Can a male Betta have friends without tragedy? Question

  1. Delaneyw Well Known Member Member

    We have Sir Bob the betta in a small 1.5 and are going to move him into something larger. He appears to be a fairly happy fish and loves human attention. He doesn't flare often, usually to his own reflection (once at my really colorful shirt!). How would I know what to look for to see if he would be overly territorial? What could be put with him safely? Husband is driving me NUTS about this but I love Bob dearly and want what is best for him.
  2. _Fried_Bettas_ Well Known Member Member

    I advise forgetting this whole idea. Although I will go through the possibilities anyway. I recommend focusing on live plants and aquascaping if you want more out of your betta tank rather than adding any more fish.

    Almost all other fish are seen as invaders to your betta. In a small tank of 5 to 10 gallons, bettas can be kept with snails or shrimp, although some bettas will snack on the latter. Tanks of this size are too small to keep other fish due to small territorial and personal space, as well as the limits of biological filtering.

    Other fish are usually either attacked by the betta, or the opposite. Many fish nip at fragile betta fins and/or intimidate him into stress and illness. Particularly bigger or fast moving fish. Fish that look anything like a betta will be attacked viciously.

    In a 20 gallon there opens a couple other options, corydoras or bristlenose plecos. These are not treated quite the same by the betta and most bettas leave them alone. Although there is the occasional betta that attacks anything that moves.

    I don't recommend putting halfmoons in anything deeper than 12-14 inches, they have too much trouble getting up to the surface. Crowntails and plakats are usually fine with a little bit deeper tank.
  3. Castiel* Well Known Member Member

    Well it really depends on what size tank your considering for him? I'd recommend a 10g tank as Sir Bob shouldn't be housed in a tank smaller than 2.5g, some people will even argue that 5g is the minimum size one male Betta should be in.

    As far as tank mates, It is extremely hard to tell if you can put something in with Sir Bob. Even if Sir Bob leaves the other fish alone for the time, it could just be a slaughter waiting to happen. It could also stress out Sir Bob as they are very territorial, anything that is in the tank with him is really in "HIS" tank. Also Sir Bob requires slow moving currents and softer water than most other fish, It might be a headache just making everybody adapt to his conditions.

    You can always do a couple Snails or a ADF, and work on Aquascaping. Make his tank more natural for him with some plants, darker gravel (to look like silt), and some driftwood. You'd be surprised how much happier he'd be with his own tank in a natural looking setting.

    I vote, if your looking to add more fish, and have the money/room its time to start working on a new tank! At least a 20g community tank would have better stocking options than a smaller tank and would be easier to maintain. In fish keeping the bigger the tank is the easier it is to maintain and keep parameters acceptable!
  4. Delaneyw Well Known Member Member

    It's really not me that wants to do this, just my husband. My husband bought the tiny tank on a whim and we were given incorrect information (wally world) about what kind of fish we could have. The other fish were obviously not happy, so our LPS traded us Bob. From the minute we've had him he's perky and active (not over-active from what I've read). Pretty much everything in his tank was picked by a 7 year old, thus bright colors (there are two green soft plants that you can't see here). Thank you both for your advice. I think i'll move him to something 5g at least and give him more natural hidey holes.

    MotoDude104, we have a 26g that needs to be cleaned up for a community tank, but medical issues have put a halt to it for now. I can't wait to get it up and cycled!
  5. Castiel* Well Known Member Member

    Sounds like a great idea! Hope everything goes good medically, I have been in the same boat the past 2 months and had 4 tanks to take care of. Completely understand waiting!
  6. Delaneyw Well Known Member Member

    Husband agreed to a 3g and we're leaving petsmart now. Just in time because Bob's filter started malfunctioning last night! They had a 5.5g for $25 but he wouldn't go for that. He'll be feeding into my MTS before he knows it..

