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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello, I have a 3 gallon tank that houses one male betta.
There are also 3 moss balls in the tank.
I have a 3 gallon filter and a 10 watt heater in there too plus an LED light.
I just tested my water and it seems as though it isn't cycled.
I thought it was cycled, but I guess not. I went on a 10 day trip, and left the tank to my pet sitter, so I missed one water change, but am going to do that tomorrow.
I just tested the water, So there is no ammonia, but there is 0.25 nitrite. There is 0 nitrate.
I do 50% water changes one week, and then the next week a do a 100% water change and so on, but I leave a little bit of water at the bottom with the gravel with 100% water changes.
I also leave the filter in a bucket of old aquarium water, so the bacteria does not die.

How do I properly cycle this little tank?
 

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I would just add some live plants. And with a Betta, floating plants like Water Sprite are ideal. This takes up a vast amount of ammonia/ammonium and you should never see nitrite, and perhaps not nitrate either, in a tank with fast growing plants. And floating plants are fast growing.

Click the shaded name for the profile with pictures of the Water Sprite. Another good floating plant is Brazilian Pennywort a stem plant that can be left floating.

Byron.
 

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Ditto the plants. My daughter kept her betta in a smallish pitcher, about a gallon, and not only changed her water but scrubbed the pitcher, gravel and rocks every five days. I dont think she let any bacteria grow but she had a moss ball and a couple of very healthy green cabomba stems. Never had a problem, cycling wasn't even a consideration. Of course he now has more space in a 37 gallon tank. I moved the cobomba to the large tank and it withered and died, the only plant that did that, I think it didn't like the higher temperature.

Of course this doesn't deal with your nitrites, so just do a 100% water change and drop in the plants. One fish and 5 gallons, one decent sized floater ought to do it, maybe two for redundancy.

Jeff
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks all!
I have some java moss, will that be ok?
I'm terrible at growing plants, I've even killed some anubias, which is very hard to kill.
Do I need any new things besides what I have in my tank currently for the plants to grow?
my ph is about 7.0-7.5
I'm not positive on the exact number.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
thanks! I will look for some more plants! :)
 

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Anacharis is cheap and is a fast grower. I swear it grows a couple inches a day in my tanks! You can float it or root it in the gravel. I do both.
 

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agree with the above.

perhaps the moss ball will be sufficient for a 3g.

But few bunches of anacharis couldn't hurt.


my .02
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
aha thank you! I used to have a ton, but it got super algae-fied so I had to throw it away because it wouldnt go away.. very sad :(

I may get wisteria because it is so pretty, but I probably dont have enough light
or maybe more moss balls!

Thank you all!
 

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So far anything I've seen at PetsMart or Petco are low light and easy plants. So you're likely going to be getting an easy pesy plant. Those moss balls are WAY over priced. I'll never get one because of that.
 

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Fast-growing floaters help attenuate any ammonia/nitrite spikes. But, in answering your original question: you cycle a 3g the same way you'd cycle any tank.
Keep the temp up around 82* if possible
Aeration (sponge filter, airstone or waterfall)
Large filter media
Plants
Attention to params
Water changes (even large ones) when necessary

Don't squeeze them mossballs for a couple of months...they don't look so smug. Hmmph!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thank you-- this is perfect. I wish I could put aeration in the tank, but even the smallest air pump makes the current too strong for my fish because his tail is so big, he can't really fight the current.
also my air pump broke!
It just doesn't make bubbles anymore, though it still turns on.
Do any of you have any suggestions on why it is not making bubbles?
 

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Thank you-- this is perfect. I wish I could put aeration in the tank, but even the smallest air pump makes the current too strong for my fish because his tail is so big, he can't really fight the current.
also my air pump broke!
It just doesn't make bubbles anymore, though it still turns on.
Do any of you have any suggestions on why it is not making bubbles?
Have you felt for air coming out of the pump?
 

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Your Betta doesn't need any aeration. It's the nitrifying bacteria that need O2. If you have enough plants growing fast enough, you don't need the nitrogen cycle at all.

Of course, growing those plants is the hardest part for many of us. That's why I cycle.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
ahhh, my air pump is with my guppies, but there is no air coming out.

ah yes, and I got my fish an anubias for the tank, because there isn't much light for anything else to grow

Here he is:


 

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Hello, I have a 3 gallon tank that houses one male betta.
There are also 3 moss balls in the tank.
I have a 3 gallon filter and a 10 watt heater in there too plus an LED light.
I just tested my water and it seems as though it isn't cycled.
I thought it was cycled, but I guess not. I went on a 10 day trip, and left the tank to my pet sitter, so I missed one water change, but am going to do that tomorrow.
I just tested the water, So there is no ammonia, but there is 0.25 nitrite. There is 0 nitrate.
I do 50% water changes one week, and then the next week a do a 100% water change and so on, but I leave a little bit of water at the bottom with the gravel with 100% water changes.
I also leave the filter in a bucket of old aquarium water, so the bacteria does not die.

How do I properly cycle this little tank?
Hi! I would recommend not doing so big of a water change! Maybe only do a 25-30 water change every week. Be when you do such a big change, you just restart the cycle. I only do a 20% every week, and my tank is going perfectly fine! i only do a water change if my ammonia gets really high
 
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