my new tank is all set up, I think?

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Bronx mom

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Hello everyone,
I just recently lost my beloved Betta Jimmy, turns out he was in the typical fish bowl, and pretty much was not doing well after about a year in this set up. So since i posted about my sick fishy i was givin great ideas as to what would be a good starter tank. I decided to get the Eclipse 3, 3 gallon tank, i placed gravel , 2 fake plants, a little cave and 25 watt heater, water conditioner which was a sample that came with the tank. It has been set up for 24 hrs, it is set at 79 degrees. When i can put a new betta baby in my tank? Am i missing anything? What about cycling? Will it cycle without a fish in there? Anyway i know someone knows a thing or two about this stuff. The reason i ask about cycling is because the pampflet that came with the tank has absolutley no mention of this process. ???

Bronx Mom
 

shollia

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AesSedai

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Hey Bronx Mom

It would definitely be better to wait until the tank is cycled. This can take 4 to 6 weeks but is SO worth waiting. The ammonia and nitrite that occurs in a tank that isn't cycled can make a Betta very sick, or worse.

The Bio-Spira you know about is expensive but an instant cycle. There are other methods to do fishless cycling too. I'm cycling Zen's 10 gal. right now. I'm using a raw cocktail shrimp to cycle mine. I just dropped one in with heat up to 84 degrees and a bubbler going (and the filter of course). Already I'm getting high ammonia readings and the nitrite is climbing.

I was going to use the plain ammonia but I couldn't find ammonia without surfactants in it so looked for another way and ran into shrimp cocktail cycling. Easy, clean (not lots of flake food rotting) and without the risk of using the wrong ammonia.

If you'd like to cycle the same way I am, I'll help you. You need a raw shrimp (about 2"x 2"x 1" piece) and a good test kit. Did you get the AP kit recommended here?

There are other ways to fishless cycle too. There's a whole board (child board) here where peeps talk about cycling and you can find it here

Again I want to say that it really is worth waiting until the tank is cycled before getting a Betta...even though it's hard to wait I know. If you don't wait, you'll be testing the 3 gal every day/every other day to check for high ammonia and nitrite (and you'll find it) and having to do large water changes to keep them down. Doing large water changes will slow down the cycle too. It's considered cruel by many to use fish (and their waste and fallen food to create ammonia) to cycle a tank. You can do but it'd require alot more work and risk to the Betta if you weren't all over it with testing and water changes.

(((((((Bronx Mom))))))
 
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Bronx mom

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well it seems as tho my efforts are just for naught > i came home today and found a Betta sitting in a bag in my new tank >. My husbands friend thought how sad it was that we lost our jimmy and took it upon himself to replace him, with out even asking. Now i have a tank that is not cycled and a baby sitting in a baggy in my tank, i am less than thrilled. I was trying to do the right thing, i have spent a good amount of money on this new tank and all the stuff i needed for it and i feel stuck. My husband thinks im worrying for nothing. I invested time and $ into this in an endeavor to do it right and i was even looking into what type of betta i was going to choose and here is this lil stranger sitting in a baggy looking at me with a "can you get me out of here look". needless to say im not happy with this situation. Any advise? To be honset with you i was thinking on putting him an a fish bowl with treated water until i could cycle the tank, im a rookie and i am now having second thoughts about being a betta mommy now. He's cute but i wasnt ready for him. And now the fun of getting started put me right back at square one with being unprepared for handling this situation.

Bronx Mom
 

0morrokh

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Sorry this is happening to you. The guy had good intentions but he really should have at least asked you before hand. Well, there's nothing you can do so you'll just have to do whatever you can with the new Betta. If I were you I would try and order Bio Spira to cycle the tank instantly so the Betta doesn't have ot go through the cycle. Even if it takes a while to get the Bio Spira it's not a good idea to leave the Betta in a bowl. Until you can get some (which hopefully you can...), do daily water changes to keep the ammonia down.

I am sorry this happened before you feel ready but try to think of the good side...heck, you just got a new Betta! And free too. Try not to stress out about this, it is possible to get a fish through the cycle and I'm sure you and your fishy will do just fine. Just get him out of the bag and into a tank asap, and ask if you have any questions.
 

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I agree. If you absolutely will not take the betta, you can see about returning him but you would need to know where he came from and you would risk offending your friend. I do not know your situation completely but I would imagine that the little guy will really appreciate the home and care.

Bettas have a way of wrapping their fins around our hearts and making us love them. It really won't be so bad. Just give him a name and stare into those cute little eyes and after a little while you will forget the disappointment and just love the little one.

It really will be okay whether you decide to get the Bio-spira or do the cycle with the fish in the tank, he has every ability to make it just fine if you do the water changes with the cycle.

To do the cycle with Bio-spira, just shake the pouch and put in the tank. Then do not change the water for a full 7 days to allow the bacteria to settle into the filter. The tank is considered cycled as soon as you add the Bio-spira.

To do it the other way, you will not need to add anything to the water other than the dechlorinator agent and then you must do a 50% water change every day to keep the ammonia down. You will also need to test the water for ammonia, nitrites and nitrates to follow the course of the cycle. This way will take about 4-6 weeks but if you do the water changes and testing the cycle should be fine.

Please let us know how things are going.

Rose
 

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:-\ I'm speechless. I think I would feel the same way if that happened to me. Poor little betta though. He would be so happy to have a caring mommy like you. Like Rose said, he will wrap his little fins around your heart in no time at all.

Being me I would keep the little fellow and consider that I had rescued him from a short life in a bowl. Of course, after a while I would also get a new tank, cycle it, and get another betta that I had picked out all by myself. ;D

CherryRose
 
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Bronx mom

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He is adorable! He has an electric violet color to him with very dark pretty eyes, yes i love him. I watched him all night swimming around his tank, darting here and there and when he found his little cave well he was very happy to hide and play peek a boo. He is sooooooo cute. I tried to feed him this morning he wasn't interested, i scooped out the food and will try agian later. Today im calling a local pet store that specializes in fish to see if they have the bio spira because i work late nites and emptying out that tank half way everyday does not sound like fun. So thanks for all your support, will keep everyone posted, no name as of yet but he has what looks like a gold crown on the top of his head so it will have to be a royal name of sorts. ;D Thanks again.

Bronx Mom
 

LZ Floyd

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Welcome to the Betta forum, Fish-with-no-name!

Always a fly in the ointment, eh, Bronx mom?

Emptying 1/2 of the tank is not a whole lot of fun, I agree.  Once you get used to it, though, it's not too bad.  If you can't go the Bio-Spira route and must do water changes, you might want to make up your water in advance to allow the dechlorinator to work and let the water age a bit.  I got away with making up the water the day before any water changes, but I'm rethinking that now.  To let the gases in the water neutralize, I'm going to shoot for a few days aging time and see how that goes.  And, don't use any dechlorinators that neutralize ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates (i.e., Amquel+), they are needed for the cycling process.  What you want to do is keep those to a non-toxic level as opposed to eliminating them.

Mike
 

0morrokh

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I had a feeling you'd like your little guy. ;D What are you naming him? Well, I hope you can find some Bio Spira but even if you can't find it I think you'll be fine. I agree 50% water changes are a pain, but they're plenty do-able in a tank of your size.
 

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Welcome to you, little one. He sounds lovely.  I have not seen many purple/lavender bettas until recently and they sell like hotcakes I hear.  The people that I usually get my bettas from say that every time they get a purple betta in they fly right out the door.  And they get good prices for them too.

Aren't their eyes the most beautiful little eyes in the world??  I love to look into their eyes and try to guess what they are thinking. 

Please do not let the petstore talk you into any other cycling product as if they do not have Bio-spira they will try to sell you something else and tell you it will do the same thing.  There are no other products that do what Bio-spira does and you will be wasting money and not getting a thing for it.  I do not know your local petstore, I just do not want you to be conned into buying something which will not work.

I am so glad you are happy with your little one and since you did not get to pick him yourself you should at least be able to choose a name for him that means something to you.  He does sound very handsome (I have a tendency to call the little males beautiful and gorgeous and they would be insulted and upset if they knew.... )  I called Alex pretty the other day and he is still pouty.   

Please do keep us informed of your progress and how he is doing...we love betta stories and pictures. 

Rose
 
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Bronx mom

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My tank is cycled ;D I found the bio spira at a not so local pet store, pet goods. I purchased the api fresh water test kit, let me just say it's a good thing these fish only cost a couple of bucks! So i am relieved and at peace now. His name is Prince jimmy ( our last 2 betta's were named jimmy but each was unique, as we had jimmy bullseye because he had a little bullseye on his fin, and our last betta was Jimmy blanco from the bronx, because he was white which is blanco in spanish)
Well this lil fishy has what looks like a gold crown on his head, he is pretty interesting to look at. He seems to favor the filter and heater for some reason he hangs out there and he likes to challenge his plant to a dual, lol very funny indeed. So now that my biggest issue is resolved, and im broke :-X how often does a tank get cleaned? I guess i should buy a big bucket that could hold 3 gallons of water over nite while its being conditioned with the aqua plus. Oh and yes chicadee there was a man at the local pet shop selling me something else called cycle and he did say it does the same thing. Im used to pet store people trying to sound like they know alot, my Lola (Eclectus Parrot) was a great example of learning NOT to expect pet store employees to know facts on keeping exotic pets, thats not to say everyone, but alot sure do SOUND like they know what they are talking about when in fact they can cause your sweet pets alot of undue harm, but thats a whole other story.....
So we are all cool and everything is all good so far, thanks for everyones help. I trusted in what you all had to say and went and made a good home for a very beautiful baby betta. I will keep in touch and hope to post a picture of Prince Jimmy. Thank you!!!!!!

Bronx Mom
 

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I was afraid they would try to sell that to you and then you would have money in it and it would not do a thing for you. I think people are getting wise and it is not selling well.

I am so happy for you now. Here is what you do...

Do not change any water in the tank for 7 full days so the Bio-spira can get a good hold on the filter and gravel and other tank surfaces. There will be a small ammonia spike and perhaps one for nitrite, but not enough to hurt your fish and it is perfectly normal so do not be concerned. By the end of a week, you will want to do a 50% water change.

Normal tank maintenance for a tank this size will be 50% water changes every week ~ one time unless there is a problem. The gravel will need to be vacuumed at least 2 times a month. (Syphons are cheap and do a good job) Get the smallest one you can find.

Now, if you have not done so, and forgive me if you have; you need to read the betta care guide at the beginning of the Betta Board.



It will give you tips like the pea treats that keep their little digestive systems going well and how much to feed them to keep from having "tummy aches". They really do not demand a lot of care, just common sense and they need to have some quality time for attention every day. They will develop as much personality as you will let them. They love the people in their lives as not many fish show. They need to be cooed over and talked to and made to feel like part of the family. You will have so much fun with him when he gets to know you. I envy you in a way. There is nothing any nicer than getting a new fish to know you and develop the personality that God gave them. It is always a surprise as you really never know what you will have until they get to know you.

Prince Jimmy, you are so welcome here and I do hope that you know that your mommy has done a lot for you.

Good luck and congratulations to the both of you. I could not be happier for you. Enjoy your baby.

Rose
 

0morrokh

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Welcome, Prince Jimmy!!! I'm glad you were able to get bio spira. Btw, we love pics here, hint hint. ;D (that is if you have a digital cam )
 

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((Bronx Mom))

I am so happy for you...and for Prince Jimmy! I bet it only took one look too, heh. You will have such fun. It's hard to believe the personality they have. Try and teach him tricks, lil movements with your hand, lol. Freaks me out when Zen sometimes copies what I'm doing. Things that make ya go hmmm...

You were fortunate to have found the Bio-Spira. That just makes things soo much easier for you and for Prince Jimmy!

