|~Basic Betta Care~|
Feeding your Betta:
You should feed your betta once daily, twice if desired. Bettas are carnivorous fish, which means they are meat eaters. Bettas do not live off plant roots. Feed your betta one of the following foods. I have 'd my preferred foods.HBH Betta Bites
Hikari Betta Bio-Gold
Freeze Dried Bloodworms
Wardley Betta Food
Freeze Dried Brine Shrimp
Live black worms
Live Mosquito Larvae
Frozen Brine Shrimp
There are many other foods that you can feed your betta, these are just examples to give you an idea. More on Your new Betta . . .Cleaning your Betta:
Your betta's water should be cleaned on a very regular basis. Bettas produce waste which turns into a harmful element called ammonia. Ammonia is very stressful to bettas and can cause severe health problems if the betta is left in continued exposure. How often you need to change your betta depends on the size of his bowl. A half gallon should be cleaned twice per week. Ammonia will begin to build up in about 1-2 days in a half gallon, so change them often. A 1 gallon bowl should be changed weekly, a 2 gallon every 2 weeks and so on. In a 2 gallon or larger you can place a small corner filter and allow the tank to cycle.
To clean your betta, keep a jug or two of water set out at least overnight prior to cleaning. If this water is from your tap, make sure and treat it with a dechlorinating product such as Prime, Novaqua/Amquel, Stress Coat or AquaSafe. This removes harmful chemicals from the water such as chlorines and chloramines. Leaving the water sit overnight will ensure that the new water is the same temperature as the old. If you buy bottled water, be sure to buy Spring water and not Distilled water. Distilled water lacks all the minerals and elements essential to a bettas health.
Fill a clean cup with your betta's water from his bowl. Gently net him out, I prefer SoftNet brand nets or brine shrimp nets. Make sure the net is already wet, a dry, hard net has to be painful. Place him in the cup of water to stay while you clean his bowl. Remove any fake plants and set aside. If you have live plants, also place them in a cup of water from the bowl. Rinse the betta's bowl thoroughly with hot water. Rinse the gravel thoroughly removing all waste. Do a final rinse with cool water and then fill the bowl with your water from the jug(s). Once filled, rinse your fake plants under hot water, then cool and place back in the tank. If you have real plants, gently rinse them in the cup of water they are sitting in and replace them in the bowl. Once the water has settled, usually just a minute or two, you can pour your betta into the net and gently place him back in his bowl. More on Your new Betta . . .
Your Betta's home:
Your betta's home should be at least a half gallon, in my opinion. Many people keep their bettas in small Betta Hex containers and those are fine as long as they are cleaned daily or at LEAST every other day. I prefer 2 gallon hex tanks for my pet bettas. Bettas also enjoy plants, I would suggest either fake silk plants or some low maintenance live ones. Java Moss is a good choice. You can also find dry plant bulbs at Wal-Mart and pet stores, sometimes appropriately called Betta Bulbs.
The temperature for your betta should be about 76°F. Small bowls are nearly impossible to heat so I would suggest keeping them in a warm place in the house. I keep mine on my mantle above my fireplace (fireplace isn't used or I might cook them!). More on Your new Betta . . .
A happy & healthy betta will be active, colorful and have a strong appetite. You might also find bubbles at top of the water, this is his bubble nest and an excellent sign that your betta is in great health. More on betta habits. . .
For other questions not covered here, please visit our Care FAQ.
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