Betta glass surfing

sassymomma

I got my daughter a Betta, and as suggested he was quickly moved from bowl to ten gallon tank. The tank is now cycled, and he's still glass surfing a month in....we haven't seen bubble nests in weeks (since he was in his bowl)

My daughter is convinced that he doesn't like all the space, and wondered about putting in a divider to make his tank smaller?

Is this a likely theory? What would be good to house on the other side of the divide?

It's a ten g heated tank, and most of the fish I'm familiar with are either finny or need a min 20g

Here's a pic...he seems to prefer the right side

His colour, activity levels and appetite are great, so I'm not worried about illnesses
 

nacPhoenix

I don't think the space has anything to do with it. Most bettas will love every inch of space they get
How is the flow in the tank? He may have a hard time resting due to a high power filter, in which case you may want to cover the outflow with a rag or sponge to break it up a bit.
You also might need to get some more resting spots for him to sit on near the surface.
Are you sure the glass surfing isn't just curiosity? My betta will come to the front of the tank every time I'm near and follow me around, it can look like glass surfing.
 

Kapitalfisht

Is there a way you can sorta peek in on the betta without being in front of the tank? Many of my platies appear to be glass surfing, however, when I crack the door open and sneakily peek in on them, they're just grazing, hiding, chasing one another. Once I pop in they rush to the front of the tank. Depending on how long you've had this betta, he likely associates you/your hand as his source of food.
 

sassymomma

Curiosity is very likely

He comes to whichever side of the tank I'm on, and shows off for me. And doesn't seem stressed even when the cats sit on his tank.... in fact, he shimmers his fins and teases the one cat

He's at the glass now, but there is a cat nearby on the bed being observed

Oh no, now he's swimming around

The filter is a ten gallon tetra whisper and I have it baffled to a trickle


Wow, looks like he plays best in the dark lol! Perhaps it's the light upsetting him?
 

wem21

Is it normal for my Betta to do this? He frequently swims quickly up, down and across the tank glass, sometimes touching the glass but mostly 1/2mm-1mm from it. The behavior started today, And I got him 2 days ago. Slightly worried, my other bettas don't do this.
CindiL TexasDomer
 

Fanatic

It could be a typical behavior for a betta that is just adjusting to his new environment.

My betta glass surfed when I first got him.

Do you have photos of him?
 

KimberlyG

I think all mine did it when the tank was new to them. I do still see it happen occasionally in back of the tank when they catch a reflection of themselves.
 

CindiL

Yeah, he might just be seeing his reflection and going after it. Does he flare at all while he does it?
 

wem21

Yeah, he might just be seeing his reflection and going after it. Does he flare at all while he does it?
yes, he does.
 

Sen

My first betta glass surfed consistently for the first few weeks after I got him. I think they're just getting adjusted to how much new space they have. Now it's not so much glass surfing as it is patrolling the tank, since he'll do a few laps and then go lie down, then get up and repeat. If he sees me, he'll stay in one place near the glass and look expectantly at me to feed him.

If your betta is flaring a lot at his reflection, you can try covering up parts of the tank or putting some things outside for him to look at. I have some fake leaves taped up, and spider plants in cups around the corners so the long leaves catch my fish's attention more than his reflection.
 

wem21

It could be a typical behavior for a betta that is just adjusting to his new environment.

My betta glass surfed when I first got him.

Do you have photos of him?
I have a close up of his finrot tail and a few swimmy shots

I have a female betts in a planted 7.5g tank for two weeks, and she never stops glass surfing. She lives with two otto cats. Any idea why this may be happening?
 

montythebrave

I have a female betts in a planted 7.5g tank for two weeks, and she never stops glass surfing. She lives with two otto cats. Any idea why this may be happening?

My betta swims up and down the glass also, It is my understanding that they see their reflection and are dancing with themselves thinking its another betta, so its just playful.
 

Jen86

That's true, it's usually because they see their reflection, but it's not usually playful, it's a sign of stress.

Bettas are very territorial and aggressive, so if they see another betta, they'll patrol the edge of their territory to guard against the intruder, and they'll attempt to attack the intruder.

As long as she's not flaring excessively, it's not usually a big deal, but you may want to try adjusting the light in the tank, if possible. Seeing their reflection is almost always a sign of a lighting problem. But with the smaller tanks that come with their own lights, it's much harder to adjust.
 

wem21

That's true, it's usually because they see their reflection, but it's not usually playful, it's a sign of stress.

Bettas are very territorial and aggressive, so if they see another betta, they'll patrol the edge of their territory to guard against the intruder, and they'll attempt to attack the intruder.

As long as she's not flaring excessively, it's not usually a big deal, but you may want to try adjusting the light in the tank, if possible. Seeing their reflection is almost always a sign of a lighting problem. But with the smaller tanks that come with their own lights, it's much harder to adjust.
would moving the light forward help more or backwards help more?
 

