Why don't we write a book? "Better Betta Care"

GKat250000
  • #1
We all agree that LFS's know way less about these fish than they should and they pass the bad info onto the consumer, right?

What if we as a fishforum/betta group write a free pamphlet that any of us can print out and give to our local Petcos to give to their customers, free of charge?

"Better Betta Care: your guide to a healthy Betta"

The pet stores will look good for giving out free books, and they will sell more stuff (heaters, tanks, plants) and the Bettas will have happier lives.

Let me start it off. For now, the next person can cut what was written before them, paste, edit, and continue. Within a week, we should have a delicious book that tell Petstores and beginners the basics. Here, I'll start us off.


1) Never ever keep your Betta in a tank with another Betta (male or female). The only fish that Bettas can sometimes live with are______ but they will often be most happy alone

2) Betta's are tropical fish. Therefore, your Betta probably needs a heater. While you're at it, you should probably get him a tank with a filter too. A good size is about 5-6 gallons, but anything from 1.5 gallons up would be great! (Living in a cold fishbowl probably won't be much fun for your betta)

3) Give your betta a "cave" to hide in...

food, mirrors, etc.

Carry on. Gerry Katzman
 
Blub
  • #2
Hi!

1) Never ever keep your Betta in a tank with another Betta (male or female). The only fish that Bettas can sometimes live with are Corydoras catfish and Otocinclus catfish but they will often be most happy alone. Females can be kept together - but only experts should do this as it is pretty hard.

2) Betta's are tropical fish. Therefore, your Betta probably needs a heater. While you're at it, you should probably get him a tank with a filter too. A good size is about 5-6 gallons, but anything from 1.5 gallons up would be great! (Living in a cold fishbowl probably won't be much fun for your betta)

3) Give your betta a "cave" to hide in. Even better - an thicket of plants (Live or plastic) will make him feel much, much more secure.

4) Bettas belong to the antabantoid family. This family includes Gouramis, Paradise fish and the Bettas themselves. These fish are also known as 'Labyrinth fish', as they have a special Labyrinth organ which allows them to breath atmospheric air. In experiments when he labyrinth organ was removed - the fish died very quickly. Make sure your Betta has plenty of access to the tank surface so he can breath easily.

5) Bettas are also known as 'Siamese fighting fish'. This is because they originate from Thailand - formally known as Siam.

6) Your Betta hates water current. In his natural ThaI home (A rice paddy) there is no current. So - adjust your filter to make as little current as possible - and perhaps put some plants in front of it to 'muffle' the current.

7) Don't forget - your Betta is a carnivorous animal who naturally eats Mosquito larvae. You will need to feed him 'Freeze dried fish food' every or 'frozen fish food' at least 3 times a week. Bettas and other fish can go for 2 weeks without food with no ill effect. Vacation time is no problem for the Betta keeper!

8) (Keep bumping this to the end of the book) There is a very good website that contains a lot of information of Bettas and other Tropical fish. It is called FishLore - and You'll find it at https://www.fishlore.com/. Be sure to join the Forum there - you'll learn more there about Bettas than anywhere else!



food, mirrors, etc.



 
chickadee
  • #3
I have an issue with the idea of any fish going 2 weeks without food. Bettas can go for 1 week but it is not a good idea to go longer than that with any fish and there are quite a few that will not tolerate even that long. You have to realize that talking about Bettas in the wild and talking about bettas in tanks are two very different things. What they can do and actually do in the wild is one thing and the bettas that we all have in our tanks have never lived in the wild and none of their kind have ever lived in the wild. They are bred in captivity and in clean nurseries and hatcheries in a lot of cases. They have never lived in a rice paddy and they have never had to search for food. It has been dutifully given to them by humans since their birth.

Also Female Bettas cannot be kept together successfully as has been proven here on Fishlore.com on several occasions. They will injure or even kill each other. The manner of killing each other may not be as violent as the males would do but they accomplish it by bullying each other to establish a "pecking order" during which the one on the bottom of the order is denied food. They refuse to allow them to eat until they starve them to death, then the next one in the order is treated with the same treatment until there is only one left. I have seen it and even removing the poor little one from the tank will not save them as they are so intimidated that they refuse to eat even if there are no other fish about. It is horrible and I lost a whole tank of females by trying it. Others here have had to do emergency removals as their females attacked each other and war broke out in the tank.

