Betta And Current Problems

What type of Aquatic life do you keep with your betta?

  • Ghost Shrimp

    Votes: 13 48.1%
  • Mystery and/or Apple Snail

    Votes: 9 33.3%
  • Tetras

    Votes: 4 14.8%
  • Ornamental Shrimp

    Votes: 4 14.8%
  • Plecostomus

    Votes: 4 14.8%
  • Gourami

    Votes: 1 3.7%
  • Other

    Votes: 11 40.7%

  • Total voters
  • #1
Ok so I know there's probably already an answer somewhere on the internet or on here for this question, but I've just bought a new filter + pads/air pump + tubing and the flow of the filter and bubble strip knocks my poor betta around.. I'd hate to take the bubble strip away from the Pleco but unless I can find a way to get the betta to avoid the corner that has the bubbler and filter current I think I might have to take it out.. I've seen him swim through them a few times like he wants to play but then loses his balance or whatever that would be called for a fish. Now he seems to understand the bubbles will push him to the surface so he will turn the other way but other times he doesn't. I tried putting wood / plants in the way to block to filter current but I don't know how to discourage him to swim through the bubble strip

Some of my readings and equipment

pH: 7.6
Ammonia 1.0ppm (just did water change after I tested, tank recycled after being moved)
Nitrite: 0ppm
Nitrate: Roughly 5ppm
Temperature: 78°F-80°F

16 Gallon Bowfront + Deluxe Hood
Full Spectrum Fluorescent Lighting
10 Gallon Sponge Filter
10 Gallon Heater
25 Watt Adjustable Heater
6 Inch? Bubble Strip
JW Aquatics's Fusion Air Pump Model 500
Aqueon Quiet Flow 20 LED Pro 30 Gallon - 125 GPH
3 Filter Pads
Aqueon Dehydrated Bloodworms
Tetra EasyBalance + Nitraban
Tetra Bettamin Tropical Medley
TetraBetta Floating MinI Pellets
Tetra BettaSafe Water Conditioner
API Master Test Kit
API Aquarium Sea Salt
API pH Down
API Super Ick Cure
Gravel Hose
Variety of Plastic and Silk plants all safe for betta fins
Driftwood (for Pleco)
All Natural Rock Deco
Betta Leaf
  • #2
If you have a Common Pleco, it's best that you rehome it. They can get over a foot, so your tank is way too small.
I'm not to familiar with your filter, but there are ways to baffle the outflow, so I will let others that have experience with that filter tell you how to do it, and you can check videos on how to do it. It's easy with a canister filter.
Some Bettas love the current. My wife's first Betta loved playing in it, and actually got mad when I blocked it and made it known. He loved being tossed around. Her new one is not crazy about it, so I have to baffle the filter.

One other thing to help is to place decorations, such as driftwood to help break up the current.
  • #3
You could use a water bottle to help baffle/redirect the filter outflow.
  • #4
Looking at your list.
I personally would not use the Stress Coat, I believe Seachem Prime is a much better product. It may also be better than the Betta Safewater conditioner. You can't go wrong with Prime.
I suggest not using the Easy Balance, or the pH up or down. It's best to let the fish adjust to your pH. Also aquarium salt is not needed. And in my opinion should only be used for medicinal use.
  • Thread Starter
  • #5
I've stopped using the pH adjusters for awhile now. I was meaning to buy prime today but I bought a better air pump thermometer and tubing plus a new filter appropriate for this tanks size (was using a 10 gallon from old tank kit) how would you suggest I use a water bottle to redirect the flow? And any suggestions for the bubble strip? I've had fish as a child but my grandparents never had all the fancy stuff you need to truly care for fish :/ it's hard to reach out to older generations bent on doing things the way they were done years ago. Anyways I've only recently got back into Aquariums and fish keeping and actually fully understanding the chemistry of it.. I understand the nitrogen cycle, what I don't understand is KH, Calcium and Phosphate and how and what they do in the Aquarium n if I need to worry about them or not?

