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Discussion Starter #81
So, have the tank and everything set up since probably 9 pm. It is now 4:30 am, and temp still is at 68 degrees. The thermometer is a bit hard to read, even with glasses on, but it is between 68 and 70. It should be a bit warmer by now, no?

So, might complain to Chewy, see what they offer. Maybe its defective. Maybe I didn't give it time to get used to the water before plugging it in. Last few times, including right now, the light is off on the heater.
 

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It's probably not working correctly. Every time I've started up a new heater, the temp rose a 2 or 3 degrees within an hour at least. Definitely complain and try to get a refund. Some better heaters for you are one of these two:

Hydor Theo -- I own 2 of these. They're actually relatively small, so if you wanted you could get the 50 watt model of this, keep it adjusted low, and use it safely in your 3g. That way, if you ever wanted to use it on a larger tank, you wouldn't need to buy a more powerful heater. An admin on this site, @RussellTheShihTzu, uses 50 watt Hydors in her 2.5 gallon tanks with no problem.

Aquarium Heaters: Hydor Theo Heater

Marina adjustable 25-watt -- I own one of these (as well as the enormous 50-watt version that would never fit in a small tank), and I've been using it daily in my old 3g for two years now with no problem. It's main drawback is that it doesn't have temperature labels, so you just have to crank it up and watch where the thermometer lands. Keep an eye on it for 24 hours to see where it peaks at, and if it's too high, turn it down slightly.

Marina 25 Watt Mini Submersible Aquarium Heater | eBay

The big thing about adjustable heaters vs. pre-set (which is what you have), is that for adjustables, upwards wattage doesn't matter at all (I once saw someone put a 100 watt adjustable in a 5g), because you can make it go to any temp you want within its capabilities. With pre-set, it's putting out the same amount of heat always, so if it's too hot or too cold for your tank, there's nothing you can do.
 

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Discussion Starter #83
Gonna get the Theo 50 w, and adjust low. I am also ordering a few of the plants you linked before, but the ones I really like are out of stock till middle of November. Thanks, again. Maybe Chewy will just do a credit for my next purchase or something.

Gonna look for an easier thermometer to read too. Tiny tiny numbers.
 

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For thermometers, I prefer to use these on my tanks because they give very fast and accurate readouts:

3 pcs LCD Digital Fish Aquarium Thermometer Water Black FREE Extra Batteries | eBay

One of these I have has been running every day for 2 years and the battery is still going strong. Works great. I dunno if it would still be too small for you or not though.

Only the temperature-sensing probe and the cord is submersible, though. The body of the thermometer has to stay on the outside of the tank. It comes with a suction cup to hang it on the outside of the tank.
 

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Discussion Starter #86
For thermometers, I prefer to use these on my tanks because they give very fast and accurate readouts:

3 pcs LCD Digital Fish Aquarium Thermometer Water Black FREE Extra Batteries | eBay

One of these I have has been running every day for 2 years and the battery is still going strong. Works great. I dunno if it would still be too small for you or not though.

Only the temperature-sensing probe and the cord is submersible, though. The body of the thermometer has to stay on the outside of the tank. It comes with a suction cup to hang it on the outside of the tank.
Okay, thanks.

Should not be too small.

The one I got, is this: https://www.chewy.com/marina-floating-thermometer-suction/dp/131461

I just cannot read it. Way smaller than their picture shows.
 

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Discussion Starter #88
Done, ordered the digital thermometer, Theo heater, 4 plants. Good to go for now.

Will wait a week or 2 or 3 before deciding on 10 gallon tank. I really have one, my son has his lizard in it right now, but I have a 40 or 50 I want him to put the lizard in, but we do not have a lid for the 40 or 50. Not sure if the 10 has a crack either, the way my son takes care of things, plus I would want a fresh sterile one.
 