One more note about Antabantoid fish, there are two medications that should NEVER be used on them as they destroy the Labyrinth organ and cause these fish to suffer painful and horrible deaths. These medications are Melafix and Pimafix (Bettafix is a watered down version of Melafix and as such I do not recommend its use) Please do not listen to anyone telling you to use these medications on your fish. More than one member on this forum has lost fish to the use of the medications.

No tank of less than 2.5 gallons can be safely heated. It needs to be that size for the safe use of any heater that can be adjusted for proper heat. The small tanks (2.5 to 5 gallons) may be cheaper but they also require a lot more maintenance. The statement that "the smaller the tank the more fragile the ecosystem" is very true. A small tank needs more frequent water changes, more frequent major cleaning, and more frequent filter cleaning. The smaller you go the more work you have to put into it and your betta will not be as active and entertaining. It is amazing to see the difference in a betta when they are moved to a larger tank. It is like they come to life for the first time.
My bettas (with the exception of the little fellow in the hospital tank) are all in 12 gallons of water. Other sizes are perfectly acceptable but I am just saying that a betta in a large tank is much more active and you will not believe the change in him/her until you see it.

I am not writing these things to go into the book but to correct some of the things that I do not think can be condoned by the site. You also need to be aware that I do not think something like this can happen unless you get Mike's okay if you are going to use the Fishlore name on it or in it.

Rose
 
GKat250000
  • Thread Starter
  • #4
Hey Chickadee,
Great points! I have made some fixes based on your notes. This isn't about fishlore per se, this is about all of us getting frustrated with fish stores for a) not knowing good information and b) not being able to equip their customers with information. I just want us to boil down what we all know together (like a wikipedia for Bettas) and disseminate it to the world in a very easy-to-understand quick packet. Keep the ball rolling! GERRY

1) Never ever keep your Betta in a tank with another Betta (male or female). The only fish that Bettas can sometimes live with are Corydoras catfish and Otocinclus catfish but they will often be most happy alone.

2) Betta's are tropical fish. Therefore, your Betta probably needs a heater. While you're at it, you should probably get him a tank with a filter too. A good size is about 5-12 gallons, but anything from 2.5 gallons up would be great! (Living in a cold fishbowl probably won't be much fun for your betta)

3) Give your betta a "cave" to hide in. Even better - an thicket of plants (Live or plastic) will make him feel much, much more secure.

4) Bettas belong to the antabantoid family. This family includes Gouramis, Paradise fish and the Bettas themselves. These fish are also known as 'Labyrinth fish', as they have a special Labyrinth organ which allows them to breath atmospheric air. In experiments when he labyrinth organ was removed - the fish died very quickly. Make sure your Betta has plenty of access to the tank surface so he can breath easily.

5) Bettas are also known as 'Siamese fighting fish'. This is because they originate from Thailand - formally known as Siam.

6) Your Betta hates water current. In his natural ThaI home (A rice paddy) there is no current. So - adjust your filter to make as little current as possible - and perhaps put some plants in front of it to 'muffle' the current.

7) Don't forget - your Betta is a carnivorous animal who naturally eats Mosquito larvae. You will need to feed him betta pellets/flakes (but not regular fish flakes), 'Freeze dried fish food' or 'frozen fish food' at least 3 times a week but preferably twice a day. Bettas and other fish can occasionally go for 1 week without food.

8) (Keep bumping this to the end of the book) There is a very good website that contains a lot of information of Bettas and other Tropical fish. It is called FishLore - and You'll find it at https://www.fishlore.com/. Be sure to join the Forum there - you'll learn more there about Bettas than anywhere else!



food, mirrors, etc.
 
ricktavious
  • #5
Here's one that 95% of people out there don't realize:

Bettas and other fish are actually living creatures and should be cared for as such.





Sometimes I hate people, thinking of the way many of them treat our little friends makes me sick
 
sirdarksol
  • #6
I wouldn't say that it's been proven that female bettas can't be kept together. A few members have reported having a successful sorority tank.
However, the majority of such experiments fail. I think that they only time they've succeeded is in an understocked 50g+ tank.
Edit: Good points, though, not only on the sorority tank, but the other info, as well.

This is a great idea (has been come up with before, in addition to other methods of letting Petco customers know about betta care). Unfortunately, I pretty much guarantee you that Petco won't hand the pamphlets out. It's not that they're not informing their customers about bettas. It's that they are purposefully misinforming their customers about bettas, and the information we would provide would run directly counter to what Petco tells their customers.
 
Allie
  • #7
This is a great idea. Most people don't realize that betta aren't easy to take care of. I learned that the hard way...listening to the stupid lfs people.
I am still learning about betta so I don't have anthing to add.
 
Blub
  • #8
Hi!

Sirdark - I think you are right. They are trying to make your fish die so you have to buy more! Don't they realise, that they will get much more money for a tank, heater, filter and decor than a few Bettas and a bowl/cup?

Allie- we are all still learning! That's the great thing about fishkeeping - always something to learn.


 
sirdarksol
  • #9
I don't know that they're quite malicious enough to want the fish to die, but they are going for the impulse buy of a betta, a tiny bowl, and decorations, rather than the fewer larger sales of tanks, filters, etc...
 
Allie
  • #10
Allie- we are all still learning! That's the great thing about fishkeeping - always something to learn.
True. I have the most trouble keeping betta...poor stock I think is the main reason.
 
Blub
  • #11
Hi!

Yes. Even so - many people would still want a Betta over a Hamster if they knew about being the price they are I think. Those starter kits would wizz up sales...;D


 
chickadee
  • #12
Bettas are pretty much replacing the goldfish as the "first fish" for little ones because of the Betta Bowl. The ease of keeping the goldfish bowl made them the favorites of grandmothers and little kids alike for many many years and now the betta bowls and nightlights and all the cutesy little ideas that the world of commercialism has come up with has done this for the betta. I actually had to ruin the wedding reception ideas of a bride friend of mine. She "adored" the idea of having large brandy snifters with bettas at each table with marbles in the brides colors in there with them. She was going to see if she could get all white bettas so match her dress. When I asked her what she would do with the bettas when the reception was over, she did not have a clue. The reception was betta-less. Now if a member of Fishlore.com was to be married and had a whole room full of members of the forum coming this may be appropriate and then give the bettas as favors to the guests. But you would know they were going to GOOD homes. But just to do this on a whim...NAH!

(now do not yell at me, you know that no member would see them in those snifters without heaters and filters )

Rose
(It is snowing to beat the dickens here and blowing our windchill is -10)
 
0morrokh
  • #13
Handing out pamphlets is a great idea.
GKat-have you read Rose's betta care guide? The first link in the betta stickies. It covers pretty much everything. For a pamphlet the info just needs to be condensed into a shorter handout like what you've started.

Hey Rose, you're gettin bad weather too? Up here windchill is either -30 or -40 right now.
 
sirdarksol
  • #14
Nah, Rose, heaters for each snifter would be too expensive...

We'd just have to turn the temp in the hall up to around 80.
 
chickadee
  • #15
Yes we are having snow and some ice pellets and -10 windchill temperatures. I have been in all day. My Rollator does not drive well on icy sidewalks. I just stay in and let the fish tell me what to do all day.

Rose
 
sirdarksol
  • #16
Oh, boo-hoo. -10 windchill? That's a balmy beach day compared to what we had here in MN this past weekend.

Seriously, this weather is just insane. I think my house is about to fall apart from the icy wind slamming into it.
 
chickadee
  • #17
Sorry about that... but when you never are out in it -10 is terrible. I would not live in MN for all the GREEN TEA in China. I would freeze to death.

I love to visit there in the summer though.

Rose
 
0morrokh
  • #18
Yeah hate to tell ya Rose but -10 is the air temp here, which is not bad for this time of year. Windchill -10 is nothin. ;D
I forgot you lived in MN too sirdarksol. You can join the organization my dad started the other day...Minnesotans for Global Warming. ;D
 

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