Cleaning your vase once every 2 weeks is necessary for a healthy environment. You may clean your vase more often if the water becomes cloudy from decaying roots or uneaten food. Never let your vase go without cleaning for more than 1 month, you are putting your fish at risk because the PH level in the water may be too high and lowering it suddenly with fresh water could put an unnecessary strain on your Betta. Remove your Betta and half of the old water, clean your vase, replace half with fresh water and add the remaining old water and your Betta fish. Continue back on your 2 week cleaning schedule.
Your Betta fish should be fed 3 pellets of food each day. (Hikari Beta Bio-Gold food) Feeding your Betta twice a day, am and pm is recommended by almost all professional breeders. If you decide to feed your Betta twice a day, only 2 pellets per feeding is recommended. A Betta’s stomach is only as big as his eye and over feeding will surely cause death. Your Betta can go up to 4 days without food and it is recommended to skip a day once in a while, even in the wild Bettas do not always eat everyday.
Using water from the tap needs to be treated. Leaving water from the tap sit overnight will not permit all the chemicals of city water to dissipate. Your local pet store will have many different products to choose from, but Stress Coat aquarium water conditioner is recommended. This product not only removes chlorine it detoxifies heavy metals and replaces the natural protective slime coating fish need in times of stress.
Bettas experience some stress during water changes. The water used for changing should be the same temperature as the vase. Never use distilled water, it is dead water. Spring water may also be used with no harmful affects.
Do not pull up on the plant. Always use the plastic container when lifting the plant for cleaning. Place your thumb in the plastic container against the vase and lift the container up and lift away from the vase. Rinse the roots of the plant and remove any roots which may have decayed. Pressing your thumb under the tap to jet spray the water will make for a more efficient, effective and easier cleaning of the roots. When replacing the plant back into the vase ensure the roots are in the water and not the green stem of the plant.
Disease is treatable. Click fish diseases. Your Betta may just be bored. If there is not much in the way of human interaction in the bedroom you might try moving him to the living room where you spend most of your time and he can see you. Bettas have great personalities and they will react when they see movement in the room. Placing a mirror up to his vase will encourage him to flare and perform for who is thought to be an intruder in his territory. You can leave the mirror for awhile but no longer than 15 minutes or it will lose its effectiveness. Bettas hate the cold so be sure he is warm enough 70-78F is best.
There are many different foods for Bettas. Among several dry foods there are several treats as well as frozen and live foods. The choice will need to be yours. Hikari Betta Bio-Gold dry food pellets provide the best balance of nutrients for Bettas and you can easily control the amount of food each day. Remember, Bettas are “carnivores”, which means they like meat. Some of their favorite foods are alive or frozen Bloodworms or Brine shrimp. Over use of live or frozen foods can result in a weekly cleaning due to uneaten food spoiling the quality of the water. Underfeeding is always better than overfeeding.
Males may blow foamy bubbles on the sides of their container - there is nothing to be worried about. The bubble nest is for mating purposes. Your betta is obviously very happy and is waiting for a female. Do not add a female to your container. Breeding bettas is very complicated and your container is not the proper environment. See links for more info on breeding bettas.
Can I add some sea shells to my vase?
Do not add sea shells Sea shells affect the ph level of the water and will most definitely harm your betta by burning its fins (fin rot).
I'm going away for the weekend. Will my betta be all right?
Yes! Your betta will not starve if you go away for the weekend or you miss a feeding. Bettas can go for several days with-out eating. It is always recommended that you feed your betta before you go away and as soon as you return home. This is also true for those people who have their betta vase in an office. Be aware, some offices turn down the heat automatically on the weekends. Ask your building attendant. You may need to move your betta to a warmer spot before you leave on Fridays. Heat rises, so higher up is better.