If you position your betta fish tank in the wrong place, you could be doing your betta a great deal of harm, even to the point of causing them to get sick or even to pass away.
One of the many misconceptions that people have concerning bettas, is that a betta fish should be kept in bright sunlight next to a window.
Granted, bettas come from an area that is hot most of the time and has a great deal of sunshine. The problem with this logic is that a lake is much larger than a fish tank, has plants to keep the temperature down and the bettas have places to hide under if they get too hot.
If you put a plastic cup full of water in direct sunshine for about two hours, you will find that the temperature of the water has risen. After a few hours or days the temperature will become hot to the touch. Imagine if this was your betta tank instead of a cup. Bettas thrive in water that is around 80 degrees and will die in water that gets into the 90’s. If your tank has a lid, the temperature increase will be even more dramatic.
Think about a garden hose that has water in it and is in the direct sunlight all day. When you start the water flowing, it comes out almost boiling to the touch. Guess what would happen if your betta had been in that water; they wouldn’t have lasted more than a few minutes.
The best place for your betta aquarium would be on an inside wall, out of direct sunlight, but still capable of having a great deal of light come into the tank.
Another misconception is that the aquarium should be in front of a mirror, so the fish thinks that it has company.
One of the main things to remember, about bettas, especially male bettas, is that they are fighting fish and will fight to the death with other bettas.
If you put two male bettas in a tank together, they will fight until one of them is dead. This is the nature of the male betta, after all, they aren’t called Siamese Fighting Fish for nothing.
It may shock you to learn that two females will do about the same thing, they may not kill each other but will tear at the others fins and tails. In the end this will cause death to the other fish.
Having a mirror behind the tank will make the betta think he has a rival in the area that is trying to dominate the aquarium. Your betta will then spend all his time trying to get at the other fish. He will frantically bang on the tank walls, swim endlessly around the aquarium and even try to launch himself out of the tank to get at the other male.
In the end, your betta will wear himself completely out, to the point of exhaustion and maybe even death.
To remedy this type situation and make the betta a little happier, my wife found a picture of flowers in a magazine. The flowers were colorful with lots of green stems, that gave the scene a tropical look. We taped that picture to the back of the aquarium, giving our little fish a bright cheery home that he could call his own.
Placing your betta fish tank in an area that is eye level with children may seem like a fun idea. If you were a fish on the other side, you wouldn’t think it was such a great idea, especially if the child starts tapping on the side of the tank.
Imagine that you are in your house and a huge giant comes up, puts his face at your window and starts banging on the side of your house. A little scary isn’t it?
Think how scary it must be for a fish to have this happen to their tank. To make matters worse, water will amplify the sound of the tapping within the tank. You can just imagine how uncomfortable this would be for your betta.
Make sure that your children look and enjoy, but don’t tap on the glass or put their hands into the water.
Your betta can live a long and healthy life, up to 5 years. Correct placement of the tank can significantly add to the lifespan of your betta, by giving them more enjoyment of life, a feeling of security and a safe environment in which to live.