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Old 09-05-2011, 05:42 PM   #1 
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Join Date: Sep 2011
Just got a aquarium and not sure how to set up a proper beta tank.

Ok. I have read up a bit about setting the aquarium up. Its a 10 gallon tank with a filter and a heater.

I have had it run for about two days so far for it to cycle( build up bacteria i guess)

I plan on having one beta and maybe a few bottom feeders. Maybe just the one beta.

I am not 100% sure on what i should have in the tank itself. I got two plastice plants that do not appear to rough. However i wont lie. I dont really want to spend a **** ton of money on fish rocks and stuff.

I took a drinking glass and buried it into the gravel at the bottom of the tank for a cave of sorts. I also have put a plate near the back of the tank leaning against the glass as a place where the fish can hide.

I hope i dont seem to be a jerk for going cheap. Money is tight for a college student. I have an idea of what food to feed a beta. Beta pellets/beta flakes, blood worms.

The only thing is. The tank does seem sort of empty. There is a cup, two plants, gravel, and a plate for him in there. But nothing near the top of the aquarium. Any ideas? Anything effective and cheap would be nice.

(i dont have the fish yet btw, plan on getting him maybe tomorrow.) I should add. I cleaned everything under very hot water before putting anything in the tank. So it should all be free of any chemicals.

Last edited by dramaqueen; 09-12-2011 at 12:50 PM.
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Old 09-05-2011, 06:05 PM   #2 
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Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Batavia, IL
Hello and welcome to the forum, and wonderful world of fish/betta keeping first of all :)

Alright, so, to begin.....your tank isn't going to cycle or build up any good bacteria without an ammonia source, either provided by fish waste or pure ammonia.
^There is a good site that describes how the cycle works, though you'll want to do research on which method you'd like to use; the choices being Fish-in or Fishless.
I would recommend fishless as it doesn't require any water changes and won't take as long to complete. The on;y downside is that you ill have to wait a while to purchase your fish....but in my opinion, the benefits far outweigh that one con.
Its up to you however, whatever you think you have time for....I'll warn you though, regardless of the method, you are going to want to find a Liquid Water Test kit. If you do fish-in, I suggest purchasing one, which will be quite a few bucks(you may need to save up for it if your really short on cash)...but if you do Fishless you may be able to get away with just taking your water down to your local fish store and getting them to test it for free, then save up and buy your test kit later on.

The ONLY way around the cycling process is to just remove the filter and do a 100% water change(with couple smaller partials in between)every week or so. But thats rather a pain in a 10 gallon.

There are lots of money-saving/cheap options for plants and decor....check around your local craft store. Using aquarium silicone you can glue together rocks for caves and such, the clay pots(plain, non-glazed)are less then a buck and also make great caves(you'll want to find a way to cover the little hole so your fish doesn't get stuck however).
The silk plants, provided they have no added scents or wires(sometimes wires can also be removed)can be used as well.
So long as you properly rinse and wash everything in hot/boiling water, lots of things you find in craft stores will work great, and are a LOT cheaper then anything you'll find in petstores. ;)
Bettas come from densely planted, dark waters in the they usually tend to feel more secure the more plants/hiding spots you have. So maybe grab some Aquarium silicone and head over to your local craft store xD

Hopefully this helps some :) And again, welcome!
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Old 09-06-2011, 09:34 AM   #3 
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Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Florida
If you're looking for stuff to decorate the top of the tank, you could try a fake plant, from the craft store or something, that'll float. (Try to get one that uses plastic instead of wire, and wash it first under hot water to make sure it doesn't leak color.) As long as there's room for your future friend to get to the surface and breathe, it'll be fine.

And hey, if you don't have a lot of money to spend on your betta, cutting corners on decorating, rather than food or essential supplies, is definitely the way to go! Besides, I think things like mugs lend a personal touch
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