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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited by Moderator)
Based on the pictures, ballpark guesses? Just for fun 馃槉

Could a moderator rotate the image for me? Or could someone tell me how to do it?

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Discussion Starter #4

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In my opinion betta never stop growing, they only slow down in growth as they get older . The most growth will happen in the first 3 months from newly hatched fry to roughly 2 inches head to tail assuming normal growth rate. (long fin males will have started growing longer/ caudals at this point)

Genetics/food availability/temperature/water chemistry/quality plays a huge role in betta growth/size. I would already consider her to be at "full size" but she should continue to grow, albeit rather slowly when comparing growth to her first 3 months.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
In my opinion betta never stop growing, they only slow down in growth as they get older . The most growth will happen in the first 3 months from newly hatched fry to roughly 2 inches head to tail assuming normal growth rate. (long fin males will have started growing longer/ caudals at this point)

Genetics/food availability/temperature/water chemistry/quality plays a huge role in betta growth/size. I would already consider her to be at "full size" but she should continue to grow, albeit rather slowly when comparing growth to her first 3 months.
Oh yes, I forgot to clarify, I know that fish continue to grow throughout their lives. I meant to say adult size rather than full size.

I think she grew slower than typical because she was about 6 months when her growth really slowed down. I attribute that to the 77-78* water. She probably would have grown faster in the low 80's. I kept her water clean and fed her a high quality diet, so I hope I didn't stunt her!

I didn't know they typically reached adult size so quickly! Does that mean the Betta at the store (that aren't babies) can be as young as a little over 3 months?
 

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Full adult size at 3 months is not typical for betta bred for commercial purposes. It is only achievable through power growing, 100% water changes or 100s+ gallons of water to dilute growth hormones and power feeding high protein/fat food multiple times a day, usually only done by people that show betta and want "quicker" results from their projects.

Most betta we see at the store that are "full adult size" tend to be older at around 6+ months of age.

kinda off topic but slow growth is not necessarily bad, a lot of older fish/betta keeper and myself believe betta fish used to have longer lifespans of 4-8 years back when heaters weren't readily available for the hobby, compared to most betta fish that have a lifespan of 2-4 years these days with heaters. It could be due to poor genetics from too much line breeding, but in my opinion it has a lot to do with the speeding up of their metabolism/growth rates with constant high temperatures.
 

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Full adult size at 3 months is not typical for betta bred for commercial purposes. It is only achievable through power growing, 100% water changes or 100s+ gallons of water to dilute growth hormones and power feeding high protein/fat food multiple times a day, usually only done by people that show betta and want "quicker" results from their projects.

Most betta we see at the store that are "full adult size" tend to be older at around 6+ months of age.

kinda off topic but slow growth is not necessarily bad, a lot of older fish/betta keeper and myself believe betta fish used to have longer lifespans of 4-8 years back when heaters weren't readily available for the hobby, compared to most betta fish that have a lifespan of 2-4 years these days with heaters. It could be due to poor genetics from too much line breeding, but in my opinion it has a lot to do with the speeding up of their metabolism/growth rates with constant high temperatures.
This is interesting because all of my pre-heater era Betta lived seven years or more.
 

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Full adult size at 3 months is not typical for betta bred for commercial purposes. It is only achievable through power growing, 100% water changes or 100s+ gallons of water to dilute growth hormones and power feeding high protein/fat food multiple times a day, usually only done by people that show betta and want "quicker" results from their projects.

Most betta we see at the store that are "full adult size" tend to be older at around 6+ months of age.

kinda off topic but slow growth is not necessarily bad, a lot of older fish/betta keeper and myself believe betta fish used to have longer lifespans of 4-8 years back when heaters weren't readily available for the hobby, compared to most betta fish that have a lifespan of 2-4 years these days with heaters. It could be due to poor genetics from too much line breeding, but in my opinion it has a lot to do with the speeding up of their metabolism/growth rates with constant high temperatures.
I wonder if turning the heaters down to 74 to 76 degrees during the winter, and cutting back on food, would help? I know the with some species of tortoise it's important, for their long term health, to give them a cold period to hibernate in during the winter.
 

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Rethinking it a bit... Maybe turn the heaters down at night in the winter, and then back up during the day. It looks like that would follow the temperature pattern that betta would have in the wild.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Interesting theory...
On that note, years ago my sister had a betta with no heater...and it was in a 1/2 gallon bowl, and she cleaned the bowl with DISH SOAP. That betta also lived to be 7. I don't like to bring that up very often, because it isn't a good example of how to take care of a betta, but you guys know better 馃槈.

Anyway, maybe there's something to be said about if/when heaters are really necessary for betta.
 

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kinda off topic but slow growth is not necessarily bad, a lot of older fish/betta keeper and myself believe betta fish used to have longer lifespans of 4-8 years back when heaters weren't readily available for the hobby, compared to most betta fish that have a lifespan of 2-4 years these days with heaters. It could be due to poor genetics from too much line breeding, but in my opinion it has a lot to do with the speeding up of their metabolism/growth rates with constant high temperatures.
This is true - higher temps = higher metabolism = shorter lives. Fast growers tend to have shorter lives compared to runts or those that grew at a normal rate. Breeders have shorter lives, especially if excessively bred. . . . . But I don't know why - don't know the science behind it.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
kinda off topic but slow growth is not necessarily bad, a lot of older fish/betta keeper and myself believe betta fish used to have longer lifespans of 4-8 years back when heaters weren't readily available for the hobby, compared to most betta fish that have a lifespan of 2-4 years these days with heaters. It could be due to poor genetics from too much line breeding, but in my opinion it has a lot to do with the speeding up of their metabolism/growth rates with constant high temperatures.
This is true - higher temps = higher metabolism = shorter lives. Fast growers tend to have shorter lives compared to runts or those that grew at a normal rate. Breeders have shorter lives, especially if excessively bred. . . . . But I don't know why - don't know the science behind it.
Well does this mean, if you are keeping as a pet and not for breeding purposes, that it is better to keep the betta around the lower temp range (76-78*F) or possibly with no heater at all?

