Male & Female? Together?!

BennyB

Member
I went by Petsmart with my friend to pick up a few things earlier tonight, when we were browsing, I noticed they had some female bettas in a tank. They were gorgeous, I have never seen such a pretty, colorful female before.(and yes, I'm certain it's a female.) So I did a big no-no and decided to walk out with a new betta. I have always been intrigued by the thought of breeding bettas, but had decided it was just not in the cards yet. But, I figured 'why not?'

I don't have too many tanks, my 20 community which is overstocked as it is, my 10 gallon with a male betta in it already, and my little 2.5 breeder that has a guppy fry in it right now. So I decided to try my luck with keeping her with Jack.(my male betta.)
Probably a bad idea, but I thought I could try, and if it was a big problem could always move the female to a little bowl.
It's been about an hour since I acclimated and introduced her to the tank. Since then, she has had her run-ins with Jack. He is a male, so of course he is going to be aggressive, but I've always noticed he wasn't THAT aggressive, and noticed that after adding a few other fish to the tank with him he has become much less aggressive.

Well, so far all I've seen can be considered 'questionable'. Jack has been stalking her, of course, following her mostly everywhere she goes unless he takes a break to let the current push him around as he usually does until he lands and drapes his fins over the driftwood like a wet towel. I've noticed that at times he has gotten right up next to her side, rubbed up against her, and flat out just kinda' stood there staring at her. I've seen him come up to her all slowly and calmly, and her darting off(probably just frightened) and of course, I have seen him flare up at her, which is aggressive. But I've never actually seen him take a bite or even lay a fin on her.

He is bipolar basically, which is weird, but can be an advantage. I don't want to remove her from the tank, but I'm worried for her health. She is WAYYYY faster than Jack(who is a crowntail and can hardly move in the current because of this, where she has a wide fin; good for swimming quickly.) She is very active, where Jack is acting just like his normal self pretty much all of the time now instead of stalking. Just lying around, letting the current drape him over the wood, the plants, the thermometer, the cord to the heater, the filter intake pipe, etc.
Lazy punk...

Basically, from what you guys have heard, and what I've noted, do you think it could be possibly that Jack is not aggressive enough to hurt her, or if eventually he is just going to go crazy and tear her apart?

Thanks!
-Ben
 

Meenu

Member

midthought

Member
Meenu said:
I think you've got a disaster brewing. They need to be separated, and I would recommend that the female be taken back to the store, personally.

Before you decide to breed bettas, please make sure you read MM's article: https://www.fishlore.com/aquariumfishforum/threads/step-by-step-guide-to-breeding-bettas.37434/


ETA: Maybe you can divide the 10 for them, but I don't know if you are supposed to keep them where they can see each other. I think the female can become eggbound
+1, though I'm unsure about the eggbound part. Still think it's a bad idea. Having them both live in the tank is not the way to breed bettas.
 
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BennyB

Member
midthought said:
+1, though I'm unsure about the eggbound part. Still think it's a bad idea. Having them both live in the tank is not the way to breed bettas.
I know, I just wanted to keep them together, don't think that will work...


Well, I've got an update already. I was taking pictures of her to show you guys and I noticed she started getting these redish-brown lines around her gills. I freaked out thinking it was blood and maybe Jack had been getting at her at the perfect moments when I wasn't peering over my shoulder at them, but was typing or something, and immediately took her out and put her into my 20. It is very active, and the current is strong...not sure if she'll like it, but we'll see what happens. At least now she won't have to worry about some guy beating on her.

Taking her back sounds extreme to me, now that I have a real job and steady income I would buy another 10 gallon tank before I would get rid of my little Pearl.(which is what I named her. )
She seems to be doing alright in t he 20 right now, she's not hurting the mollies or platies, she is just kind of chillin' behind the granite block.

w/e, here are the pics...

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Here are some that you can kind of make out the brownish-red lines by her gills.

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Meenu

Member
Possibly stress lines??
 
  • Thread Starter

BennyB

Member
BTW, Meenu, I did read the article. I do plenty of research before I do something. I said earlier I was intrigued, so I read up on it.
 

Meenu

Member
Good. You made it sound in your first post very much like this was an impulse buy, and that you didn't have a tank for her so you stuck her in with Jack. Seemed like poor (or no) planning. I just wanted to point you toward the article so that you'd go into this knowing all the facts.
 
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BennyB

Member
Lol, maybe I should have mentioned doing a little research in the first post. It basically was an impulse buy and no, I didn't have any other plans, other than just sticking her in with Jack, praying to God they don't fight, and if they do, move her to a bowl or the other tanks. I figured, it couldn't hurt to try, she was only like 3 bucks anyway.

I was worried that somebody would come by and be like, "Dude, that's a dude..." The sign said "Female Betta" but the lady was questioning it. Said it could be a wild male, but from what I've read, if it were a wild male, or just a male, it would have killed the other bettas in the tank, and if it were wild, would have absolutely obliterated Jack my now.

Do you think she will be okay in the 20? Or should I try and move her to the bowl?
 