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Be careful with using reptile tanks as fish tanks. Depending on what it was designed for, it may not even hold water. If it was sold as a reptile tank, it may not be water-tight even if it isn't cracked. Last thing anybody wants is to have a tank burst. That's every aquarist's nightmare.

Walmart sells 10gs made for fish for only $14. That's where I got all of mine.
 

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Discussion Starter #90
Ugh the more I work with this tank, the more I hate it. So, it came with this thing that gives off bubbles and changes the color of the lights. I have no gravel so the thing will not stay where I put it and it just keeps floating around. I am about to take it out and have no light in there other than the room light. But, wanted to ask first, do Betta's like the bubbles. The bubble stream can be adjusted, and I have it going pretty high now, but he seems to keep going over there to get some bubbles, it seems.

Then, every time I put my arm in there to make something stay down, water comes out the top. This is not an easy feat, because I have to stand on my desk to reach it.

I thought I had the heater figured out. It was seeming the bubble/light thingy was causing it to think its hot, I don't know, shutting it off. When I moved it, it turned back on. But I cannot get the bubble thingy/light to stay down anywhere cept using the bottom of the heater and wedging it under there. Temp is still around 68 in there.

If the bubles are not necessary and the weird changing light is not necessary, I am going to take it out.

Little stinker he is. I decided to try to feed him pellets again because I read they are better for him. I fed him 3. He takes one, spits it out. Goes to the next one, takes it in, spits it out. Did the same thing to all 3, and did it numerous times. In front of my face. So, took them out and gave him flakes. I have to get some shrimp in a can and try that too. I put my finger in there just still. He came up and tasted me, then ran away. He is so cute.
 

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Discussion Starter #91 (Edited)
Got my test kit. So, tested just pH and ammonia.





Weird kit. They have 5 tests but only give you 4 test tubes.

How does this look?

Hard for me to tell. Seems between 00.25 and 00.50.
 

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Discussion Starter #93 (Edited)
I am completely at a loss and confused about cycling and what I need to be doing. I just put this water in yesterday. I put QuickStart and BettaSafe in it. Waiting on the SeaChem, not here yet. Edited: SeaChem StressGuard just arrived, and am going to put some in now. This bottle should last for a while.

How do you wash the test tubes out after you test? If I just rinse, won't the tubes have residue from yesterday's test in there as well as the chemicals from the test itself?

I checked out the thread about cycling but I am even more confused now.

I dunno. Water is not even hot enough yet. Does that affect ammonia and or nitrites/nitrates (yes, didn't test them yet).

I am going to go nap. See you all later and thanks again for reading my posts. I am just such a newbie and need so much help.
 

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If I miss any of your questions please let me know! Lack of sleep has my brain a bit fuzzy.

No, they do not need a bubbler, or technically a filter. Both of those will oxygenate the water, and the filter will additionally keep the water clean, BUT betta have what's known as an labyrinth organ which means that they can take oxygen from the surface of the water to breath if they are in low oxygen water. Contrary to rumor to do not need to use that organ, and if they are in water with a high oxygen you won't see them come to the surface to take a gulp of air as often. My own 2.5 gal tank has neither a filter or bubbler right now and hasn't since I got the tank. Some betta's like to play in the bubbles, some don't care either way, and some don't like them at all so it's just a matter of preference for them. If you wan't to take the bubbler out the bottom of the tank feel free! You can always put it back in later when you have something to weigh it down.

I don't know if you have a filter on the tank or not, but if you do not you will need to keep up with the water changes because the ammonia and nitrite will rise even faster. Also an unfiltered tank is very hard to cycle due to the beneficial bacteria having less to grow on. The bacteria likes to grow in the filter sponge and to a much lesser degree it'll grow in the gravel and on the tanks decorations.

I clean my API test tubes, and the caps to the tubes, by rinsing them really well in hot tap water then turning them upside down to dry.

