Oh, no! Two more bettas!

I had a moment of weakness, and when you see them, I’m sure you’ll understand.

The first one I call Tango. I started calling him Tang, as in the orange power drink as his color is perfect for that.

Tango day 1

The second one is the one that caused me the moment of weakness, the one I call Techno, as in “Technicolor.” Actually, he is iridescent changing to different colors in varying light.

Tech day one

That was the best picture I could get. He is very bashful, spending his time in corner.


Betta getting caught in the “Tunnel of Doom”

My fish, like many others, seem to love getting into tight places. In this case, I had doubled up the panel in a spot where the two fish liked to flare at each other hoping to reduce that just a bit.

Turns out that Red just wanted to get between the panels, going through the “Tunnel of Doom” over and over again.

Don’t worry, Red was always safe, and was able to leave on his own. And after I removed the double panel, he found plenty of other places to get into.

How to clean a Dalek

One of the great mysteries of the Universe, well, at least in the Sol System, is how to dirty daleks get cleaned?

Answer: They go to the Robo wash! (Anyone remember those!?)

Okay, this may be a more plausible answer:

How daleks get cleaned


Of course, while documenting this, Red was being a camera hog!

Red getting in front of the camera

Welcome Otos

After reading positive things about the otocinclus dwarf suckermouth catfish, I ordered six from my local fish store. They arrived this morning.

As per my understanding, they need to be acclimated slowly, so I did several things to minimize the shock.

First, I carried them out of the store in a black metal pan with their bag wrapped in cloth. This provided a dark-ish and hopefully secure feeling environment for the trip. (When I picked up Red and Blue, it was night-time so bright light wasn’t an issue then.)

In my home office, I mean my fishes territory, I turned off the main lights and put them in a large wide mouth glass container that holds about a gallon.

Next, I inserted a bubble stone with a slow air stream. Whether this was necessary, I’m not certain but certainly it wasn’t going to hurt.

Finally I have a two gallon container with a spigot that I purchased at the local WalMart. It was originally intended for serving drinks. I placed it up on a top shelf with an air hose line attached to it along with an adjustable restriction valve.

After adding about a half-gallon of water from the 10 gallon tank, I set it to go drip-drip-drip into the glass container. For the next four hours or so, the goal was to give the otos a very slow, steady and hopefully low-stress acclimation period.

BTW, I have another of these that is plumed into the 10 gallon tank and will put two gallons of prepared water in there. When I do water changes / vacuum the gravel, I pull out two gallons down to a line that I marked on the glass and open the spigot. It takes about 15 minutes to refill the tank and doesn’t cause a serious water current to disturb the residents.

I then extracted some water from the glass container using a turkey baster and repeated the process with another half-gallon from the 10 gallon tank.

At this point, I felt the otos were as ready as they will ever be to enter their new home.

Oto on Thermometer

So far, the bettas have been curious about the new residents. I’ve seen a few brief chases but the otos are so much faster than the big finned bettas that it was no contest. It was like a lumbering 1960 Lincoln chasing an Ariel Atom.

Oto on Leaf

Underwater Dalek, Amazon Sword plants

Brave Blue! He isn’t the least bit concerned about the Dalek. The Doctor would be proud.

Brave Blue, he isn't the least bit afraid of the Dalek. The Doctor would be proud!


I also added an Amazon Sword plant to each side. From what I can tell, the plant might end up a bit too large so will likely require trimming. However I understand that bettas like to lay down on leaves to relax/rest/sleep and I figure this would be much nicer than the nasty plastic ones.

Day 1 in their new home

I spy something red WP

Red and Blue are now in their palace.

The white divider is a piece of needlepoint plastic reinforced by those (terrible) sliding-bar ‘report’ covers. I need to for on the anchoring a bit so that it won’t fall over and they get into a fight.

The floating plants (left side of each section in this picture) are java ferns. They’re support to do will in lower light situations. (I forgot what the other one is. but it was free at the pet store.)

For the next few weeks, I will have to do daily water tests, in particular watching for ammonia. The moment ammonia is detected, I’ll have to swap out some water. However, considering the low bio load and large size, I don’t expect that happen for a few days.

My next step is to figure out how to reduce to deflect the water flow. Thankfully, this filter has an adjustable flow which helps but I would like to diffuse it a bit more. Perhaps some of the needlepoint plastic would help.