Category : PET
Name : Breeding Betta Fish
Description : Betta is one of the easiest aquarium fish to keep. Also know as Siamese fighting fish because two males start to fight with each other if living together.
Size: Up to 7 cm (3″)
Difficulty Rating: Beginner
Breeding Difficulty: Moderate
Temperature: 24-28°C (75-82°F)
Life span: 3-5 years
Water pH: 6.0-7.5
Water Hardness: 5 – 20 dGH
Breeding Temperature : 27°C (80°F)
Breeding Tank : 40 liters (10 Gallons) equipped with sponge filter, heater, thermometer. One piece of glass to divide the breeding aquarium into two. It is better to consider the heating of whole room for bigger production sizes and more breeding tanks, instead of heating each tank. Also you will need 2 x 20 liters (5 gallons) tank to keep parents before breeding and one 100+ liters (25+ gallons) tank for fry after 2-3 weeks.
Breeding Parent : 1 male to 1 females, approximately on the same size. Healthy, male with bright colors and both with good body form.
Number of fry per Spawn : 200-600 (depends on size and age of female)
Breeding Efficiency: Females start to produce first offspring 4-5 months of age. Sexually mature female betta fish can be selected by rounded belly and the presence of whitish breeding tube. Bettas breed best when they are 5-12 months and must be maximum age of 14-15 months for a successful breeding. They can have spawn every month.
Process : Before adding parents to breeding tank, in the separate tanks feed them with high quality, highly nutritious food especially live food for conditioning for around 2 weeks.
Prepare breeding tank with 10-15 cm (4-6 inches) deep water, heater, sponge filter, some places for hiding female. Add some floating materials like Styrofoam, floating plants etc. for bubble nest. Turn off the air supply or filtration to protect water movement which can damage bubble nest.
Divide the breeding aquarium into two and add parents to each side separately. Male must be on the side of floating materials.
If the male is ready, he will start to swim up to the female, turn a deeper color, start to display his fins, flaring, and generally showing off to try and attract the female and both interacting with each other. Let them 1-2 days like this separately. If your female is ready, her color will darken, a small white egg tube will stick out just on her abdomen, she should have a plumper body, indicating she is full of eggs and may display her vertical stripes along her midsection. Also male will start to prepare the bubble nest. If both are ready you may take off the separator slowly.
If at least one of them not ready, better to return them for conditioning tanks and feed them for 2 more weeks as you did before. Still have the same negative response, change the parents or only the not ready one.
After they realize there is no longer a barrier between them, they will act aggressively towards each other. Usually the male will chase the female into hiding – but it’s also possible that the female chasing the male. Fin ripping is completely normal.
The male’s attention will alternately focus on both building the bubble nest and attracting the female.
The ready male will invite the female to swim under the bubble nest. When the female comes under the bubble nest, sometimes turns upside down. The male will wrap himself around the female by bending his body and start to squeeze her tightly. Both of them will be temporarily motionless as the female releases eggs and the male fertilizes them.
After sometime and several squeezing attempt, you will see the falling eggs to the bottom of the tank slowly. During this time male will stop the breeding and will start to collect eggs to bubble nest. The male will collect the eggs by his mouth and blown into the bubble nest.
The spawning can last from a few minutes to 2-3 hours. If the female is no longer near the bubble nest and start to escape from male shows that the spawning is over. You must remove the female from the breeding tank as soon as possible.
The eggs in the bubble nest are visible at this time. Better to keep light 24 hours open. Male will control and care for eggs and will put back to bubble nest any falling of them. During this time male will not eat anything, so better not to feed to keep better water quality.
Eggs will start to hatch after 24-36 hours and small moving tails on the bubble nest will be visible. These small wigglers will be attached to bubbles with their heads and will stay vertically. Male will collect the falling wigglers back to the bubble nest.
Until fry start to swim normal, parallel position inside the tank, keep the male inside the breeding tank. Male will collect back the falling eggs and wigglers, will repair the bubble nest and sometimes will make a new bubble nest and will carry all to the new nest.
Feeding the Fry : After fry start to swim and consume their yolk sac, you may start with first feeding. Some betta fish breeders use microworms and infusoria cultures, also you may use Liquifry Number 1 food,Atison Betta Starter Food and some other commercial food for new born egg layers. After a few days they must able to eat baby brine shrimp and vinegar eels.
The fry should be fed three to five times daily, amount must be just enough to consume all within 5 minutes. Never let excess food to stay on the tank.
After removing male from breeding tank, you start to turn off light for night and start the sponge filter.
After 2-3 weeks move baby bettas to 100+ liters (25+ gallons) growing tank.
Advantages – Disadvantages : Your main competitor will be big producers. Their cost for each fish will be lower than yours but you may use your low shipment cost advantages by staying closer to your local market.
Additional Advices : You may consider to breed different kinds of aquarium fishes to give better alternatives to your customers. Also you can cross breed different kind of bettas to have different shapes and colors.
Additional Sources :
Betta Fish Care Tips Video: