Before you buy betta fish, you should get their tank set up. Some aquarists new to the hobby buy betta fish from a pet store and leave them in the tiny betta fish bowls they are housed in. While your betta can survive in a small amount of water with little to no water circulation, they certainly will not thrive there. You probably chose bettas because of their amazing colors and fin plumage. If you want your fish to thrive and be the happiest, healthiest betta he can be, you will need to upgrade to a larger betta house when you buy betta supplies.
I buy betta tanks no smaller than five gallons, and prefer ten gallon tanks, because they make breeding, and adding betta tankmates and betta plants much easier. With a larger betta tank, you will also be providing your fish with many more chances to show off their individual personality.
Betta fish prefer shallow depths, so when choosing a betta tank, buy something lower and wider instead of deep. Not only will this make your water changes and maintenance easier, but it will also give your betta an environment most like his natural habitat.
Your betta has to eat. So, when you buy betta fish food, make sure that the food size is appropriate for your fish. I prefer flakes at first if the betta is small, and then pellets at later stages of his growth. There are a lot of options out there, but I prefer a standard betta flake food product. You can also use freeze-dried brine.
You of course will need to buy betta supplies like a net, lid for the betta tank, heater and filter. Buy a sponge filter, because good bacteria will grow in the filter collection area, and will provide the nitrates your fish needs to fight off diseases. When purchasing a heater, three to five watts per gallon will be sufficient. Hood selection and accessories like nets are not as important. Get what works for you.
Buy your betta an aquarium test kit, and cyle his tank before you add him. There are many good betta care guides that walk you through the water cycling process. This is the most important step in your fish’s young life! Follow the directions, and add fish. Be forewarned, cycling aquarium water takes two to eight weeks, so you will have to be prepared to wait. But, when cycled properly, your betta tank will have pristine water quality, and your fish can live up to five years.
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