People who have pets – be it a dog, a cat, a snake, or maybe a couple of fishes, all do special things to make their pets happy and comfortable.
Today, we’re going to talk about one of the chosen pets by many – the betta fish.
Betta fish have very specific needs (related to food, water, temperature, etc.) that are unlike those of cats and dogs. Their needs can also vary between the different species of fish.
Someone who is getting their first aquarium tank may have questions they need to be answered about all aspects of caring for their pet. But, even seasoned fish owners will find they need help with the right way to care and the proper water parameters for a type of fish they’ve never had before.
One common type of fish in many households the world over is the betta fish, otherwise known as the Siamese fighting fish. This fish is beautiful with vibrant colors and larger-than-average fins fanning out from their bodies. It is a freshwater fish perfect for beginner aquarists. While the freshwater betta fish may be a common choice for families, their needs are quite specific, and that includes the type of water that is most recommended for them. Betta owners must know that betta fish live in betta fish tanks with proper water requirements. Let us get to know the important water parameters, the best type of water for their survival, and the needed water conditions.
Required Water Parameters For Betta Fish
The perfect water for betta fish (Betta splendens) is tap water that has been dechlorinated with the right conditioner. The well water, reverse osmosis, spring, and bottled water can also be used as water for the tank.
Typically, the right kind of water for bettas is something that is the type of water that still has purities within it. Spring water is probably the most recommended, simply because, unlike distilled water, spring water contains the minerals needed in the type of water that they can enjoy. Spring water is a more expensive alternative to tap water, but it is better than distilled water. It hasn’t been processed to remove minerals and nutrients. Further, it is safe for the betta tank since it is dechlorinated water. Just be sure that the pH level of the spring water to be added to the tank is in line with the safe levels. To do this, you can also get yourself a water test kit.
Distilled water is not recommended water. Distilled or purified water lacks tap water benefits because it has been processed. Processed distilled water lacks the chemicals, minerals, and nutrients needed for their health; and that isn’t recommended.
It isn’t the best aquarium water either for most tropical fishes, along with bettas as well. According to experts, distilled water must not be added to the tank unless essential minerals and nutrients are added and the pH level of water is controlled. Betta fish living in the absence of minerals in the water can result in health problems. In conclusion, purified or distilled water is not recommended for betta tanks.
They do well with preconditioned water. When we say preconditioned water, it is a type of water that has been de-chlorinated. Among all, this is our most recommended. Chlorine can harm your pet fish, so de-chlorinated water will be perfect. You can simply add this to your betta aquarium tank during a water change since you do need to change the water every now and then. Your tanks need to be cleaned every so often in evenly spaced intervals and to make your betta fish care easy, you can add this as the most ideal water choice.
Good water for a betta fish tank is typically betta-specific water you can find at your favorite pet stores and fish stores. If you buy this water, you can simply put it in the aquarium. This water is better for their health. Giving them this new water makes fish care much easier, and is really one of the best choices of water you can get. However, it is also worth noting that it lacks some of the beneficial bacteria your pet needs to survive.
Betta Fish Care – Water Requirement
Understanding The Water Requirement Of Betta Fish
When choosing the best water for your freshwater bettas, you also need to understand that betta care is also a part of choosing water for them.
You need to do a water change every couple of weeks, and that involves a water change so you can have clean water in the tank. During the water change, you want to keep the bettas in the water from the tank, so you can put new water in.
Once the betta water is in the tank, the betta fish will be in, you can then put it in the new water. This new water does need to be replaced during the water change, but it’s relatively safe.
The Most Common Types Of Water For Betta Fish Tanks
- Tap water can be used as water for betta fish as long as the tap water is conditioned properly. Treat tap water first before putting it in the aquarium tanks. If your fish is introduced to untreated tap water, it will die. Tap water is chemically treated to eliminate harmful microorganisms so that it is safe to drink and for other beneficial uses. Tap can contain heavy metals and other harmful chemicals that can be detrimental to your fish. To know what heavy metals are present in the tap water, you can test using an aquarium water testing kit. Before adding tap water to your betta tanks, add tap water conditioner to your bucket of tap water, as the tap water conditioners neutralize the chlorine in the water, or you can also dechlorinate tap water.
