New Tank - New to Hobby - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 4 Old 06-20-2011, 07:31 PM Thread Starter
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New Tank - New to Hobby

Hi guys,

So I recently got into keeping tropical fish (I was given a betta fish by a teacher because his cats kept trying to eat him...) and for about 2 weeks with me, my poor little guy was living in a tiny bowl that was totally unfit. After doing a bit of research, I purchased a 5 gallon aquarium and now he (Ziya) is happily living in there with a small heater, filter, attempts at plants, and some buddies. I have added 2 small mystery snails to the tank and 4 ghost shrimp (not all added at the beginning, the tank has been set up for maybe 3 weeks now?).

Since I'm totally new to this and not quite sure what I'm doing, I saw that tanks need to be cycled? I did not do this when I added Ziya since I wanted to get him out of his miniscule home, and now the water is easily clouded. I have been doing partial water changes ever 2 days but it gets cloudy in no time. I am using water conditioner, but I do not know the parameters of my water (I have a snow melt-off fed mountain well for water.) Is there anything I should be doing differently to make the water less cloudy and gross?

Also, I have the Tetra Power Filter Whisper 10i (the one with an extension tube type thing into the tank) and it has recently started leaking at the back. Any suggestions on how to fix this? And does anyone know of ways to reduce the flow a little because at times it seems a bit too strong.

One final question I swear! :)
With my betta, the 2 snails, and the 4 ghost shrimp, is that too many creatures for a 5 gallon tank? Or is there any room for some small compatible fish?

Thank you guys for all the help! :)
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post #2 of 4 Old 06-20-2011, 10:37 PM
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I applaud you for doing something positive for the betta ... some people just keep them in those ridiculously small bowls.

The first thing I'll recommend is get the API test master kit to test your water parameters. If your cloudiness is a whitish color, sounds like a bacterial bloom of beneficial bacteria ... which is a good thing. Keep up on water changes .... 25% at least. The bacteria will soon finish establishing in your filter media, gravel, glass ornaments etc. Everywhere except the water which is why a water change will not stop your tank from cycling.

In regards to a filter ... It is best to over filter than under filter .. so you do not want to reduce flow rate. If your finding yours is leaking too much ... it is best to get a new one ... and use the filter media to seed the new one.

Shrimp have next to no bio-load, however snails do tend to have larger bio-loads. Still I think your tank is fine for now ... however do consider a 10gal. More space is always a good idea, Petco is having their $1.00 / gal sale later this month.

75g FW Cyprinidae Tank - Running Fluval 404
5 BlackRuby, 4 Albino Tiger, 4 Odessa, 3 Tiger, 2 Green Tiger, 3 Denison, 2 Cherry, 2 Gold, 2 Checkered BARBS + 4 Zebra Danios, 1 Red-tail Shark. Looking to add 4 Five Banded Barbs
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post #3 of 4 Old 06-21-2011, 10:54 AM
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Betta are not good community fish so they are best on their own (snails and shrimp are fine). A 5g with a Betta is good. I don't know that make of filter so can't help there, but if you had live plants in the tank you would not need the filter with one Betta.

Welcome to Tropical Fish Keeping forum, and the hobby. Glad you joined us.


Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #4 of 4 Old 06-23-2011, 07:42 AM
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I also have a 5 gallon with one betta, and alot of little snails. I would not add anymore fish to the tank ( I learned the hard way). If you have live plants you may want to get a new bulb for your tank (assuming that this is a tank set from the store) and keep it on a timer. Alot of plants will really help the water and will give your betta ( and shrimp and snails) new places to explore. They also need some cover from the light, they have "floating betta logs" that look kinda natural and do the trick, or some floating plants. This will also help reduce the water flow.

Not sure what to tell you about the filter. Maybe return it? I would keep the filter material in the tank ( not sure how) so you don't remove the bacteria living there.

Welcome to TFK. You should post a pic of your tank.
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