If you have ever been attracted to the engaging personality and beauty of Siamese fighting fish and think you might want to own some yourself, the following are a few basic facts about Siamese fighting fish that you might find interesting. Some of the information you may find helpful and others might just be of interest and add to your overall knowledge of betta fish. It is essential to learn about the basic facts of natural habitat and origin if you really want to own and care for these beautiful fish.
Siamese fighting fish, or betta splendens, is a native of Asia’s slow moving ponds and streams. They were first witnessed in Cambodia, known then as Siam, which is where their name of Siamese fighting fish comes from. It is also found in China, Thailand and Vietnam. Bettas are known for being very aggressive with other bettas. They will continue to fight until their opponent is seriously injured or backs down in order to defend their territory. For entertainment purposes, the behavior in the past has been exploited. However, betta fish aggressive traits are quite often bred out by breeders these days.
Bettas Are Great Pets
The flowing fins and beautiful colors definitely make the betta very attractive fish to have for pets. Another reason why they are so appealing is they have a tendency to respond much more to their owners than they do to other fish. They have phenomenal eyesight and if they see you will usually come to the surface of the water. Females have shorter fins, while males are longer. Male betters are more colorful and larger.
Siamese Fighting Fish are Aggressive
The betta’s aggressive nature is why it is so hard to keep them inside a tank together without them acting aggressively towards one another. Although they do attack other types of betta, surprisingly they are quite tolerant of other kinds of fish. Quite often other aggressive fish bully them. It might be due to the fact that other kinds of fish are not competitors for females.
That trait makes bettas suitable for adding into a community tank. However, they aren’t good tank mates with all fish. They probably are most happiest when they are alone.
If you would like to get a community tank built, it is recommended that you do some research on which fish are compatible with bettas.
Breathing With a Labyrinth
Another interesting fact about betta fish is their breathing method. Rather than breathe underwater like a majority of fish, bettas breathe air rather than water using an organ referred to as a labyrinth. That is why you may notice that they go up to the surface once in a while and open their mouth. For this reason, it is a good idea to keep bettas inside an aquarium that isn’t too high.
The frequent trips that they take to the surface of the water requires a lot of energy. It can stress them out and they may become weak and more susceptible to diseases. So although certain aquarium design might be quite appealing to you, when they are very tall, they aren’t the best choice to use with bettas.
Wall-mounted aquariums is a good example. They are very easy to maintain, so they are very popular with aquarists. For example, the Aqua Bella aquariums, only require you to change the water once a year. Although technically you can use them for betta fish, it isn’t ideal. Keep in mind that the natural home of betta fish is still, warm and shallow waters in rice paddies. That translates in aquarium terms to 10 inches from surface of water to substrate in terms of the best height for bettas.
If you would like to keep bettas as pets, you need to keep in mind that originally bettas comes from a tropical climate. To keep them healthy, the conditions from their natural environment need to be replicated. Water temperatures of 75 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit will keep bettas comfortable and help to reduce the chances of getting parasites. With an active filtration system, make sure the water doesn’t move too fast. Bettas are accustomed to slow moving water. If there are strong currents, it could stress the fish out.
Strong filters come with many popular aquariums. Before buying, make sure you ask. Not all manufacturers have an awareness of what bettas needs are and at times will recommend or advertise certain kinds of filtration systems for betta fish tanks where the current is too strong.
Great Betta Books in the Library
In order to improve your understanding of this gorgeous species of betta fish, you can find information all around, from the Internet to books from the library. They are informative as well as being entertaining. If you would like to own betta fish, some of these facts are essential for you to know, since the knowledge can help you improve being able to properly care for your pet betta fish.
Photo courtesy of Lisa Lenscap -https://www.flickr.com/photos/lisalenscap/