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Old 02-13-2012, 01:55 PM   #1 
Eiksaa
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Is my betta crazy?

Hi everyone! First, I would like to thank everyone for the wealth of information on this forum. I am a new betta owner(got Sake on Friday) and this forum made sure I didn't put him in a half gallon plastic bowl.

He is in a 5gallon tank(the Fluval Chi) with 2 plants, a hiding 'cave', a heater, a filter(just the one that the Chi comes with) etc. He has been eating well. I give him 4 pellets (2 in the morning, two at night) and I think he would easily eat more if I gave him more.

The problem is he has not stopped glass surfing in the last 2 days. I have tried every possible configuration of lighting and he still won't stop. He is not flaring at all, I have never actually seen him flare, but he just swims in vertical circles only along one side of his tank. He does this thing where he swims through the space between the 'rock on' sign and the glass(picture attached). Don't know if that's what keeps him going round and round or if he's following his reflection. I read on the forum bettas do this when they are bored but there's no way he could be bored already, right?

When should I start worrying about this? He seems healthy otherwise. Also, he hasn't gone into his cave yet, except one time when we switched on the lights at night suddenly.

Sorry if I'm being paranoid. But I am known to kill even bamboo plants(that supposedly are easy to keep) and I really, really want Sake to be ok.

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Old 02-13-2012, 02:04 PM   #2 
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His tank is pretty sparse, he could be lacking stimulation or nervous about the open space. I would get a few more plants and create a more stimulating environment.

Some bettas are perfectly content in bare-bottom tanks with nothing more than some Java Fern to hide in, while others need a more enriched environment to thrive.

Also, some bettas don't utilise caves at all. I have pieces of PVC pipe in most of my males' tanks and although they all have been in them, they only really use them 5% of the time, if that.

Don't worry I killed my lucky bamboo too but my bettas are all doing well.
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Old 02-13-2012, 02:18 PM   #3 
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+1 to LittleBettaFish

I like to have a heavily planted corner in the tank to allow my guys some refuge. In the one tank where I had a massive plant die-off after my bulb went out I noticed my guys glass surfing without the plants. Plants take some time to grow in, so give it a few weeks. In the meantime try to distract him with interaction like a mirror.

You could try stem plants like hornwort and anarcharis. Or go for fake plants, just make sure they are silk or don't have sharp edges.
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Old 02-13-2012, 02:36 PM   #4 
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More plants along the edges and other distractions in the meantime, got it. Thank you to you both for your replies.
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Old 02-13-2012, 03:30 PM   #5 
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I agree with what's been said. He needs a little bit more decor in his tank for stimulation. I would put in more plants (real or artificial, just be careful not to get anything with sharp edges). Btw, I have that temple and my little guy loves it! He likes to sleep in the top opening.
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Old 02-13-2012, 05:14 PM   #6 
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Yes.

Okay.. now I will read your post.. but had to answer the question at the top first, as all bettas are crazy ;)

He most likely is enjoying the room, enjoying the exercise, and looking at his surroundings outside of the tank. I have a boy, perfectly happy that swims nonstop- tires me out watching him.. but just the way he is.
I say just make sure to feed him small meals a couple times a day to keep up with the energy he is burning and let him just be him.
He doesn't need more plants.. in my own personal opinion. Yes, some prefer a more planted tank, but not all of them do.. If all he is doing is swimming around, then it's a good sign as he feels secure and is happy in his own little territory.

Now, don't get me wrong, you have gotten some good advice about more decor.. but honestly, it's not truly needed to keep a betta happy/healthy.. all depends on the fish, and if he isn't being shy, acting stressed then no reason to change it unless you want to. There may be something outside the tank in the room that attracts him to cause him to swim on that side more.. who knows.. but if he seems happy and active, then keep it as you like :)

As for reflection on the glass- that tends to happen when you have the tank light on, but the room is dark. And a good flare a day is good for them.

Good luck! And congrats on your new little guy!
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Old 02-13-2012, 05:35 PM   #7 
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I have active bettas that enjoy swimming almost constantly throughout the day, and then I have had bettas that constantly swim back and forth along the glass in an almost compulsive manner, sort of like pacing.

In my opinion, there is a difference between active, healthy swimming and glass surfing. I had a female that would incessantly swim back and forth along the back of her tank and only stopped once I moved her to a more stimulating environment. It never struck me as healthy as it always seemed very frantic and obsessive.

Although a lot of my tanks are fairly boring with maybe a handful of moss and some PVC pipe, my males are all in sight of either another male or female and so get a lot of mental enrichment. If the OP has the tank positioned somewhere there is not a lot of outside activity, it could be that her fish is 'bored' or slightly skittish.

If he doesn't stop glass-surfing after a week or so in his new tank, I would put in some more plants. I don't think long-term compulsive behaviours are healthy in any animal.
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Old 02-14-2012, 04:54 PM   #8 
Eiksaa
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Follow up question, the current plants I have(the two you see in the picture) were just impulse buys when I knew nothing about plants. As I am planning a shopping list I have been consulting the plant guide on this site. However, could someone help me identify these two plants? I would really appreciate it a lot.
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Old 02-14-2012, 05:20 PM   #9 
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It looks like a variety of cryptocoryne and maybe hygrophila.
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Old 02-16-2012, 01:11 PM   #10 
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Thank you! I got plants for him and he seems to love them. His glass surfing has reduced a lot and he just kinda chills behind the plants. Again, thank you so much everyone.
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