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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone :) I'm new to fish in general. I had a tank when I was growing up and I didn't know much about caring for them properly as a young child. :oops: I'm now grown and would like to begin again. I have been reading up on the care and requirements for a beautiful betta.

I wonder though, is it okay to set up an empty tank before I choose a fish? I would feel more comfortable setting up the right temp and water conditions without the pressure of a fish needing to live in it right away. Is this weird or unhealthy at all?
 

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I usually set-up tanks before I bring bettas home unless it's an impulse buy. Then I will set one up as soon as the new purchase gets home.

In my case it lets me see all my equipment is working properly, and gives me time to get the tank looking how I want it.

If you are doing a fishless cycle, you can have an empty tank set up for as long as a month, as stock are only added once the cycle is complete.

It's not at all unusual or weird in the least.
 

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If you just do a google search on fish-in or fishless cycling, a lot of information should crop up. Some forums have detailed stickies outlining cycling and the process of developing an established biological filter so it shouldn't be hard to find.

Generally unless using live stem plants to supplement your filter, it is very hard for anything under around 4-5 gallons to hold a stable cycle. I never bother cycling any of my smaller tanks but just do regular water changes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Hmm. I'm planning on starting with something smaller like a 2.5 gallon. It seems from your post like that wouldn't work with cycling? I plan to do weekly 50% changes.

Thanks for recommending I just google search it. I wasn't sure if we had a sticky or dedicated thread. You've been a great help so far!
 

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When I had a 2.5 gallon, I tried for a 100% change 1x/week but it wasn't enough. I ended up doing 100% every 4 days, but I think the 100% change 1x/week with a 50% in between is better (less stressful for the fish).

If you got some live plants, you might be OK... in my planted tank (5g), my ammonia and nitrites are always 0 and nitrates go up only a little.
http://www.bettatalk.com/java_moss.htm
 

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Well, let's step back a moment =)

Are you fixed on having a 2.5gal tank? If so, you won't be able to cycle it - too small.

Are you willing to go to 5gal? I have heard that cycles on 5g are fragile but doable. My 5g works because the plants do the work that normally the cycle-bacteria would do. I set up the tank and ran it for quite a while before getting my fish =)

Are you willing to go to 10gal? Then cycling is definitely a good idea. I have never cycled a tank, though, so I am not sure how much of the information on that page is accurate. =) Here are a bunch of other threads on this form about cycling:
http://www.bettafish.com/tags.php?tag=cycling

ETA: java moss - I have seen it in my local Pet Club. You can also check the Classifieds forum or Craigslist. I don't really trust pet store plants much =|
 

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Just thought I'd add - a 5 gallon is definitely possible to cycle. :) My 5 holds it's cycle very well. I do have live plants, though.

Some other easy plants you may wish to look into are: java fern, anubias, ambulia, elodea (also called anacharis), lacefern and hornwort. :)

The site you posted is definitely a good guide. :)
 

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If you are going to get a tank big enough to cycle I highly recommend getting a tank 6-8 weeks beforehand and doing a pure ammonia fishless cycle. http://www.tropical-fish-success.com/fishless-tank-cycling.html instructions here (the seeding isn't mandatory) Right now I'm trying to cycle two tanks with Betta fish in them. It's definitely a balancing act that I would not have attempted if I had knew better in the first place. Trying to keep the ammonia enough so the tank cycles but doesn't kill my guys is very interesting to say the least and causing a lot of undue stress. My fish act perfectly healthy but I keep a very close eye on them. It's not really hard, but at the same time I keep thinking in the back of my head what if something goes wrong. If I had just the tank at this point my life would be much simpler not worrying about if I'm going to kill the fish trying to do a cycle with them in it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
So I went browsing for the first time today and fell in love with the Fluval Edge 6 gallon tank. :)

http://www.hagen.com/uk/aquatic/addinfo/fluval_edge.cfm



My husband loves it too and it will look great in our living room/kitchen area. Is this a tank I should attempt to cycle? Does anyone have any input on whether or not the included filter will be too disturbing? I know that it needs a heater and thermometer as well.

Also, is this tank large enough to accommodate a betta (male), a ghost shrimp or two as well as another compatible fish?

I am so excited!
 

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Yeah those tank can be cycled. Also the filters on the fluval tanks are very gentle and will not disturb your Betta. You could do that with a few shrimp if they have enough hiding spots. I would stay away from putting another fish in anything under 10 gallons. You may be able to do some cory catfish. www.aqadvisor.com is a good site to estimate what your tank can handle.
 

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isay a 2.5 is great! you can get filters if you buy the aqueon bettabow. 2.5 galllon. i owuld cycle it the day before just to have everything mixed. then buy your betta!!! :) java moss is great. i really need some too! it is realy easy to clean and take care of. good luck!
they are beautiful fish!! :)
 
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