Betta fish or Siamese fighting fish are very popular pets. Not only are they the beautiful ones with their long tails, but they also have great personalities. Bettas are often referred to as “scaly cats and dogs” under water. Although they have a great personality, they tend to be aggressive towards other bettas (male and female alike), which is why they often live in solitude. In some cases, they may be suitable for tankmates. Still, the success of this situation mainly depends on the temperament of the beta fish, the size of the tank, and other factors as well. If you are interested in becoming a betta fish breeder and often ask how to care for them, there are certain things you need to know to extend the life of your fish and keep it healthy and happy. So, here is your guide on how to care for betta fish:
How to care for Betta: set up your tank correctly
If you really want to successfully care for a beta fish, you need to take some time when setting up your beta fish aquarium. For example, your fish needs to have enough room to move. For this, you will need at least a 3 gallon fish tank, preferably a larger one. Whichever tank you choose, it should have a filter and an adjustable heater. Make sure to choose one based on the exact size of your tank so your fish don’t overheat. The recommended temperature for bettas is 78 degrees to 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
• Be sure to properly cycle your new tank so your aquarium has a healthy filtration system whose job it is to establish a colony of healthy bacteria that removes toxic waste. Cycling your tank ensures that your fish stay healthy.
• Use water without chlorine and perform a 25% water change every week and a complete water change once a month. During the total water change, you will need to remove the fish and clean the gravel, sand or substrate with a siphon.
• Choose the right location for your aquarium. Your fish tank should be kept in an area where your fish are not isolated and can interact with you. Bettas are very intelligent and seem to recognize their pet owners. When choosing a location for your tank, make sure it is free from drafts of cold or excessive heat. For example, you should never keep your tank close to a window or too close to a radiator, as your fish can get too hot or cold. Also, direct sunlight can cause an algae overgrowth problem. Of course, if you have a tankmate that eats algae for your betta fish, then this will not be a problem, and they will likely like some algae growth to feed their algae eater.
• Place your betta fish tank on a flat, stable surface that will not move out of its location. You may even want to keep your fish on your desk or on a table against the wall. Either way, find a place that is not easily pushed.
Caring for Betta Fish: Choose a Safe Tank Decor
Provide a suitable and safe decoration. Sometimes your fish may prefer to hide. Therefore, you must provide a wide variety of silk or live plants. You can also offer caves and other hiding places. Whatever decoration you choose, make sure it is safe for delicate fins. One way to test this is to run a pair of pantyhose over the decoration, and if you rip the pantyhose, it is too rough for your fish.
Caring for Betta Fish: Implement Proper Feeding Strategies
Bettas tend to overeat and this can cause weight gain, constipation, blockage, bloating, and even death. Therefore, it is essential that you do the following:
• Give your beta fish the correct amount of food – Your beta fish should only eat as much food as its eyeball. That is, 3-4 marbles or 1-2 words of blood are usually enough. You should also feed your fish one or two pellets or live food at a time. This will ensure that he eats it and that not too much food gets to the bottom of the tank before he can grab it. If you don’t eat the food you were given in 5 minutes, take it out so you don’t contaminate the water in your tank.
• Feed your beta fish regularly: Feed your fish every day. Some people skip a day and most feed them in small amounts twice a day. If you need to go on vacation, stay away from those weekend feeders as they can contaminate the water and cause bacterial growth and fin rot. Instead, get someone you trust to come and feed your fish every day or every other day. Make sure they don’t overfeed your fish while you’re away.
• Vary your betta food choices: Like you, bettas don’t like to eat the same kind of food every day. Therefore, you need to offer them a variety of food to make it enjoyable. Some excellent options are frozen premium or flake granules. live or dried bloodworms, fruit fly larvae or wingless fruit flies, and brine shrimp.
In conclusion, hopefully, you can stop looking for how to care for betta fish and go out and get one, either through adoption or by purchasing one. However, to keep your fish healthy and happy, you should follow the tips mentioned above. Good luck with your new climbing betta fish friend.