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Fish of the Week - Siamese Fighting Fish

November 3, 2014

Betta splendens

pH - 6 - 7
Temp - 23 - 25 C
Size (max) - 6 cm
Minimum tank size - 15 litres
General Hardness - 7 - 9 dGH


Siamese Fighting fish are originally from the Mekong Basin region in Thailand. Though they may be found in shallow, wide bodies of water (such as rice paddies), they do not live in puddles as is often believed. 

Males are well known for their varieties of beautiful finnage and striking colours and are the most commonly sold. The Siamese Fighting fish earns the name due to the enthusiasm by which he will protect his territory or nest from other Siamese Fighting fish, though in other respects he is non-aggressive. In fact, Siamese Fighting fish will often be the ones to be bullied and stressed by other fish. Therefore great consideration needs to be taken before adding one to a community tank.

Unfortunately, Siamese Fighting fish are often kept in very small containers. They are able to survive these oxygen depleted conditions because of the Labyrinth organ, which allows them to take in air from the atmosphere. However, the facts remain that any intelligent animal (they can be trained to do tricks!) should not be kept in such confinement and the smaller a body of water is, the more difficult it is to keep clean. Though they may be kept in small holding containers in the aquarium, at home their living quarters should be large enough to enable them to exercise and explore. Siamese Fighting fish come from a heavily vegetated environment so will benefit from aquascaping that allows them shelter when feeling exposed and correct filtration. 

For more information see:
http://kb.rspca.org.au/How-should-I-keep-and-care-for-Siamese-fighting-fish_441.html

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