Shopping for the 2nd tank yet? <g>
 
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Bronx mom

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Prince Jimmy is coming around pretty quickly! He has turned into a hustler! I fed him from one corner of his tank and now everytime i come to pay him a visit he swims quickly to that corner and dances! He is definately a Bronx fish, he knows how to work his cuteness :-* It's pretty cool to watch him explore his new pad, he seems to be happy which is a good thing. I will post a picture and start a new thread, i just need to make the time to do so. It's like noahs ark around here, LOL dogs birds and a fish. My parrot sat with me last night and watched him swim around you can see they actually took notice of each other, that was very cool! Well good nite and i thank you all for your support.

Bronx Mom
 

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I would like to make a comment on Birospira. Contrary to Marineland's marketing claims, it does not cycle a tank in 24 hours. Anyone who has used it and tested the water for the ammonia and nitrite spike will know this.

Also there is NOTHING wrong with using a temporary fish bowl to house that betta while the main tank is cycling as long as you do water changes every few days. In fact it's actually more dangerous to put that betta in the currently cycling tank which will have ammonia and nitrite spikes that will cause undue stress to the fish.
 

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Pardon me but do not tell others that there is NOTHING wrong with that situation. It is not the best of situations and the water should get a 50% water change EVERY day if this is what you are going to do. If you choose to do it with your fish that is your choice but there are newcomers here who could lose fish putting a betta in a bowl and doing an occasional water change. Ammonia can build up quite quickly and unless we are aware of each person's situation, I do not believe we should be encouraging a dangerous situation. I will continue to explain the way the fish have the better chance for a healthy start and if anyone wishes to do elsewise they are free to, but they need to know that there are risks to what you are suggesting. (no heat and the danger of cold water diseases for one) I realize that Bettas are kept in unheated, unfiltered bowls or cups at the stores and I hate to think of them going into another one at home.

The really BEST situation is to cycle the tank and have it ready and THEN go buy the betta so you do not have to make a choice of how to handle this. Agreed?

Yes the Bio-spira has the tank SAFE for fish after 24 hours. I do not think they actually say that it is cycled in 24 hours, just SAFE for fish. The bacteria is there and working on the ammonia, nitrates, and nitrites and yes, there is going to be a spike in ammonia, and nitrites probably but there is in any cycle. The difference is that the levels do not get so high as to hurt the fish and the bacteria is already present working on the harmful substances. I have used it on many fish, some of whom have been fragile and there has never been a loss during a breaking in period. The levels of the ammonia, nitrites and nitrates produced during the ordinary cycle process on the other hand are much higher and can be fatal to fish.

Sorry if you are upset but I do not mean to offend anyone.

Rose
 
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Bronx mom

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well i am a newbie, and i have tried my hand at keeping a betta in a bowl only to see the little guy die. I however do know people who have kept bettas in bowls for a longtime and i just couldnt figure out what i was doing wrong. I am no extemist or an over-reactor ( as someone who owns a parrot this is the case with alot of parrot owners, one sneeze and off to the vet they go) I just feel if im going to have any pet i want to ensure that it is cared for properly. It realy did kill me to watch my lil guy suffer and i just couldnt do anything for him, he was in a bad way for a long time. He did live in a bowl for quite some time, i think a year but it was in my opinion the cold water that did him in in the end. My husband has no idea how much it cost to get what i needed for this guy, in total i would say 200. if he knew that he would have had a fit, but i have peace of mind knowing that at the very least my new baby has a better shot. Im not sure if that water is harming him to tell you the truth but he looks very happy to be swimming around in this big tank. The water is warm and clear he's dancing and following my finger ( i think hes a genious) i could only take the info givin me and do my best with it as my circumstanced changed when i came home and found a fishy sitting in a baggy in my new uncycled tank. There is still alot to learn and i take everything im taught assimilate it and come to my own conclusion on how best to handle a situation. I think prince Jimmy is doing pretty good, i still do have my fish bowl cuz you just never know if he has to be transported i know how to treat the water so that he can do well for a short period of time at least. But thank you for all the info i will test the water in the morning because i havnt tested it yet and i have to read the instructions as there are many liquids and tubes and all kind of stuff that looks foreign to me anyway. Thanks again and good nite.

Bronx Mom
 

AesSedai

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Bronx Mom

How's it coming with the water testing? Were you able to figure it all out? And how is Prince Jimmy?
 
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