Sorry, I wasn't really sure where to post this, since there was no "strange, unbettalike behavior" section.
I suppose my dear Ella has reached full maturity now, because she lays eggs a little less than once a week. Usually about 100-200 eggs around 1mm. They look healthy enough, white, consistently sized, although they're not fertilzed.
Then the wacky part comes in: give her a day, and my dear Ella will have every one floating at the top. They are secured together by a few bubbles, and although she uses fewer bubbles than a male would, the eggs seem much more secure. She even holds off on eating them until we siphon them out, then she gets competitive.
So we have a female Betta, doing the male's job, better than he would have done. Oh yeah, and the eggs aren't even fertilized (maybe that makes them lighter?). She is not currently sharing a tank with anyone else, so that rules out gender mix up.
Has anyone else seen this happen? Do you have an explanation? I'm not so much worried as curious. I'll probably post a picture soon.
Um...females lay eggs without a mate??? Tell me not all females do this, please! I don't know what I would do if mine started laying eggs. I'm still too new to this. Ugh...going to take a look at her now and have a talk! :-?
Yes, they can lay eggs without a male. Yours probably will eventually if she is well fed (but don't starve her! It's mean).They won't grow into fry because they were never fertilized. Your female will probably start laying eggs as soon as she matures, and all you have to do is take them out, or they'll rot over time. So don't freak out, it's no big deal.
Oh dear! I knew there was a reason I wanted a male! Ok, so when will she be mature? Are there any signs I can look for? She wasn't paying me any attention when I tried talking to her telling her she doesn't need to lay any eggs. ;-)
Ok, take a deep breathe and breath! There seems to be so much to learn about these little fishies! Unbelievable!
It's REALLY NOT a big deal. I can't say when she'll be mature, because I don't know how long you've had her, and it can vary with the fish. If she's starting to make eggs she will look bloated, and a little white spot will appear under her belly in less than a week. If the white spot never appears, she's just overfed. Sometimes they will start to make eggs long before they lay. They often go through several cycles of makings eggs, then reabsorbing some, then making more. All you have to do is take them out when she lays them. You can do it with your regular water changes.
By the way, is that your fish in the picture? She has very long fins for a female...
Yeah, the gravel vac is fine, and Lisa if you don't want to spend the $ on one just a few feet of tubing from home depot is fine. Try to get 1/2" width or less.
I think Ella must be between 9 and 13 months old, but I got her from a pet store so it's anyone's guess. http://bettatalk.com/fry_growth.htm has a chart showing the growth of young bettas. If Pheonix still looks young, she's no more than 3 months old, and should be mature in a year or less.
Well, I have seen a little white spot and she has been bloated but I thought that was her eating too much the day before so I would fast her that day! But I see no eggs. Is it ok if she happens to eat some of them? I don't want her getting sick.
Yes, eating them is fine if they're still fairly fresh. Just get them out within a day so they don't go bad.
How much/how often do you feed her every day? She could actually be bloated even with the white spot. It's hard to tell. Just don't feed her eat "all you can eat"-females will eat a lot if you let them. (all-you-can-eat=eggs+bloating)
Ok, I'll be sure to watch for eggs but I won't be too concerned because she won't get sick if she eats a few before I can get them out...if she even lays any!
Ella, no that is not my female. That is the male I bought with the female before I took him back to the store as I learned after buying them that they can't stay in the same small tank. I really wanted him but she was calmer and I thought she would be the better choice for me in betta keeping. He was super pretty so I hope someone else came along with a bigger tank for him. He made some beautiful bubble nests!
I don't feed my female that much but the few times I have seen a big tummy on her I also saw the white spot. To me, big tummy equals a day of no eating. I am still learning with her!
Thanks everyone for the information! I learn something new everyday!
When I got her about 3 weeks ago she was small but had all her color, she just got a little bigger and her color is deeper and prettier. So now I know she must be between 4-8 months old, thank you! They can reabsorb their eggs? I have never heard of that but a lot of this stuff is new to me! Thanks for the info!
I was absolutely in shock, I didnt even know I had females, and then I saw the egg spot, and I noticed one of my females on her nose all day..looking for the perfect spot, and then I saw a microcosm of little white dots floating, still not sure, but I was assuming they were eggs, so then my next female a few days later doing the same thing, I knew the way she was acting, and whala..I got it on video..it's on Utube, under Pepsy dropping eggs!!! I will send the link in a few..
Cool video, lelei! I've never actually seen my girls lay eggs, even though they've both done so at least twice. Sad sad.
big belly does NOT mean no feeding. For one thing, if she goes a long time without feeding, it could permanently damage her digestive system. GO FEED HER RIGHT NOW. Even if you "fast" her, she should still eat a tiny amount of food to prevent that.
Some females can reabsorb their eggs, so you'd think fasting her would make her belly shrink, but in my experience that doesn't work... by the time it would work, it would probably damage her system first. So I guess they don't do that very efficiently. It makes sense though, because in the wild it would be better to lay and starve than feed yourself and destroy the next generation.
She's not necessarily mature yet. ALL pet store bettas go through a huge visible health improvement a few weeks after purchase (unless you take care of them REALLY BADLY!) Many bettas are sold by pet stores at 2-3 months (just a rough guess!).
So, make sure to feed her several times a day on a normal day, and just a little even on a "fast" day. Female bettas can absorb their eggs, but that doesn't mean they will.