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Old 07-05-2011, 01:57 AM   #1 
Oiseauii
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Join Date: Jul 2011
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Smile New Member Here: Getting my fish tomorrow!!!

Hey folks! I feel like I know you all so well, haha. See, I've been betta-crazy going on several weeks now and I've been scouring this forum obsessively (my boyfriend is a bit concerned..). This forum has taught me SO much and corrected what I thought I knew about bettas. Anyhow, tomorrow I'm FINALLY going shopping for my very own betta! I'm really excited and I feel pretty prepared for this new fishy endeavor.. I've put together a shopping list and was wondering if all you experienced betta keepers could add anything or make any recommendations.

  • Fish!
  • Tank w/ filter 2.5-3gal
  • Heater
  • Thermometer
  • Gravel/Sand (I love how sand looks, but I'm not sure if I have the patience to wait for it to settle every time I change the water or something -- anybody used sand before and can tell me about it?)
  • Live plants -- anachris, java moss, water sprite...?
  • Decor, cave, etc
  • Liquid test kit
  • Food
  • Water conditioner
  • Water siphon
  • Algae scrubber

What do you think? Sound good for a first time betta owner? I would love your input, thanks! :)
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Old 07-05-2011, 02:13 AM   #2 
Sakura8
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Hi Oiseauii and welcome to the forum.

Your list looks pretty good. I use sand and there are a few things to remember. First is rinse the sand super well before you put it in the tank. Take it outside in a bucket or something and rinse it, dumping the water, until the dumped water runs clear. Gotta warn you, this can take a looooooooooong time. But it prevents a cloudy tank so it's worth it. It just won't seem like it when your back is killing you. Secondly, in water changes, it helps to either put a little saucer on the bottom and pour the water over that, or to pour the water over the plants and decor. Anything that diffuses the power the water comes down with so the sand isn't disturbed as much. When using a gravel vac, don't stick the tube all the way into the sand, just hold it right above the surface and it will suck up all the poo and waste (and some sand but that's inevitable).

For water conditioner, I recommend API Stress Coat or Seachem Prime. Both are really good brands. For food, it's best to get a variety. A good quality pellet like Omega One Betta Buffet Pellets or New Life Spectrum Betta Formula pellets are great. Flakes generally aren't as good because they can dirty up the water really fast. Freeze-dried AND frozen bloodworms are great to encourage a picky betta to eat. For plants, anything but hornwort. Hornwort sheds when stressed and it is always stressed. Uhm, for heater just be sure to get one that is adjustable and not preset.

Other things you will want to have on hand are buckets, aquarium salt, a small container (save the cup your betta comes in from the pet store), epsom salt (available at grocery stores and places like Wal-Mart) and an empty, clean gallon jug to mix up medications in.

And that's about it. If you have any questions about water changes etc, don't hesitate to post. Oh, and be sure to post pics of your new guy!
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Old 07-05-2011, 11:41 AM   #3 
Oiseauii
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sakura8 View Post
Hi Oiseauii and welcome to the forum.

Your list looks pretty good. I use sand and there are a few things to remember. First is rinse the sand super well before you put it in the tank. Take it outside in a bucket or something and rinse it, dumping the water, until the dumped water runs clear. Gotta warn you, this can take a looooooooooong time. But it prevents a cloudy tank so it's worth it. It just won't seem like it when your back is killing you. Secondly, in water changes, it helps to either put a little saucer on the bottom and pour the water over that, or to pour the water over the plants and decor. Anything that diffuses the power the water comes down with so the sand isn't disturbed as much. When using a gravel vac, don't stick the tube all the way into the sand, just hold it right above the surface and it will suck up all the poo and waste (and some sand but that's inevitable).

For water conditioner, I recommend API Stress Coat or Seachem Prime. Both are really good brands. For food, it's best to get a variety. A good quality pellet like Omega One Betta Buffet Pellets or New Life Spectrum Betta Formula pellets are great. Flakes generally aren't as good because they can dirty up the water really fast. Freeze-dried AND frozen bloodworms are great to encourage a picky betta to eat. For plants, anything but hornwort. Hornwort sheds when stressed and it is always stressed. Uhm, for heater just be sure to get one that is adjustable and not preset.

Other things you will want to have on hand are buckets, aquarium salt, a small container (save the cup your betta comes in from the pet store), epsom salt (available at grocery stores and places like Wal-Mart) and an empty, clean gallon jug to mix up medications in.

And that's about it. If you have any questions about water changes etc, don't hesitate to post. Oh, and be sure to post pics of your new guy!
Thanks for replying! I think I will go with sand, I really like that natural look. Question: When doing water changes, do you leave the fish in there or take him out? And you are supposed to treat the water before putting it in the tank, right?
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Old 07-05-2011, 06:29 PM   #4 
Sakura8
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It depends on how much water you're taking out. Most of us leave our fish in unless we're doing a 100% water change. Just keep an eye on your guy if he's curious and likes to play near the siphon hose. More than a few of us - myself included - have accidentally sucked our bettas up the hose. If you're not comfortable with leaving him in, you can use a cup or net to take him out; a cup usually means less stress on the betta.

And yes, treat the water before putting it in.
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Old 07-09-2011, 09:42 PM   #5 
dramaqueen
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Hello and welcome to the forum.
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Old 07-09-2011, 11:55 PM   #6 
gbose
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Hi Oiseauii ,

Welcome! Yes your list looks great. I've no experience with sand, but hear it's good if kept properly...

PLEASE cycle your tank before putting in your fish. I lost 2 bettas in days and was very puzzled; I later realized my tank wasn't properly cycled... so hold off on your purchase and do a fishless cycle.

Leave your fish in the tank while doing water changes. I do an 80% change and Oscar is always curious and unstressed....

Good luck!

GB
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