Can you fast your betta fish?

In this blog we will discuss betta fish fasting,its advantages,negative impacts,feeding frequency and everything related to fasting.This blog will give all the information to a novice fishkeeper about betta fish fasting and feeding frequency too.

Overview

In this blog

  • Can you fast your betta fish?
  • What is the advantage of fasting a betta fish?
  • How long can you leave your betta fish unattended?
  • How long can a betta fry go without food?
  • What is the negative impact of fasting your betta fish for more than 3 days?
  • What to feed bettas when you run out of specific betta food?
  • Feeding frequency for bettas
  • How do you know if you are overfeeding bettas?
  • How do you know if a fighting fish is hungry?
  • How to keep bettas digestive system in order?
  • Do fasting bettas keep the ammonia spikes in check?
  • How long can a betta fish spend without eating before it dies? 
  • Summary 
  • Frequently asked questions
  • Reference

Can you fast your betta fish?

Yes, you can fast your betta fish, most tank fish can survive several days of fasting, but some do it better than others.A fighting fish or bettas can go 10 to 14 days without food, but there are many factors that go along with this long period of fasting.

Bettas can spend a day or two without food, and then swallow every food you give them later. In addition,betta’s fish stomach is as large as its eyes. While the average maximum survival time is 14 days, betta begins to starve after 4-5 days when it is not given food.

What is the advantage of fasting a betta fish?

Bettas are voracious and love to eat, but that doesn’t mean they have to eat all the time.

Fasting your betta fish once a week is a wise idea. Bettas can stay without eating for up to two weeks.

A day of fasting allows their digestive system to rest to fully process food.

  • Reduced chance of constipation/bloating that may lead to air bladder disease.If the fish is constipated, fasting can give the intestines the necessary rest.
  • Artificial foods include flour and other bulking agents, which I think are one of the main reasons fish are constipated.
  • Fish haven’t evolved to eat such food.
  • Gastrointestinal cleansing
  • Better aquarium water quality
  • Fasting may also be a break from some of the artificial foods, as commercial or prepared food are filled with things that fish never eat in the wild. 
  • It may be better to replace prepared food with frozen or live foods.

How long can you leave your betta fish unattended?

If you are on vacation for two to four days, you may fast the betta fish during that period. Not all bettas can be left unattended as they all are different from age, health, metabolism and environment.The maximum time to leave without feeding should be 4-7 days.

How long can a betta fry go without food?

Fry of a betta fish can go for 3 days without eating if they can swim freely (48 hours after hatching). They get nutrients from the egg bag for the first 3 days of life, after which they need a small amount of feeding 3-4 times a day.

What is the negative impact of fasting your betta fish for more than 3 days?

Do not fast the fish for more than 3 days. After 3 days, your fish body goes into starvation mode, which stresses them.This stress often results in an increased likelihood of illness.

What to feed bettas when you run out of specific betta food?

Food to feed when you run out of betta specific food:

  • Raw shrimp
  • Worms
  • Tuna fish.
  • Other fish filets
  • Insects and insect larvae
  • Cut peas.
  • Melon

Feeding frequency for bettas

One should feed bettas small amounts twice daily. Feeding them once every morning and night is great. Making these feeds daily at about 12 hour intervals at the same time will help your betta fish to have a feeding routine.Some fishkeepers choose to fast their fish for 24 hours once every 10-14 days.

It is recommended to feed the betta fish 1 to 2 times a day with 2 to 4 pellets.The pellet swells when placed in water and fills the fish very well. Instead of pellet feeding 1-2 days a week, freeze-dried or fresh food can be used.

How do you know if you are overfeeding bettas?

If the flakes sink at the bottom of the tank and bettas are not eating it, then it’s an indication,you’re feeding your bettas too much. If the flakes are not consumed within a minute or two, they will most likely soften and rot at the bottom of the aquarium.

With time, the flake food will get accumulated in the gravel and if leftovers stay there for too long it will contaminate the water chemistry. If you fish eat too much, they will bloat and they may also be seen throwing out the food they just ate.