Or, is it possible that keeping a betta for longer doesn't necessarily mean it was happier. For instance, maybe a betta would rather live for 3 years in warm water than 6 years in cold water.

Maybe with tropical fish, a longer lifespan doesn't directly correlate with good care?

And please don't take offense to this! People here that have had long lived Betta, I am sure you kept them alive longer because you kept them healthy. I'm just saying maybe some people (like my sister I meantioned earlier) kept a betta alive for a long time because of cooler water, even though they had a less than good diet and uncycled and dirty water.

But then again, it seems like power feeding and very warm water isn't necessarily healthy either. Or maybe it is?

I don't know. This thread has taken a turn but that's ok with me. Please share your thoughts on this!

And again, I really hope this doesn't offend anyone. I think having kept a betta alive for 4+ years is something to be proud of! And I also understand that breeders need to keep their fish growing and moving at a good pace.
 

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No one is saying lowering temperatures will cause a Betta with otherwise awful care to live longer. Why your sister's did is a mystery; an anomaly. I imagine far more Betta and other fish die under such lack of care than live seven years.

A majority of species profiles (not blog opinions) give a temperature range of 72-82 for Betta splendens. So temperatures of 76-78 would be median. I wish I knew the temperature of my two-gallon bowls all those years ago; but since heaters for such hadn't been invented, I didn't have thermometers.

Interesting conversation.

FWIW, the definition of a "Tropical" climate is: Non-arid climate in which all twelve months have mean temperatures of warmer than 18 掳C (64 掳F).

Sort of makes you wonder about "Tropical" water temperatures, doesn't it?
 

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Discussion Starter #15
No one is saying lowering temperatures will cause a Betta with otherwise awful care to live longer. Why your sister's did is a mystery; an anomaly. I imagine far more Betta and other fish die under such lack of care than live seven years.

A majority of species profiles (not blog opinions) give a temperature range of 72-82 for Betta splendens. So temperatures of 76-78 would be median. I wish I knew the temperature of my two-gallon bowls all those years ago; but since heaters for such hadn't been invented, I didn't have thermometers.

Interesting conversation.

FWIW, the definition of a "Tropical" climate is: Non-arid climate in which all twelve months have mean temperatures of warmer than 18 掳C (64 掳F).

Sort of makes you wonder about "Tropical" water temperatures, doesn't it?
Right, I wasn't saying that either. I was very surprised that my sister's Betta lived so long. I'm sorry if my thoughts got a little jumbled by the time I typed them 馃槪

Maybe the sweet spot is more towards the lower 70's than the upper 70's?

Although higher temps help with immune system, right?

This does make me wonder...
 

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Because I have Betta-based community tanks and must keep the needs of all residents in mind, I keep my tanks between 76-78. This is the median range for most species so that's how I decided.

And jumbled thoughts? Sometimes I don't understand the things I've written!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Because I have Betta-based community tanks and must keep the needs of all residents in mind, I keep my tanks between 76-78. This is the median range for most species so that's how I decided.

And jumbled thoughts? Sometimes I don't understand the things I've written!
Ah, okay. I think I will continue to keep my betta tanks in the median range as well. Keeping fish is a balancing act!

LOL same here. I usually just hope that the people on the other end understand what I'm trying to convey XD
 

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There are several things I myself don't understand. Things done by people in the US may not be do-able by me. You can keep bettas at a steady 77F (25C). Mine would be problematic. It's usually okay if temps fluctuated between 77-80.6F (25-27C) within a 24 hour period. So I can't say what is best and tend to stay away from questions about betta care.
 

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There are several things I myself don't understand. Things done by people in the US may not be do-able by me. You can keep bettas at a steady 77F (25C). Mine would be problematic. It's usually okay if temps fluctuated between 77-80.6F (25-27C) within a 24 hour period. So I can't say what is best and tend to stay away from questions about betta care.
Don't feel alone! I don't think any of us knows what's really best or understands everything. Besides temperatures, so much depends on parameters like hardness, pH, genetics, parameters of water where raised, care and feeding of fry, etc.

That is why I always note the only thing written in stone is aquatics is "Nothing is written in stone."
 

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I grew up on a tropical island where I had my first betta back when you could only get them in VTs and mostly in blue and red. Tropical temperatures were defined by the temperature zones between the Tropic of Capricorn and the Tropic of Cancer, this other definition I wasn't aware of until I read it here by @RussellTheShihTzu and had to look it up. Ambient temperatures varied from 76 degrees to 87 degrees depending on the time of year (which meant the water temperature ranges were only slightly less than that).

My first betta lived in a 1 gallon tank that was sometimes changed weekly and I'm pretty sure I stressed him out when I did water changes. No filter, obviously no heater and he ate mosquito larva and chopped up earth worms almost every day. Water was left out to age for 24+ hours although my dad always had a couple hundred gallons of water aging at any given time so water could be aging for a week. My brother's betta jumped out of his tank and mine died from unnatural causes that I don't remember because I think it's too traumatic. And the one thing I remember ... he was never ill.

Back then, it was common for bettas to live 4+ years. Do I think it's genetics ... yes. Do I think it is because there were less pathogens and chemicals in the water back then ... yes. Do I think the food was less contaminated back then ... yes. Do I know any of this for sure ... nope.
 
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