Betta Fish

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Betta fish, or the Siamese Fighting fish, are some of the most common, and most commonly abused pet we have today. These hardy little fish can live 3-5 years, they are colorful, beautiful, and come with a very large price range. Most betta’s, depending on their species, cost anywhere from less than five dollars to 30 dollars. There are however, some breeders who can sell their fish for up to 500$! What ever kind of of betta fish that you choose to get however (whether it is a half moon, crown-tail, butterfly or delta) their care requirements are the same.

BASIC CARE REQUIREMENTS

TANK SIZE- 

2.5-5 GAL.

Of course you can always go much bigger, but this is the recommended amount of space a Betta fish needs, despite myths you may have heard about betta’s being able to happily live in less than a gallon of water. They might be able to survive for quite some time in smaller conditions, but a happy betta is one that has enough space to swim

WATER TEMPERATURE- 

78-80 DEGREES F

You will want a heater to be able to keep the water temperature in the right range, which you cannot do in a tank under 1 gal. of water. This is because a heater in this small of a tank will cause the temperatures to rise too quickly, which is bad for your fish. Luckily keeping them in a tank under a gallon is also not good for your fish so we don’t need to worry about that.

DIET- 

BETTA PELLETS, FROZEN BLOODWORMS

Bettas naturally eat small insects, insect eggs, and even smaller fish. This means they need a protein rich diet to be happy and healthy fishies. Feed about  3 bloodworms or brine shrimp, or 2-3 pellets per feeding. Feed about twice a day.

TANK SETUP

Fish tank

REQUIRED

  • Heater
  • Filter
  • Light (Strongly recommended, required for planted tanks)
    • I would recommend getting a timer for your light as well. I got mine for less than 5 dollars at walmart and it is much easier than dealing with turning my fish tank light on and off again every day and the consistency of it means less stress for my fish
  • Decorations

It is important to provide your fish with interesting things to swim around, hide in and interact with.  Whether you choose plastic plants, ceramic decorations or opt for a heavily planted tank, your Betta fish will thank you for it.

FAQ

  1. Can I keep my Betta with other fish or tank-mates?

Yes, you can! Despite their reputation for being very aggressive fish, some smaller fresh water fish can live happily with your Betta. This all of course, depends on the temperament of your Betta, the size of your tank and of course the type of tank mate you get, however. In general you want to pick a fish that does not resemble a Betta fish (IE- long flowing tail, bright colors) and one that has similar care requirements. There are also a couple of non-fish aquatic tank mates that will get along with your Betta fish just fine.

Good tank mates for your Betta Fish include:

Feeder Guppies

Keep in mind, this does not include fancy guppies, esp. male fancy guppies. Some very passive Betta’s might not mind, but their long tails and bright colors could cause a fight.

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Pakistani Loaches

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Apple and Mystery Snails

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Ghost Shrimp

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*Of course do your research on different care requirements before purchasing another pet. Some of these animals require different tank sizes, or need to be kept in schools. Posts about all of these creatures are coming soon, but for the mean time, do your homework.

2. I thought Betta’s liked living in small spaces

This is a myth that you have been told, but it holds no actual ground. The origins of this claim come from the fact that Bettas come from rice patties, and when there is a drought some times a Betta will become trapped in a small pocket of water for a few days. This however is not evidence to prove that Betta fish prefer smaller living conditions. This is actually a very stressful event for the Betta and if kept in a small pocket for too long, they will often attempt to leap out of the pocket in search of more water, risking their lives in the process. Besides, a larger tank is a cleaner tank, so do yourself and your fish a favor and get the proper size tank.

3. I often should I complete water changes

This largely depends on how large of a tank you have. Assuming you got a tank that is about 5 gallons or larger, I would recommend complementing a 10-20% water change every week. If you have a smaller tank more frequent water changes or larger water changes will be needed. The important thing is to test your water fairly regularly so that you can start to understand when the water is getting too dirty. If you buy your pet at a PetCo or PetSmart, they will test your water for free. All you have to do is bring in a sample.

4. How can I tell the difference between a male and female Betta?

Simple

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Male                                                                                      Female

Has longer fins and no egg spot                                 Has much shorter fins and an egg spot right                                                                                                            between her front and back fins on her                                                                                                                    underside

Can not be kept with other Betta’s                           Can be kept with other females in a sorority                                                                                                           tank, about 5 or more females are needed for a                                                                                                      successful tank

 

 

Betta Fish Disease and treatment

Fin Rot

Fungal Infection

Ick

Velvet

Popeye

Dropsy

Swim Bladder Disorder

External Parasites

Internal Parasites

Bacterial Infection

SOURCES

Betta Fish Care

Nippy Fish

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