Betta fish are a popular pet. Thanks to their bold, bright colors, feisty personalities and low cost, people all over the world are familiar with these small, unique animals.
Unfortunately, bettas sold in stores are often displayed in small containers with scarcely enough room for them to move. Because of this, people have the impression that bettas do not require properly sized fish tanks and filtration. Bettas thrive when they have ample room to swim, hide and explore. A fish tank such as the Fluval SPEC Freshwater Aquarium Kit is the best choice for those who want their pet to stay happy and healthy.
Tap water is fine for humans, but chlorine and water acidity are major factors when it comes to the health of your betta. A neutral pH level between 6.5 and 7.5 will ensure that your fish remains comfortable and is not living in water that is too acidic or basic. Various chlorine removal solutions are available that provide easy-to-follow instructions on how to prepare your tap water before introducing any fish to it.
Be sure that you have a location chosen for your betta fish tank before you put any water or fish in it. Look for a spot that provides good visibility, but avoid direct sunlight or high traffic areas where too many people or pets passing by will frighten your fish.
Betta fish tanks may be small, but ensuring that your pet remains in good health still requires keeping up with cleaning, feeding and monitoring pH levels. Be sure that your schedule allows for the work required in maintaining your aquarium.
Bettas are healthiest in warm water between the temperatures of 74°F-80°F. Since bettas are from a tropical environment in Southeast Asia, any major changes in water temperature can cause them stress and kill them. To ensure a consistent temperature, you will need your tank to include a heater with five watts of power for every gallon of water. A heater that has a thermometer built-in will allow you to easily monitor your pet’s temperature.
Don’t be fooled by the tiny bowls bettas are kept in at the store. A single betta requires a minimum of one gallon of water to live in permanently. When given space, bettas are active, curious fish. The largest aquarium your space will allow is the best choice to keep your betta happy.
Fish tanks tend to be rectangular or square, but there are also round and cylindrical options available for those who prefer something a bit different. As long as your tank has the right equipment installed and adequate space for your betta, the shape and appearance of the aquarium is up to you.
Despite their mellow appearance, bettas are fiercely territorial. Keeping more than one betta in the same tank will guarantee fighting. Even other species of fish are not suitable tank mates for a betta and may end up being killed.
A tank divider will allow you to keep more than one betta in your aquarium while preventing them from physically coming into contact with one another. You can purchase a divider at a later date if you decide you would like to add another betta to your tank.
Bettas are excellent jumpers and can easily escape from an uncovered aquarium. Be sure your betta tank has a secure lid on it to prevent your fish from leaving the safety of the aquarium and becoming injured.
Bettas are messy animals and their water can become toxic if it is not properly filtered. Bettas are native to very still water in the wild, and too much current can cause them stress. Look for a filter that is either specifically designed for a betta’s comfort, or one that has an adjustable flow so that you can keep your pet’s water clean with minimal disturbance.
Bettas require a day/night cycle to maintain proper health and minimize stress. Some aquariums have a light built into the lid. During the night, the light should be turned off or swapped with a bulb that provides a blue or purple light. Many tanks include an LED lighting system that allows for multiple color combinations, although it is recommended to use white light during the day.
Putting extra decoration in your betta’s tank is fun and items such as plants or natural-looking shelters provide your fish with security. Choose small grain gravel to make cleaning easier, and avoid any decor that has sharp or jagged edges that could injure your fish. Resist the temptation to decorate your aquarium with bright or neon-colored items, as these can overstimulate your pet.
The price of a betta fish tank will depend on the size and material. Small, plastic tanks up to 1.5 gallons can cost $12-$40. Larger, glass tanks can cost over $100 depending on what additional items may be included.
A. Betta fish tanks are typically made of either acrylic or glass. Acrylic tanks are lighter but can easily become scratched or discolored. Glass tanks are stronger, more affordable, will never yellow or fog and don’t result in as much visual distortion as plastic options.
A. Yes. Live plants not only help filter and clean your fish’s environment, but they also add oxygen to the water. Silk or plastic plants are a better option for those that want the lush look of plant life in their aquarium but don’t want the extra care required to keep actual living plants healthy.
A. Fresh, clean water is very important for the health of your betta. Small tanks will need to be cleaned more often than larger ones. For a tank that is 2.5 gallons or less, change 30-50% of the water every two to three days and clean the tank at least once a week. An aquarium larger than 2.5 gallons will need to have 10-15% of its water changed every week, with a full cleaning done every two to three weeks.
What you need to know: This betta tank is larger than most and its sleek, modern design looks great in both the home or the office.
What you’ll love: This aquarium comes as a kit that includes most of what you will need to start your tank. The filter’s adjustable flow is specifically designed for betta comfort and the included light is bright.
What you should consider: No heater is included in this kit, meaning you will have to purchase one separately.
What you need to know: Best for more experienced fish owners, this aquaponics tank makes for a beautiful display when properly set up with a live plant.
What you’ll love: This tank comes with rocks and can be used with a variety of different plants. Once established, this setup makes for a great conversation piece.
What you should consider: This tank still requires regular maintenance like feeding and water changing, and its half-gallon size is on the small side.
What you need to know: This three-gallon betta fish tank is great for beginners and provides ample room for your fish to thrive.
What you’ll love: The included filter is quiet and the tank has a modern, stylish design. Its clear lid is easy to operate and includes LED lighting.
What you should consider: Water condenses on the underside of the lid, meaning that you will often be toweling up drips and puddles after opening the tank.
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Derek Walborn writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.