HannahH

I agree its a sign of stress, when I got my boy he would surf all day and all night. The tank was bare with a decoration and a amazon sword. I floated some anubias and he stopped the surfing because he feels secure in the little tank. No he only surfs when he sees me walk up, i'mm the food lady

You must be registered to see images
 

wem21

I agree its a sign of stress, when I got my boy he would surf all day and all night. The tank was bare with a decoration and a amazon sword. I floated some anubias and he stopped the surfing because he feels secure in the little tank. No he only surfs when he sees me walk up, i'mm the food lady

You must be registered to see images
Will adding java moss and plastoc plants have the same effect? Dad won't let mr grt real ones because apparently theyre the same as plastic ones.
 

JamieXPXP

defintely aren't the same as plastic ones and probably around the same price as them lol
 

wem21

defintely aren't the same as plastic ones and probably around the same price as them lol
will plastic do the same job though?
 

JamieXPXP

will plastic do the same job though?
keep them calm? then yes they will be happy but would feel happier and more secure if they have real plants and I wouldnt get plastic for bettas silk plants are better for them (it won't tear their fins like plastics do)
 

THE HABITAT

if you do fake plants you should do silk instead of plastic to avoid tearing their fins if they rub against them...and u should tell dad they are the same price as real plants and much more beneficial to the tank the fish and the water as a whole
 

wem21

if you do fake plants you should do silk instead of plastic to avoid tearing their fins if they rub against them...and u should tell dad they are the same price as real plants and much more beneficial to the tank the fish and the water as a whole
I have some spare plastic plants and he doesn't want me to not use them. Oh well, I suppose Ill just have to convince him. The real problem is he sees fish as decorations.
 

david1978

My bettas seem much calmer since I got floating plants to dI'm the light in their tank.
 

wem21

I got a free clump of java moss from the lfs owners son who goes to the same school. He gave it to me in this tiny cigarrette pack kinda box (not a cigarrette pack) and some teachers saw us and thought he was selling naugty stuff LOL.
For future reference, which plants are best for giving more cover,?

I have venus, my female crowntail betta in a 7.5 with two ottos, and she has been glass surfing nonstop. I have been told adding more plants will stop it, and I just added some water wisteria. However, she has not stopped. Are there any other causes for this?

Challenge: find the second otto (betcha can't XD)
 

techfool

Vinnie is in five gallons, planted, with floating plants. Fishless cycle.
He glass surfs 80% of the time in one corner, I shouldn't have bothered! He also fin bites. However, this is an improvement from surfing ALL the time and he hasn't bitten his fins for a couple of weeks. I've had him three months.
He still bites me though if I give him a chance.
Some fish just do it but I think as they settle in and get older it reduces.
 

ap4lmtree

It could be betta PTSD from being transhipped in small containers from thailand and have fish tank changes too much from ones she got attached to. I would just let her glass surf and keep her in the same constant environment . I miss my old betta that would glass surf all the time. I would get worried and stressed along with her from glass surfing. But, I miss it now that she is dead and gone and doesn't glass surf anymore.
 

wem21

It could be betta PTSD from being transhipped in small containers from thailand and have fish tank changes too much from ones she got attached to. I would just let her glass surf and keep her in the same constant environment . I miss my old betta that would glass surf all the time. I would get worried and stressed along with her from glass surfing. But, I miss it now that she is dead and gone and doesn't glass surf anymore.
Wow. I'm sorry for your loss. Just a wild question, did your betta ever stop or did you see any major reduction in the time spent surfing?
 

California L33

Increasing the light level outside the tank lets them see out and reduces reflections. You don't want her seeing her reflection, and you want her able to hide and feel like nobody can see her if she chooses- this, too, will reduce her stress level and make her feel that she doesn't have to be 'on patrol' all the time. From the configuration of your tank it looks like it's impossible for her to 'vanish' right now if she's feeling stressed.
 

wem21

Increasing the light level outside the tank lets them see out and reduces reflections. You don't want her seeing her reflection, and you want her able to hide and feel like nobody can see her if she chooses- this, too, will reduce her stress level and make her feel that she doesn't have to be 'on patrol' all the time. From the configuration of your tank it looks like it's impossible for her to 'vanish' right now if she's feeling stressed.
then what would you suggest I add/remove?

The Driftwood is hollow, I just don't think she knows.
 

ap4lmtree

Wow. I'm sorry for your loss. Just a wild question, did your betta ever stop or did you see any major reduction in the time spent surfing?

Yes, after about 3 or 4 weeks, she stopped doing it nonstop, and did it less than 40% if I recall correctly.
 

California L33

then what would you suggest I add/remove?

The Driftwood is hollow, I just don't think she knows.

It looks like she's got some hollow ceramic pipes. If you put a silk plant (not plastic, often sold as 'Betta Plants' in pet stores) in front of and behind one of those it should provide a nice hiding place.
 

wem21

It looks like she's got some hollow ceramic pipes. If you put a silk plant (not plastic, often sold as 'Betta Plants' in pet stores) in front of and behind one of those it should provide a nice hiding place.
That pic was before my tank got rescaped. this is the tank now. The driftwood with the java moss on it is hollow
 

California L33

That pic was before my tank got rescaped. this is the tank now. The driftwood with the java moss on it is hollow

It looks like she could vanish if she wanted to, and that's all you really need.
 

