I would still feed the beta properly. If you have a recommendation for a quiet filter I would also love to hear that! Cycling is going to be out of the question for you since you already have the fish, so you may want to pick up some “quick-start” which will add beneficial bacteria to the tank and speed up the process for you to acclimate them into the water on the same day or 24 hours later. He is in a one gallon tank, I thought that was a big size tank since the one the store recommended to me was a third of that size. Nicole. Some examples of different types include: under gravel filters, hanging on the back power filters, sponge filters, and internal filters. His goal is to create a fun, educational, and inspiring community for other betta moms and dads. Keep some test strips in your supplies so you can test the water periodically to ensure the parameters are within the safe range. 100% water changes only need to be done when the tank is especially dirty. What should I do? I want to get the deep blue professional 2.5 fish tank. You did enough, algae can build up and is easily scraped off with an aquarium cleaning brush or sponge. The main drawback to using a UGF system is that it causes particles of solid waste to gather between the pieces of gravel that make up the substrate. I do not actually have the Betta yet, because of afore-mentioned problems I have had in the past. Yes, just not as effective as running it all the time. How old is he? Using your current filter could definitely be an option. Yes, Michelle, those tiny tanks are for placing your fish in to view them up close, or during tank cleanings, they are not permanent housing. Would you recommend no filter for now until he’s done healing? This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. This can help to reduce the flow and turbulence in the tank for betta fish. The only thing he’ll eat right now is a small bit of pea. If your water parameters are fine and they don’t spike rapidly then it’s completely up to you. Thanks, Stefi – the 14-gallon will be okay as long as it’s got some hiding places and plants as you said you’re going to add. Undergravel systems are cheap to purchase and run. If he has a fungus, I would try something better than Bettafix, like API Fungus Cure. I have a betta in a 3 gal bowl, no filter with a moss ball and another live plant, so is it ok not to do 100% water changes? There are a couple of concerns with that filter – 1. As for the substrate, you may have to switch to pebbles if it’s easier for you to clean. Do I need a thermometer? I thought about a sponge filter with few anubias in the tank, but I need a new silent, hopefully, low-cost air pump to let it work and I don’t really know what to get. I just bought a Betta and put him in the Tetra Half Moon Starter Kit tank (3 gal). If you don’t want to see the uplift tubes, simply place tall plants in a position to obscure them. Baby bettas should be housed in 2.5-gallons to 5-gallons and have no power filters. I give her a pea each week and hopefully this helps. We have tried everything from checking the water quality using strips to adding conditioner, beta fin fix medicine and recently when we saw white spots around his gills we tried an anti-fungus treatment. The mechanical element of the filter system pulls water down through the substrate and over the plate, providing a massive surface area on which waste-consuming bacteria can form vast colonies. My question is, what may I use as an alternative to the slim filters because they can be quite costly? I have a 1 gallon tank with a filter included but the current seems to strong and I think is stressing out my betta. Most UGFs do not contain a chemical filtration element. Yes, it’s actually required. and already have the tank and decorations set up. What if you have a baby betta? A 12 gallon isn’t too big for a betta, you’ll just need to make sure the tank has a lot of plants/decor and places to rest/hide to replicate a betta’s habitat and for them to feel safe and not stressed. So, you need to buy an air pump or powerhead. We have done 2 partial water changes and he does ok a few hours right after we change it. I am very fortunate and my room temperature actually stays ideal for bettas. Is that bad and what do I need to do? You’ll want to maintain a tropical habitat for your betta to keep his immune system and activity level proper. You will likely be happier in the long-run than trying to piece together items. Thank you! A flow-through setup is included that accommodates a powerhead if you want to use one with your system. Thank you 🙂 oh and I have moss balls in his bowl and can get more when o switch him to his tank. Lee’s Premium UGF is a simple one-piece unit, so you need to choose the right size for your tank or buy multiple units if you have a large aquarium. I added a heater that keeps temps at 78 and a few plants. Hello Bryan. Warmly, Nathalie. The fish seem fine and there is not much movement of the water on top. I just got a betta 3 days ago and I want to get a filter. That depends on what you’ve decided given the pros and cons for each scenario above and your personal situation and preference. When I bought the fish I was told to do that and that I have to change filter every 3 months. I would like to buy a new heater for my 3 gallons for my betta fish. You also get two activated carbon filter cartridges. If you still have questions, please ask them in the comments below. So when we do a partial cleaning of the tank we take out our fish ? So sorry to hear about your experience thus far Julia. Constant water changes can limit these beneficial microorganisms and create stress as well. do you mean by making sure Moonlight gets acclimated to new water? If your betta’s filter is too strong you will need to remove it or reduce the strength of the current. You are now on the right track, yes, and that sounds like a good setup for them. Sponge filters use bubbles of air from an air pump to draw water through a sponge. What size tank Krista? He keeps fins clamped and stays at top. Do you recommend I turn everything off at night to give him rest or should I keep everything on 24/7? You should also use test strips to analyze your water parameters in real-time. Betta fish can also become bored in their tanks, so it may be beneficial to introduce some change. 🙁. Doing partial water changes and adding fresh water will lower the levels. The first tank has two huge fancy goldfish who are almost ten years old and still looking as good as ever. Honestly, if Petco had prepared me properly, I would have decided on not having a pet at all. A filter helps to maintain beneficial bacteria while cleaning and neutralizing ammonia and nitrates. ), water temp, or environment. Make sure to always clean your filter in tank water and not tap water to preserve beneficial bacteria. Hi, we really need some help with our beta fish. The absolute minimum size for a betta fish is 2.5 gallons, with the recommended size being 5 gallons or more. The filter UGF system’s filter plates are hidden beneath the substrate, and all you can see in your tank are two transparent plastic columns full of bubbles. The unit is suitable for use with 40 and 50-gallon aquariums and is made up of four individual filter plates that clip together. Hi Megan – I’m really glad to hear you’re learning from the information and want to provide him with a better habitat. Cheap To Buy And Run. The larger your tank, the easier it will be to maintain. Their squat bodies and special features like their double-tails, fancy fins, head growths, bubbles, and telescoping eyes are associated with health problems that reduce their longevity and lifespan. Can I leave him in this size tank indefinitely? All are different, but some won’t eat food from the bottom. As discussed above, if you want to run a system that includes chemical filtration, you’ll need to add activated carbon filters to the UGF system. My bottom is more like sand like than pebbles. I actually have 2 bettas each in 1 gallon tank. I think you’d be better off going without the filter in a small tank, and doing as you said above. Really appreciate your help. However that being said, when we try to feed her, the food that would normally sit at the surface for her to eat gets swirled around in the current and broken up rapidly, which then causes it to sink to the bottom of the tank. I had seeds slip into the main tank and make an absolute mess. I wanted to ask you for this particular aquarium would you have a link to what a sponge-style filter with the air pump looks like? So upgrade again to a 9gal fluval flex. Solid waste particles floating in the water are dragged down into the gravel, eventually impeding the water flow rate and depriving the bacteria on the filter plate of oxygen. New at this. It was an emergency tank purchase and was the biggest available within my post-bills-paid price range. I am going to buy my fourth Betta later this week (The others, unfortunately, are no longer alive, due to age, disease, and malfunctioning heaters, all but the last when I was very young.) Just rinse everything under hot, hot tap water and scrub off any algae or build up as necessary. Also, doing 20-30% water changes a couple times a week will drastically improve your water quality too in between the weekly change. After becoming physically exhausted they can be tossed around or even sucked up by the filters intake tube. Sometimes, algae grow inside and over the outside of the uplift columns. I’m not sure to be honest. She has Led lights and I have her on a 8am wake up, 7Pm moonlight setting after dinner and 11pm night time. Really appreciate you teaching all of us. A sponge filter is the best for smaller tanks, but at that size you could just go without a filter altogether and do more frequent partial water changes until you get a new habitat. I have my Betta in a 3g unfiltered tank. A betta would be great in that size tank, and you could even consider some suitable tankmates too at that capacity habitat. I’m at a loss haha. I bought my daughter a 10-gallon tank, which included a filter, fake plants, decoration and gravel for Goldie Bob (the goldfish she won). It’s a smaller tank than I would like because I’m living in a college dorm right now. I have 2 bettas kept in separate identical unfiltered tanks. So now I read that I should not do that because that bacteria is actually good for them, right? An air stone is a small weighted accessory that diffuses the air from your air pump into smaller bubbles in the water. What filter will you recommend? 2 carbon filter cartridges remove odors, and water discoloration by trapping the pollutants in the pores of the carbon. So after adding decorations, plants, filters etc. We did two treatments, and have done two 25% water changes. In a filtered tank you don’t need to do 100% water changes unless you have an algae or rampant disease problem. Was going to shop for a small plant that will grow out of tank and help reduce his waste and filter water for him absorbing his waste. Bryan. Basic UGFs that are powered by a simple air pump are best-suited for use in tanks of less than 55 gallons, although you can use them in larger aquariums with the addition of a powerhead that provides extra pulling power. Any thoughts on some snails or some type of shrimp that will be fine in a filterless tank? Before deciding on a UGF, there are a few things that you should consider: Some undergravel filter systems are constructed from one single plate, whereas others have two plates or even more. It’s been a couple months now and he is still very immobile, to the level that he only swims now to come to the top when we provide food to him. Hello, Can we take him to any vet? A sponge filter is generally more ideal as it produces little to no current which is favorable for bettas. That’s not the case with a UGF. A final option is an internal filtration unit that goes inside the tank (on the right). Id recommend a filter if you go to a tank larger than 3-gallons, just ensuring it’s not very powerful and can be adjusted or baffled. It’s a cool idea and is contemporary, but as you said it can create some problems – especially getting necessary equipment in there like heaters and filtration. Don’t forget to include hiding spots that inside break up the current and allow it to be relatively still to allow them to have areas they can rest. The French make duck and pork confit this way, and this was a traditional way to preserve the meat. Aside from the gentle hum of the pump and the relaxing sound of bubbling water, a UGF system is completely silent, which is great news if you want to keep your aquarium in a workroom or bedroom. Hi! Do I need a filter since it is technically bigger then 2.5g? Just use a small aquarium brush to brush it off so it doesn’t continue to grow and do more frequent water changes. A pump or powerhead at the top of each tube draws water up through the tube along with bubbles that are generated by the air stones. An undergravel filter system can be customized relatively simply. but I guess I missed the check the pump and clean as necessary. Maybe it’s the rocks? Tankarium is reader-supported. So frustrated im not doing the pet fish thing right. I had snails before for a while but they littered my tank with hatched eggs, like HUNDREDS. The Penn Plax UGF is one of the most popular undergravel systems that you can buy. Hi, the guy at Petsmart recommended the Tetra Whisper for my Dragon Scale Betta, so that’s what I ended up getting. I chose this tank for its ease of use but I’m concerned the filter is too strong. Started with a tiny tank then upgraded him to the TopFin BettaFlo tank but found it difficult to see him and clean due to its cylindrical shape. My fish HATES this filter, he won’t swim near it and freaks out if he gets caught in the output water because it moves him around, and I really don’t want him to be stressed. Thermometers help to read the temperature of tank’s water, if it’s below 78 degrees Fahrenheit, then you should get a heater as well to maintain proper tropical temperatures. I have him n a 5-Gallon Tetra tank with filter and all the trimmings to go with it. What should I do? That would really help Thanks. Ammonia should ideally always be at 0ppm. Regardless, you’re right, I would turn it off for now until you figure something out with the filter or get an adjustable one as it appears to be stressing him. Establishing a natural ecosystem is crucial to long-term health and limiting the chances of stress and disease. You cannot adjust the flow, 2. Most submersible filters attach to the tank’s wall via suction cups and perform relatively well if they’re not too powerful. Mine’s about 1 inch right now. I’m considering a Betta. Pet store employee said they were community bettas. I have had my Betta fish “Benny” for 2 months now and just love him. They work best in tanks up to 10 gallons and present virtually no risk to your betta from suction or flow. All was well she grew to be blue (was a light pink baby) with some soft green