How do you know if a fighting fish is hungry?

Bettas will display these behavior,when they are hungry to let their owners know:

  • Bettas would be looking for food in the aquarium- They will wait for their food, and look for their owners to feed them exactly at the same time at the same spot everyday.
  • Waiting at the top of the aquarium (at the time of feeding).
  • Changes in behavior (aggression)- If they are not fed for a longer time,they will get aggressive.They are already known for their aggression and if they are not fed well,they will surely become angry and super aggressive and feed on smaller fish or might end up hurting other tank mates.
  • Noticeable weight/size changes-Your bettas will become thin, when they are not fed for 4-5 days continuously.
  • They will become feeble,which inturn will make their immune system weak and house of infections.
  • Slow or lethargic behavior- Not eating for a longer time can make them lazy.
  • They will stay at one spot all the time and hardly swim around in the aquarium, by displaying their colorful finnage.Their fins will also start losing colors and they will become extremely lazy.

How to keep bettas digestive system in order?

To keep your betta fish’s digestive system in good shape and prevent diet-related health problems from affecting your pet, feeding the fish once or twice a day, 6 days a week, and no food for a day would be a great idea.

Feeding frequency and feeding time table should be maintained too to maintain their health.Fasting once a week won’t hurt your bettas,but keeping them without food for much longer time can surely make them weak and feeble.

Do fasting bettas keep the ammonia spikes in check?

Overfeeding bettas are not at all good for their health and for the tank environment.If they are fed moderately everyday and on time and go fasting once a week will keep their digestive tract healthy.

If they are overfed,they will produce more poop, which contains lots of ammonia,which inturn will increase the ammonia levels in the tank.This spikes can alter the water chemistry,which won’t be suitable for bettas to thrive.

It is very important to clean the leftovers everyday using a gravel siphon for keeping the tank environment free of organic pollutants. Underfeeding is fine and fasting them once a week is great to keep them healthy overall.

How long can a betta fish spend without eating before it dies? 

The average maximum survival time is 14 days, but if not fed, bettas will begin to starve after 4-5 days.Not only does this increase their stress levels, it can also cause disease contractions and organ failure. Therefore, it is recommended not to leave the bettas for more than 4-5 days.

Summary

Most healthy tank fish can go without food for three days to a week. However, it is generally not recommended to  leave your fish without eating for more than a day or two unless absolutely necessary. 

Fish do not starve so quickly because of their surprisingly low energy requirements. If the owner leaves the house for days or weeks, the fish should be fine without being fed.

Some fishkeepers choose one day a week to not feed their fish and usually have great success doing so. However, if they use this as an excuse to avoid partial water changes, the tank would have a buildup of toxic nitrogen compounds.

Once a week it is reasonable to starve your pet fish.Don’t be afraid to starve them.A betta can live without food for up to two weeks,but in my opinion just three days.

A one-day fast gives their digestive tract a break to completely process the food.This practice can also help minimize the effects of overfeeding bettas.

A healthy adult aquarium fish can go from three days to one week without eating.Some species of fish can even survive more than two weeks without food.Whether in nature or in the aquarium, an adult fish has enough body mass and fat reserves to skip a few meals.

Frequently asked questions

Can  deliberately missing a feed one day a week be good for betta fish?

Deliberately missing a feeding once a week is good for betta, but don’t miss a feeding again.Fasting will ensure that your betta is in optimal health.

What is the best betta food?

Best food for bettas are:

  • Northfin food betta Bits
  • Fluval bug bites betta
  • Omega one betta buffet

Do prolonged fasting trigger illness in bettas?

Do not fast betta fish for more than 3 days, because three days later, their body becomes starved and stressed.This stress often results in an increased likelihood of illness.

Is it possible to fast a betta fish for two days?

With very little food, bettas can easily live without food for a day or two. 

Can a betta go without food for seven days?

Yes, only if their aquarium has been previously kept under optimal conditions, then a betta can go without food for seven weeks.

Reference

https://japanesefightingfish.org/betta-fish-feeding-instructions/

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