt have a bow, does it?

And yeah- the hex, not so great for dividing. Great in the sense its good for the dividers themselves (they fit well) but not space.

Send the pm to you guys now <3
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Old 06-02-2011, 03:27 PM   #10 
JeanLuc2
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Awesome!!! Thank you guys for answering my questions to such detail. It really helps.

This may sound stupid but, how in the world do I siphon without sucking my little boy up? Do I just remove him for like 10 minutes and let him swim around in his QT cup until I am finished?

2) Yep, my Java might have been cursed or something. I had put some rocks around it so it wouldn't float to the top. Then the problem with stinking up my room happend so I had to trash it. It was sad cause both Jean-Luc and I loved it. The lady at PetSmart recommended it since it was supposed to be easy to care for. So, I bought Jean-Luc's plastic fern for the moment and he adores it.

4) Ok...I hadn't heard of the swirly lightbulbs as CFLs.

5) I am totally clueless about test kits. So, could someone please help me to figure out what would be the best to help me fill out that long list of stuff to help OFL and everyone-else to diagnose any problems with my little boy.

When it comes to comparing the Hex and the Hawkeye I would like to have something that is slightly wider than tall. I am planning to put my little boy on-top of a bookshelf in my dorm room and would like for him to not only have more of a clean space and for him to have a huge amount of swimming room.

When it comes to a lady friend I am thinking about maybe trying to find a delta/super delta tail or a crowntail little girl. I am already thinking about names and I am currently between Deanna, Lwaxana, Guinan, or Beverly. Try to figure out where those names come from......
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