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Are bettas and shrimp good tank mates?

Discussion in 'Betta Fish' started by sindy, Jun 13, 2014.

  1. sindy

    sindy Thread Starter Administrator Staff Member

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    My daughter has a betta for a pet and I know that they need to be isolated from another betta, including females. But I was wondering whether I could add a shrimp to the tank. The tank is about 3 gallons (I wouldn't use any of those awful tiny betta bowls or 1 gallon betta tanks) and there is room for the shrimp to hide, at least I would think so since there is a soft cave that has a thin spot where the betta can't reach the shrimp.
     
  2. betta

    betta Administrator Staff Member

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    No - bettas are not compatible with shrimp and certainly not with anything small enough to be attacked and eaten. The shrimp may live for a day or two and perhaps longer, but only until such time as your pet betta has in order to square up the shrimp and get a good bite. I'll upload some pictures of my experiment in trying to house a betta and a shrimp in the same tank.
     
  3. buzz4520

    buzz4520 Well-Known Member

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    I also agree, shrimp do not make good tank mates with bettas. We had a black mystery snail with our betta in a 10g and the betta had nothing to do with the snail
     
  4. betta

    betta Administrator Staff Member

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    Snails move extremely slowly and are large enough so that bettas probably wouldn't bother with them. Shrimp, on the other hand, are small enough to have parts fit in a betta's mouth. They are much more active and likely to tick off the betta.... which is what happened way back when I started.

    Many years ago when I started, this is what happened when I put a shrimp into a 2.5 gallon betta tank. That was more like 2+ gallons, had to have water changed every other day and no less than twice per week. I think 3 gallons is the minimum size if you want to keep your betta happy and healthy. They really like their space. Bad idea. Here is part one.
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  5. betta

    betta Administrator Staff Member

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    So after I thought my betta was just curiously look at the shrimp, he decided to have one more closer observation. The little shrimp wasn't bothering him at all, or so I thought. And he nudges right up against the little guy.

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  6. betta

    betta Administrator Staff Member

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    And shortly after, while I was taking pictures of two fellow tank mates that I thought were living in peace and harmony, this is what happened -- dinner! What annoyed me was that the betta didn't really do much more than take the shrimp apart. I thought he was hungry but it was more about a territorial dispute than anything else. This picture I snapped by accident and it was enough to end my experiment on whether it's safe to put a betta in the same tank as a shrimp. Not recommended, especially in any tank smaller than 5 gallons - the shrimp will be eaten or ended. Bettas are just territorial fish and don't want to feel like their safe area and territory is threatened.

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  7. buzz4520

    buzz4520 Well-Known Member

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    Very nice looking betta ! The last betta we had was the color as yours.
    I've also heard of people keeping African Dwarf Frogs with bettas in 5+ gallon tanks.