In Part 2, we talked about the enjoyable aspect of setting up your fish tank with decorative items. In this article, we will discuss some of the mandatory elements that are needed to provide the necessities for the health of your Betta.
Aeration within your aquarium is very important for your Betta. Even though a fairly large fish tank with a good filter chosen by a professional provides plenty of aeration, it’s still wise to add further equipment. To be cautious, many hobbyists install an airstone that connects to an air pump. This provides a stream of bubbles that are not only good for the fish, but also provide a pleasing site in your aquarium.
Although an airstone is a wise investment, make sure the aeration in your fish tank is gentle and not strong and overpowering. Remember, in Bettas’ natural habitat, they live in fairly stagnant water. They don’t spend their lives “living an upstream battle” every day and expending their energy fighting off a current of air bubbles. Position your tank plants, driftwood, rocks and other decorations in the direct flow of the pump as to redirect and weaken the current. This will protect your Betta without sacrificing any of the filtration system’s efficiency.
2. Air Pump
Another item that is vital in your Betta fish tank setup is an air pump. Again, these can be found in the aquarium shop where you purchased your other items. This pump should rest right above the aquarium. This positioning prevents any of the water from back flowing into the tank in case the power shuts off. Commercial fish stores will encourage you to acquire a dual valve where one end connects to the airstone and the other bleeds the surplus pressure up into the air.
As stated above, your fish tank needs an air pump, but that doesn’t take the place of an airstone, which is completely different. The pump supplies oxygen into the water, while an airstone increases that oxygen by dispersing the air that is supplied by your air pump. There are many different types of airstones made out of varying substances such as ceramic, plastic or wood. Whichever one you choose, remember that it has to be changed every 2-3 months.
Finally, you will have to purchase tubing from your aquarium dealer. This is made of a rubber type of material, normally tinted a bluish-green to blend in with the aquarium environment, and it is very easy to work with. Because of its flexibility, you can bend and twist it around your rocks, wood and other tank decorations. If you are having trouble connecting the tubing to your pump, hold the tip of it under hot water which will expand it and allow for easier attaching. Don’t worry; the tubing tip will contract to its original size once it has cooled.
Purchasing Betta fish is a joy, but also a responsibility. There are many factors to setting up your fish tank so your Betta stays happy and free from illness. There are no shortcuts. It’s vital to buy and install correctly all the items your fish tank dealer suggests to ensure a healthful and beautiful aquarium.
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For more information and a more detailed analysis of the essential tank parts, check out all of our Aquarium Setup Articles.