Stop with Tiny Bowls!
I don't care what petstores, backyard breeders or whoever tells you that a betta can live a content and healthy life in a tiny unheated bowl. Bettas
are hardy fish and there have been cases where they live out their entire existence in these setups but there also thousands of cases where the fish perishes premature
of their full lifespan.
Do you keep a dog in a closet? So why do we keep bettas in a tiny bowls that fall short of their needs? If you can't afford a proper setup, don't get a fish,
just like if you can't afford to feed or have a yard for your dog, its not right or humane to keep them in a tiny room all day with their poop/pee everywhere. Just because
a fish cannot cry, scream or tell you its in pain, it does not mean they don't suffer. So please, no more tiny glass bowls the size of my palm, the min. size is a heated 1 gallon.
PROPER BETTA SETUP
Many people do not realize that if your setup is perhaps the number one deciding factor of your betta's longevity and health. Bettas
are cold blooded and completely submersed in their enviroment making them very vurneable to enivromental inadequacy. A proper setup can prevent 90% of
diseases, prevent your betta from suffering and letting it live to its full lifespan.
You will need around $40-50 for a basic setup, bare min. or you will have a sick fish
1. A 1 gallon can work given you find a heater and change it regularly. However, a tank at least 2.5 gallons to 10 gallons (preferable with a lid or you will need to make some sort of covering!) is preferred. Usually range around $20. 2.5 gallon is the smallest size for a adjustable heater to work efficiently
and small enough to fit almost anywhere. Possible candidates: 2.5 gallon Basic Marineland or Topfin 10 gallon Basic,
for basic tanks, the tanks are similar in price regardless of size. Remember to change the water on time!
2. A adjustable heater, betta's health and wellbeing are extremely dependent on temperature. Most cost around $20 or less. A betta can be kept between 76F-84F with the best temperature
being 78F-80F. A betta's digestion, metabolism, activity and immunity is affected by temperature. Higher temperatures allows for faster metaoblism, digestion
and better immunity keeping your betta healthy. Wattage is important, it tells you how strong a heater is, a 25W is great for 2.5-5 gallon tanks, a 50w will work for 5-10 gallons.
Bettas tend to live longer and healthier when kept at a steady 78F-80F. Possible candidates: Hydor Theo 25W
or Elite 50W (both brand have 25W/50W). If you have a 1 gallon, something such as the Hydor 7.5w mini might work but remember
these heater simply continously add heat, you may need to do extra monitoring to prevent overheating.
3. A glass thermometerm, you must be able to tell the actual temperature is. Cost $5 or less. Avoid digital ones, they
are expensive and not anymore accurate than a glass one but can break from water. Water temperature does not always equal air temperature (due to evaporate cooling), humans
are warm blooded so the temperature will 'always' feel roughly the same - your body temperature. What feels like 25 degrees or 74F may
not be the actual case. These thing are super cheap, skip a coffee and get one for the sake of your fish's whose life depend on it. Possible candidates:
Topfin Glass Thermometer
In addition for a basic setup, for stimulation and wellbeing, have the following
1. A decoration or cave your fish can hide and explore. They can range from $5-$20, try to have at least 1 or 2. If you live in Canada, Dollarama sells
fish decor for only $2, if don't, check out your local dollar store. Possible candidates: Rough hollow log
or Rock Cave.
2. Silk plants (NOT plastic, they are notorious for tearing the fins of bettas) which are soft and can be safely rested on bettas. Cost around $12-$15
per pack. Silk plants
are very popular among betta owners who do not want to have live plants but still want their betta to have resting places. Many bettas
will grow very attach to a silk plant, often sleeping/resting on it regularly. You can also have live AND silk plants, its not a one
or the other kind of thing. Possible candidates: Blue Ribbon 3 pack silk plants
3. Lighting, lighting helps stimulates your bettas. If your tank comes with a hooded light fixture lid than you already have a source of light. If you don't,
consider buying a clip on desk top lamp. They cost usually under $10 and great if you have live plants. Possible candidate: Mini Clip Lamp
These are things bettas really really enjoy and should have a chance to have!
1. Live plants, bettas love live plants, the more the merrier for bettas. They generally cost under $20 for lots of plants, especially if you get a pack. Bettas or any fish enjoy swimming through mass of plants, it provides them with a sense
of security and helps makes their tank feel less empty. The best thing about live plants is that it grows, releases oxygen and can readily asborb
nitrate and some ammonia. Bettas are often known to sleep in plants. Live plants does require a little extra care but hardy plants
are very easy to care for. Check out my live plant guide. Possible candidates: Java Fern, Water wisteria
2. Stimulating toys like a ping pong, mirror or a hoop ring. These little toys are great to entertain your betta with and help
redirect some excess energy that can sometimes be destructive such as the case of tail biting. You can find small mirrors
at dollar stores, simply set them up by your tank.
3. A weak bubbler or filter, this is not for every betta, some fish with very large tails such as halfmoons are very sensitive to current
and can start tail biting if the drag is too strong. opt for a small filter/bubbler that is underrated for the tank. Water movement can encourage
swimming and help reduce algage/protein build up on the surface. Possible candidate: Whisper 3i.
Star's Betta Blog © Star all rights reserved unless stated otherwise.
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Redistribution welcome with a link back.
Images used found on google,
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Welcome to Star's Betta Guide, this is a achieve of articles, tips and information for betta keepers. I am a betta lover of 7+ years
and been keeping aquariums for over 6 years. Please take a look around and hopefully, you find some of the information I collect on this site useful! :)
Have fish keeping, if you have any questions, feel free to contact me.
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Is your betta living in a bowl? Do you only change the water every week? Does your betta only stay in one place all the time?
One of the reasons for this blog is to inform owners on proper care. Please take the time to read my article on why
placing your betta in a setup pictured above is causing it to suffer and die a slow painful death!
|"Bettas lived in tiny mud puddles in the wild"
Bettas lived in rice paddies and slow moving bodies of water, often several hundred gallons; filled with plants and insects
"Bettas can live in a vase with peace lilies, its a complete ecosystem"
The betta have no food, they do not eat plant roots. There is little oxygen and the lily do not remove the waste. The betta
inevitably will slowly die from starvation, waste poisoning and suffocation.
"Bettas are hardy and can live in dirty water"
A common point pet stores use to sell their fish. Bettas are very toleranting fish but they many die prematurely within a few months
of purchase from poor living conditions when they can easily live up to 3-6 years.
"Bettas can don't require filteration or heating"
A betta is a low waste fish, so if water changes are frequent enough, they do not require a filter. However they are tropical fish that require a stable
warm water temperature of at least 78F or 25.5C.
"My room is set to 26C, so the water must be 26C"
Water temperature does not always equal room temperature, its very often cooler than room temp. Smaller bodies of water less than 5 gallons or 20 litres
can fluxuate throughout the day which is very stressful for a betta