So Saturday night, I had an inkling of a design idea that revolves around betta fish. The Betta fish (a subset being the commonly known Siamese Fighting Fish) is absolutely beautiful:


So the idea was to get one of these from Ikea:

... and get some individual tanks for each Betta fish and arrange them like so:

I think it would look very attractive.

Unfortunately, the problems began when I realized that no Ikea shelf would support the weight I needed; assuming each of those jars is a 2 gallon tank for each Betta, that means the shelf has to support roughly 40 pounds of weight (~8.3 pounds per gallon for water, plus the tank itself). So the plans were put temporarily on hold.

Instead, I *did* want to pursue setting up tanks of Bettas next to each other (watching them flare up at each other is rather amusing, although I will state that none of the fish are stressed out - they simply swim away if they get tired of flaring!). So I added a 20 gallon tank and partitioned it with dividers (so each Betta fish gets 5 gallons of space):

You can see a bit closer the arrangement in the tank:

Unfortunately, the middle partition was makeshift and wasn't enough to keep the two center Bettas separated, so I moved one of them to the community tank (I haven't seen him attack a fish yet, so I may just keep him there!). When I get back from NC, I'll finish this tank by adding another partition and adding a few rocks (give them hiding space).

This morning, I woke up and found the betta which was in the left partition in the center! The only conceivable way this happened was that he jumped! Anyways, before I split for work, I put him back in the left partition... but when I got back from work, he had somehow found his way back to the center again!.

I decided to leave that guy in the center, and moved the guy who was previously in the center to the left.

(I have a tank cover, but it doesn't completely close due to the filter I have installed).

My community tank is doing very well - all the fish are incredibly active and seem to get along with each other very well. I had two fatalities yesterday, but those were of sick fish from the store, so I'm ok with it. I bought some larger rocks today, and I'm going to order a Java fern soon so I can help set-up a more fry-friendly (baby fish) part of the aquarium - I have a lot of live-bearing fish, so hopefully with some luck one of them will have a few babies which will make it into adulthood.

Posted by roy on November 13, 2007 at 11:20 PM in Loft | 9 Comments

Related Entries

Want to comment with Tabulas?. Please login.

Comment posted on November 15th, 2007 at 03:27 PM
you're going to fry fish?
har har har.
Comment posted on November 14th, 2007 at 09:52 AM
Name him Jacques Cousteau!
Comment posted on November 14th, 2007 at 09:31 AM
oh yeah, and bettas can jump!

And to jinshil - even though people tend to put them in tiny bowls, they are better off in bigger tanks, at least one gallon, preferably bigger.
Comment posted on November 14th, 2007 at 09:29 AM
Just keep an eye on the bettas. I also have 2 bettas, and I used to keep them next to each other. For months, they seemed fine with the arrangement, only flaring up at each other now and then. But then one day they just both started flipping out and thrashing around. I would separate them for a while to cool off, and then try to put them back together, to no avail. Now they have to sit on separate shelves to prevent them from freaking out to death.
Comment posted on November 15th, 2007 at 10:41 AM
My betta fish, Marcel Marceau usually sits placidly in his bowl staring into space, sometimes making the effort to taunt my roommate, Laundromat Jeff. But then, every once in a while, he'll spin around really fast and almost jump out of the bowl. This one time he got about two feet of air and pulled a knife on me during a heated discussion about clowns versus mimes. I was arguing that mimes are just black-and-white clowns, and he kept on insisting that "le mime, c'est un art," and, "les clowns sont les bouffons idiot avec des poulets plastiques."
Comment posted on November 15th, 2007 at 04:25 PM
Comment posted on November 15th, 2007 at 09:48 PM
No kidding.
Comment posted on November 14th, 2007 at 08:19 AM
very nice!

i really like the ikea shelf idea. why two gallon jars? that seems huge for a betta fish.
Comment posted on November 14th, 2007 at 02:52 PM
well, for your betta to be healthy, it's suggested you keep tanks > 1 gallon.

another thing to consider is that with a <1 gallon tank, you'll have to do water changes *really* often (probably once every few days). i think with a 2-gallon you can probably get away with changing the water once a week.