Oh and about the Pleco he has not outgrown the tank yet, he is large but we do plan to upgrade him to his own space sometime soon when we can afford to do so, If worst comes to worst we will consider rehoming him to someone more capable but I don't think it will come to that I really love them and all our other animals.
  • #6
I can't comment on hardness or softness of wster, I've never had to worry about it. I'll let others hanope that for you. The bubble strip is a personal choice. To me they are more of an aesthetic thing. But saying that, I've always kept airstones around for emergency reasons. You never know if something happens to your filter and need temporary o2.
As far as the Pleco goes....again if its a Common Pleco, I really suggest that you rehome him. They can grow quite fast, and before you know it you will need a new tank faster than you expected. I wish I had a penny every time I heard "I'll get a bigger tank when it's time". I'd be a millionaire. I hope that you plan to upgrade to at least 150 gallons. Plus its possible that you could stut him by leaving it in a tank that is too small for him.
If you want a Pleco that bad, look into Clown Plecos, or Bristle Nose Plecos.
  • Thread Starter
  • #7
Well I did want to move him to a 75 or 100 until he got too big for those but I honestly don't know if it's a common or a BN Pleco they were calling it the same thing ? The bubble strip doesn't increase aeration ? I've seen the Pleco breathe from the surface that's why I put it in and he/she loves it. I'm just not convinced it's the best thing with the betta in there. Like I said he hasn't outgrown it yet, BUT when the time comes I will upgrade him or I will try to find a nice permanent home for him. I have grown up around animals and have plenty of them myself.
4 Bunnies
1 minI lop
2 dutch
1 mixed (dutch and harlequin?)
A Green (Common) Iguana
An I plan to take care of them all the best possible way if that mean I have to re-home against my wishes it will happen it's something I considered and thought about before buying him so I already know. Right now he has plenty of room and yes I know they grow quickly. I'd hate to get rid of him but I'm against any and a forms of animal abuse and neglect, literally all my money goes to the fish, bunnies of my big lizard I have accounts on bunny and Iguana forums and now here because I want to make sure they get the best care possible. Our paychecks go-to vet bills, animal food, animal necessities, food for us, and rent/power bills... I don't even know the last time I was able to afford a pair of shoes for myself or a new outfit lol sometimes I even get $1 body wash conditioner and shampoo from dollar general bc I spoil our babies. I'm just worried I'm not giving the betta the best life with the new tank he's in :/
  • #8
Post a picture of your Pleco, and I'm sure someone can identify it for you.
It can increase aeration, but as long as you have a good filter it's not really needed. But a lot of people like to use airstones to help keep the protein of the surface of the water. That's the oil slick that gathers on the surface with poor surface movement.
  • Thread Starter
  • #9
Keep in mind the Bow Fronts do magnify whatever is in the front "viewing" side of the glass so he appears much bigger than what he actually is.


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  • #10
Looks like a Common Pleco to me. He is a very nice one.
The problem you may have with the Betta and the Pleco is that the Pleco is nocturnal and may get a bit rambunctious for the Betta.
  • Thread Starter
  • #11
So since the bubble strip knocks poor betta around maybe use the air store instead? I have 3 stones , a bubble strip , and the sponge filter which increases agitation also