and pink. I got few questions if you can answer. I’m now taking care of 2 2.5 gallon tanks because I don’t have the heart to get rid of one of them. Our favorite product is the Penn Plax Premium UGF kit. Thanks, You don’t have to buy replacement filter media or expensive cartridges, and there’s nothing to go wrong with the unit unless the pump breaks. The green algae may be growing if you have the tank exposed to sunlight (e.g. This ability comes from their labyrinth organ, classifying them as Anabantoidei or labyrinth fish. Let’s start with a really quiet one. I don’t want him to be unhappy any more. Feeding wise she grew up on shrimps and blood worm with one day fasting and one day with 1/4 boiled pea which I would typically do on Saturday then Sunday would test, and clean water. I had to add a tall tropical live fern to break some current but wondering what else I could do that is minimal. That said, I did successfully use a UGF with a 30-gallon setup that housed fancy goldfish, although I was very diligent in vacuuming the gravel each week, and the pump I used was a large one. Now, that’s not a problem provided that you are diligent in carrying out partial water changes every week, as well as agitating and vacuuming the substrate to remove general detritus and fish waste. Let’s start by understanding a betta’s natural habitat, living in rice paddies and shallow bodies of water. I have a sponge filter. Hi Bryan! Undergravel systems are cheap to purchase and run. near a window). Without changing the tank, you will need to do frequent partial water changes and consider a live plant like a moss ball to aid in cleanliness and oxygenation. Introduction. The water is more murky, but he seems happier. But we did have a betta which we unfortunately lost recently. How Long Do Betta Fish Live? There is so much information out there on different media, sponges etc. After reading this very helpful article I just wanted to say thank you. Pre-filter sponges will easily fit over certain filters’ output tubes into the aquarium like the Fluval Spec V too. Moonlight seems happy in her 3 gallons tank with only live plants. Are the strips showing the water quality is okay? It appears to be a very mild current. I have been doing 25% changes twice per week. Hanging on the back filters are generally the ones which are too strong for a betta unless adjustable. Your email address will not be published. Is this usual? To help with unfiltered tanks, remove uneaten food and poop before it settles and decays (pro tip: use an aquarium designated turkey baster to easily suck debris out of the tank). Great post. How do I add a filter to his tank if he is already there? What type of filter should I get? If by air-pump filter you mean a sponge filter setup then you should be fine. I’ll test her water today and see how it is it does, it does not look cloudy. It is a 5.5-gallon tank with filter and live plants. There’s so many different kinds, some have tubes and pumps and some don’t, that I’m not sure which one I can get? Hi Bryan, Hello, I have a 1.5 gallon tank. I was told that they would be fine with a hiding spot, plants, substrate. These are the safest in my opinion. Do betta fish need a filter? I have read so many articles and I don’t understand. Unless you have an external canister filter or sump that’s hidden underneath your aquarium in the cabinet, you’ll have a bulky, ugly box filter on view in your tank. Black racer snails or mystery snails are good options. I have just bought a new fish tank and it is 1.5 gallons. We have been changing the filter, cleaning and at least half of the water every 30 days but this last time it was 34 days and I noticed that the water started turning green and the filter was full of algae and some of the artificial plants were slimed over. Make sure there is nothing sharp in the tank that Simon may be cutting or tearing his fins on. I recommend 2.5-gallons as the minimum size for a betta fish habitat, and power filters only in tanks that are 3-gallons or larger because of strong current concerns. However, the larger plate size means that you don’t need to buy as many filter plates for a big tank as you do with other brands, making this an economical choice. We are in New Jersey and if we can visit a vet what type of vet should I be looking for on the internet. If you go with a 2.5-gallon tank I would not use a filter other than a sponge filter to avoid creating a strong current in a small tank. He has recently been seeming sad and not moving as much. Floating the cup or bag in the water to acclimate the betta to the water temperature in the tank slowly, and slowly introducing small amounts of the tank’s water into the bag during the acclimation period. Also would I stil need an air filter if I get a sponge one? You can increase plants and decorations near the filter to break the flow as it enters the tank. Hope this helps 🙂. Once a week would be doable for me. That’s what makes the UGF the best choice if you’re looking for a highly efficient biological