Beta tank. I NEED HELP :( :O

Discussion in 'Betta Fish' started by jinx_beta, Apr 9, 2006.

  1. jinx_betaValued MemberMember

    I got a beta for my b-day 3 weeks ago, he's awesome!

    I couldn't be happier. However, I got a 'starter pack' and, I have a feeling a few things are missing.

    I got gravel, two fake plants, beta plus conditioner and food pellets. DO I NEED A HEATER, LIGHT AND FILTER?

    Please help me, because I've looked everywhere!

    If so, answer these questions.

    (1) what type of filter for small tank (corner?)

    (2) what type of heater, what is average temp?

    (3) what type of light (18-40 watts like on site)? ???

    I don't know what to do!

    PS What's airstones, and air pumps etc.? Is that necessary? :'( :'(
  2. atmmachine816Fishlore VIPMember

    Well to answer your questions we really need to know the volume the tank holds or if you don't know that then the dimensions of the tank. As for yes it needs a filter and heater and light it doesn't NEED but might appreciate but don't use a desk lamp just use natural light from a window until you can get a aquirum lilght. One thing you shouldn't do is go out and buy things for him/her on impluse. I have learned not to do that from bad expierence.


  3. chickadeeFishlore VIPMember

    I hope you don't have a Betta bowl because it is going to be very hard to help if you do. In the first place they generally don't hold much more than a gallon of water and that is not nearly enough for a heater and filter. While you can find filters that are very good that will work in as little as 2 gallons of water, your betta will not be happy or healthy there for long. He needs to have heat and the very smallest tank you can heat is 2.5 gallons. He will do the best in 5 gallons or more. The temperature needs to be regulated by a good heater (I use the Marineland Stealth because it comes with a lifetime warranty and is an excellent heater with a good thermostat) between 78 to 80 degrees. (80 is better) He also needs a good filter (NOT an undergravel filter) (I use the Duetto Mini filter in my small tank and the two bigger tanks are Marineland Eclipse tanks that came with Bio-wheel filters which I heartily recommend) All of these filters are very easy to take care of and can use filter media that is other than the manufacturers cartridges that cost more than necessary. The other alternative is sponge filters which are very good and add a bit of oxyget at the same time they are filtering as they bubble and fish kind of like them to lay on as little pillows. I use the light that comes with my Eclipse systems on my bigger tanks and the smaller tank has a fluorescent light especially made for small tanks, but they are very fragile and made of plastic. I have had to repair it already and it was expensive and the bulbs cost almost as much as the lamp so I wouldn't recommend it. The small tanks are lucky to get 10 watts fluorescent. if you want more you have to buy a hanging light and I do not consider them necessary unless you intend to have some very high light plants and the betta probably won't like it. I have a timer put on the 10 watt bulb for 12 hours a day (was 10 hours but I decided since daylight savings time they may as well stay up as long as the sun did).
    I used to have just a little airstone (cheap one) but I bought a air wand that sticks to the back of the tank with suction cups (Walmart has them) and the cheapest air pump and the smallest I could get. You won't want much air bubbles movement but some to keep the hot spots down from the heater. put it on the wall 90 degrees from the heater and turn it on low. You may have to turn it down a bit when you feed if you feed bloodworms. It may help to have a small valve in the airline with a wheel to close and open the airline to allow more and less air through. and remember a check valve to keep water from backing up your hose if the power goes out.
    Bettas are not cheap to keep, but to have a happy healthy betta is worth it since they are the best of company if you take the time to get to know them. they love people and want to get to know you so give them a good home with what they need and they wil try to please. If you cannot find some of these things let me know and I can give you links, or if you need to see what I am talking about.

