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229 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My beta fish is currently swimming around, but then he sticks to the bottom of the tank. He's currently in a 0.5 gallon tank with a plant in it.

Is he stressed? Crammed? Sick?

Please help!

(Also how can I keep the water warm or normal temp without a heater?)

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229 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Ok, first off sweetheart, a .5 gallon tank is really too small for him.
Unless you are doing twice a day water changes, he is probably stressed AND sick. It's hard to keep water a good temperature without a heater, but wrapping a towel all the way around it will help to slow the temperature variations in the water.
Can you give us a little more information about the fish and tank so ppl can more accurately help?
What size is your tank?
What temperature is your tank?
Does your tank have a filter?
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration?
Is your tank heated?
What tank mates does your betta fish live with?

What type of food do you feed your betta fish?
How often do you feed your betta fish?

How often do you perform a water change?
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change?
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change?

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters?


Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed?
How has your betta fish's behavior changed?
When did you start noticing the symptoms?
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how?
Does your fish have any history of being ill?
How old is your fish (approximately)?

A few questions? :p

He's In a 0.5 gallon tank, I want a bigger tank and I will buy one probably this weekend.

I change the water about every two days.
He's a crowntail betta and I don't know his age
He hasn't been sick
I've been feeding him pellets and flakes.
He's looking really stressed.

The water is room temperature.
I haven't tested the ph levels.
He is currently without a heater and a filter..

I just want him to be happy :/

Thanks for your help!

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229 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Lol, not my list of questions, its what they ask for in disease. In half a gallon, ammonia builds up fast. Daily water changes would be best. Also, if you plan to upgrade him this weekend, here is what its said on here is the minimum. A 2 gallon tank and a heater. I loved the aqueon mini bow 2.5 but it was on sale for $20 when I bought it. Until you upgrade him, do daily water changes and try to match the the water temp. Also flakes can cause bloating and are harder to get out. Stick to his pellets for now. Use a turkey baster to clean out any leftover food (or in the case of the small tank, feed before water change) He will probably stay stressed until you can upgrade him, but doing daily water changes with a good water conditioner (which I'm assuming you already have) will at least keep down the ammonia
The flakes are nutrafin max
He's swimming around more now
Is there a way to keep him in the tank and not to be stressed?
Thanks for being so nice in a difficult situation

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229 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
If you have a petsmart, they have the top fin 5.5 gallon starter kit for $28. All you need to add to it is a heater and a thermometer. I have the 29 gallon version of this tank and am pretty happy with it. If you have space, the Grreat Choice 10 gallon starter kit for $30 is pretty nice. Just add heater. I have the 10 gallon and am pretty pleased with it. If space is a premium, the Top Fin Aquascene 3.5 gallon is on sale for $23. An heater ran me $10-$15, so if you need to stay around $30, that's your bet.
BUT, and here is the best part, if you get the 10, you can always make a divider and get a second betta. And since you already have the filter, heater, food, water conditioner, and space, all he costs is the price of himself and a divider. And trust me, bettas are like potato chips. It's really hard to stop after one (i currently have 5!)
What tank would be best? And also, what heater did you buy/ reccommend? I might just order it online now!

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229 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Everyone is telling me they do not need a big tank to live, ( A 2.5 gallon) I want to get one, as he's currently in a 0.5 gallon and he's stressed, and keeps his fins tucked in. I did a 100% water change yesterday, and I will do a 50% or 100% tonight. I want to keep him healthy until I can ask my parents very nicely that I can get a 5.5 gallon tank. (Top Fin 5.5 Gal Aquarium Starter KIt? Reviews? Concerns?) Thnaks everyone and anymore tips on how to keep the beta healthy, and happy until then? It doesn't look like I will get a tank this weekend :/

I place him in the sunlight when I see the sun. (lol)
And I place a bedside table lamp over him sometimes, and wrap a towel around the tank. Anymore ideas or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.



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229 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Yeah, a smaller tank is all right. Just nothing under a gallon. Even then, we kind of recommend the gallon size only for more experienced keepers because it requires more maintenance, and has bigger repercussions if you miss water changes and so on.

