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Old 04-03-2012, 08:19 PM   #1 
Ikebana
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Red face New Betta, Questions

So I've had Betta fish before, in the sense that most people have (small, round, *maybe* 1 gallon tanks without heater/filter). And just yesterday a friend of mine bought a Betta for me because I admired hers so much.

Well I bought a Vase (filled to the brim it's probably 1 gallon) a live plant, and Betta pellets. Then decided I wanted to put some rocks of mine in the tank, and googled how to boil rocks for a fishtank. Well it brought me here, and I did a ton and a half of reading last night (was not happy with having to wake up this morning I stayed up so late!) and registered as a user here

So I decided to used the vase as, well, probably a vase. We have an older tank that we've seemingly had forever. I put the measurements online and its a 5.5 gallon tank. I think he'll be happy with that!

So now come the questions:

1) My poor Betta is still in his cup because I didn't want to stress him out by moving him to the vase, then moving him into the other tank when I got it set up. How long will he be ok in there? It's been a day, do I need to change the water? He's very lively and has a voracious appetite! The reason I ask this is because,

2) I bought a 1-3 gallon pump/filter for my tank I had a blonde moment and was thinking I needed to get the smallest size (I also had to pee like a wild raced horse, so this may have clouded my judgement a bit!). I figured I'd just take it in tomorrow and grab a 5 gallon pump/filter, no biggie, right?

But then....

3) Back when I bought the tank, probably 3+ years ago (may have had it longer) I bought a heater. I dont know what size tank it is for, but am assuming it can handle a 5 gallon tank. But it IS probably somewhere between 2-3 years old. And has been in our garage for probably 6 months. Is it ok to use? It seems to be in good shape. But at the bottom half inch or so, instead of being black, it has turned white (the stuff inside, not the glass). I have no idea what I'm doing, but was tempted to put it in to start heating the water so that he could have a warm home tonight....

4) I also bought a new light for the hood of the aquarium for the plant. It's an Aquarium Plant Growth Bulb, and is Pre-Tested 15W/120V Incandescent. It fits nicely into my hood, and is the same size visually as the previous bulb, but there is a warning on my hood that says only to use:

"tested tubular lamp 'rated 25 watts maximum'"

So how do I know if this light will be ok? Will it do something weird to the hood/explode if I use it?

So now I'm wondering if I shouldn't just leave him in the cup another day, get the new filter/pump (any brand will do? I bought a Tetra Whisper Internal Filter, will that work? Of course I need a bigger size ) and maybe find a new heater if it is deemed bad?

Forgot to add I bought a water conditioner, 'Tetra Betta Safe'. Will this work fine? I'm assuming it will but I thought I read something about it not removing 'something' (sorry, read it earlier today and have forgotten it, and have no idea where I saw it!) and that I had to have a filter that removed that 'something' or my fish would get sick...

So, to leave in cup, or not to leave in cup....that is the question!
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Old 04-03-2012, 08:36 PM   #2 
Olympia
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1) I would set up the tank, and put him in asap. You will be doing a fish in cycle, which means you will need to be doing a lot of water changes until your tank is cycled, which can usually take about a month. You can get your water tested at most pet stores for free if you don't want to spend around $40 on a test kit.

2) I'd take back the filter for a larger one, set it up asap since it is vital to your cycle.

3) Get a thermometer and test out the heater in a large bowl to see if it works okay. If the stuff is inside I wouldn't worry too much as long as it works. Most heaters have white fluff on the inside.

4) Your light is 15watts and your lamp holds 25 maximum. I don't see a problem.

Don't know about that conditioner in specific.

Welcome to the horribly addicting world of betta! Enjoy your stay, and try not to end up with 10 fish like most of us do ;)
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Old 04-03-2012, 09:05 PM   #3 
Ikebana
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I was only worried about the light because it said it needed to be tested for a tubular hood. I've never really gotten into fish, but I really like this guy, so am second guessing everything (especially since most of my knowledge is from pet store people...small tanks, no heater, etc.).

