Your opinions on cup bettas

Discussion in 'Fishkeeping Hot Topics' started by Gordinian, Dec 23, 2012.

  1. GordinianWell Known MemberMember

    Just wondering what everyone's opinions are on purchasing bettas from large chain stores that sell them in those tiny cups.

    Personally, I've only ever gotten bettas from the chain stores. I feel awful about it because I know that with the money I give them they'll just turn around and get five more, but I just feel so bad for them. I feel that if I don't get that gorgeous betta in the tiny cup that it's very possible that somebody else who knows nothing about bettas will get it and stick it in a filterless, heaterless bowl, where it will live a miserable, shortened life, and likely die of some easily preventable disease.

    So what are your opinions?
  2. soltarianknightFishlore VIPMember

    All of my betta's beside Arro come from cups, Arro comes from a egg soup container. I got most of them free or discount though. Payed full price for Arro, it was a nice soup container....xD
  3. jetajockeyFishlore VIPMember

    I don't see a problem with it if they are healthy.
  4. CichlidnutFishlore VIPMember

    I have a king betta that came from a cup. He's pretty darn big. He's always been healthy and active.
  5. YeoyWell Known MemberMember

    I don't think bettas should be at all until the false information surrounding their care is wiped out. Take them off the market for a few years. But as they are good $$, that will never happen.

    P.S. I realise a lot of keepers on here treat them very well, but to me the numbers that die outweigh that.
  6. ryanrModeratorModerator Member

    :;du Thread moved to Hot Topics. Fishlore Rule #1 still applies to all discussions ;)

  7. monkeypie102Well Known MemberMember

    The funny thing is everyone complains about walmart bettasbut I bought one frm there and one from my local petsmart and Walmart houses them in larger cups than petsmart does... anyways I dislik that they are sold like that for a few reasons...
    1. A dmb kid could think it is funny o take a cup and hid it ese where and if an employee isn't looking for it then the fish will die
    2. It is a bit small but more that. Likely it is just a temp home until someone buys him/her... even a goldfish bowl is still larger than the cup in most cases...

    However removing them completely off the market is dumb and also impossible, IMHO. People responsible enough will have looked into their care prior to buying them... and you can't really fault the owner if they get bad advice from an employee...
  8. JayseeFishlore LegendMember

    They aren't any different than any of the other fish available for purchase.
  9. jetajockeyFishlore VIPMember

    The problem with walmart bettas is their upkeep, not cup size. They have proven for decades now that they are kosher in a small container as long as it's kept clean and they are fed. That's why the stores keep them this way.
  10. JayseeFishlore LegendMember

    At least they don't have to share a tank with incompatible fish. Or dead fish.
  11. bankruptjojoFishlore VIPMember

    iv been trying to not give my money to petco, ect... as much as possible. all my bettas are from chain stores except for one i got at a small LFS. ill be ordering them from now on. petco and those places have some very nice looking bettas but usually not like you can find on the internet. the places you see on the internet use those cubes, idk why other stores cant use them instead of the cups.
  12. jetajockeyFishlore VIPMember

    FWIW with the couple of wholesale farms I've ordered through in the past, the bettas always show up pre-cupped or in a comparable sized bag.

    The reason why most pet stores don't go to the trouble of putting them in nice little tanks is because it just isn't economical to do so. Cups are cheap and the bettas are fine in them, so it's the standard.
  13. bankruptjojoFishlore VIPMember

    i would not say they are fine in them. i see them all the time floating at the top of the water. last time i was in petco i saw a lot of bettas rubbing... maybe ich although i didnt see any. the cubs can be filtered and heated they would save money by not killing them before they sell. the cubes arnt huge one little wall of cubes would allow for plenty of bettas. your right they do it to save money but i dont think they are saving much, and would prob save money in the end.

    well they cant ship them in the cubes... the place i was looking at had them in cubes.
  14. jetajockeyFishlore VIPMember

    They are fine in cups if they are taken care of. It's a lot less work to have them all on a central system of course, but filters and heaters are unnecessary. In fact the lack of a heater works in the store's favor because it lowers the metabolism of the fish. Filtration can be substituted with a regular water change routine in a 'holding' scenario where the fish are not being kept permanently.