The bigger tanks are better, because it's easier to find good, consistent heaters for them, and because most bettas prefer more space over less. In fact, if you get a 5.5 gal tank, there are a few fish that you can actually house with bettas peacefully. But they're specific kinds, and you don't want to put too many in at once. The 1gal per inch of fish applies. Bettas reach maybe 2-2.5 inches long (sometimes bigger).

5.5 is great if you can get it. If you can't get that, a 3gal is perfectly fine. There are threads about water change recommendations for different tank sizes; oldfishlady's thread is the one most people consider to be a respectable source. It's easy to find in the Betta Fish Care section.

Just get what you can. My instructions above are for the minimum of what you might need; I was assuming from your writing style that you were probably a college student in a dorm room (that's when a lot of people get fish), or maybe a high/middle schooler, and neither of those groups has a lot of money on hand.
Yes, I am :p
I really want this fish to live, so I've asked my friend if I can have he one gallon tank.

I want to get a cave for him instead of a plastic plant, dice it can tear his fins.

I think I like him too much lol
Whenever I go near the tank he swims away :/

Why does he do that?

I also have a problem with catching him and putting him in the tank.
Also, do I need a heater? I trying to find a thermometer at least for the water, any other help would be great :)

Thanks everyone!


(Sorry for any spelling mistakes or bad grammar, it was never my strong suit :p)

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229 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
YOU NEED A HEATER. It was said multiple times in this thread. Betta's are tropical fish. You need a heater to keep the water warm enough. Get a GLASS thermometer. The stick on ones are unreliable.
read myexplodingcat post on this thread. Everything is said perfectly.
Just because you are a college kid doesn't mean you can miss treat a fish. Im a college student too but all of my fish are in AT LEAST 2.5 gallon tanks.
in terms of decor - get silk pants (not plastic) and just make sure whatever you get you make sure there isn't any sharp edges (run you fingers ALL over it, inside and out) and soak it before you put it in his tank to make sure there aren't harmful chemicals or paints. there a tread on the forum and lists dangerous ornaments
He is probably swimming away from you because he is stressed and not happy.
Honestly I hate to be this rude but if you weren't planning on doing TONS of research about bettas and what they need before you got tone then you should not have gotten one in the first place.
They are a big responsibility and way more than something cute to look at.
Thank you for your input. I currently live two hours away from the closest pet store. I'm not trying to mistreat the fish, and now I feel bad about keeping it. Next time I go out of town, I will pick up a 3 gallon tank and a heater.
But right now, I cannot get one.

I currently have a plastic plant, should I take it out?

Thanks everyone for your contribution to this forum.

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229 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Hello Everyone!

A little update on my beta, Joe.
I currently have him in a 1.5 gallon (That's what it says on the box, at least)
I realize I need a bigger tank, but this is what I have at the moment.
It'd currently 22-23 degrees in his tank. (I know this is cooler than reccommended but I do not have a heater)
Since moving him to the bigger tank, Joe is swimming around more happily. As soon as I get a chance to go to a pet store, he'll have a 3.5 gallon with a heater, and maybe even a snail friend.

Thanks everyone for all your help, I know it sounds like I'm tryng to kill this beta, but I just didn't have the money, and I recieved this fish as a gift.



P.S: Cheaper tank suggestions from petsmart or other places they might have here in Canada would be great :)

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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
Aw, Thanks everyone :)

I'm currently in the process of trying to buy a 3 gallon, or the 5.5 gallon, depending on how much space I have!

I have medicine for torn fins, until I can get somethign he can hide in besides the plant (Which he *loves*)

I did my research o nthe tank, and it's about 0.7 gallons :/
A little bit bigger, but maybe it was a weird box? I don't know.
He seems happier though, which is good. I'm going to be buying a heater ASAP!

Any good suggestions for a heater for a 3 gallon, or a 5.5 gallon?

Thanks everyone!
(And I will be stalking the fourms daily ;) )
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