Here's the forums guide that explains how to do a fish in cycle... http://www.bettafish.com/30-betta-fish-care/507585-cycling-two-sentence-tutorial.html

It looks like the ammonia test you did shows .25 ppm . Am I reading that right or is the color off due to it being a picture. If it is .25 did you test the new tank, or the old tank? If it's the new tank was the water completely fresh? The reason for all the questions is that if you tested new water, then it should have 0 ammonia, but sometimes tap water contains ammonium (not toxic to fish) and the API test will read it as ammonia. All that to say if it's new water do a test on your tap water to double check that that's the problem. It'll save you a bunch of headache later on when you are cycling the tank.

When testing the tank water while using Prime make sure to test the tank water right before a water change, or 48 hours after a water change.

A couple of things with the heater, it may be that the thermometer is not working correctly, I've had that happen. If the thermometer is right then try unplugging the heater for 2 to 3 hours, leaving it in the tank, and then plugging it back in. If it's still not heating the water then you'll know it's the heater that's not working correctly.

Hopefully that answers all your questions, if I missed any just let me know.
 

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Discussion Starter #95
Rainblo, this is a new tank I just got yesterday and put him in at around 9 pm last night. It has a filter and heater (but heater doesnt seem to work and have another one coming in the mail). It is not the filter I want to remove, it is this changing light/bubbling thingy that I want to remove.

So the water is new. It has QuickStart, BettaSafe, and Seachem Safeguard in it, and an Indian leave. The water was a bit cloudy today but it is crystal clear now.

I did not buy Prime. I bought QuickStart and SeaChem on suggestion here.

My fish seems to love the bubbler. He also loves his new Indian leave. He hangs out under it all the time.

I am just going to unplug the heater, wait a few hours and take it out and wait for the new one which should be here tomorrow.

I have read a good bit of the cycling thread but it still goes over my head. I do not understand what I am trying to do. I guess I need to change half the water in a week. My starting purpose here was because the round bowl w/o a filter or anything else I could not keep clean, so was wanting to get a tank mate to eat the gunk, but it developed into much more than that, why we are at 10 pages of posts. I have done pretty much everything asked, except order the Prime, because I do not believe that was recommended to me until now. I have QuickStart and BettaStart and SeachemStressGuard. I can't possibly need another drop, can I?
 

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Discussion Starter #96
I was watching videos on YouTube about fish, some as small as Betta, having surgery, like for swim bladder, or a lesion on the side of the fish, big Koi surgeries. I guess I started looking because I was reading the thread about weird Betta disease, then some posts about dropsy and it led me to videos of fish having surgery to remove edema. Amazing stuff.
 

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Discussion Starter #97
Oh and Rainblo, I used the water from the old tank to pour into the new tank, the old rocks, etc., to keep the bacteria from them in, and just added new water to the tank to fill it up.
 

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Rainblo, this is a new tank I just got yesterday and put him in at around 9 pm last night. It has a filter and heater (but heater doesnt seem to work and have another one coming in the mail). It is not the filter I want to remove, it is this changing light/bubbling thingy that I want to remove.

So the water is new. It has QuickStart, BettaSafe, and Seachem Safeguard in it, and an Indian leave. The water was a bit cloudy today but it is crystal clear now.

I did not buy Prime. I bought QuickStart and SeaChem on suggestion here.

My fish seems to love the bubbler. He also loves his new Indian leave. He hangs out under it all the time.

I am just going to unplug the heater, wait a few hours and take it out and wait for the new one which should be here tomorrow.

I have read a good bit of the cycling thread but it still goes over my head. I do not understand what I am trying to do. I guess I need to change half the water in a week. My starting purpose here was because the round bowl w/o a filter or anything else I could not keep clean, so was wanting to get a tank mate to eat the gunk, but it developed into much more than that, why we are at 10 pages of posts. I have done pretty much everything asked, except order the Prime, because I do not believe that was recommended to me until now. I have QuickStart and BettaStart and SeachemStressGuard. I can't possibly need another drop, can I?
It's fine to take the bubbler out, the filter will do the job of oxygenating the water and filtering it.

