Learn how to breed Betta fish for fun or profit. It is not as simple as putting the male and female fish together, they will kill each other if you do not follow the steps.
A common question among people who keep Betta fish, is “If you cannot put male and female Betta fish together without them fighting, how do Betta fish breed?”. This article will answer that question.
First of all, it is true that you cannot just put male and female Betta fish together. They got their other name, Siamese fighting fish, due to the fact that they are aggressive to each other, even fish of the opposite sex. They are very territorial and will fight and kill each other. In the wild they would not fight to the death, one of the fish would swim away, leaving the area to the victor, but in enclosed spaces, the fight is more extreme.
Having said that, there are times when a male and female Betta fish can be put together for the rather brief act of mating.
Note that most Betta fish sold in stores are lower quality males and lower quality (or even older) females. If you really want to be a professional Betta breeder start with quality fish purchased at a show or from a good breeder.
Betta fish are egg layers, the female produces eggs which the male must “milk” out of her, fertilize, and guard. When the female fish is ready to lay her eggs she will enter her “breeding pattern” in which her color changes slightly and vertical (up and down) stripes appear on the sides of her body. She will be encouraged to enter this phase by being put in a tank with a male but separated safely. They can “smell” each other in the water understanding the gender of the other as being opposite.
As such the male Betta fish must be in a fairly large (clean) tank; one that can be fitted with a divider. The female should be put on the other side, with care taken to be sure the fish cannot jump out, or into the other side. Their must be enough room for both fish so they are not stressed by the near presence of the other. After a few days the male should start building a bubble nest and the female should enter her breeding phase.
When these two events have taken place you can remove the divider and let them be together. Note that the mating habits can seem rough, and can actually be rough, so you should stay and remove the female if needed. Normally the male will wrap himself around the female, squeezing out the eggs. He will then fertilize and collect the eggs and put them into the bubble nest. At this time the female should be removed or she will eat the eggs.
When the fry first hatch (within a week) they will not be able to swim and the male will be picking them up and spitting them back into the bubble nest. By the time they are able to swim well (a couple of days later), he will start to eat them, and as such this is when the male Betta fish needs to be removed.
The young Betta fry need to be kept warm and should be fed proper Betta fish fry food twice a day. When the get bigger they must have individual containers.
Breeding Betta fish is only something you should do if you have lots of space, lots of time, and a buyer for the young fish.
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Published in: Pets