Feeding a betta when gone 5 days

aprilrain85
  • #1
Hey Everyone.
About two weeks ago I got a new Betta (Geppetto). He is in a five gallon tank, with a small filter (which does not cause a current in his tank), a plastic plant, and a ghost shrimp as a tank mate. He is quite happy right now - eats well, swims a lot, very interested in his environment. Next week, I am supposed to be going to visit my parents for about 5 days. They live about 4 hours away from me, and I will be driving. I am wondering what would be better for Geppetto - to buy him a feeder block and leave him in his tank, or put him in a 1 gallon moving container, bring him with me, and then set him up in a 1/2 gal - 1 gal goldfish bowl for the visit. I feel like taking him with me might be a lot of stress for him, but I have had bad luck with tropical fish getting sick when using a feeding block. Unfortunately, there is no one that I could get to come feed him for me.
Any suggestions or ideas would be greatly appreciated!
 
Narcicius
  • #2
Never had that problem with feeding blocks, sorry No help here.
 
COBettaCouple
  • #3
Welcome to Fishlore.

Bettas can go a few weeks without food and really would be able to go 5 days. The feeder blocks can cause so many problems that he'd be better off fasting the 5 days, just feed him a meal right before you go & right after you get back. The trip would be pretty stressful on him, especially combined with being in a unheated, unfiltered bowl for 5 days.
 
aprilrain85
  • Thread Starter
  • #4
Hmm, I have never heard that they are okay for so long without food. If they are okay, it does sound like a better option than either taking him with me or using a feeder block.
 
susitna-flower
  • #5
HI Aprilrain85, WELCOME TO FISHLORE!


There are several considerations, I agree with COBettaCouple, staying home would be much better, health wise for your fish.

Most tanks have a certain amount of algae and provide some amount of food for the fish even if you aren't there dealing with the tank. I have several times had to leave my fish for 3 or 4 days, and do not put any extra food in. The lowered food intake means lower waste output, and the water will actually be healthier without a water change.

The horror stories of people putting fish feeders in, just to have them over feed, and cause a minI cycle, killing fish! It just isn't worth it!
 
aprilrain85
  • Thread Starter
  • #6
The tank is still very new, and has very little algae (none visable). We also have a 20 gal tank and using feeding blocks has killed several fish over the past few years. I really really want to avoid that with my betta - darn their ability to make us love them... Anyway, thanks for the advice everyone!
 
chickadee
  • #7
I had an emergency trip to the hospital and had no way to arrange for anyone to care for my fish and was there for a full 5 days and they all did fine. They had no food and no water changes for that long and it was okay. They were VERY glad to see me when I got home but they were healthy and happy and no losses of any kind.

I would say that a 5 or even 6 day absence would not hurt anything. They may pout a bit when you return depending on your bettas personality but they will get over it when they get a meal under their belts.

Rose
 
Narcicius
  • #8
Guess you know what to do now, let us know how the betta is doing when you get back, just to make sure everything went alright.
 
chickadee
  • #9
Even though there is not visible food there. There are always tiny microorganisms that they seem to find to eat and it used to bother me that they were there but the more experienced fish hobbyists here soon explained that this was a good thing as when times like this came up it helped the fish to have good food and that they were used to it. So we can say thank you to the little things that grow in our tanks that we cannot see as long as they do not cause disease and chaos. Maybe they will feed our fish for us when we cannot be there to do it for them.

Rose
 
Blub
  • #10
Hi!

Fish can go for a fortnight without food with no adverse effects. Feeding blocks can pollute the tank a lot, and they aren't good.

EDIT: But if you must bring him, I've seen 2.5gal 'Kritter keepers' which are portable.

 
chickadee
  • #11
I would really not suggest going that long without feeding them. I have not seen them go quite that long without any food in a new tank. I would hate to make a sweeping statement like that and have someone take me up on it. I believe that I would not take it for granted that they could go more than one week with no attention to their needs at all. There are just too many types of fish out there and some cannot be left as long as others.

Rose
 
Narcicius
  • #12
Any answer on how it went with Gepetto?
 
aprilrain85
  • Thread Starter
  • #13
Geppetto Update
Hey Everyone, I actually just got back from the trip today. I did as was suggested and let Geppetto fast while I was gone. When I got home he was fine. He ignored me for a few minutes, and actually swam around with his tail at me for a long while. After about five minutes he stopped ignoring me, so I fed him. He seems quite happy now. He comes and says hello any time I am remotely near the tank, so I think he missed the company. He seems that he did fine for 5 days with no food. He has one tank mate of a amino shrimp, and he did not get eaten, which is good news.
Thanks everyone for the advice.
 
COBettaCouple
  • #14
Sounds like you got a little bit of Betta pouting there, but it couldn't last with his desire for your attention. I'm glad he did well and is happy now.
 
chickadee
  • #15
Yeah, he had to show you who was the "boss" and once he figured he had done that he could be friends again. They are so funny!!

Rose
 

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