filter for your tank. Lee’s Original UGF is available in a range of handy sizes, so you’re sure to find one to fit your tank. The water is neither filtered nor heated. After a dismal and frustrating experience with some carnival goldfish, I’m researching so I and any fish I get have a better experience. In high quantities, these can begin to stress and make your betta sick. Heated with an old style rock/sponge filter. I am wondering if this is too small, and what would be the best way to clean the tank. I did a 100% water change yesterday. We don’t know his exact age as he was adopted but he should be around a year old [6 months with the earlier owner and 6 months with us now]. I did not know that I have to rinse it in the tank so I did it under the running water. Also wondering what type of thermometer I could position on the glass maybe to make sure indeed the water is at 78 average? I was wondering if you could recommend the best filter for this size tank due to my 3 year old saying she wants her betta again. Regardless of the size of your tank and whether you have a freshwater or marine setup, an efficient biological filter system is essential to provide a healthy environment for your fishes and other livestock. It’s impossible to keep debris from them. Safe for use in both freshwater and saltwater tanks. The result is a thriving mass of bacteria, an efficient biological filter system, and a healthy, well-oxygenated environment for your fish. Do you think this would be ok, or should I just stick with the filter and hope my betta gets used to it? Once you have bought the unit and pump or powerhead, that’s it! Yes, it’s necessary to monitor pH, ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates. Now he is lying on his side all day at the bottom of the tank and his gills seem to show labored breathing. Not so! I would look into a sponge filter setup if I were you, or think realistically about how you would baffle the flow of the water falling into the tank and restrict that intake area. I did notice the fins don’t look as full as before. It’s not as effective, but would be better than the 1-gallon jars. Needless to say the pump was filled with crap and the bottom too so I had to empty it which meant emptying her water again. With a 5-gallon heated and filtered tank, you should only need to do about a 25% water change per week and filter media replacement per your filter’s instructions. Is there a way to make the switch that will be beneficial to him? The bowl is staying clean as of now, just change water 1 x a month. Is the tank heated and filtered? Do you have a list of all the products I need to set it up? His fins are still looking kind of stringy, but don’t want to over medicate. Non-filtered tanks require 1-2 water cycles at around 25% and a full 100% water change each week (depending on water quality). An undergravel filter doesn’t have messy sponge filters or cartridges to wash or replace. You could also add a tall decoration or plants up close to the output to slow the flow as well. Also, you get airline tubing and air stones included with the kit. The first thing to try is limiting the flow of your filter if it’s adjustable (try the lowest setting). I also was wondering about heaters, because I am rather nervous about using one after my last Betta died when it overheated the water to 90 Fahrenheit. I have settled on the Fluval Spec III (one for each of them of course), a Hydor 25w heater, Purigen filter material (I have no idea what that is but it seems to be in a bunch of reviews), and Luffy betta balls. I had it in a large vase with a plant and now that I have a tank it seems happier but now I am worried about the rocks and filter I have a tank heater and I’m going to add live plants. Btw, it houses 2 male bettas that were from a community tank in the pet store. Plants do certainly help, but I wouldn’t say they completely replace what a filter can do. Is the filter producing too much current and stressing him out? We have had him 2 weeks and he is declining. Of the various types of filter systems that are available today, the undergravel filtration system is regarded as somewhat old-fashioned and is often passed over in favor of more complicated technical systems. She has been very active recognizes me and plays. Make sure to acclimate them into the new tank (float them in a bag or cup) for 20-30 minutes to get them used to the new tank’s temperature. I have a 1.5 gal wall mounted tank for my betta. The life span can also be shortened from less than ideal conditions. If you already have a small tank (3 gallons), this can reduce swimming space and the overall water volume available for your betta fish. Hello! Over time, that blockage disrupts the passage of water across the bacteria in the substrate and down through the filter plates, depriving the bacteria of oxygen and creating pockets of foul water. Betta fish like filtered tanks because they do best in stable water parameters. 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