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bettachris 05-13-2007 02:50 PM

betta article
 
here is a betta article/profile that i wrote about a year ago, it is very basic, but helpful.

Specific name: Betta Splenden
Common name: Betta, Siamese Fighting Fish
Origin: Thailand
Anabantoids
Family: Belonntiidae
Genera: Betta


Intro: Bettas are often found in local fish stores(LFS) in little betta cups. The reason for this is because bettas dont need alot of water to live and have a special labyrith organ which allows Bettas to take in oxygen directly from the air. Since bettas dont need alot of room to live, LFS will have alot of them in cups, but dont always think that this is animal curelty. These cups are not perminate housing, and are called housing cups. Really for bussiness purposes. Like the name suggest, male bettas and even females will usually fight eachother. while their are some bettas who are more passive it shouldn't ever be tried unless you are a pro.

History: In the wild bettas live in small rice paddies. These paddies dont hold alot of water so the water gets really hot. Also in the wild bettas are naturally short finned. Long finned bettas are a result of selective breeding.

Care: Bettas dont require alot of work. Like with all fishes it is important to do weekly water changes to keep the water parameter in check(I.E ph, ammonia, nitrites, nitrates, hardness.) It would be a good idea to not only keep the water clean but keep the water warm. Bettas, while they can live in cool water, are naturally warm water fishes and would like about 82*F water. Bettas should get some exercise. Allow your betta to see itself in the mirror for about 5 mins aday. The betta will begin to flare and try and attack its reflexition. This is good for both physical and mental health.

Feeding: It is a good idea to feed your betta everyday. Bettas are carnivours and are use to eatting insects. However bettas will also eat pellets such as hiakri betta bio-gold. It is also a good idea once aweek to feed the betta a treat such as freezed dried bloodworms. Freezed dried foods should not be any everyday food. This will cause problems with the bettas digestive track. Bettas will sometimes eat flakes, peas etc.. however from experience i wouldn't recommend it, as every betta is different so they will have their own personallities, But i have found that most bettas will eat pellets than flakes. Dont worry about missing a few days, Bettas like most fish will actually be better if they dont get feed for a day. Fishes can live for awhile without food, but it shouldn't be unless nessesary.

Tank set-up: While bettas can live in a bowl, a tank would be better. A 1 gallon tank is often referred to as the min # of gallons. Bettas will like to have a few live plants such as java moss, java ferns, anabuis nana. The plants are easy to take care of and are great for the water. Plastic plants should really be avoided as they will often catch on the bettas fins. causeing them to get damaged. A heater is a good idea but it isn't required. A filter would be a good idea, but for a betta tank really a sponge filter is best as HOB(Hang on Back) filters produce too much of a current and the bettas fins will get in a draft and slow the betta down causing problems. A cover is important as well. Bettas can jump very well so a hood/cover is a good idea.

Temperment: Male and Female bettas are all different. Some tend to be more passive and some tend to be more aggressive. So it really depends on your betta. As a general rule it is a good idea to keep each betta alone.

Tank mates: Going back to the aggressiveness of each betta, the gerenal rule is not to stock bettas with other long finned fishes as they will often mistake that for another betta. Great tank mates include: Cherry barbs, Cory catfish, White cloud minnows, Platies. Stocking also involves alot of numbers. Tank size for example is an important factor.

Sexing: You will often hear "betta expert wanabees" Say that only male bettas will have long finnage, and females only have short fins. This is very much false. Bettas both males and females can have long fins, and males and female can both have short fins. Same goes for coloration. The best way to sex bettas is to look under them. Females will have a little white dot inbetween their ventricles. On males it is never there, but sometimes there is a white dot, but that is usually a parasite etc.. The white dot under the females is the egg tube or ovipositor. Both male and females will get horizantal stripes(Stress lines) and vertical stripes(Mating lines), while in males seeing verticle stripes are rare they can get them.

Breeding(Short version): Betta Splendens are a bubblenester. The males will build a bubble nest. This nest is important because it will hold the eggs and it has been proven that the spit in the nest, helps dis-infect the eggs. Before Breeding a conditioning process should be done. live foods such as worms should be feed as the male wont eat during his time raising the young, and the fat from the worms helps the female develop more eggs. The female should be released into a cup inside the breeding tank, which should be a ten gallon tank at least. It is important to leave the base of the tank bare, with not substrate. Maybe just alittle java moss. The male will build a nest and the will try to lure the female into the nest. you will notice that he is acting different and isn't trying to always attack the female during the breeding. When the female is ready, she will barr up verticly and swim head down, fins tight to her body, and swim in a S pattern. The male will sometimes attack her, but it shouldn't be that bad. If the partners aren't ready he will just attack her again and again, and sometimes the female may attack the male if he is un-experienced. it would be a good idea to seperate them and ask for help. If they do breed, the male will wrap his body around the females and squeeze. They will seem parailized for a few minutes. dont worry as this is natural. If they dont embrace the first time they will often keep trying, many un-sucessful embraces can occur. Usually the male will recover first and go to the bottom and grab th eggs and put them into his mouth. The female will often help when she recovers. After breeding is done, usually about 6-7 hours later it is super important to remove her as he will try and kill anything in the tank that could harm his young. The eggs will sometimes fall out of the nest, but the male if he knows what he is doing, will get the eggs until they hatch. Usually 24-36 hours later, the eggs will hatch, and the fry will always fall from the nest. the father will usually contiune to put them back into the nest. The fry should be fine for about 3 days, until they become free-swimming. They will then be needing to feed. Baby brine shrimp(BBS) is the most common used food. It is a good idea to start a culture when they first breed. Remeber to wash them as brine shrimp a salt water. After the nest is gone, and the male tends to be tired, it is important to remove him and treat him with meds and try to get him to feed as he will not eat when he is raising the fry. The fry should be left to live by themselves at this point. (to be contiuned, as there is so much info on breeding and raising fry)

Fry foods: "Another thing to add to the fry foods, is a hard boiled egg yolk, put it in a spray bottle with water, shake till it hurts lol, then give ONE spray, store the rest in the fridge, it should last around 3-5 days, but always check it before you use to make sure it hasnt gone bad...Do NOT over cook the egg, as it cooks, the nutritional value goes down, the perfect yolk is pure yellow with no spotting and is compleltly solid, the middle can be slightly moist, but thats IT! it should take around 10 minuets to get your egg perfect " ~by BirdLuver288


Breeding tank set-up: a 10 gallon tank with a bare bottom is great. the temp should be high at about 86* F. There should be no other fish in the tank.


Varities: Bettas that are often in LFS are veil tails. There are many other tail types and color and color patterns.

Tail types:
Veil tails-very common, their tails are very long and their tail rays aren't straight.

Double tails- these bettas have one tail fin, that has a split at the base, creating the image of two tails. The dorsal fin on DT's starts closer to the head and has twice as many rays as a single tailed betta.

Crown tails- Crown tail bettas have extended rays from the bases of the fins.

Deltas and super deltas- these tails are like a veil tail, but are straight rays. Super deltas have tails that aren't 180*.

Halfmoons- halfmoon bettas have a tail that is stretches vertical 180 *.
OMH are over half moons, which means that the tail goes past 180 *.

plakats or short tails- these are short finned bettas and resemble what finnage wild bettas had.

There are many more types, but these are the basics.

Coloration: the main colors are blue, red, and green.
While bettas come in every color like, black,white,steel,royal blue etc..

Color patterns: many color patterns include, solid, cambodian, peibald, butterfly, marbled etc....

The following and much more can be found on my betta site.


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