Yeah I've made a cubby hole for the betta that the Pleco would have a very hard time getting to
  • #12
If you already have an airstones, it won't hurt to give it a chance.
  • Thread Starter
  • #13
Ok I'll do that later on today when I do a water change, if he gets to growing too fast I'll set up that 10 gallon for just the betta and let the Pleco have the 16 to himself. We've been looking at 55 gallons for the Pleco on resell apps so over the next few months we should be able to upgrade him, if I were to set a tank divider up to where it's 45/10 could I keep the betta on the 10 gallon side and the Pleco on the 45 gallon side? Or should I just have separate tanks. The reason I ask is because I have a 10 Gallon kit, 16 Gallon Now Front kit (the lid/hood alone costed $50+ I bought the tank used for $15. Switched over the equipment from my 10 gallon but kept the old filter I plan to get a higher wattage heater so I can keep the heater that came with the 10 gallon as a kit.
  • #14
Again... (dont take it the wrong way) will eventually have to upgrade from a 55 to at least a 150. Once you put him in something bigger giving him a a chance to grow, he will take off, and you will find yourself back in the same situation.
If you plan on keeping this fish long term, just jump up to the bigger tank, and be done with it.
Temporarily you can divide the tank the way you suggestet.
  • Thread Starter
  • #15
Okay if we can't get at least a 100 gallon within the next month or two then I will re-home her. (I think it's a her) I removed the air strip and put a bubble stone instead, still has great agitation with minimal effect in betta, I tried putting driftwood and a plant in the way of the filter but it's still pretty strong. If I end up having to rehome the Pleco what are some fish I can keep with the betta in the 16 gallon that won't outgrow it or take up bettas space or nip?
  • #16
For stocking I will let others give you advice on that.
Anders247, TexasDomer. Can the two of you please help with stocking?
Thank you.
  • #17
you could split your 16g in half with a divider and get a Betta on each side.

it isn't really recommended to mix anything with Betta besides shrimp or snails. I've heard of some successful stories with corys but your 16g is to small to house a school of them, you could always try some Ember Tetras or chilI rasboras(Might attract the Betta with their bright color), but have a plan b just in case their is aggression. some bettas are passive while some are down right aggressive, it really depend on your Betta.

you could try a Betta sorority but it's very tricky and often doesn't turn out good.

as stated above common pleco gets over a foot long and need s much bigger tank, 125g+ , consider getting a larger tank for him or rehoming.
  • #18
Gouramis are a definite no to be with bettas, they will kill each other.
Tetras also are not a good idea.
This tank is too small for plecos.

Shrimp and snails are the best options.
  • #19
If you have a Common Pleco, it's best that you rehome it. They can get over a foot, so your tank is way too small.
I'm not to familiar with your filter, but there are ways to baffle the outflow, so I will let others that have experience with that filter tell you how to do it, and you can check videos on how to do it. It's easy with a canister filter.
Some Bettas love the current. My wife's first Betta loved playing in it, and actually got mad when I blocked it and made it known. He loved being tossed around. Her new one is not crazy about it, so I have to baffle the filter.

One other thing to help is to place decorations, such as driftwood to help break up the current.

Hey! Sorry you're having some trouble! I actually had the same problem with my Betta getting pushed all around the place by the filter in his 10 gallon aquarium. All I did to fix problem, was to use a plastic water bottle over the flow to redirect it. He's fine now. What kind of Betta do you have?
  • #20
I believe he is a Double Half Moon.
I'm not having any trouble at all. We have a Fluval SpecV, and its easy to baffle it. Plus with the type of driftwood I have, he has plenty of places to chill.
Her first Betta just loved the current and would play on it all day.
  • Thread Starter
  • #21
Some pics of Pleco the tank and Betta it's kinda hard to get pics of him lol.

So this is the filter and air pump I got and the power of the current.. can I use this red plastic cup or can it be toxic? I can wait to get a water bottle I'm just worried about sticker residue.. any suggestions on how it get it all off? I really need to make a baffle asap. And also thanks for the advice everyone the Pleco is a nice size he has not outgrown the tank I understand the space demands for her I will move her when necessary I won't let the Plec suffer just cause I don't want to move him or her.

Yes yes yes I know Plecostomus can't stay in here very long but as of right now he has space to grow and move freely. He won't be in here forever I just need 2 months to buy the tank and then I will move him or her the same day.