- Distilled water for betta fish is a bad choice. This water type lacks the minerals essential for their proper growth. It is best to avoid distilled water in your tanks. It is not the right type of water for bettas.
- Pure water lacks the minerals and nutrients important for the survival of the betta fish. Hence, you should always avoid purified water for betta fish tanks.
- The use of bottled water is safe for betta fish since it has little to no impurities like heavy metals and other harmful substances. But over time, this can become expensive. Some owners opt to use reverse osmosis water. Reverse osmosis (RO) water is tap water that goes through a process of dechlorination and conditioning through a semi-permeable membrane. This results in an almost completely pure betta fish tank water. However, reverse osmosis water has no beneficial minerals and nutrients needed for the osmoregulation of the betta fish and the stability of the pH levels. There is a need for the remineralization of the reverse osmosis water by adding calcium sulfate and magnesium sulfate (ratio of 4:1). An aquarium mineralizer is also available in pet stores.
- Soft water is water that is free from dissolved salts. Bettas thrive best in softer water, though they can also tolerate medium and semi-hard water. If the tap water is so hard, some pet owners mix a small amount of reverse osmosis water. This helps in the softening of the water and the stability of the water’s pH levels. However, using soft water in your tank increases the risk of bacterial infections in your fish.
- Always dechlorinate tap water for your betta tank. Your betta will likely die if your tap water is not dechlorinated since chlorine is one of the most harmful and toxic chemicals for betta fish. Too much chlorine can kill them. Further, the presence of chlorine in the betta tank can kill beneficial bacteria that they need which have developed in your betta’s tank. These beneficial bacteria will decrease the ammonia levels along with nitrite levels. Both ammonia and nitrite are toxic to betta fish. To dechlorinate, use a water conditioner or leave your tap water for a minimum of 24 hours. It is important to note that chloramine, unlike chlorine, does not evaporate. Thus, there is a need for the use of water conditioners. Normally, 1/2 to 1 tsp. of water conditioner is added to 10 gallons of untreated tap water. Usually, the water conditioner will treat chlorine within 2 minutes and chloramine within 5 minutes. Always follow the instructions in your water conditioners and if possible, have your water tested.
- Rainwater is mildly acidic and has no buffering capacity. Hence, the pH level drops. Theoretically, your betta and other kinds of fishes can thrive in pure rainwater. Betta fish owners alternatively mix 5% to 10% conditioned tap water with pure rainwater. It is vital to check the water hardness and carbonate hardness of your water to make sure that they are at a level safe for your pet. Typically, rainwater does not have airborne pollutants, but this is still dependent on the areas where you live.
- The well water normally does not contain chlorine and chloramine, however, it does have heavy metals like iron and copper. Well water also has other harmful chemicals like fertilizer and pesticides that are detrimental to your betta. If you’re planning to use the well water for your tank, bring the well water sample to your local pet store and have the water quality checked. You can choose the proper aquarium conditioners and stress coat additives once the well water is tested for other chemicals present.
- It’s ok to fill your tank with tap water if you just make sure the chlorine is gone in the tap water before putting the betta fish in it. Spring water may be a better choice for betta water because of its natural properties. The nutrients in the spring water will provide the most natural-feeling environment to the habitat you’d find betta fish – out in the rice paddies, slow-moving streams, and other muddy waters where it naturally lives. It may be more expensive to fill a large tank with spring water, but if it’s within your budgetary constraints, it can give your betta the healthiest home to live in so you can it as long as possible.
Other Tips To Remember
You also may want to get LED lighting when looking at betta care. This helps with the water temperature. They’re tropical fishes, so the water temperature does need to be higher. LED lighting heats it up quickly, and you should make sure the LED lighting is set up before putting the fish back in there. Water temperature is one of the water parameters to watch out for. The best water temperature for bettas is between 76° and 80° F. This species is a freshwater species and they require specific water conditions to stay healthy. That’s why it’s important that you research carefully about this.
You should also get an aquarium filter for tanks best suited for betta fish. An aquarium filter helps with filtering out the gunk. You should have the aquarium filter in place before putting it in so the aquarium filter can clean out the tank and make it better. Make sure to set up the betta fish water conditions and aquarium for at least 48 hours before purchasing your new betta. Betta fish require specific aqua in their environment, so if you can’t provide this for them, then don’t bother buying one. Fish keepers should be knowledgeable of the fish species they will be taking care of.
Top Bottled Water for Betta Fish
Frequently Asked Questions
Will Water From The Faucet Or Tap Water Kill My Betta Fish?
Yes and no is the answer to this question. You can fill your tank up with tap water, however, if you plunk your betta or any fish, into the tank with tap water right away, it will likely die. There is chlorine in tap water, which kills fish of all types. You can let the water sit after filling up your tank, though, and the chlorine will eventually evaporate and then the water is safe for your pets. Tap water isn’t the perfect option – first find out through chemical testing kits or by asking your local authority to disclose chemical content information. Water companies are required by law to tell customers what’s in the aqua.
If you live in a rural area, you might be getting your aqua from a ground well and you might think that it doesn’t contain chlorine since it’s rich in minerals, but that’s not true. Betta fish need clean water with pH levels between 6.5 and 7.5. Conditioning the aqua and letting it go through a dechlorination process would be a good practice, especially if you don’t want to kill your betta fish. You don’t need the wrong type of water. Search more detail and consider water changes to use for your betta, specifically designed with recommended water ph levels.
How Long Does It Take to Lose Chlorine In Tap Water?
The amount of chlorine in tap water varies across different locations. On average, it will take 4-5 days before the chlorine disappears. If you want to speed the process up some, you can stir or circulate the water, expose it to UV light, or aerate it to nudge the evaporation process along. There are also products like water conditioners that will instantly remove the chemicals from tap water making it safe immediately to be used as betta water.
Water conditioners are good because these make the environment much better. With a water conditioner, it helps the water change properties. It makes the water liveable for the betta fish.
Before you add your fish to the tank, you should test for the presence of chlorine in the betta water. You can do this with betta fish kits made specifically for this.
Is Purified Water Good To Use?
Purified water is not good for them. Purified water lacks the important minerals and nutrients this species needs to survive. Hence, purified water is not ideal to be used as betta water.
Is Purified The Same As Distilled Water?
These aren’t the same. Purified water has been cleared of any contaminants and chemicals that were in it. Distilled water is purified water taken to another level. Not only are all of the contaminants removed, but the minerals and nutrients get removed, as well. For that reason, distilled water is not recommended for many betta fish because it’s lacking in substances that help keep them healthy.
Can I Use Water Sold In Groceries?
You can use bottled water for your aquarium. You do need to choose water for this species cautiously, though. Not all bottled water is the same. There are three general types of bottled water:
Purified– this may or may not be ok in your betta aquarium as it could contain chlorine, or it may have been distilled so it lacks minerals good for your betta fish
Filtered – similar to purified water, it depends on what has or hasn’t been stripped from the water as to whether this type of bottled water is suitable as betta fish water
Spring– sometimes is passed through filters, but sometimes it is not; has no chlorine, but does have the minerals and nutrients that are found naturally in spring water
The other factor to measure here is the pH level of the bottled water you intend to use in your aquarium. For a betta fish, you want a pH that’s not higher than 8 and not lower than about 6.5.
Is Spring Water A Good Option?
Spring water is quite good for them because of the nutrients and minerals it holds. It doesn’t have chlorine in it and isn’t stripped of its good properties that benefit this species. It’s a good choice for replicating a fish’s natural habitat. Spring water will help with keeping your pets healthy and happy inside an aquarium tank. Hence, it is a good betta fish water.
