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Old 01-23-2012, 07:34 PM   #1 
zaichev
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Urgent: will this hurt my fish?

My new 2.5 gallon fish tank with a divider arrived today. I also bought a filter and a heater (Hagen Elite Underwater Mini Filter, UL Listed+ Elite Submersible Preset Heater Mini, 25-Watt.)

The fillter doesn't seem to work out in a tank with a divider; one fish seemed struggling to swim anywhere and was being sucked toward it. So I turned it off. He now just hides behind it.

The other one LOVES the heater and sits next to it. However the water on his side is noticeably warmer than the other side. I suspect this has to do with the divider. I can't add water to the top (allowing water exchange) because the fish must be kept apart.

First, will this always be? Will one part of the tank be colder than the other? Second, will this bake my fish, as it is only heating one side of the tank? I don't see an option to set a temperature, either.

Here's a photo:

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Old 01-23-2012, 07:50 PM   #2 
Badjer
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One side will likely be colder than the other yes. You would need a thermometer to tell for certain. Also, I don't recommend dividing anything less than a 5 gallon. I speak from experience, before I knew proper betta care I kept my boys in a divided 2.5. One was constantly stressed out as this doesn't allow for them to move out of sight from the other male. Also, with the decor and such, this isn't adequate room for a betta to live in. Filters aren't necessary, so I recommend getting a kritter keeper (they're rather cheap) and another small heater as soon as possible.
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Old 01-23-2012, 07:58 PM   #3 
callistra
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Agreed this is not large enough to split.
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Old 01-23-2012, 07:59 PM   #4 
Pataflafla
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If you're unwilling to get separate tanks or a larger tank, try moving the heater closer to the divider and investing in some taller plants to help block the view of each other and give them somewhere nice to rest on near the surface.

Be aware that since it's two fish in a space that is suitable for one, you'll want to change the water frequently to keep ammonia, nitrates, and nitrites down. I suggest at least 2 100% changes weekly.

A filter is not needed for bettas and often ends up needing to be baffled because the current is harsh on long-finned males and can blow bettas around the tank, which can cause damage to fins and body as well as stress.
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Old 01-23-2012, 08:02 PM   #5 
zaichev
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Actually, the divider is black, so they can't see each other.

I've ordered two beta fish hammocks, which should arrive any day now.

I checked the temperature; the side with the heater is at 81, the side without the heater is at 78. I'm not really sure how, as my room is probably about at 73-74, but okay..

Unfortunately I'm a college student and can't have a larger tank in my residence. This is much better, however, than what petco suggested: a .5 gallon tank divided. It was pitiful. I was changing the water every day. Now I think I'll do it every three-four days. However would 75 percent be more permissible? The fish get very stressed out whenever they are removed from any tank.

The ornamentation is hollow. I brought it for them so they have a place to hide if they want to.
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Old 01-23-2012, 08:20 PM   #6 
Silverfang
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Unless the divider is solid (not mesh), they will see each other. I highly recommend a few more plants so they will feel more secure. And placing plants beside the divider does act as a nice distraction from their neighbour.
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Old 01-23-2012, 08:22 PM   #7 
zaichev
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It is solid. It's plastic. Thus the problem with the heater. :-/

However I might not actually need a heater, as I live in a tropical climate and indoors it never gets before 73, really.
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Old 01-23-2012, 10:44 PM   #8 
Pataflafla
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I would strongly recommend keeping your heater. 73 is quite cold for a betta. Preferred range is 78-82. Colder and their systems tend to slow down and experience problems as well as leaving the immune system weak and vulnerable to attack.

As far as partial changes, if you're going to do 75%s, then I suggest doing quite a few during the week. 4 would be a good number for 75% changes since the water can be too clean, but you also want to balance that with keeping ammonia as low as possible.
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