How often would I need to change the tank if cycled/uncycled?
I know the general gist or cycling but I have many different suggestions can someone share their own cycling experiences? (also I only have Betta so I have to use the fish to cycle if I do plan to do it)
I also want to know how long it would take to cycle a tank that large.
Some people don't cycle, just throw the fish in and hope for the best.. it's an option.. but you have to be diligent on testing the water frequently as new tanks will have spikes in the chemistry, such as ammonia, which can be deadly.
When ammonia is present you will want to make a small to medium sized water change depending on how much ammonia is in there.
The tank will eventually build up the proper bacteria on it's own, but during the time you aren't in control as much.
For a 10 gallon with a filter, no live plants you will end up with 1 50% water change per week with regular substrate vacuuming.
For a 10 gallon without a filter, no live plants you will end up with 1 50% per week and 1 100% per month water change.
A properly cycled tank tends to be somewhat healthier overall, and allows you to have more variety of live plants, or even a couple tank mates. It also means you wouldn't have to do any 100% water change.
But if you plan on keeping just the betta alone, minimal plants that don't need a cycled tank (or fake plants), and willing to do a monthly 100%, then a filter isn't needed.
Either way, weekly water changes is needed for both filtered and nonfiltered tanks.
I definitely think it's worth it to cycle. I cycled a 5 gallon with one betta fish in it in about 5-6 weeks. I was very diligent with water changes to maintain fish health (30%-50% twice a week, depending on water quality), which probably made it take a little longer, but I was veeery concerned about the fish's health. I didn't let ammonia or nitrites get above .25 ppm.
After it cycled, I changed 30%-50% of the water once a week, vacuuming substrate. Since you intend for 4 bettas, I agree with Myates, 50% once a week after cycle.
Really depends on how committed you are with water changes.
I have yet to fail a Fish in cycle and have ranged anywhere from lone males in a 5 to a full sorority in a 15 gallon.
Without fail, 2 to 3, 25 to 50pct water changes a week...can't blow it off. If you are unable to follow this schedule due to work, school, kids whatnot, then do not attempt a fish in cycle else you will most likely find em dead.
!!! You CAN cycle without a filter if you set up a Walstad (natural) planted tank. It's a little pricey to start, because you need a ton of plants (plantedaquariumscentral.com is amaaaazing, and coupon code BETTAFISH at least used to get you 10% off... probably still works), but well worth it. I have a 10g Walstad planted tank and I love it. When you first start it out, you have to stay on top of testing the water like crazy, but after a few weeks, just trim some plants once in a while, take out some snails, watch for algae, test the water once every few weeks... maintenance done, lol. After a year my levels are still 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, 0 nitrate and my plants love me.
Look it up/post a thread or some questions if you're interested!
Ahh I know of those tanks..... actually my dream setup didn't know you can do that with Betta XD
I'm a bit hesitant now though to start anything so delicate like an ecosystem though....(not sure if we'll be moving in the near future or not)
But if you have any good advice or reference I would love to check it out ^.^
Anyway my setup is as soo:
(I temporarily stuck in the little girlie Jinx (there is a VERY good reason she is called that) to spare her from my Grandma's tank - she has been warned to get a large tank! - while my other boy is in quarantine. Lols she really gets on with Jester, they show off and dance around but don't seem to be aggressive.
rant:I'm so stupid and forgot to pick up water tester sticks and Styrofoam cups (I was right There!!), so I hope they're are all right until Saturday...they certainly look happy at least :)
Strange how warm the water is though, would have thought it colder due to being a larger tank than their previous one.
grrr also Need to add a Baster and more plants to the list....
Do a 50% change on like Wednesday and they'll be fine. :)
I know the concern of moving a planted tank very well... I go to school 2 hours from my parents' house, and I set mine up in a 10 gallon tank there. Now that I'm living in an apartment at school, I'd love to bring Sky up here, but I'm suuuper worried about moving the tank. I don't want to mess up the entire thing! eeee I think everything is pretty much well-rooted enough that it'd be okay, though... still undecided.