When the days get shorter, the leaves change color, and the air turns crisp, we know that the cozy comfort of fall is quickly being replaced with the bitter chill of winter. These changes also bring their own set of considerations for any pet owner who has an aquarium at home. If you’re reading this article because you own a betta fish and are concerned about its ability to survive through temperature for a betta fish in the winter months, you have good reason to be concerned. After all, it’s not typical to see these tropical fish thriving in such cold temperatures. However—with some careful planning on your part—your little friend can make it through this upcoming season just fine.
There’s no doubt that winter is on its way. You may already be noticing the first signs of its arrival. However, betta fish don’t thrive in cold temperatures. If you want to ensure that your betta survives through the winter months, you’ll need to be proactive in your planning. Remember, it’s not that your fish will die if temperatures fall below 50 degrees Fahrenheit. What’s dangerous for your betta is sudden and drastic changes.
If the temperature in your home suddenly drops (due to a power outage or faulty furnace, for example), your betta is likely to become stressed. Even if temperatures only fall to the low 60s, your betta could be negatively impacted. If you want your betta to survive the winter months, you’ll want to take these sudden changes into account. Be sure to plan to ensure that your betta is prepared for any sudden temperature changes.
Adapt Your Betta habitat
In the summer months, your betta likely has a warm and sunny habitat to call its home. However, when temperatures fall and the cold weather of winter sets in, it’s time to switch things up. First, be sure to keep your betta inside away from the cold as much as possible. If you can create a warm spot for your betta inside, this will go a long way toward keeping it healthy. Try using a heat lamp or something similar to keep your betta’s habitat warm and cozy.
You may also want to consider upgrading your betta’s habitat to one that is more insulated and warm. If you own a glass aquarium, you can purchase aquarium heaters that sit on the bottom of the tank to provide warmth. Be sure to check the instructions that come with your heater to ensure that you’re using it correctly. You can also try adding a layer of insulation to your aquarium. You can find special aquarium insulation online or at your local pet store.
Don’t Forget The Food
One of the first things that most pet owners worry about in the winter months is their pet’s ability to get enough to eat. For most outdoor pets, this is not a concern since they can roam the yard and eat what they find. However, bettas are largely kept indoors, which means that they rely on their owners to provide them with plenty of food. In the summer months, you can feed your betta a variety of foods that contain higher levels of protein.
But as the weather gets colder, you’ll want to switch to a higher percentage of protein in your betta’s diet. Try adding frozen bloodworms or brine shrimp to your betta’s diet in the winter months. You can also feed your betta a high-protein feeder fish like silverfish or mosquito fish. Be sure to provide your betta with plenty of food, especially if you notice that your fish is eating less.
Heating & Lighting
If you live in an area where temperatures drop below freezing in the winter months, you may want to consider adding a heater to your betta’s tank. You can find specialized aquarium heaters at your local pet store or online. Be sure to choose a heater that is designed for aquariums so that it doesn’t damage your tank.
If your betta tank doesn’t already come with a built-in light, you’ll want to add one. Betta fish are tropical creatures and need a lot of light to thrive. While you can add light to any aquarium, be sure that you get a hood that covers the entire tank. This will help protect your betta from any nearby dangers, such as curious cats.
Install a Humidifier
One of the biggest threats to a betta in the winter months is the risk of developing swim bladder disease. While this disease can strike bettas at any time, it is especially prevalent during the cold months when humidity is low. There are several ways that you can increase the humidity around your betta and decrease the risk of swim bladder disease. All of these methods will help keep your betta is healthy and happy as possible during the winter months.
You can try adding a humidifier to your home to increase humidity levels. Be sure to place the humidifier in a well-ventilated area and keep it away from your betta’s habitat. You can also try adding a water feature to your betta’s habitat. Be sure to clean your water feature regularly to prevent the disease from spreading.