Keeping a tropical Betta Fish is a fun adventure with many rewards. Although this is a great fish for those just beginning to keep tropical fish, there are rules that cannot be broken. A reason for choosing the Betta Fish is their beauty. They have large fins and bright colors, especially the male. A reason for not choosing the tropical Betta Fish is contained in their alternate name, “The Siamese Fighting Fish.”
Watch the Males
From the time a hatchling tropical Betta Fish is determined to be male, it is raised in a bowl by itself. If two males are put into the same tank, they will fight until there is only male in the tank. The fact remains that the males are too beautiful not to own. Often a male tropical Betta Fish is sold in a small bowl. However, this is not the way to keep them as they need at least a 5 gallon tank that can be heated and filtered for optimal health. They only grow to be two and half inches long. Although they are violent with other Bettas, they can get along with other tropical fish if their fins are not large.
Some Betta tanks are available with separators so that two or more Bettas can be kept in the same tank without being able to get to each other. You can observe the fighting behavior by holding a mirror against the side of the tank. When the male tropical Betta Fish sees his reflection, he will assume the fighting stance. If you wish to breed your tropical Betta Fish, you will have to introduce the female at the proper time or the male will fight it to death. Not surprising for an aggressive fish, the tropical Betta Fish is a carnivore although it can be fed with flakes, freeze dried and live foods.
The tropical Betta Fish likes a warm tank and will fall prey to cold water problems like Ich and Finrot. The tank should be kept at a constant temperature of at least 78 degrees, although 80 degrees is better. The tropical Betta Fish needs a good filtration system. Avoid the under gravel filters and use chemical, biological or mechanical filtration without a lot of current. A Betta Fish especially needs the top of the tank to be clean so that it can breathe.
The addition of a tall plant will give the tropical Betta Fish a place to sleep and a source of oxygen. The beauty of the tropical Betta Fish makes up for any temperament it displays. The acquisition of an education in the way to keep the Betta makes the experience an easy and fun one.