Can I Get My Betta To Flare Without A Mirror?

Discussion in 'Betta Fish' started by cheapcouches, Apr 10, 2017.

  1. cheapcouchesValued MemberMember

    I don't have a handheld mirror on me, and I don't want to pay for a mirror that I'll only use for my betta. Are there any alternatives to getting your betta to flare without a mirror? I've tried lots of things, including the "selfie" camera on my phone, showing him pictures of other bettas flaring, and I even tried to use the back of a DVD instead of a mirror, and I could not get him to flare at all.

    Things to note:
    • I have seen him flare only once, and that was when I put my Tenor Saxophone case next to my tank. When I came back in a few minutes later I saw the betta flaring at the case (or at its general vicinity)
    • My betta is building bubble nests weekly
    • I currently have no ammonia in this tank, but I don't know about nitrites/nitrates
    • I have a PH level of about 7.5 in this tank
    • The betta currently has no tank mates
  2. KaderTheAntWell Known MemberMember

    You could try a pen? My Bettas flare at quite a lot things, most of them are things they aren't familiar with or don't see daily.

  3. cheapcouchesValued MemberMember

    I could try, but I'm pretty sure you need to train your betta to flare at a pen.

  4. cheapcouchesValued MemberMember

    Nevermind, the pen actually kind of worked - the betta flared at it a little before deeming it unworthy to flare at. I will keep on finding things for him to flare at.

  5. KaderTheAntWell Known MemberMember

    My pens must be more threatening then
  6. FishWhishesNew MemberMember

    Just be careful about the flaring. Getting him to do it too often could cause stress.
  7. AsterWell Known MemberMember

    Maybe a photo or video of another betta?
  8. BriggsWell Known MemberMember

    I have a crowntail that won't flare for anything I've tried. I've just decided he's a gentler soul than most. My halfmoon, on the other hand, has flared at nearly everything in his aquarium at least once.
  9. AllieStenFishlore VIPMember

    You could try to put dark paper on one side of the tank. It will cause a mirrored type effect on the glass.
  10. ChunkycatValued MemberMember

    My halfmoon Zeus flares at a plastic pink ball my kids found somewhere. I threw it in his aquarium to see if it could keep his attention away from the cherry shrimp and I guess it worked. He got so off that he wouldn't stop flaring at the little ball, the shrimp forgotten. I only give him that ball for a few minutes once every several days, maybe once a week so as to not to stress him.
  11. AllieStenFishlore VIPMember

    I hadn't even thought about my betta flaring or not until this post. He zips around when he gets scared, but I wouldn't call it flaring. So this morning I put my makeup mirror outside the tank. He swam up to it, and was staring, but no flaring at all. I also put the spoon I use to feed him in the tank, and even touched him gently, and all he did was move out of the way. No flaring at all. Guess he is way too relaxed to be bothered lol
  12. BriggsWell Known MemberMember

    I think some bettas are just more territorial than others. I'd love to see if there is a correlation between flariness and tolerance with tankmates. Maybe I could risk more than a little nerite with my crowntail if there is.
  13. peppy210Valued MemberMember

    I have a pen with a metallic clicker/button at the top and it makes all my bettas flare like crazy. If I keep my finger on the glass long enough, they flare at it too. The camera on my phone and pictures/videos of other bettas don't work on my fish either haha
  14. JnxValued MemberMember

    There are definite personality differences that seem to correlate with flaring. I check for flaring when choosing girls for my sorority, and those that don't flare seem less aggressive. I also recently got my first cories, and am quarantining them before adding them to other tanks/ponds. I plan to put a small school in with my sorority, so to give the cories a heads up on betta behavior, I got them a plakat male tank mate. I made sure to get a guy who didn't flare. He now schools with them, feeds with them, stays on the bottom with them most of the time, and even mimics their 'shoot to the surface for a breath' behavior. Absolutely crazy to watch- he doesn't even pick on the babies.
  15. BriggsWell Known MemberMember

    Oh that's fascinating! You should try to get a video. I hope he doesn't miss them when they move in with the girls. Bettas are supposed to be solitary, but it sounds like he bonded with them.

    I don't know if this would only apply to other fish, or if it would work with shrimp and snails as well. There is probably a big behavioral difference between 'fight everything that moves' and 'eat everything that moves'.

    I think I'll make a poll to see if other people have had good luck using flaring behavior to judge tank mate appositeness.
  16. AsterWell Known MemberMember

    Flaring does indicate aggressiveness and may mean the betta isn't suitable for tankmates. However, some bettas may really hate other bettas but not mind other fish, or the other way around.

    Checking for aggressiveness at the store also isn't always reliable, the bettas may be too weak or bored to care and show a complete personality change in an appropriate environment.
  17. JnxValued MemberMember

    So far, my tablet refuses to focus on the tiny cories. It's truly hopeless. I have ideas how to get a video, and plan to post if I manage- it really is crazy.
    And I'll only be moving a group of the six biggest cories in with the girls, which will leave him with seven of the smaller ones. The marble plakat has definitely bonded- I'll make sure he always has cories now.

    It seems to work with shrimp and snails, too. Though even my more aggressive guys eventually get used to nerites, they've always eradicated any shrimp. Only the less aggressive ones get mystery snails. The antennae prove too much of a temptation.

    Keep me posted on your poll- sounds interesting!

    Good points!
  18. BriggsWell Known MemberMember

    Poll is up and posted here

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