7 Care Recommendations For Betta Fish – A Beginner’s Guide
Article by Trent Gallamore
Alright, so you just got a Betta fish (or are at least considering getting one), now what? With so many of the website’s you visit having slightly contradictory content and lessons, it can be hard to know just exactly what you should be doing to make sure that your little is in the best health he can be in and lives as long as possible. So, in the spirit of helping you do just that, this write-up is going to cover 7 vital Betta fish care tips that you should be made well aware of before trying to care for a Betta fish.
1.) First and foremost, let’s talk tank size. This is one of the most disputed issues of Betta fish care but the bottom line is this: Five gallons should be the minimum tank size you keep a Betta in, and ten is better. Shoving a Betta into a little glass vase where he can barely turn around is not going to give him an enjoyable nor a long life. And just so you know, those people who say that Betta fish originated in puddles and therefore don’t like a lot of space are sorely misinformed, yes the rice paddies of Thailand were shallow, but Bettas’ original homes were vast ponds of water that dwarf any aquarium most of us can buy. In closing, bigger is better when it comes to Bettas!
2.) Our second care tip is short but sweet: Temperature in the tank. Betta fish are used to warm water and 78-82 degrees Fahrenheit is the recommended range for these guys to live in. Anything below 76 and your fish will start to get sluggish, with serious health risks presenting themselves after pro-longed exposure to 68 degrees or lower.
3.) Next, be sure that you know your water well enough to deem it safe for living. For Bettas, this means more than simply dropping some dechlorination drops in your tap water (though you should always do this too). It is important that you buy a cheap testing kit for oxygen levels, ammonia, and nitrates, which you should use regularly to ensure proper water quality. The number one cause of Betta fish illness and premature death is the fact that most owners don’t keep up on their water conditions, this should also include changing about 50% of your Bettas water out each week if the tank is filtered, more if not.
4.) Socialize! This is one of the most overlooked aspects of Betta care, which has always been a surprise to me because it is generally the most fun! While these finned friends are usually forced to live alone in tanks due to their conflicting nature with certain (though not all) other types of fish, it doesn’t mean they like being lonely. The more you are around the more a Betta fish will get to know you and accept your presence as a friend, especially when he associates feeding time with you being nearby. Try training your Betta, oh yes, it’s possible, to swim through hoops or jump out of the water for food.
5.) Speaking of jumping, Bettas do that, a lot! Even though Bettas can breath through their labyrinth organ, not just their gills, this organ has to be moist to function properly so if a Betta jumps out of his tank, he can be in trouble with more than just other household pets you might have around! Make sure your water level is a few inches below the top of your tank and that, if possible, it is covered with some sort of mesh.
6.) Alright so it’s feeding time, what do I serve up?! For most Betta fish, a well balanced diet that can be provided by most Betta-specific flake or pellet formulas is just fine. However, it is good to sprinkle in some live or freeze dried protein treats when possible, brine shrimp and blood or ring worms are timeless favorites for these guys.
7.) Night and day. While most people don’t realize or think about it, Betta fish like to be on the same general sleep pattern as us (awake during the day, asleep at night). When choosing a place for your Betta’s tank be sure that it will be lit during the day (though not in direct sunlight!) and dark at night, to promote a natural and non-stressful sleep cycle for your finned friend!
About the Author
That should get you started on your way to becoming a Betta care expert, but there is a lot more that goes into Betta fish care than this and I highly encourage you to find out more by visiting my site on Caring For Betta Fish to get a set of free Betta fish care lessons and educate yourself to be the best caregiver possible!
Pssst! Hey webmasters, if you run a Betta or pet/fish related blog or website, feel free to re-publish my articles, including this one, but please a link intact to Thanks!