Betta compatibility in my community tank?

  1. pyth Initiate Member

    Hi all,

    I 'inherited' a betta a few days ago, which is to say it was given to my daughter for Easter, in a 'Betta tank". Which is to say a very small tank, with 1 tree planted in it and some purple gravel. There's no filter, no heater, nothing. Doesn't seem like the best of places to keep him to me.

    So I myself had just started my first tank a week ago as well, by strange coincidence. I have a 20g tank with 3 guppys and 3 swordtails in it. I would like, to transplant the Betta in there once the tank has cycled, but I'm kind of fearful of his reputation. So do these guys tend to fight any fish at all; or just their own kind?
     
  2. jdhef Moderator Moderator Member

    Generally if the Betta isn't attacking a flowing finned fish (such as guppies) the other fish can't resist nipping the betta's flowing fins. He would be much better off in a 5 gallon, filtered, heated tank of his own.
     

  3. Tigerlily Well Known Member Member

    Got to agree with jdhef. As tempting as it is to try to add a betta to a community tank, the success rate isn't high.

    Most bettas really do prefer to live alone. Mine is elderly now and not as active as he used to be but he is still aware of me whenever I'm near his tank and dances for his dinner.

    I bet your daughter would really get a kick out of interacting with her fish in a 5 gallon, heated and filtered tank. Bettas are charmers!
     

  4. amber0107 Well Known Member Member

    I've got to agree. I tried adding tankmates for my betta and it just didn't work out. Nothing was injured but nobody was happy either. And I recently just rescued a betta that was seriously hurt from being in a community, so I'd say don't risk it and just give it a good home alone.
     

  5. Uncle Squid Initiate Member

    I too must agree with my fellow fishophiles. I did at one time have success with a Betta in a 29gal. long. However, he did have a unique personality & have yet to reproduce the experiment with any long term success!
     
  6. Wendy Lubianetsky Well Known Member Member

    I agree too, all my attempts at having a "community betta" have been a disaster. I am sure there are exceptions, but as a rule, they like their "own space"
     
  7. Borisbbadd Guest

    Although I've done it without any problems, I wouldn't recommend it.

    Alot of it depends on the personality of the betta, and also what other types of fish are in the tank.
    You would not want anything with long flowing fins ( like fancy guppies ) that he could mistake for another betta.
    If you have fin nippers in there, they will make his life miserable.
     
  8. Craig-D Member Member

    I guess I have to be the lone voice of dissent here in stating that it's fine to put a Betta in a community tank. I am on my second consecutive Betta in my 29 gallon with no problems - and he's in there with 3 fancy guppies. The fish store I get my fish from put all their bettas in community tanks because they refuse to keep them in those tiny bowls most stores keep theirs. They have not had a single problem with any of them. While I don't discount the negative experiences others say they have had, I have to believe that it's the exception rather than the norm. There are simply too many experiences to the contrary. Thus I say put him in with the others and see what happens. Doesn't hurt to at least try it first before abandoning the idea.
     
  9. pirahnah3 Fishlore VIP Member

    I really have to say that if you have a tank with any fish with long flowing fins or anything that can resemble a beta in any way (which is a lot more fish than you would think) that its best to get him his own tank. I have seen it done regularly and with success with either larger fish or fish that do not look anything like a beta. But I think personally this would be a great time to get your daughter into the hobby. A beta is a very interactive fish and will also teach her about caring for others as the beta will react to her and to how she treats it.
     
  10. catsma_97504 Fishlore Legend Member

    Welcome to Fishlore.

    As to whether or not a betta can work in a community environment really depends on the fish. I have kept bettas in a community with great success; and others that cannot play nice in the sandbox. My current betta has so much attitude that he kills everything I've tried to add to his tank. So, now I am adding plants to his tank. Some plants he even flares at he is so aggressive.

    That being said, if you decide to try adding your betta, be prepared to intervene if needed.

    If yours is one that is too aggressive, keep an eye out on craigslist for a 5G tank. You can usually find them very cheap! Then you'll be able to add a heater and filter.

    While he is in his current tiny, unfiltered tank you will need to do daily or every other day water changes.

    Good luck!
     
  11. dandy123 Initiate Member

    Take it from me don't I got one Thursday as I was told they would be grand with other fish as long as there was not a second batta, I woke up yesterday morning to find my honey gourmai dead with his fin chewed off, now one of my silver dollar fish fin is missing and one of my flying fox. I will have to bring him back tomorrow, am not happy as I was told he would be fine with others, dandy123