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I recently lost my betta fish, Kori, who I love dearly and who will always have a special place in my heart. Although I don't think I'm emotionally ready yet to get another fish, I know in the semi-near future I will be and I want to get I new tank because I felt like the 2.5 I had Kori in was far too small. However, I don't know whether a 5 gallon or a 10 is better. I think both have pros and cons such as a 5 gallon is cheaper, easier to fit on my dresser, and will cycle quicker but it definitely won't stay as clean as a 10 and in some ways I'm limited in space for plants and small tank mates like shrimp and snails. On the other hand a 10 will be much easier to manage and keep clean, plus I have many more options in terms of space but I'm afraid that it could be too much space for a betta and it possibly out of budget depending on the brand of tank. As a note, I plan on taking on aquascaping and natural planted approach to any tank I get so the majority of the tank will be planted. Anyway, I'm just interested in other's opinion on what size they think is better for a betta. Of course I could always meet in the middle and get a tank around 7 gallons but I've noticed that 7's are hard to find in my area compared to a 5 or 10.
 

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I house all my Betta in 5.5 gallon regular tanks, heavily planted. I don't find any difference in keeping the tank clean. However I do over filter all of my tanks. In my Little Bee's tank there are 4 mystery snails to take care of the Green algae. If it weren't for the algae, his tank would be the same as Gunny's with no other tank mates.

I think either would be great for a betta. There are some betta that get very stressed when put into a 10 gallon. They don't deal well with all the space and depth. And there are others that thrive in one.
Your space needs are another thing you must consider, and also cost. I just added up the price of what I would put into a 5.5 and the cost of what a 10 gallon would cost.

If you buy a starter tank kit in either the kit for a 5.5 gallon at Petco is $29.99 The kit cost for a 10 gallon is $78.99 These tanks include the tank, LED Hood, Thermometer, net, and filter. You would need to buy a heater. I would suggest Aqueon heaters at petsmart, I just bought a 50 watt adjustable for $14.99 (online price) Have them price check it because the store price is $35.99.

These prices do not include your plants.
 

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I have a planted 10 gallon tank with my Betta. I tried a community tank with him, 5 ember tetras and a snail. Unfortunately, he's too aggressive with the tetras (but fine with snail), so I have to divide my tank to keep everyone safe. The left side is where my Betta (Sanji) is, the right side is where the tetras are. I bought another snail so I have one on each side. Planning to get another Betta for the right side. He's been making bubble nest nonstop since then.

Here are the items I bought for my set up and I usually wait for sales, especially for aquarium tanks.
Petco:
10 gal (dollar per gallon sale) $10
Aquarium Lid (bought during sale) $13

Amazon:
Submersible adjustable heater for 10 gal tank $13
Floating thermometer $2 (inside the tank - submerged in water)
Aquarium thermometer $5 (stick on outside the tank)
NICREW LED light $28

Plants (bought at local fish store):
Java fern, Amazon sword, Morimo Moss Balls, Crypt. Wendtii

I forgot the website, I will try to search my shopping history in case you're interested:
10 gallon with 2 sponge filters and air pump $38 (I got this package as a set)
They also have a 10 gallon Tank dividers only $15

I spent around $100 - $150 for everything. Including hardscapes. I hope this help you with your set up.
 

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I think either will work.

I do not find a 2.5 is too small if it is longer than tall. My 2.5 was more of a challenge to plant because I had to research and find plants that wouldn't get too big for it. Small Swords, Crypts and Anubias were the answer. Maybe the fact I had to put more planning into it is why it's always been my favorite. :dunno:
 
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