Can You Use Filtered Water For A Betta Fish Tank?
You can use filtered water for betta fish, but it depends on the level of filtration, meaning how much is being filtered out or not. This species thrives in one that has nutrients and minerals in the open water. The fish water you’re using in the aquarium they’re living in needs to mimic the open water environment as much as possible. Don’t use water that’s been filtered down so much that it has nothing to offer your betta fish, such as distilled water. You need to make sure that chlorine or any other harmful chemicals have been removed, but not the beneficial elements in the water.
How Do You Treat This Aqua?
Once you’ve chosen the right kind of water, such as spring or tap water that’s been cleared of its chlorine, you can condition it with products found in pet shops that will help you keep your betta fish alive and healthy. You should condition the water in your aquarium with every water change you do. Usually, a stress coat additive can be added to the betta’s water. The stress coat additive restores your betta fish’s natural slime coat that is removed when your betta fish is stressed.
How Often Should You Change It?
Whether you use tap, betta-specific, or bottled spring water in your tank, you’ll need to change it on a regular basis. How often depends on the size of your tank, whether it’s a filtered or unfiltered tank, how many fish live in it, and how much you feed your fish. (Uneaten fish food can rot and create a toxic environment.)
Here’s a guideline to follow for changing the water in your tank. If the tank is small and unfiltered, you should change up to 50% of the water once a week. If you have a larger tank that has a filter, then you still need to change some of it every week, but 20-25% is probably ok.
Ultimately, you’re changing the water to keep the level of ammonia within a safe range for the fish. You can get test strips for checking the levels if you’d like that assurance.
Is Distilled Water Good To Use On My Betta Fish Tank?
Distilled water is not a recommended option. It lacks the chemicals, minerals, and nutrients because it has been processed. They prefer to live in a habitat with minerals and nutrients needed for the betta fish’s proper growth. If they live in distilled water, they will lack energy and could die.
What Is The Best Water To Use For Betta Fish?
Of course, if we’re being honest, you can buy specially prepared betta water. But the next at the top of the list would be tap water or spring water. The best water for betta fish is Ensure you have water test strips readily accessible for convenient testing. Additionally, incorporating aquarium salt into your betta’s water can provide protection against prevalent parasites and fungi. But make sure to make the tap water safe by adding conditioner to it before you add it to the tank.
Can Betta Fish Live In Filtered Water?
Filtered tanks are loved by betta fish due to their preference for stable fish water conditions. The presence of a filter aids in preserving beneficial bacteria, effectively purifying the water and neutralizing harmful substances such as ammonia and nitrates. Establishing a natural ecosystem within the tank is of utmost importance for ensuring long-term health and reducing the likelihood of stress and disease.
Is Room Temperature Water Okay?
A significant number of betta owners may not be aware that this species requires warm water, rather than relying on room temperature water, which typically falls within the range of 68–72 degrees Fahrenheit (21–23 degrees Celsius). Ideally, the water temperature should be maintained between 78–80 degrees Fahrenheit (25.5–26.5 degrees Celsius) to ensure the well-being of bettas.
Can You Use Boiled Water?
If you boil tap water, it gets rid of most of the chemicals. It would also help if you would let the water sit for 24 hours or more to let the chlorine evaporate. To be sure, make sure to have your water tested and always check the temperature of your aquarium so your fish will not suffer from drastic temperature changes.
How Often Do You Condition Betta Water?
It is best to change the 25%-50% of the water every week. The smaller your bowl or aquarium is, the more water you should change and condition on a weekly basis.
Last Updated on May 14, 2023 by Lisette LaoDISCLAIMER (IMPORTANT): This information (including all text, images, audio, or other formats on FamilyHype.com) is not intended to be a substitute for informed professional advice, diagnosis, endorsement or treatment. You should not take any action or avoid taking action without consulting a qualified professional. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions about medical conditions. Do not disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking advice or treatment because of something you have read here a FamilyHype.com.