Do all hoods have a metal reflector (am guessing thats what it is) on the hood side of the bulb? Maybe thats what I'm worrying about, too much heat for the bulb...

And Betta is now in my room. Am giving the tank a little bit of time for the conditioner to diffuse through the water before I put him in. Am just worried about him swimming through a big spot of conditioner (not sure if thats a valid fear or not, something I just think would be bad, please correct me if I'm wrong!).

Also heater is now being tested in water, will see how it does. Water was 66F and is now 68F so it seems to be working in the 5 mins or so its been in the water. Should I just watch to make sure it turns off when it hits a certain degreeF?
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Old 04-03-2012, 09:10 PM   #4 
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I don't know too much about lights so I'll stop there.
As long as you stir the conditioner up, you can add him in right away with no worries.
Is the heater adjustable? If so it should stop when it reaches the adjusted temperature. If not, they usually heat to 76-78 by default. It'll probably take a while, I'd leave it in at least overnight, a lot of broken heaters heat and heat until they overheat, so take some time to see if that happens.
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Old 04-03-2012, 09:22 PM   #5 
Ikebana
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Ok. I've had him floating in the tank for a little while (probably 15-20mins now that I think about it) will let him out here pretty soon. Will he be fine without a heater then, if I have to keep it going all night to test it? My room gets pretty cold, I actually had him in our family room near our fireplace because thats the only room I know will stay above 70F all night. My room probably hits 65F or lower most nights, and the rest of the house isn't much better!

And until I hear a definite, 'yes your light is fine' I figure my plant will be ok without a light. So will leave it off for now.

Thanks!
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Old 04-03-2012, 09:29 PM   #6 
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Originally Posted by Ikebana View Post
Ok. I've had him floating in the tank for a little while (probably 15-20mins now that I think about it) will let him out here pretty soon. Will he be fine without a heater then, if I have to keep it going all night to test it? My room gets pretty cold, I actually had him in our family room near our fireplace because thats the only room I know will stay above 70F all night. My room probably hits 65F or lower most nights, and the rest of the house isn't much better!

And until I hear a definite, 'yes your light is fine' I figure my plant will be ok without a light. So will leave it off for now.

Thanks!
No he'll need a heater for sure. I would suggest keep him near the fireplace, it's the only way to keep him warm. 65F is really cold, and not suitable for a Betta. Also about the water conditioner, they work instantly, a lot of people like to switch their hand around mixing it before pouring it into their tanks but apparently it instantly works. I just pour in the water conditioner and swirl my bucket around and pour it in.
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Old 04-03-2012, 09:30 PM   #7 
Ikebana
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Unhappy

Well I released him, and he seemed happy enough, until I realized...

The stupid glass is mirrored!

So now what? Back into the container?

This poor fish, everything seems to be set against him
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Old 04-03-2012, 09:35 PM   #8 
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Well I released him, and he seemed happy enough, until I realized...

The stupid glass is mirrored!

So now what? Back into the container?

This poor fish, everything seems to be set against him
I wouldn't remove him again, it'll just stress himself out more. My new guy flared at his own reflection all day yesterday, and now he's fine. They get used to it I believe.
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Old 04-03-2012, 09:39 PM   #9 
Ikebana
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oh good, so they just get used to their reflection? I'd never heard of that, we always put up a mirror, for maybe 10 seconds at a time, to see the Bettas we had years ago flare. Should I worry about any stress related things then? Or just keep an eye on him until he settles?
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Old 04-03-2012, 09:44 PM   #10 
Olympia
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Watch him, some betta are uncomfortable at first in large spaces, so some cover is a good idea. They usually come around. If he doesn't get used to his reflection within a few days, put some dark green/blue paper along the back and sides of the tank to reduce reflection (black and white paper increase reflection). :)
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