Oh and the betta is very friendly towards shrimp, snails, plecos, ECT... Just HATES his reflection


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  • #22
One thing I see is that your water level is quite low.
Even with a baffle, you're going to have some current issues with the waterfall effect.
  • Thread Starter
  • #23
Ok but will the cup be okay.

Put a water bottle on and it helped even without adding water. Anyone have any suggestions what else I can change for the well being of the fish?
  • #24
I think at some point you will want to switch to sand for the Pleco. It will be easier on its stomach. Plus you will bring out more of its natural behavior of digging in sand.
I recommend Black Diamond Blasting Sand (BDBS).
Fairly cheap, it's only 9 bucks for a 50lb bag. Or you can use playground or pool filter sand.
  • Thread Starter
  • #25
Okay how much of that would you say I'd need for a 55 Gallon and then a 150? I know Plecs can grow to be huge but also there's a chance even with all the space he/she won't get maxed out on size but when it does get to big for a 55 I'm gonna make the jump and get triple the space, probably sell each Aquarium kit along the way and maybe keep either the 10 or 16 for Rick (Betta.) I've heard that it's a pain to clean sand bc you can't vacuum it you can only skI'm the surface, and can the bacteria needed to cycle still thrive in a sand Aquarium? Since it will be only the Pleco should I get a 50 gallon filter or should I go for something larger and more powerful? What type of lighting do they prefer, I know they're nocturnal but is there a preference for lighting, say fluorescent over LED or vice versa? How do you clean a sanded tank? Also I have a question about dietary needs for the Pleco. I boil veggies or prepare fruits for him every few days and give him HikarI algae wafers. Usually I give him Zucchini, Asparagus, Grapes and Carrots, but he seems to ignore the carrots and I always take uneaten food after a day or two so it doesn't mess with the water and start decomposing. What are some other veggies that are nutritious and good for him/her? I have a list I just would like to hear what most other Plecs eat before I go spend a bunch of money on veggies nobody in the house will eat, and what ratio should I give him the vegetables to to the amount of algae wafers? I usually give him about two wafers a day and every 2-3 days a big chunk of Vegetable an then only one wafer while it's in there, is this ideal or what would be a better course of action to make sure he's getting a full stomach and nutrients he needs
  • #26
For a 55 gallon, I would say that you would need about 60-70lbs. It also depends on what you like, there is no set amount.
Again...dont mess around wasting money on a 55, when all you are gonna have to do is get a bigger tank. Just get the 150, and be done with it. Even if you were to sell everything, you won't get nowhere near as much as you put in.
Sand is much easier to clean than gravel. A debris sits on top, you can see everything. To clean it all you have to do is swirl the siphon right above it, and suck up the debris.
There is some bacteria in the sand, decorations, and plants but its very minimal.
As far as filters go, go with a filter with at least 400gph. You will want very good, strong filter because they are mass waste producers.
With lighting, your average leds, or fluorescent should be ok. If you are going for live plants, there are other Leds to check out, like Finnex.
I'm not into Plecos, and don't keep them. I will have to defer to others on their care.
  • Thread Starter
  • #27
Hey everyone, I would like to thank you all for the good information. So I've made my decision.. I'm moving my betta back to his 10 gallon tank and trading my 16 gallon kit for a 55 gallon which only needs a heater and filter cartridge. I hate to get rid of the Pleco so I'm going to keep him until he outgrows the 55 and if I don't have the money for a 150Gallon then I will take him to SailFin (a LFS) and trade him in.. I hear that they sell the huge Plecs to people that have huge ponds so this will be something I find out for myself before giving him/her up... If I do trade him in I'd like some stocking ideas for a 55 Gallon, I'm looking for either a peaceful community tank or a semI aggressive tank.
Also I need advice on my bettas health.. when I first got him he had long perfect flowing fins, but due to an incident with a plastic plant (I know don't badger me I learned me lesson and I felt horrible) his fins got torn, and to top it off its been MONTHS since this has happened but the ends of his fins still look tattered.. they've grown to where they are filled out but still somewhat thinned on his underside fins and they are all somewhat ragged on the ends... Is this something I can help him regrow or will he never have the smooth evenly shaped fins he had when I first got him? I'm going to attach pics of when I first got him compared to the most recent pics and also a few pics of my Pleco when I first got him for our 10 gallon! It's going to break my heart to get rid of him..