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  7. Delaneyw Well Known Member Member

    Attached Files:

  8. Mims Member Member

    Good luck, Nancy! I had a happy little betta at work. He has a 5 gallon, and was doing fine. Went out on surgery leave for a month, and a co-worker fed him for me. Way overfed, causing a major algae bloom. Decided snails were the thing to fix it, and dumped something like 9 or 10 Mystery snails (great big ones, at that) in there. He murdered all but 3, and they survived because I came back in time to rescue them. He died shortly thereafter, I think from stress. Sad lesson learned. I'll just take him home next time.
  9. Sprightly Initiate Member

    My experience- I thought the same, got a ten gallon for my betta, some "friends" neons and cory cats. The cory cats were great but he went after the neons so they went back. Problem with the Cory's was that the betta had a "nose" for their food and way overate. Long story short, he's back in his little tank alone and happy and now I have two tanks going. If you enjoy fishkeeping, just start a new tank.
  10. atb224155 Member Member

    It all comes down to what a roommate for your betta reveals. Is your betta laid-back or aggressive? Will he bite or ignore? I would check for compatibilities of other fish that won't either damage your betta, cause him stress, or cause him to attack.
  11. Delaneyw Well Known Member Member

    Nancy and Bob don't care about each other at all, and Nancy has been having a feast on some newly developed brown algae. It's a fun game every morning for my daughter to try and spot her. Her favorite spots are behind the filter and the heater during the day, in the evening she's everywhere.

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  12. Lyfeoffishing Well Known Member Member

    Just keep an eye on Nancy's eye stalks. Bettas are known for picking at snails eyes.

    As for tank mates I will be starting a 17G tank within the next month and at first I'm going to start a red cherry shrimp colony hopefully they get nicely adjusted and then I'm going to introduce a male betta and hope he doesn't go crazy eating all the shrimp. If he dose oh well just a $20 snack that should last a little while.
  13. Delaneyw Well Known Member Member

    We have been. That was a concern of ours. We have other tanks we can pop her in if it ever becomes a problem.
  14. e_watson09 Well Known Member Member

    I personally have broken the rules so to speak and ended up with a betta in my 29g with other fish. Now I had a back up plan for him which would have involved me setting up our smaller tank for him and stealing filter media from the 29 to jump start the cycle but my betta has been in the 29 for almost 2 months now with zero issues. I added new fish for the first time since I added the betta and the betta was interested and looked at the new fish and then just went back about his business.

    I've honestly had about 50/50 with success with bettas and roommates. I've always had a back up plan so I've never had that big of an issue to worry about, if they started acting aggressive at all I'd remove them pretty quick and they'd live alone.
  15. tanz88 Member Member

    I no this goes against all rules of keeping bettas but our boy mickael had neon tetras as friends and it was great he swam with them danced and flared but never once got aggressive he even had his girlfriend living in his tank and they got along really well we have since separated them as they would spawn weekly and we couldn't keep up and I couldn't help but think it wasn't good for them she used to stay in the tank as well and tend the nest and alsorts they were an odd pair and separating them in the past as never worked they would stop eating and loose all color and energy so we managed to get a tank that sits next to mickaels tank so they can see each other and they seem fine. It took mickael about a month to blow a nest he started the day before yesterday and we put her in there yesterday and they were at it this morning and I will judge the situation when they have finished to weather I pull her put because if she's tending the nest with him it's a bit hard to yank her out. So in my experience it depends on the betta really we also had the neons first before him so he entered there house not the other way around so that could have been the deal breaker

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  16. Delaneyw Well Known Member Member

    Hard to see but she's got both eye stalks peeking out, you see them more at night with this snail. We had a little bit of brown algae and it must be very yummy because she's been out all day after it the last few days.

    Attached Files:

  17. atb224155 Member Member

    What is that you have in the tank?! :;snail
  18. Delaneyw Well Known Member Member

    The pink thing? A cave my 7 year old daughter picked out.

    Or Nancy the blobby snail? Lol