Meenu

Member
I would put her in a bowl tonight and then get her a tank tomorrow if she was mine. She would NOT appreciate being put into the 20 - bettas don't tolerate salt well, and I see that you use the stuff in that tank. And I wouldn't leave her with Jack either.
 
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BennyB

Member
Well is the salt the only reason? I don't put that much in, and I've done several water changes since I last added salt. I'm probably starting to bug you, but I'm just asking if I can leave her in there because I think it would be even more stressful being moved so many times.
Also, I don't have the money now, I have already spent most of it on gas and important things like that. It would be a week or so before I would be able to get the tank. But I do know how to care for bettas in small bowls and keep them healthy at the same time.

Thanks!
 

Meenu

Member
Well, the salt, the fact that the tank is alreay overcrowded, and also just that I'd hate to see you put a fish that hasn't been quarantined into an established tank.

Although it is not what I would do or recommend, if you want to put her in there, I would say do the bowl tonight, and then try to put her in tomorrow when you can keep an eye on the situation for a few hours to make sure things are okay. I'm worried that if she's already showing signs of stress, that maybe putting her in a tank with a bunch of fish would freak her out. she's been living alone for a long time, and bettas are solitary fish by nature anyway.

And you aren't bugging me, although I may go to bed soon - it's midnight here. I answer your questions because my best friend loves Benjamin Breaker. (just kidding, by the way. I'd answer your questions anyways.. just helps that you have a cool name. )
 
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BennyB

Member
Yeah, it's like 1 here. She was in a tank with two other females at the store. I would have quarantined her in the 2.5 like I usually do with all of my other new fish, but I've got that stinkin' baby guppy in there, I think she would have a field day with it, my bro wants it to live.
I'll put her in the bowl.

Lol, thanks. Breaking Benjamin is pretty amazing. Even though I've been cheating on them with Thousand Foot Krutch.
She is being a bit more active now, swimming around the tank and such. The lines are still there though.
 

Meenu

Member
I don't know either - I just know she gets all excited about some Benjamin Break thing - I told her about you this morning.

Good luck with the betta.
 
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BennyB

Member
K, well thanks for the help. I'll talk to you later.
 

Meenu

Member
Hey, Ben, when you log in, can I get an update?
 

uprightandlocked

Member
From what I know of females, those vertical lines are breeding stripes? I don't advocate keeping bettas with other fish in community tanks, so add me to the column of people who feel she should be put into her own tank.

I know it can be easy to impulsively buy a betta, and when I've done that in the past I've made sure I have an empty tank to put them in or bought a new tank to put them in. I think its irresponsible to just buy a betta and figure out what to do with it later ... like put it into an established tank that doesn't meet their needs.
 

LyndaB

Member
uprightandlocked said:
I know it can be easy to impulsively buy a betta, and when I've done that in the past I've made sure I have an empty tank to put them in or bought a new tank to put them in. I think its irresponsible to just buy a betta and figure out what to do with it later ... like put it into an established tank that doesn't meet their needs.
+1
 

midthought

Member
Yeah, vertical lines = breeding, horizontal lines = stress.
 

Red1313

Member
The lines were on her gills you said?
Those aren't breeding lines lol, most of my females have those I'm not sure what it is.
 

Heather M

Member
Why don't you get an in-tank breeder box for the guppy and put the betta in your 2.5g? They are on sale for $5.59 right now at drs foster and smith, and I'm sure you could find one at your LFS so you could get it quickly without paying for shipping.
 
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BennyB

Member
Probably a silly thing to try, but I do want Jack to see her so he can start to build his nest. So I put her in a jar and put the jar in the tank, upside down so that there was air at the top, but the jar would not come up.

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That's right, Jack, can't hurt her now can ya'?! Look at him flaring at her, that is a pretty betta. I looked everywhere for a clear plastic tube, but I don't have any! I'll ask my aunt, I bet she'll have one.
 

Red1313

Member
I'm confused.... Are you trying to spawn them or just find her a temp home...
 

platy ben

Member
+1 on what Red said. Also, that jar idea really doesn't seem to smart. I just think they are going to get even more stressed out.
 

LyndaB

Member
Won't she end up with a lot of ammonia in that jar if there's no current and no way for the water to move in and out?
 
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BennyB

Member
Spawn. I am going to get a breeder for my mollies, like right now, so we'll see if I decide to put the gup in there and keep the betta in the 2.5 for now.
Be back later.
 

Shiba

Member
she's gonna suffocate w/out fresh air
 

Meenu

Member
I'm going to agree with the others that this jar thing doesn't sound like a good idea.

How will you feed her and do her daily water changes?
 