Compared to now.
  • Thread Starter
  • #28

  • #29
My bettas fins got torn up a little bit before. First I would just up water changes. That's what I did and my bettas fins are healing quite nicely. Keep in mind they need clean water to heal and you have a huge bioload in there with the Pleco. So you might need to do daily where I just had to do every other or even three days
  • Thread Starter
  • #30
Yes I keep the tank very clean, today's test results;
Ammonia: 0ppm
Nitrite: 0ppm
Nitrate: approx. 5ppm
He's has plenty of time to heal I'm afraid they're gonna stay frayed on the ends forever, he's still a healthy beautiful fish and I love him, and yes I do small water changes every day as needed, I've taught my gf how to test and how much to change depending on how high the Nitrates are.
  • #31
That sounds like good water for him to be in. Hmmm yeah he might not completely heal I guess. Not sure. He's still beautiful. Frazier doesn't have the rays he once did but he's beautiful still
  • Thread Starter
  • #32
I am trading my 16 Gallon kit for a 55G I'm gonna move my pleco to the 55 and Rick (my betta) back to the 10 gallon by himself, maybe with a shrimp or small school of Harlequin Rasboras, hopefully being back to a long tank rather than tall it will help plus I won't need a filter baffle an I can set up the bubble strip for the pleco tank. The only thing I think it could possibly be is if something is stressing him out maybe his reflection or that the tank is a little taller than the 10 gallon.
  • #33
Cycling the 10 gallon will be easy as you can just put the filter onto it. However the 55 has to be cycled as well. Ideas? Maybe take some filter floss from current and put it in the filter for the 55? Would that work? Can't think of anything else except bubble strip, filter fall, and having a tank mate besides the ones you listed.
  • Thread Starter
  • #34
Well I did put a baffle over the filter output, as far as having a tankmate the Pleco was very small when I got him so that might be the issue, I'll have to see how he does after I separate them.. either way the cycling will be fine I test every day to make sure things are safe and still cycling correctly
  • #35
My first betta would have been a lovely community guy. My current betta is very much a loner guy. Ok good. I just know Plecos sometimes have issues in brand new tank set ups I have heard.
  • Thread Starter
  • #36
What type of issues ? My betta is very friendly I've had shrimp, snails an pleco with him never other fish tho so I'm kind of eager to try Harlequin Rasboras..
  • #37
What type of issues ? My betta is very friendly I've had shrimp, snails an pleco with him never other fish tho so I'm kind of eager to try Harlequin Rasboras..

Some fish are more hardy, like bettas, they can handle a cycling tank usually. Plecos are not good to handle a cycling tank.

Aww, hopefully your betta does good with the Rasboras. I think they are from the same area so worth a shot! . Make sure you can have another tank ready for them or can return them if he decides he doesn't want other mid/too dwelling buddies
  • Thread Starter
  • #38
Yeah hopefully I can do 4 of the Rasboras and 2 shrimp or something along those lines. I'll make sure there's plenty of bottom and top decor so they have their own places to hangout. I've never had Rasboras so do they like cluttered or open space , my betta likes to swim through the plant leaves and chill against them lol but not all fish like cluttered areas so I wouldn't know.
  • #39
Could you do 6 rasboras? They are a schooling fish. I usually hear that schooling fish like plants to swim through but also an open area to swim. Research those guys and find out
  • Thread Starter
  • #40
Yes If it's better for their health I'll do 6 an won't get any shrimp so I don't overpopulate the tank.

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