Siamese Fighting Fish (or Betta Splendens).
Siamese Fighting fish make great first pets, but like all pets, they need a little bit of knowledge, care and attention to ensure that you get the most enjoyment from your fighter.
Here’s a quick rundown on keeping Siamese Fighting Fish as pets.
Regardless of the size of the aquarium or bowl your fighter is in, water quality must be kept to a high standard.
This means regular water changes (i.e. at least 100% fortnightly depending on size of aquarium/bowl and the amount of food your fish is fed).
Gravel cleans either using a gravel vacuum or by washing the gravel under the tap should also be performed on a regular basis.
Water must be de-chlorinated to remove the harmful chlorine found in our tap water, and the pH value is best at neutral – 7.0. This can easily be achieved by using Seachem’s Betta Basics.
Water movement should also be kept to a minimum. I.e. Siamese fighting fish aren’t suited to aquariums with a strong powerhead or current.
Siamese fighting fish originate from warm water and should always be kept above 18°C. This means in winter you will need a small aquarium heater.
Male Siamese fighting fish are extremely aggressive towards each other and generally towards females when not breeding as well.
Males therefore cannot be kept together.
However, they are usually peaceful to all other fish so can successfully be kept in community aquariums providing there are no other fin-nipping fish.
Ideally, feed your fighter small floating pellets such as Hikari Betta Bio. Live blackworm, freeze-dried blackworm and frozen bloodworm make good treats that should only be feed on occasion.
We recommend feeding your fighter approximately 2-3 Hikari Betta Bio pellets only once a day.
It is also a good idea to skip one day a week to help prevent a fast build up of toxic ammonia from fish wastes.
Fighters are not difficult to breed and given the right care, will generally breed on their own. Males will blow a bubble nest to show they are ready to breed.
The willing female will then lay her eggs on the ground which are then scooped up and fertilised before being placed in the bubble nest by the male. The female must then be removed to prevent the male from bullying her. Once the eggs have hatched into fry, the male must also be removed and the fry raised on their own.