Fighter fish breeding (betta fish breeding) is just like breeding any aquarium fish. However, there are few things that should be taken care of before the fighter fish breeding, during the fighter fish breeding, and after the fighter fish breeding.
Below the instructions are given in brief on how to breed fighter fish. They are as follows;
1. Buy a female fighter fish if you only have male fighter fish. Keep in mind that female fighter fish are rarely available in pet shops. You may get a standard female fighter fish if you look for the sources online.
2. After you get fighter fish pair, make them fit for the breeding process. For this, you have to feed them with superb quality foods. Live food is recommended but dried foods like frozen bloodworms and daphnia can also be given. During fighter fish breeding time, they tend to eat as much as they can. This whole process should be continued for two weeks.
3. Set the fighter fish breeding tank up. The tank must be cleaned with very hot water; but soap must not be used. Fill the water in the tank about 5 – 6 inches of height from the bottom. Attach your sponge filter and heater to the tank. The heater should be set between 80 – 82 degrees. Now, add the required dose of an aquarium bacteria starter as well as water conditioner. Put the sponge filter on.
4. Now, prepare the inside of the tank. Cut a Styrofoam in half. Place the cup halve in such a way, i.e. in the front corner of your tank, that it should float nicely on top of the water creating a “tunnel” of air between the cup and the top of the water. You can place either live plants or fake plants on the opposite corner of the floating cup. These plants will serve as hiding spots for the female fighter fish. Put tank divider or hurricane glass away from the half cup as well.
5. You can put the fighting fish pair into the tank once the fitness procedure is completed. First, turn off the sponge filter. Put the male fighter fish into the main tank area first. Let him get accustomed to the new surroundings for few minutes. Now, put the female fighter fish into the divided part of the tank or hurricane glass. It is recommended to keep the male and the female fighter fish separate at this stage.
6. When the male fighter fish is ready to breed, he will flicker his fins around the female fighter fish and begin to build a bubble nest. The female fighter fish will react to the male fighter fish’s action by displaying vertical bars on her body. However, it is not easy to see those bars. Once you get confirmed that the fighter fish pair is ready to breed, release the female fighter fish. It is recommended to release her just before “lights out” in the tank.
7. It is normal for a male fighter fish to chase the female fighter fish and nip at her fins. You may find fin and scale damage on both fighter fish (betta fish). When the female fighter fish is ready, she will approach the male fighter fish and the nest in a head down position. The process will take long as much as 48 hours. During this period, if the fighter fish pair has not spawned, remove the female fish. You can try again another time. Remember that do not feed the fighter fish while they are together.
8. The fighter fish breeding process will begin when both the male and female fighter fish are ready. You will see them appearing as if they are paralyzed for a while. This will be repeated several times.
9. You should remove the female fighter fish once she moves away from the male fighter fish and the embracing is not taking place anymore. Leave the male fighter fish and the nest of eggs alone. The female fighter fish should be put in a warm quite spot (clean water) so that she can rest and recover.
10. The male fighter fish begins to take care of the eggs by catching them and placing them back in the nest if they fall down.
11. The off-springs (fighter fish fry) will begin to swim after 4 days. At this stage, you should remove the male fighter fish.
12. Once you done that, turn on the sponge filter very lightly. The off-springs must handle the current. Also manage the air flow by using the valve appropriately.
13. Feed the off-springs with microworms. It is recommended to have them in hand before the fighter fish breeding begins. First, put some microworms in a cup of water and then, with the help of eye dropper, put them in the fighter fish breeding tank. 2 – 3 drops are enough. The feeding should be done every 4 – 6 hours. Otherwise, the growth rate of the off-springs will be affected. The feeding process should continue for 3 – 4 weeks. However, if you find enough microworms at the bottom of the tank before you begin the next feeding schedule, cancel that schedule. Remove the microworms which have been in the tank for more than 24 hours with the help of a siphon.
14. You can feed the off-springs with frozen bloodworms or daphnia which are cut into tiny pieces, once they begin to grow. For few days, combine this new food variety with microworms. You can stop this once you are confirmed that all off-springs are able to eat the larger foods.
15. Raise the water level of the fighter fish breeding tank steadily by adding water. This will give enough room to the off-springs to grow. Also, keep feeding them with the larger pieces of food.
16. After 7 – 8 weeks, it is recommended to separate male fighter fish from the group and put into their own containers. This does not apply for female fighter fish. The male fighter fish can easily be identified because of their extended fins at this stage.
17. You can release the raised fighter fish (betta fish) into the ponds if you live in a warm climate. Another best option is to present them as a gift to your friends and family members. Also, you can make money by selling them to the local pet shops. It is recommended to reserve some spots before the fighter fish breeding begins.