Hey! Newer member (and newer fish keeper) here!

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DrogJustDrog

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As the topic line suggest, I am new to the hobby. I am just trying it out so right now so I am planning to start with a betta tank. My (very) long-term goal is to eventually have a community saltwater tank someday but I'm starting with freshwater.

As for my short-term goal it's to cycle my new tank without too much related disaster- more on that later.

I'm not entirely sure if I wanna stay on this forum, I'm just testing the waters (I swear I don't make forced puns like that often) so I might just vanish off the face of the earth if I don't feel like staying for too long.
 
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Aquariumlover1357

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Welcome! Fishkeeping is amazing, and I hope you the best of luck with all your tank adventures!
 
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Demonskid

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Welcome! And good luck with your betta tank! Everyone here is really nice, so if you have questions about fishkeeping, there are tons of people who can help out.
 
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lucky123

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Welcome to the forum! Bettas are amazing fish! You’ll have lots of fun with them!
 
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DrogJustDrog

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Thanks! I'm hoping to have the tank ready and cycled soon.
 
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FishBoy101

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Welcome to FishLore!
 
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RuralGuppykeeper

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Welcome! :)
 
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Mandy627

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Welcome! I know this forum helps me alot, there are things that pop up in this hobby and there are so many people who have gone through same things and have similar experiences.
 
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Charlie’s Dad

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Welcome to the forum. Your in great company here. Lots of knowledge to help all of us!

Again....welcome!!
 
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DrogJustDrog

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Oh thanks! Sorry for neglecting this thread- I've found this place really safe and friendly so far!

For those curious, I finished decorating my tank! It went from incredibly sad (just one silk plant and a hide) to way less sad with several silk plants and a few more hides.
 
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FishGirl115

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Welcome! Hope you plan on staying! What size is your betta tank? I would suggest some live plants. They help with ammonia and stuff. Pretty cool to have :)
 
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Mandy627

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DrogJustDrog said:
Oh thanks! Sorry for neglecting this thread- I've found this place really safe and friendly so far!

For those curious, I finished decorating my tank! It went from incredibly sad (just one silk plant and a hide) to way less sad with several silk plants and a few more hides.
That is exciting! You should post photos if you can. Always feels good to upgrade tanks and provide a good habitat.
 
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Koneko

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Hello and welcome! :)
 
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DrogJustDrog

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Hey! The tank is 5.5 gallons, and while I would've liked to get a bigger tank and some live plants I'm in a situation that doesn't allow that just yet.
 
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Fisch

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DrogJustDrog said:
Hey! The tank is 5.5 gallons, and while I would've liked to get a bigger tank and some live plants I'm in a situation that doesn't allow that just yet.
5.5 gallon is a good start...so did you start the cycle?
 
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DrogJustDrog

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RayClem

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Your plan seems to be a good one. Betta fish are use to living alone in small pools, so you can keep them singly in a small aquarium. I am glad to see that you have acquired a 5.5 gallon tank. Many people try keeping them in smaller tanks and bowls which is really a type of animal abuse. The larger the aquarium, the more stable the water parameters: temperature, water chemistry, etc.

Be sure to check the quality of your tap water. I live in an area where the tap water is very hard (22-29 GH), very alkaline over 8 pH with high alkalinity. The water also contains 1 ppm phosphate which is higher than desirable. Furthurmore, my water supplier treats the water with chloramine which is a combination of chlorine gas and ammonia. I can add a water conditioner to break the chloramine bond and neutralize the chlorine, but I am still adding ammonia to the aquarium. I have a water softener than reduces the high level of hardness in the raw water, but that introduces a high level of sodium which is not conducive to plants. Thus, I have an RO system to remove unwanted chemicals in the water. I then add back the chemical I need. Hopefully, your tap water will be much higher quality than mine and you can use tap water rather than having to make your own water. Be sure to either test your tap water, or check with your local water supplier to determine the quality of your water. Many localities post their water test results on the Internet.

If your home is warm enough, you can keep Betta fish in a tank without a heater, but they require a minimum temperature of 74 degrees and a temperature around 78 degrees is even better. Thus, unless you live in a temperate climate where the temperature rarely falls below 74 degrees, you might want to invest in a heater to keep your betta happy.

Although you can manage without a filter if you do frequent water changes, perhaps even daily, a filter will help remove uneaten food and other debris from the aquarium and provide a large surface area for biological media to grow. I house two bettas in a divided 10 gallon aquarium with plants, a heater, a filter and I still do 10-15% water changes twice a week.

I do not know where you live, but sometimes you can pick up aquariums quite cheaply, either second hand or during sales. In the States, Pecto often sells 10 gallon - 29 gallon tanks for $1 per gallon. This is a good way to upgrade from your 5.5 gallon tank wihout investing a lot of money. Of course, larger tanks require larger stands, more substrate, larger heaters, larger filters, etc. Thus, when Petco sell tanks as a loss-leader (below their cost), they are doing so to entice people to purchase other equipment, supplies, and livestock from their stores.

Learn all you can while keeping your betta so you will be prepared for larger aquaria (the plural of aquarium is aquaria not aquariums). One day you will be ready for the wonderful world of keeping saltwater fish and invergabrates, but that aspect of the hobby is a lot of work and can get expensive, so do your research first. It is one thing to lose a tetra costing $3. It is quite another having a a fish die for which you paid over $100.
 
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DrogJustDrog

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Oh thanks for all this! I'll be sure to test the pH of my water since I haven't done that yet admittedly. I do have a heater and filter and a light I have yet to figure out how to plug in since I've already taken up all the outlet space where the tank sits.

Also I wanted to mention the water in the tank seems clearer than yesterday so fingers crossed that means the ammonia is being taken over by nitrites.
 
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