The vivid appearance and bright colors of the Betta fish is the main reason for them being one of the most popular freshwater fish to keep as your pet. Their petite shape but dynamic behavior has managed to attract many buyers. Whether it’s the fish’s quirky and unique fin shape or the distinctive body shapes, there’s no question that they make gorgeous pets. However, they can get quite aggressive with other male Bettas, and it would be sensible to keep one male Betta per tank.
Betta Fish General Factoids:
The average adult size of a Betta fish can range from about 2 ½ inches long, excluding the whimsical tail. They can live for about three years if cared for according to their needs. They belong to the carnivorous category because of their eating regime, which includes live brine shrimp, worms, or mosquito larvae. Although, if it comes to that, the fish can survive for up to 14 days without food.
They tend not to grow a lot, and hence, the requirement of water can range from about five gallons with the water being 72-82 degrees Fahrenheit in temperature. The fish are capable of surviving in different water temperatures, but sudden changes can hurt the fragile creatures.
The Betta Fish, also sometimes colloquially known as Siamese Fighting Fish, is a species in the gourami family which is popular as an aquarium fish. This species is native to the Mekong basin of Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, and Vietnam, where it can be found in standing waters of canals, rice paddies, and floodplains. They are called pla-kad (biting fish) in Thai or trey krem in Khmer. They tend to be rather aggressive.
Betta Fish will eat any animal small enough that they can ingest. From worms to larvae of mosquitoes to smaller fish. However, their natural environments usually lack the resources giving them minimal choices in food. Keeping them in tanks and such can actually be an advantage for them as it confirms food. Feed sparingly; otherwise, you’re risking making your bowl filthy, especially if not filtered. Baby Bettas consume tiny pellets or finely crushed flake food. Before feeding any age of Betta fish, remember to thaw the food that may be frozen.
Bettas require a relatively shallow body of water to be able to rise to the surface and breathe because apart from gills, they also happen to have labyrinth organs. The water has to be minimal current, and they survive best when alone, especially males. They are able to prosper peacefully in a communal tank as long as it isn’t the same species as them and the other species aren’t aggressive, for example, any fish with long tails, Guppies, Oscars, Killifish, these fishes can seem like threats to the male Betta fish.
Unlike male Bettas, female bettas can live with serenity with other female Betta fish or any other community of fish. Compatible fish can include Bloodfin Tetras, Black Tetras, Catfish, Rasboras, or Croaking Gouramis. Quality water and the required temperatures and pH level are crucial for the survival of the Betta fish.
Setting up the tank:
The right tank and the right equipment are a prerequisite for the longevity of the life span of the fish. Although the generalized gallon requirement is 5, people advise researching according to the breed you have. The tank placement has to be in dim light with minimum commotion to avoid alarming your fish every now and then. The necessary equipment includes LED lights mainly because Betta fish enjoy the light.
Intensive light can be a catalyst in the growth of algae, which makes the tank grotesque, and unlike catfish, Betta does not feed on the vegetative matter. However, they do require the presence of faux plants in their bowl in order for them to have a place to hide if they get scared. The plants should most likely be made of silk and not sharp plastic. Betta fish are used to warm, tropical weather. For that, you might need a heater kept at 72 to 82 degrees Fahrenheit.
Decorations for the tank should be marked “aquarium,” otherwise, you’re risking the life of your fish. The substrate of an aquarium is used for the tank bottom, and it can affect the water’s chemistry, filtration, and the well-being of the aquarium’s inhabitants. The choice of the substrate should be made keeping in mind the breed of your fish. A general specification of the substrate is that it need not be sharp as not to hurt your fish.
Maintaining the tank:
Stable water temperature is important; what can be done is measuring your water at regular intervals. Check on the equipment and your fish, too, every time you feed it. Change your fish’s water as often as you can to retain a fresh environment for the fish. Disgusting water can be a cause for suffocation and, eventually, the death of your fish. 25% of the water should be reinvigorated every week.
Betta Fish Diseases:
Betta fish can be susceptible to a number of illnesses, regardless of being strong. Cuts from substrates can cause infections, to avoid, make sure the substrate or any other decorations you put in the bowl are smooth. Diseases that can develop from murky water include fin rot, a bacterial infection that can cause inflammation or irritation on the body of the fish. Bacteria can also be the cause of fin rot. Fin rot can also be a symptom of other diseases. In a situation like that, the medication should be of the essence to retard and eventually stop the disease from spreading.
Overfeeding is also seen as a disease because it can be bad for the fish’s digestive system. Give it time and let its body absorb the food. If that doesn’t work; it could be the food you’re giving. The solution would be to change its diet entirely. Ich is also a common ailment with Betta fish, white spots are seen on its body, and the fish might be swimming awkwardly and scratching on hard surfaces.
A healthy Betta fish will eat regularly, the males tend to preserve their vibrant colors, and both sexes will be active and alert. It will swim up to investigate when you get too close to their habitat.
All in all, Betta fish can be an exquisite pet if cared for the right way and treated with respect. As long as you acknowledge that you’re responsible for them, not much can go wrong.
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