Changing of Betta Fish Water - Essential Info

Click Here For The Best Betta Fish GuideBetta fish, also referred to as Siamese Fighting Fish, come from a very unique environment, and as a result, their needs with regard to water are a bit different than they are for, say, a gold fish.

Native to Thailand and Southeastern Asia, Betta fish originate in shallow pools of water in rice paddies. The environment they live in is rich with nitrogen, oxygen, and other nutrient-fixing plants in the water, and is also tropical in nature.

When it comes to the actual water used, tap (with considerations to be discussed below), is the best way to go. Distilled water has had all nutrients removed from it in the distillation process, and is, therefore, not a good Betta fish water.

Many think that bottled water is a great choice, but this is not recommended, as there is a lot of trial and error involved. Bottled water comes from a huge variety of sources, and while some might work just fine for your Betta, others could be found to be lacking or overridden with nutrients and actually be harmful to your Betta. So the best choice is stagnant tap water.

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The best way to prepare water for your Betta is to let the tap water you intend to use stand out, at room temperature, overnight. This allows many of the impurities to evaporate. However, as Betta's are very sensitive to certain chemicals that are often added to city tap water - such as chlorine and chloramine - some chemicals still need to be removed. Drops and pellets that can remove these chemicals from the water are readily available at pet stores.

Water temperature and pH levels are also pretty important as well, so a thermometer and pH testing strips are in order. You want the water temperature to be between about 75 and 85 degrees, and the pH level should range between 6.5 and 7.5. A substance often referred to as "Betta conditioner" is something that needs to be added before the Betta is ever introduced to the bowl, as well as with each water change, as it will help to prevent common fungal and parasitic conditions.

It is best to never actually completely change your Betta fish water. If you have an unfiltered tank, you will need to refresh the water weekly (this can also be referred to as a partial water change). If you use a filtered tank, refreshing the water every other week is sufficient. When you have a large tank, you do not even need to remove the Betta from the water, which makes it less stressful on the fish. With each partial changing, have your stagnant water prepared, remove about a quarter of the water, and add the new water.

With a smaller bowl or tank, you may have to remove the Betta to partially replace the water. To do this, fill a small container with some of their existing water. Carefully, using a small fish net, transfer the Betta to the smaller container and proceed with the cleaning process. It might seem complex, but these special fish are worth the extra effort it takes to keep their environment healthy and pure. 

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