    A store that maintains the cups will have healthy fish, I've seen it from store to store. I'm not a fan of keeping bettas in cups in general, but they obviously have a working model and that's why they do it. If they had significant losses it wouldn't make business sense to do it that way and it would change in time within the industry. There was a time when paradisefish were kept in cups also, but they have waned in popularity in the last few decades.

    Until someone can make the case that bettas are better off in some other kind of setup, it's not going to happen.
  15. bankruptjojoFishlore VIPMember

    i think a heater is very important. i have forgotten to plug in heaters before and i notice they are much less active compared to when its 80f. i cant remember exactly what the temp was but im sure the stores get colder and that is not much water in those cups. i would think they could get to the low 70s, to low imo.

    it would help if they were only in the cup for a short time but my petco has tons of bettas. id say 50+, i dont want to think how long some might be sitting there for.

    they prob dont even make the money on fish its all the tanks and decor. i dont think they care how many fish they loose. some of those cups i see are very dirty. i dont know how often there suppose to change them but some get way to dirty.

    there is no possible way you can say the cups are better, so no argument there. do they work? you say yes, i say sort of. i know if i opened my own store i would not keep them in cups. i also know that i would love to find a store that didnt keep them in cups. they would get all my business just like petco used to.
  16. llfishWell Known MemberMember

    The petlands i have been to around here do not use cups, I have only seen them in "rose bowls and some in bigger vases. Still not that big and not the greatest and of course some lack water! Pne of my small lfs uses big glass beer mugs. I don't like it but i buy them still, or in my opinion I do not buy them I save them.
  17. jetajockeyFishlore VIPMember

    well yes, it's too low for someone keeping a betta long term, as it's a bit lower than their standard temperature range. That's the nature of being cold blooded. But it's not hurting them, although I would be interested in a study that shows otherwise.
    I'm certain they do care about the fish they lose, it's money going down the drain. I know they factor in a certain percentage of normal loss, and if it deviates significantly then action is taken. Of course they are slow to act since that's the way chains of command work. Pet stores do make money on bettas, there is significant markup on all aquarium fish, some more than others.

    Right, I don't argue that keeping the fish in cups is better, but I could argue that they could receive equivalent care in either setup. I.e. they aren't going to be healthier in either setup if both are well taken care of.

    I don't think bettas suffer in any way by being kept at room temp. They may be somewhat less active, as is normal with cold blooded animals, but in turn they also live longer.

    One could argue that store bettas don't belong in cups because of the lack of space, but wouldn't you also argue that 25 oscars shouldn't be in a 5-10g, or 25 mixed africans be crammed together in a 5-10g as well? Why are we just singling out bettas here and ignoring the other dozens of species in the store that are all crammed into tiny sales tanks?

    I guess to sum up my argument I'm saying that horror stories of cup bettas that are heard are due to improper maintenance on the store's part rather than the sole fact that the fish is in a little cup.
  18. bankruptjojoFishlore VIPMember

    the problem is that a lot of these stores dont keep up on water changes. im pretty sure most here would suggest daily water changes in a cup like that. most dont do that or they must be missing some, at least at some iv seen. if they had my system that would not be a problem.

    well i have no proof that the water temp is as important as i think it is. but i do believe its very important. they might live longer in colder but they dont seem as happy to me. maybe active fish dont = happy idk, but it always has to me... :)

    thanks for the chat but its my bed time. im sure ill wake up and have to read a whole lot more in this thread lol. good night.
  19. AquaristFishlore LegendMember

    Good morning,

    Jetta, Jojo, I think you both make very good points. Thanks for keeping the discussion civil! :) It's appreciated.

    Ken candycane2.gif
  20. AquariaUKValued MemberMember

    The only betta I've EVER seen (not on a computer was at my LPS in a 20 gallon tank with a few catfish. But in Britain the demand for bettas isn't nearly as high - if it was, they would be kept in cups. The only things that are kept in cups are mealworms.