1. You will need at a minimum a 2 gallon or larger aquarium container. But 2 gallons is the absolute bare minimum. You should even consider a 5 gallon container. Basic 5 gallon fish tanks cost around $15. A complete and fully equipped tank setup will cost you arounf $50. However, this is a very suitable setup.
2. Proper water treatment for your betta. It's not advisable to place your pet betta in straight tap water. Plus, it can get really costly if you are constantly buying betta water from your local pet shop. It's advisable to purchase "novaqua" betta fish tap water treatment for 3-5 dollars. You can exect to get at least a months treatment from a 3-5 dollar cost. Or, you may wish to buy the larger bottle of novagua tap water treatment for $10.00. This should last you a least two to three months.
3. Proper and adequate fFish food. The best for a betta fish is either typically freeze dried or brine shrimp, freeze dried bloodworms and/or smaller floating fish pellets made especially for betta fish. Also, flake food made especially for betta fish will also do well for a supplement food. However, you should make certain that it contains at the very least around 40 percent in protein. Betta's usually only consume around 3 to 4 smaller pieces of flake food a day. Just remember that one or two ounces of fish pellets will usually last quite a bit longer. This should cost you anywhere between 3 to five dollars. The best though, is to buy several types of food to give your pet betta an all round nutrient supply of food.
4. Adequate Heat. When you have an adequate size aquarium tank, good size bowl or container you should invest in a traditional aquarium heater has been tested and is a submersible and non-breakable type. This should cost you around $15 to $20. On the other hand, if you are using a smaller bowl, then it's a good idea to purcahse a small plant heating mat for around $18.00. Here's a breakdown of costs for you. Expect about $10 for the bowl, $3 - $5 for fish food or pellets, $5 for water conditioner and about $15 - $20 for a long-last quality water heater.
Betta Supplies That Are Optional
1. Fine tank gravel. Pea sized gravel in most cases is too large especially for smaller containers. It has been know that betta fish oftentimes can get their heads stuck in bigger tank gravel especially whenit's marble size. Also, please keep in mind that the bigger the tank gravel, the more fish waste it is going to hold. This in turn will dirty your tank up much quicker. Nevertheless, smaller or finer grained type gravel is much harder to locate even from a local pet shop. However after saying that, it is much better in your bowl or tank in the long term. Try to purcahse gravel that is no-wider than say half a pen thinkness in width. It's also a good idea to buy 2 bags of fish tank gravel. You should strive to get about 10lbs worth to compliment a 5 gallon size tank.
2. What types of plants are best - plastic or real? Java moss and java ferns are usually much more expensive to buy than a lot of other other plants, but unless the tank or container you're using requires special type of lighting, simply purchase the lowest type lighting that requires ordinary plants you can find at most pet shops. Always keep in mind that eventually your plants will die and decompose, and you will need to clean out the tank at least a few times until you have removed all of the dead plant matter. Expect a cost for plastic plants of abot $3.00 and real plants about $7.00 each.
3. Alternative Food Types. Freeze dried and brine shrimp. Floating fish pellets and especially developed fish flake food. To buy premium fish food expect to pay around $6.00 to $8.00.
4. Proper Water testing kit (pH and ammonia test kits) If you're using only a smaller container, you can generally skip purchasing an ammonia test kit. The idea is... if you are not sure about the ammonia content of your fish container, simply change the water. On the other hand, if you decide that you want to breed betta fish, you should think about buying a water hardness kit.It will cost you around $5.00 to $20.00 depending on just how elaborate the kit is. Also, you will need to buy a net that is big enough to scoop-up your betta fish as well as his long fins. For a quality made net expect to pay about $7.50.
5. Aquarium Tank Filters. You will only need a filter if you intend setting-up a community fish tank. Small betta fish bowls do not need them. Why? Because most good owner's change the bowl water every few days. But if you do feel like you need to get a water filter, then start by looking at buying a smaller "over the side" hanging filter. With any filter of course, you will need to watch the power setting because too much power and you could blow your betta fish away in a strong water current. Betta's do not like that at all! Expect to pay anywhere around $10.00 to $20.oo for a good unit.
6. Cleaning Animals. When you use a small bowl say only 2 gallons, all you will need is a snail. But if your bowl is around 3 to 5 gallons in size then there should be sufficient room for a small, very mellow-like tiny catfish. When you have "cleaning animals" in your tank or bowl you will also require some plant life as well. This will help to cut down on the build up of algae in the tank. However, it's a lovely addition to any bowl or tank but it's not really necessary at all. Expect to pay around $2.00 for a snail and about $7.00 for suitable catfish.