xtreams

Betta Splendens Care sheet

Basic stats:

Difficulty: Easy they make an excellent entry level fish!
Minimum tank size: 3 gallons (10 liters). 5 gallons (19 liters) is better and 10 gallons (40 liters) is ideal.
Size: 2-3″ 
PH: 6-8.2 (They’re not picky, you may get some ray bending in higher ph)
Temperature: Tropical 75-82′F (24-28′C)
Hardness: 4-10 (Can tolerate harder and softer)
Diet: Insectivore/carnivore 
Lifespan: 2-7 years though average is 5 when cared for.
Habitat: Asia

Housing:

Betta require at least 3 gallons+ of water with a low flow filter and a heater for long term health and growth. A typical setup can cost between 50 and 100 dollars on average not including any of the other fish keeping necessities. 

Checklist:

-Tank ranging from 3-10 gallons (more if desired)
-An appropriate sized heater. 5 watts per gallon.
-A low flow filter with permanent media (suggestions below) 
    -Sponge filter (requires air pump)
    -Aqua clear (the 20 model)
    -Fluval’s mini power filter
-Substrate 1 pound per gallon. Any substrate is fine, my betta have liked sand over gravel though.
-Decor and hides. PVC pipes are wonderful cheap options. Generally silk or live plants are good as are any hides that don’t have sharp edges. NAtural decor such as driftwood and rocks are loved too
-Lighting (Optional if you want to do plants. A clip on desk or chicken lamp with a daylight cfl bulb is a great cheap way of lighting a tank.

Other non optional supplies/perishables:

-A liquid master test kit (Nutrafin or api) 
-A water conditioner (prime, safe, stress coat are good brands)
-A bucket and syphon that hasn’t been used for anything else
-A log to help with cycling and recording things.
-Betta food (You want pellets, omega one has some good food as does xtream and new life spectrum. You probably won’t have to buy more until it expires)

Feeding:

Betta are obligated insectivores. They can be fed a good variety diet that includes dry foods such as pellets (flakes if they absolutely won’t touch them), frozen foods of all kinds, and live aquatic insects. They will also enjoy fruit flies and pinhead crickets as treats. They should be fed once a day or split the meal into two times a day. You may need to skip days and find a schudule that works for you. Remember their stomach is only about the size of their eye, so it doesn’t take much to fill them up!.

Tank mates:

They do fine, if not better solo. Appropriate tankmates include.

<5 gallons (Snails and shrimp. there really isn’t room for other fish in smaller tanks.)

5-10 gallons (Still recommended to be alone but in 10 gallons you can keep them with rasbora, and pygmy cories without too many issues.)

20+ gallons. (Really any non aggressive, not nippy fish from the same waters. Try to get dulled colours. Any of the above plus kuhli loaches, other cories or rice fish.

Do not house them with dwarf frogs, neon tetra, white cloud minnow or some of the other suggested animals, They really aren’t compatible and usually result in at least one of the animals getting the short end of the stick.

Medical issues:

Betta are prone to pretty much the whole line of issues. Parasites, bacteria infects, rot, pop eye and organ failure. Keep an eye on them and make sure to be aware of common symptoms and how to treat them.

Misconceptions

Cycling

The above are two great sources on both. Give them a read before you get a betta.

Sorority Tanks:

I’m going to mention this briefly. They’re advanced and require an absolute minimum of a 20 gallon, densely planted with 5 calm females. You will need a setup for each of those females in case something does happen. Treat it as if it will.

@elemental-kiss Has wonderful resources on sorority tanks.

Divided tanks:

I don’t recommend them unless you have to. Never divide anything smaller than a 10 gallon. Never divide it so there’s less than 5 gallons per section. Have stable non see through dividers that allow water to pass. It will cause some stress regardless of how you set it up. Never divide a male and a female you will severely stress them both out!. 

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