  4. newbie101Well Known MemberMember

    Ugh, is it the Marina Betta Kit? If so you need another tank!!!!!!!!! I keep ghost shrimp in mine, so you can get another tank for the betta and still enjoy things in the small tank. Those are only 1/2 gallon :(
  5. chickadeeFishlore VIPMember

    I should mention that I do suggest 5 gallons as a tank for bettas. and 50 watts for the heater in a Visi-therm Stealth and there are some who would disagree with me and say 25 watts but 50 works best for me and keeps the temp at a more steady heat with the Visi-therm. The Eclipse Hex 5 tank is $29.95 at Walmart and includes everything but plants, gravel and heater. I would suggest Hikari Betta Bio-gold pellets to keep the color of your betta pretty and also because the pellets sold on the market are for the most part too big for their mouths. If you don't want to feed him those the second option is FREEZE-DRIED bloodworms (not the fresh or frozen). Feed only 3 pellets 2 times a day or 6 worms 2 times a day or you will have a very miserable constipated little betta. If he does get constipated you will know it because he will "shimmy" when he swims or stay at the bottom and look absolutely miserable. Then you buy some frozen peas at the grocery store and take one pea and put it on a saucer and microwave it for 30 seconds. Then remove the skin and cut off a piece about half the size of his eye and feed to him in one or two chunks. (either on a plastic spoon or the end of your finger) He won't bite and even if he nips it won't hurt. In a day he should be good as new.

  6. newbie101Well Known MemberMember

    WOW! There is a 5 gallon for ONLY $30?! I didn't know that! The MiniBow 5 is like $40 at walmart and even more, up to $55 at other places! Cool! Now I can get ottos orsomething along with the betta!
  7. jinx_betaValued MemberMember

    Oh man!!!!! Mine IS a marina betta kit!!!!! :eek:
    What'll I do! Thanks for the help. I'll need to get a 5 gallon!
    I'm only new to the fish, if I get a new tank, should I stick with fake plants?
    I'm sure he'll be alot happier then he is at the moment (i think he's depressed)

    Kristyn  :)
  8. chickadeeFishlore VIPMember

    they will accept fake plants. mine did for several months, but i could not believe the difference in them when i put real plants in the tank. it does not have to be all real plants at once it can be part real and part fake. i would not recommend Java Moss. they get it in their long fins and trail it all over the tank and make a real mess. Anubias are really nice especially the little petite ones. Look in the swap section of the forum and there is a member named Off-ice who sells plants and his are the best. (and the prices are right too) He can give you advice. It would also not be too good an idea to have much floating plant life as bettas have GOT to have a lot of surface room access to breathe. (they breathe air as well as with their gills and CAN drown)

    And yes folks, Walmart here at least has the Marineland Eclipse Hex 5 for $29.95 all the time. That is where I got my 5 gallon and I noticed when I was out there last week it is still the same price. They have it hidden way up high where you can hardly see it away from the higher priced ones, but it was there. If you don't see one perhaps they will order????? I had Azul in it and now Noel calls it home and it is an excellent aquarium. If I could I would get you each one and ship but the shipping would probably cost more than the tank.

  9. newbie101Well Known MemberMember

    Yeah, you will see a huge change in your betta if he gets a bigger tank, filter, and heater. Also bettas in good-sized tanks with filters and heaters most live longer lives, and are much more colorful and active than bettas in bowls or other small containers with no filter or heater.
    Your little guy will thank you!
    And about the plants, fake plants should be ok as long as they aren't really stiff and sharp edges, like the one that came with my "betta" kit is not good for bettas. And yes, real plants are better.
    You should get ghost shrimp for the Marina thing, as they don't need a heater, are fun to watch, and are really cheap. Mine were 30 cents each at Petsmart. I have two in there, they are so cute :D
  10. chickadeeFishlore VIPMember

    until you can get him a heater and a new home that can be heated, try to keep him in a warm place away from drafts where his temperature will change a lot. he can even sit by a window as long as it is not ever open and has a curtain on it so he is not in direct sun. the sun coming through the curtain is going to help warm the water a little but he shouldn't be in full sun or the water will get too hot and cool off too much and then we would have a problem. Better a steady temperature than rising and falling.

    but there is a real need to get the tank that can be filtered and heated as soon as you can and the test kits to test the water for ammonia, nitrate, and nitrite (we usually get a master test kit made by Aquarium Pharmaceuticals or API) because the tank you get is not going to be cycled and he is going to have to cycle it for you. It will mean he may be a little sluggish fish for a while as it is hard on them to do it, but I think as long as we go through this step-by- step it can be done. I had to do this when I got my first betta as I did the same thing you did. It is not the end of the world, it just makes the process more difficult. Also if you haven't been treating your water for chlorine and chloramine then you will need to get something like Stresscoat or Amquel or Aquaclear.

    Let us know how things are going and we will help you.


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