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Old 10-29-2020, 08:11 PM   #1
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Betta-Safe Hardscaping?

Iím new to aquascaping. Iím planning a 10-15 gallon betta tank that I would like to use rock or wood, and live plants in. But Iíve had problems in the past with adventurous bettas tearing their fins while exploring, even on flexible artificial plants. The pantyhose test is useful on individual pieces once I have them in hand, and I can sand sharp edges down to some extent, but Iím hoping to eliminate some potentially snaggy problems before I begin purchasing stuff.

1) What kind kind of rock would generally be fragile-fin safe? Obviously something like dragon stone wouldnít do, but I want rock with enough texture to allow epiphytes to hang onto.

2) Is there a clear, aquarium-safe sealant or coating I could apply to rocks or wood to smooth out/guard against sharp surfaces that I canít sand down?

3) I have also read about planted tanks coating craggier rocks with things like Java moss to cushion surfaces. Would that be viable?

Any answers, advice, or anecdotes would be appreciated!
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Old 11-01-2020, 01:02 AM   #2
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One thing is to have a Betta which is in better condition too. Using Indian Almond leaves /IAL and other botanicals and DW will help with the condition of the Betta's body, because of the tannins. Betta's like tinted water and of course benefit from a better condtion / and wellness.

Also a Plakat Betta doesn't have the flowy fins of many other varieties and are fun and beautiful as well, more active as they aren't dragging a ball gown around. So maybe check them out.

Using a Betta Log (also check inside for any sharp protruding plastic edges jic) or floating stem plants will also help keep the fish from laying around on the bottom all the time, also can help avoid fin rot.

As for stones. I have used many types and even smaller sized Dragon stone. Using plants to shield the fish is a great idea. Petrified wood is pretty and usually smooth.

Moss, Anubias nana, Bucephalandra, Crypts at the corners of stones and DW. Subwassertang can be situated on or next to a stone.

Aquarium safe caulk or sealant might not look the best. But a scaper "tip" is to coat the edges of sealant with sprinkles of brown or same color as what you are using it on, sand or substrate to make it appear more natural. Also can add a bit of moss or other plant there.
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