No problem about the Prime, when you said Seachem my brain automatically went to Prime. I'll explain what Prime is, and what it does, and why the forum recommends it, you can decide if you want to get it :)

Prime is a water conditioner like the BettaStart what you already have, but where it differs is that it also binds with ammonia and Nitrite making them harmless for 24 to 48 hours. That's all the difference there really is between the two.

Now the reason Prime is recommended when doing a fish in cycle (cycling the tank while you have a fish or fish in it) is because of it's ability to bind with the ammonia and nitrite. Both Ammonia and Nitrite are toxic to fish, BUT when cycling a tank you need a bit of ammonia and nitrite in the tank to feed the beneficial bacteria since that is what they eat. So in order to have the ammonia and nitrate in the tank to feed the bacteria, and to keep the fish safe, it's recommended to use Prime.

To cycle the tank, and keep your boy safe, just do what is suggested in the beginning of the thread I linked. Don't worry about all the other stuff that goes into detail about each step. It really is as simple as doing 25% water changes 2x a week, or when the ammonia or nitrite rises to .25ppm on the API master kit. Test your water before the water change and all you need to test is Ammonia, Nitrite, and Nitrate. What you are aiming for is 0 on the Ammonia and Nitrite, and 10 to 20 on the Nitrate. Once you achieve that your tank is cycled and you can do 25% water changes once a week. That is literally all you need to do. You can add QuickStart according to the instructions on the bottle if you want, sometimes it helps to speed up the cycle, if you don't want to be bothered that's fine too, the tank will still cycle. If you don't want to cycle with Prime that's fine, when I did my first tank I was like you and did not have Prime, my boy survived the cycle, Betta's are pretty hardy fish, just test the tanks water ever other day to make sure the ammonia and nitrite doesn't spike.
 

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Discussion Starter #99 (Edited)
I will get some Prime. Chewy is the best, they deliver next day. He seems to love the bubbles, so for now leaving it in. I have to get gravel. Ordered some but it was out of stock so the company cancelled my order. I have 100 of these pretty glow in the dark gravel/rock pieces coming, but that is not gravel.

I have to find a better spot for his tank. It is up high so doing anything is becoming hard because I have to climb on my desk to get to him. So, I have to bring him down to my level. I didn't test his nitrites/nitrates because I was confused with the test kit. Only 4 tubes, but 5 tests, but I will do it soon.

Prime has now been ordered, but probably won't be here until Tuesday because it is 10:13 pm on Friday night and the probably won't process my order until Monday.
 

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Hey, sorry for the late reply. Had some stuff to do. On the bright side I put some Christmas lights on my tank because I'm too broke to buy actual aquarium lights for all my tanks, so now the one-man-7-fish DZIM household is 100% festive.



Some ammonia is normal when the tank starts establishing. Over time the bacteria culture will grow enough to take the ammonia down to a consistent 0 all the time. So keep up with regular water changes and test water frequently to make sure the nitrates and ammonia don't skyrocket to dangerous levels. Once you get consistently low readings, you won't need to check water parameters very often at all. It's only at the beginning that thinks are very unstable. 6 drops of Seachem Prime in your tank every day until ammonia reads 0 (meaning the cycle is established) will neutralize ammonia and keep the water safe for the fish.

Bubblers are necessary for bettas and are a personal preference for the keeper. I think they look great, but the last time I used one my fish became incredibly stressed out by the turbulence it caused, so I threw it out. Some bettas enjoy bubblers as a form of enrichment, some are afraid of them. It's all down to personal preference. If you like it and the fish likes it, feel free to keep it.

Bettas naturally live in slow moving, shallow water, and consequently aren't well adapted to turbulent waters. If you see the betta avoiding the bubbler, hiding a lot, or going pale, or showing horizontal stripes down the sides of its body, take it out.
 
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