Your betta fish’s bubble nest has eggs if the male is sitting by it at all times. Male betta fish tend to the nest and catch any eggs that fall from the nest. This is their way of breeding, and it keeps the eggs safe from damage and predators.
The rest of this article will give you important information on the process of betta fish breeding and interesting facts on bubble nests and why males make them even without females.
Are There Eggs In The Bubble Nest?
Eggs are kept in the bubble nest. Male betta fish often instinctively build bubble nests even while living in tanks and without the presence of a female betta. If your betta is making a nest, it is natural and is a sign your betta is healthy.
Males take the eggs in their mouths after the females release them and add them to the nest. The males will then take care of the nest without females to assist them.
Eggs stay in the bubble nest for only a few days before they are ready to hatch. However, they will remain in the nest for more than a few days, maybe even a couple of weeks, before they leave and go out on their own. This is when they are able to survive without their parent.
Why Are Eggs Kept In A Bubble Nest?
Betta eggs are kept in a bubble nest because it is a safe place for the eggs to incubate in the natural betta habitat.
Betta fish are a member of a species family called Aphrophils. These species live in shallow, murky waters where predators dare not travel due to low oxygen levels and slow-moving, sometimes still, water.
This habitat makes it difficult to lay eggs normally, so betta fish and other species have adapted to form foam or bubble nests to support their reproduction. The nest is similar to a cocoon where the fry (baby betta fish) can have a safe place to grow.
How To Tell If A Betta Bubble Nest Has Eggs
In order to be able to look and see whether your betta fish have laid eggs and added them to their bubble nest, you first need to breed them and let the two fish go through the process.
Conditioning Your Fish For Breeding
In the wild, male betta fish will make a bubble nest in order to attract a female to come and appraise it. Once she does so and likes it, she and the male will mate.
For betta fish as pets, you need to condition your fish by taking extra care of them by feeding them live, freeze-dried, or frozen bloodworms, brine shrimp, and earthworms. It is also a great idea to keep their bowls very clean.
Introduce The Female
Place your conditioned female betta fish into a glass jar and introduce her to your conditioned male. Make sure you keep an eye on your bettas, so they don’t end up fighting each other. Once they are used to each other and become interested, the male will do a mating dance. He will flare his gills and show off for the female.
If he hasn’t already made a bubble nest, the male will do so, and the female will
Put her back into the jar to separate her from the male once again, for her and the potential spawn’s safety.
Keep an eye on the female and look for a change in color. The female is ready to release her eggs when she starts to show a striped pattern. If you see a small spec that looks like a small spec of salt between her ventral fins, that is her ovipositor.
Once you see this, add her back to the male’s bowl, and she will release her eggs. The male will wrap his body around hers and help to squeeze the eggs out. He will then take the eggs to the nest to incubate by taking them into his mouth. Sometimes the female will help.
Take the female from the male’s bowl using the jar or a net.
Males are normally aggressive to females but are less aggressive during the breeding process. The female should be removed, as mentioned because the male will become aggressive to the female again.
Male Watching The Nest
If your male has made a bubble nest and is staying close to it after mating with your female, there are eggs in the nest. The male bettas are the primary protectors of the nest. They will keep watch for any eggs that will call from the nest. If they do, he will take them back to the nest in his mouth.
You need to be careful you’re not being too invasive to your beta while taking care of the nest since he is likely to eat an egg or two when threatened.
The Nest Has Little White Dots Within The Bubbles
Once the female has laid her eggs, and the male has brought them up to the nest, you will start to see little white dots inside the bubbles of the nest. If the nest is flat, it will be easy to see.
The eggs look like little tiny marbles that can be hard to see if you’re not looking for them.
There will also be a cluster of eggs in one part of the foam of the bubble nest that can be identified by a little yellow patch where the eggs are located.
If you see your male betta fish around the nest more than usual, that means that there are eggs in the nest. There will also be times where the male is simply staying by the nest, but there are no eggs there, but more often than not, there will be eggs in the nest for him to protect.
Now you know what to look for to determine whether the bubble nest in your betta’s tank has eggs in it.