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Old January 4th, 2009, 10:37 PM
dustybird's Avatar
dustybird dustybird is offline
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Location: Geraldton, ON & Lake Of The Woods
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Need some Betta help and other fishies

So for Christmas I am getting my mom a Betta for her desk at work. I know Christmas is over but we haven't gotten together yet to celebrate. She's wanted one for a long time and her office area is quite large and she has pleanty of time to take care of it etc...and he will be in a safe place.

1-what would the ideal aquarium size be for a betta, is 5g good?

2-live plant or fake plant and if live what type and how do you keep the plant alive? I know nothing with rough edges etc...as they can injure thier fins.

3-feeding- what is the ideal food and there are a lot of different answers to this but how many time a day and what about Sat and Sun when she's not there? I have read not feeding for two days is a good thing....is this true. Now my dad goes in on sat or sun to clean so he could feed one meal on the week-end.

4-are there any other fish that could live happily with a betta in a 5g tank that would be ok on the week-ends?

I know my mom was thinking of something fancy to keep him in but I am going to get her to agree to a nice looking aquarium with heater and filter as the temp in her office is always changing. She'll want what is best so she will be fine with that.

Other than Betta's what are some other fish that do well in a 5g tank(providing there is no Betta in it). I was going to get the same thing for my brother for Christmas(he's 22) but don't know if he would prefer a different fish. Everyone in my family is a huge animal lover so I know they will be taken care of. My mom already know's of my plans so it's not one of those unplanned pet gifts which I think is wrong.

My parents had fish many, many years ago so they're not complete novices(I am) but they had 50+g tanks and I assume taking care of a 5g is different.
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Old January 5th, 2009, 04:12 PM
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angeldogs angeldogs is offline
Jag and Gingers dad
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Waterloo On.Ca
Posts: 4,483
We have a 3.5L for my daughters betta and have the colored stones for the bottom,we feed blood worm fish food and betta buffet food.and we use betta water conditioner as our city water has lots of chlorine and heavy metals in the water.and we use aquarium salt for the gills.we don't have and plant.

we asked about putting other fish in with and we told not to as it would most likely attack it as it would if you put another betta in with it.they told us if we were going to do it anyways it had to be a different kind of fish and the other fish had to be slow introduced into the tanks.so we never did it.
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Old January 5th, 2009, 05:37 PM
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lUvMyLaB<3 lUvMyLaB<3 is offline
I'm a softy
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Brandon, mb, Canada
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fishie fishie

betta's can be ok with other fish just dont get anything with lotsa fins! they will chew on fins, but there are many that can go with a betta, go to a really really good fish person. NO male betta's and no females either.... then they can live happily ever after.. if u get a betta alone then u don't really need to worry too much about a heater. it is goof that they can see other fish otherwise they wont puff up thei fins and they need to excersise. that is why people put betta bowls beside eachother, so they will puff up... I have had many betta's some lived a long time!! Make sure u go to a really good person and they can answer all kinds of questions. I have always had lots and lots of tropical tanks. Have 2 large ones and a small one now..
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Old January 5th, 2009, 05:48 PM
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Melanie1010 Melanie1010 is offline
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Location: Ontario
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Bettas do well in smaller tanks so you dont really need a 5 gallon tank unless you really want to add extra fish. I have had 3 Bettas, my last one I added 2 other fish and the Betta got Ick (also known as Whitespot) likely from the stress of the two fish, or from something with the water. I have a bamboo shoot in my tank, its easy maintenance and looks nice, my current betta likes to swim up against it. Personally I would keep the Betta on its own, my previous 3 did best on their own, the longest lived 4 years. I lost the one to Ick pretty quickly once it got sick. For tank size mine is 2 Gallon and he is perfectly happy there, I have a "bubbler filter" that just makes air bubbles, I dont have a heater or acutal filter system. I change the water and treat the water as required. Good luck!
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Old January 5th, 2009, 06:41 PM
dustybird's Avatar
dustybird dustybird is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Geraldton, ON & Lake Of The Woods
Posts: 366
Thank you for all the replies.

There is just so much info on the net and it's all different so I never know what to believe.

I was planning on going to Big Al's(I think that's what it's called) in London since all they deal with is fish. I just know from experience that not all the people that work in pet stores know what they're talking about(some do but some just want to make a sale).

As for adding other fish I just thought that he might be lonely but it sounds like they do just fine alone.

As for tank size I have always been one to go big(but that has been with rodents and birds and we always ended up making our own enclosures).

If anyone know's of any places in London, On that know's what they're talking about please let me know.
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Old January 19th, 2009, 01:29 AM
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MyBirdIsEvil MyBirdIsEvil is offline
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Location: Missouri
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5g is a good size though since it's big enough to heat and filter easily. Though you could technically keep a betta in something smaller I wouldn't do so since a bigger tank should stay more stable. (The smaller the tank the more likely a heater is to overheat it, and the faster toxins build up).

You don't need an aerator because bettas breathe atmospheric air, but it is best to keep a betta in a filtered tank. Bettas are still affected by poor water quality and can end up with ich, fungus, columnaris and other issues when subjected to it.

You DO need a heater if you want a healthy betta unless the aquarium is going to be kept in an area with a warm and constant temperature. Temperature swings and low temperatures can cause a betta to get sick. Ich is especially likely when you keep water temperatures too low. Bettas like water temperatures of 75+ and ich is less likely the warmer your water is (I used to keep mine at 80).

As far as other fish go, it's REALLY easy to overstock such a small aquarium. I'd just stay with the betta and nothing else.
The danger of a betta attacking other fish isn't as likely as you think (they're called fighting fish because they attack their own species, not because they're necessarily aggressive with other fish). It's actually more likely for a betta to be picked on because they have such long fins.
Either way the betta will be fine by itself. It will get stimulation by interacting with people during feeding time and whatnot. If you want to give him more exercise you can put a small mirror next to the tank sometimes and they'll think it's another betta and flare up and try to fight with it (That's what's going on in my avatar pic). It's funny to watch anyway, just don't leave the mirror on the tank or they will eventually get stressed and worn out.

I wouldn't do live plants. Keeping the plants alive can be a problem (some plants that pet stores sell aren't even aquatic, so be careful of that also) and dying plants only hurt the water quality.

I have a "bubbler filter" that just makes air bubbles, I dont have a heater or acutal filter system
That pretty much is a type of filtration. The bubbles cause water turnover which oxygenates the water and will allow denitrifying bacteria to grow on the sides of the tank and any substrate you have.
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