New to Bettas

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Sarameow

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Hi all! I'm sure I am repeat asking a question and I promise I will do some more research but I am on a bit of a time crunch with a crazy 4 year old running rampant.

My husband and I were really into tanking pre-kid. Mostly saltwater/corals. When I got pregnant and we decided to move we sold most of our tanks, precious corals and fish. We kept only our 55 gallon freshwater tank because we have had it for so many years and it requires minimal maintenance. We don't add fish, we don't change anything, we just do water changes and feed the existing (old) fish.

My kiddo turned 4 this week and wants mice. I had told him previously that he could start with a fish and if he takes really good care of it for a year he could have mice. I subtly suggested a betta and he agreed this was a good idea. I thought I would read about them as I haven't ever kept one and know there is a bunch of myths surrounding their optimal care. So... it looks like I would still need a heater, filter etc. Seems like it would be just as easy to get a small tank of neon tetras for him (what he originally wanted while we were hanging out at the store- but I don't really want a 20 gallon tank hanging out in the kitchen). Anyhow, those of you who have done small tanks for your kiddos what did you do? Those who have bettas ...what specific tank/set up do you recommend. Link to amazon or somewhere would be phenomenal. Thank you!!!
 

BornThisWayBettas

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Hello and welcome to Fish Lore and betta keeping!!!!!

Okay, so bettas are, in my experience, the easiest freshwater fish to keep, and have the most personality out of any fish I've ever kept.

You will need a:

At least a 2.5 gallon tank, but 3 gallons would be better.
A decent filter.
A heater.
A light (if you want one)
And then decorations, as bettas love to play!

I actually moved my betta from a bowl into a heated, filtered 10 gallon, but my with my newest one, I'm planning on getting this setup for him sometime next week hopefully: Now, you will need to buy a heater, and I'm not sure how your betta (or mine) will like the bubbler.

The heater I'm planning to use (and am using currently) is this one: I know, it's overkill on the wattage for the tank size, so keep that in mind. Additionally, you might want to look into spending a little extra and getting an adjustable heater, just in case your betta comes down with something that require the temp to be adjusted. The one I put a link to is not adjustable.

Also, you might want to have a thermometer just to measure the temperature, if you want. I use this one: I used to have a glass one, but it broke, just to warn you.

For decorations, get him a few (fake or live) small plants. If going with fake, silk might be a better option to avoid tearing the fins. He might also like a log or something to hide in. With all decorations for your betta, remember to run your fingers over the decorations beforehand to check for any rough spots that could snag his beautiful fins. Some people also have a moss ball for their bettas, but I've never had one.

For food, I gave mine Hikaria Bio-Gold Betta pellets, pretty sure this is it: Many people give their bettas treats like bloodworms and such, but I don't know much about this.

Okay haha, hope I was able to help!
 

TexasDomer

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You don't need a Finnex stingray light if you're not growing plants. A cheaper fluorescent is fine too, though LEDs are more cost-effective.
 

Sarameow

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I'm hoping to stick in the 3-5 gallon range so it can be in our living room or kitchen without taking up too much space. I'm seeing a lot of kits but concerned about the filter being too strong so not really sure which would be best and which are adjustable. Heater rec for a small tank as none come with it. Pretty sure I have at least a stick on thermometer hanging out somewhere under the old tank supplies. Also... betta substrate recs? I am reading they can damage themselves easily on even fake plants? Thank you!
 

BornThisWayBettas

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I don't know about the filter, but I already gave you a heater "recommendation". It says 2-10 gallons on the box of the heater on Amazon.

I just used regular old gravel.

That's why I said silk might be a better option if you're going with fake plants. My new one has been ripping his fins on something lately, and I suspect it might be the plastic plant he loves to sit in. :/
 

Bijou88

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A lot of people use sponge filters with bettas since they have a low bioload and tend to not like much current. I have my betta in a 5g with real and silk plants. A hang on back filter with a baffle to slow the current.

Welcome to fishlore!

 

Dom90

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Just got this in the mail from Amazon today for my betta:



 

mg13

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Welcome to fishlore and Betta keeping!
BornThisWayBettas took the words right out of my mouth, but I have one thing to say, neon tetras are not easier to care for than bettas, and in some cases they are actually harder. For a first fish, Bettas are your best bet if you care and do your research. some things are not absolutely crucial even though they are listed under that title. that's why it can be overwhelming. Conspiracies and opinions sated as facts sometimes make it easier to read the stuff and try it yourself. Just so you know the basics. If you are doing this for your son, read through what BornThisWayBettas said and you should be good to go!
 

Sarameow

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Oh my Goodness! I didn't see your response Born This Way for some reason! Thank you!

Thank you everyone!
 
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Sarameow

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Wow. it's impossible to search on mobile. I can't even find my own thread! haha
 

Sarameow

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I could order off Amazon with Prime but don't want to wait another 2 days. He's excited to get the tank part of it set up today and is already being patient enough about adding the fish! They didn't have that exact one at walmart but they did have a tetra color fusion one that was essentially the same thing. I was concerned about the filter being to strong and I couldn't see anywhere on it if it could be turned down.
 

Sarameow

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3 gallons. I am thinking it is pretty much the same thing- maybe an older model or something.
 

Sarameow

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No, that's very similar to the one that had the undegravel filter though. The 2 I saw are NOT on the website at all somehow. One looks like your link above and one looks exactly like the tetra one (is also tetra- just different name) Also considering this:

I might go to Petsmart or Petco for silk plants (none at Walmart I noticed), safestart and sand possibly and look at what they have and head to walmart if no good kits. I am concerned about getting something without an adjustable flow on the filter. What do you do if it is too strong? Put some fake plants in front of the output or something?

I know I am making this too hard. haha.. it's how I roll. I just don't want to drag my kiddo all over town and back and ruin an exciting event.

hmm.. or this?
 
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Sarameow

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Thanks for the advice on the Top Fin. I ended up getting the 5 gallon . We ended up with a super bizarre combo of decor. My son felt every single piece of decor for smoothness and chose a beehive home, a rainbow and a old bug car with white sand and one small green silk plant (I think we will get more fake plants but he was in charge tonight). I will get it check up and see what the flow on the filter is like. Maybe to the baffle idea with a soda bottle. Now I just need to figure out how to rinse this sand. I didn't think about it at the store but every container I own has been washed with soap at some point.
 
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