DelleBelle

Member
a healthy male will build a bubblenest even without seeing a female, and I really don't think you're ready to breed. This jar thing is really going to stress out both of your bettas, and it looks like your girl is already under a lot of stress. the bit of air you trapped at the top of the jar is only going to last so long. I wouldn't trust it for more than an hour or two.
You're female also isn't showing any vertical egg lines on her abdomen, so neither of your bettas are ready, or in the condition to breed.
 

uprightandlocked

Member
DelleBelle said:
You're female also isn't showing any vertical egg lines on her abdomen, so neither of your bettas are ready, or in the condition to breed.
+1. Isn't the female a new addition? Serious breeders spend upwards of two weeks conditioning a pair of bettas to breed. They don't just throw them together and hope for the best.
 

Red1313

Member
I think they're planning to move the female to the 2.5 when they get back with a breeder net for the liver bearer fry currently in said 2.5.

After that there'll be a betta breeding quizz
 

Shine

Member
I was just talking to someone the other day who had the type of set up you are describing: 1 male, 2 females in a tank... plus a bunch of neon tetras and assorted other fish. Anyway this woman was telling me how good it had been. No problems, no fights... So she says anyway. For about 6 months. Then the male decided he didn't want to play nice anymore, and in the course of 2 days killed one of the females, most of the tetras (shredded them to pieces) and the last female apparently only comes out of hiding to eat, and then retreats back to a cave.

Yeah. okey:

Not fun. And not something I would subject my pets to. The woman still hadn't seperated the betta, and when I 'suggested' that she do so ASAP she continued to try to tell me bettas are fine with each other and in a community.

This despite the clear PROOF in her own tank that it didn't.
 
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BennyB

Member
Okay, stop stressing over the jar. When I was at Petsmart I was looking around and saw this separator screen, so I picked one of those up. I'm sure what I did with the tank now is more than acceptable.

I took out the driftwood and put all the males on one side, and all the females on the other. That's Jack and the two glassfish on the left, and Pearl and the two lake guppies on the right. One is prego again.

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Here is the breeder I got too, Pluto looked like she was about to pop so I put her in there. Hopefully, I should have some molly fry in with my guppy in the 2.5 by morning.

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Well, I might now be there yet, but I'm making progress at least. Admit it!
 
  • Thread Starter

BennyB

Member
?
W/E

So last night I noticed that the females fins were starting to get torn up. I figured it was either from stress or being nipped at. But I just now realized that since she likes to hide behind the filter she gets caught in the current and gets blown around before she regains control. So I think I might have to move her over to Jack's side, and vice verca just for the fins to start healing. Also I took out the guppies.
In other news, Jack has started to build a nest...whoo!
 

Meenu

Member
You can use a sponge to diffuse the flow.
 
  • Moderator

Lucy

Moderator
Member
To avoid confusion, kit_frisk's questions have been moved here:
 

DelleBelle

Member
Please reconsider your plan to breed the bettas right away. At the least, do some research before you just throw them together and hope for the best.
 
  • Thread Starter

BennyB

Member
DelleBelle said:
Please reconsider your plan to breed the bettas right away. At the least, do some research before you just throw them together and hope for the best.
Read
benjaminBreaker said:
BTW, Meenu, I did read the article. I do plenty of research before I do something. I said earlier I was intrigued, so I read up on it.
Did you read the whole thread? I've done plenty of research, don't think I'm some mindless goon throwing caution to the wind and jumping into something I have no idea how to do. I know how to play this out.

Besides, the set up I have now is perfectly acceptable, whether I'm trying to breed or not.
 

DelleBelle

Member
Yes, I did read the whole thread. Please don't take offense to what I'm saying. As others have told you, your girl has stress lines. That means she is not comfortable in her new surroundings yet. She's a new betta, she should be allowed to get used to her new home for a few weeks first, and then when both she and the male are ready, they should be conditioned for a week or two, before breeding. You may have read the article, but you aren't following the advice. I read it too, and it says that breeding pet store bettas are a bad idea because you have no idea what the age and genes are. You read it, but you aren't using all the information there. Just please be careful, I know you care about your bettas, so be careful about doing anything that could potentially be bad for them. Reading is a first step, but following the advice is the important part
 
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BennyB

Member
She isn't old enough, I know this. She has been in her new home for about 2 days tonight without being moved or disturbed. They are both still on their own sides of the separator, and I had no intentions of introducing them to each other for breeding purposes until she was old enough and had those breeding lines. BTW, the stress lines are gone.
The whole reason I put them in together at first was merely to see if they could be housed together. Obviously not, so this separator was a good idea.

I was a little offended, I'm not going to lie, but it's okay. I did something wrong, but I fixed it, and everything is getting better. I turned my filter down, and took all the other fish out, so her fin is starting to look better. And by that I mean, not getting any worse.

I know what to do now, and am not making any more mistakes. I still have to condition them, I know, I am trying. I have freeze dried foods, and am going to get some brine shrimp for them soon.

Jack's bubble nest is getting pretty huge now, it's pretty cool
 

Meenu

Member
That's awesome about the stripes being gone.

In case you don't already know: Be careful with freeze-dried foods. As they become hydrated, they expand. This can be dangerous if it happens inside the fish. It can cause bloating. I suggest pre-soaking the bloodworms in a bit of tank water, or even better, in some garlic juice.
 
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