Presouz

I have a female betts in a planted 7.5g tank for two weeks, and she never stops glass surfing. She lives with two otto cats. Any idea why this may be happening?


You could get some almond leaves and put them on top of the water to make them feel more secure. My male guppies do this sometimes. Are used to think it was just them playing in the water flow out. But I did read it's due to stress
 

mikalac

hI guys!
I’ve had a veil tail male in a 3.5 gallon for a little over a month. My current readings are 0/0/5-10.
His fins are torn up(they were when I got him, but lately I think he’s been stuck on the filter. Some IAL Get delivered today, and I’m going to get aquarium salt to treat it when I have money.
Anyways, he spends almost all of his time glass surfing. He only stops after the lights been off for awhile or when I go up to the tank, he’ll zoom up to the front to look at me. I have a hideout covered in java moss that he likes, Anubias, and a silk plant (with a betta hammock coming in soon).
Is it boredom? Or something else? He seems healthy to me besides the fin issues, he is very responsive and most definitely has an appetite. I just wanna know how to fix it so he stops exhausting himself
 

Repolie

Bettas usually glass surf when they see their reflection in the glass and chase after it. It's almost always the lighting that causes it so you may want to try adjust it's position if possible or increase the lighting in the room to make it brighter than inside the tank. Other options is to buy decorations to cover the spot he's usually doing it at or move him to a location that has dark coloured surroundings as that seems to reduce reflections.
 

mikalac

Bettas usually glass surf when they see their reflection in the glass and chase after it. It's almost always the lighting that causes it so you may want to try adjust it's position if possible or increase the lighting in the room to make it brighter than inside the tank. Other options is to buy decorations to cover the spot he's usually doing it at or move him to a location that has dark coloured surroundings as that seems to reduce reflections.
Ok thank you. His LED light is super bright, should I just use one of my overhead desk lights as his light so he’s at the same level as the room lighting?
 

Repolie

Ok thank you. His LED light is super bright, should I just use one of my overhead desk lights as his light so he’s at the same level as the room lighting?
You can try and see if it'll change anything.
 

Kevin Dennis

Bettas don't enjoy super bright tank lights.
 

mikalac

Bettas don't enjoy super bright tank lights.
ok thank you. I just got some IAL, would the tannins help lower the brightness a bit? or should I modify the light as well
 

Kevin Dennis

Tannins should help and bettas like tannins. It won't cost you anything to try your desk lamp and I suspect your betta might like it better.
 

mikalac

Tannins should help and bettas like tannins. It won't cost you anything to try your desk lamp and I suspect your betta might like it better.
I put some Indian almond leaves in, it’s crazt how much they help his attitude and fins! I also placed a book next to the side where he always glass surfs and that didn’t help, and the desk lamp has slightly
 

Linzlamb

He might be doing it because his tank is so darn small, you would think if he was following his reflection he would be flaring at it too.
 

mikalac

He might be doing it because his tank is so darn small, you would think if he was following his reflection he would be flaring at it too.
I don’t appreciate the attitude. I am aware that the tank is small but he was in tatters at petco so I figured at least that upgrade was something. I’m saving up to get him a bigger tank.
 

Megaanemp

Hello,

Today I purchased a betta fish.
I set up a 5 gallon for him.
I am doing a fish in cycle with this guy and have a master test kit to carefully monitor.
He has only been in his new tank for about a half hour and was previously housed in a 1 gallon bowl.
I definitely remembered to condition the water and acclimated him for about 20 mins.
I’m not sure why he’s glass surfing and have little experience with bettas. Also he’s not doing it constantly.
He otherwise looks to be very healthy.
I’d really appreciate some advice!

water parameter (5 gallon tank with sponge filter):
temp: 78F (His bowl was cold did I temperature shock him?)
ammonia: 0ppm
Nitrites: 0ppm
Nitrates: 0ppm
 

SAM321

If there too much light that is causing reflection
 

StarGirl

It could be temperature shock. What kind of conditioner are you using?
 

Megaanemp

If there too much light that is causing reflection
Thanks for the reply!
Don’t think it’s the light it’s fairly dark, he has no light. Though there is some natural sunlight.
Could he be just getting used to the tank?

It could be temperature shock. What kind of conditioner are you using?
Prime. The bowl he came from was probably about 70-75 degrees. I was hoping he’d be ok in a 78 degree tank due to the long car ride ( the car was probably in between 75-78). He was only in the bag for about an hour in tota.
 

StarGirl

You let him acclimate that is probably not the case then. Maybe it is just getting used to the tank. Keep an eye on him see if he keeps doing it.
 

Megaanemp

He is swimming normally in between these brief glass surfing. So maybe I’m just over reacting?
You let him acclimate that is probably not the case then. Maybe it is just getting used to the tank. Keep an eye on him see if he keeps doing it.

Thanks so much for the help! I may just be over reacting he’s mostly just exploring normally. When I was a kid I had a betta in a little bowl before I knew any better, so I’m just really trying to do right by this guy!
 

StarGirl

It sounds like everything is as good as its going to be before you get cycled! Keep track of ammonia and nitrites. be ready to go lots of water changes. Keep them both under 1ppm for your Prime to keep him safe.
 

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