i'm wondering if this "all fish only have a three second memory span" is true...i think bettas - and possible other fish - may have a larger memory than we think. the reason i'm wondering is because my one fish, Ollie is usually the most curious and active and loves diving down deep to the bottom of his tank. after the last tank cleaning i removed one of his decorations and replaced it with another, now he seems almost a little mopey! he mostly stays near the top and away from the area i had the decoration. not as active either...i think he might miss it! i could be wrong though. i always kinda thought bettas were smart because the fish i've had the longest don't seem to be extremely freaked by tank cleaning day when i catch them with a net like new bettas are. my senior bettas seem to swim in and out of the net very calmly! how smart do you think bettas are?
Actually I believe the three second memory span is a myth or some sort of rumor made by people who don't understand the way a fish's mind works. I've seen goldfish be trained to go through hoops, pick up hoops, touch certain objects, etc. with food as reinforcement. In fact, I've seen this done for bettas as well on youtube.
I honestly do think bettas can prove to be quite intelligent and do have some sort of memory...that's why they react differently when something new gets added to their tanks or they get put into a bigger sized tank with different decorations. They even have enough memory to understand who feeds them =P
There's no way a fish can have a 3 second memory (unless it is a REALLY dumb one!) When you train them to go through hoops. One person even told me that goldfish were as smart as 3 year old childs, so Bettas most certainly don't have a 3 second memory. If they did, why would they act different over different people? If they did, how could they be trained? If they did, how could they have different personalities? Bettas are smart!
Totally not true! My female Betta wiggles all over when she sees me. She swims straight to the food port in her tank, whether it's feeding time or not. She is so smart!
My male Betta also seems to recognize me. He sometimes flares at my parents, but never at me.
I'd say bettas are decently smart, they can be taught tricks and can recognize their owners. I taught mine to jump with little to no effort at all.
Here's a few articles about fish intelligence that I thought I would share, I was researching for a project, and they are interesting reads :) The fish in these articles are not bettas, but they still prove that fish are capable of learning things that we wouldn't have assumed possible! :)