This is one of the most frequently asked questions. Is the behavior of your Betta confusing you? Do you think that it is blind? Or do you think that it might be going blind? If these are some of the few questions that keep you up at night then fear not! We have got you covered!
Yes, Betta fish can go blind. However, there is very little chance of complete blindness. Most of the time Betta fish partially lose sight in one eye or completely lose sight in one eye. Betta fish go blind mostly because of parasitic infections or sometimes because of fighting with other fish because of their aggressive nature.
Through this article, we will discuss in detail Betta’s vision. By the end of this article, you will understand all about your Betta’s sight. So let’s get started about Betta blindness and everything you need to know about it.
So Can Betta Fish Go Blind?
Unfortunately, the answer to this question is yes. Betta can very much go blind. They might get partially blind or lose one eye and they may even go completely blind. So if you think that your Betta is blind then there is a high chance that it actually is. It is sad but it is what it is.
How to Spot a Blind Betta?
Before discussing why a Betta goes blind and what to do to treat it, we will discuss how one can identify a blind Betta. So we will discuss one by one some key points to identify a blind Betta. The points are as follows;
They Collide With the Decorations and other Fish
Bettas have very good vision generally. If you see your Betta colliding with other tank mates and seemingly obvious decorations then this should get your attention. If your Betta is banging into things in the tank then there is a high chance that it is visually impaired.
They have Stopped Eating their Food
Are you noticing pellets lying around untouched in the tank? Does your betta seem to have lost its appetite suddenly? Then this could be an eye issue rather than a gut issue. Your Betta might not be eating simply because it can’t see the food. Betta depends highly on their vision for food\. A Blind Betta might suffer in this regard.
No Response to Unusual Change
Put your finger in the Betta tank. Make sure your hands are clean, we are not trying to bother the Betta even more! If the Betta gets curious about your finger and tries to explore it then chances are that it is not blind. If a Betta shows no interest in the new object then it is likely that it has gone blind.
Put a Mirror in the Betta Tank
Betta is extremely territorial. They can even fight with Betta if they try to come into their space. So if you put a mirror in the tank a normal Betta will try to fight with its reflection. If your Betta gives no response to its reflection then there is a chance that it has gone blind.
The Eyes Physically Look Weird
Blind eyes might be identified if looked closely. If your Betta’s eyes seem cloudy or if they seem like they are popping out then there is a high chance that the Betta is going blind or is already blind. So it is suggested to keep a close check on your Betta’s eyes. If such symptoms are detected early, the Betta might be saved from permanent damage.
What Causes Betta’s Blindness?
We will now discuss different diseases and problems which can cause Betta to go blind. Some of these can be avoided while others are genetic. So now we will discuss one by one a few causes of Betta blindness. The causes are as follows;
Trauma or injury is one of the causes of Betta blindness. A Betta’s eye might get injured by different things.
- It could get into a fight with other tank mates and get its eye injured.
- It could get poked in the eye by the decorations in the tank.
- It could get injured by the filter or heater in the tank and damage its eyes.
Like humans, Betta can also develop eye cataracts with age. Simply put cataract is a clouding of the eye lens. This clouding makes it difficult for the Betta to see and they can even go completely blind. Unfortunately, there are not any surgeries for the Betta which could treat cataracts. So you could say that a Betta with a cataract cannot regain its sight. Alas! Life is not fair.
Certain types of Betta are bred to have very beautiful scales. These scales are called dragon skills. This type of Betta can undergo a specific condition. In this condition, these scales start to grow around the eye region. The scales can become so big that they completely cover Betta’s eyes. So if the Betta’s eyes are completely covered then they won’t be able to see or in other words, they will go blind.
Too much Ammonia
Betta waste carries ammonia in it. Too much ammonia in the Betta tank is one of the biggest curses. An increased amount of ammonia can cause Betta’s eyes to become cloudy. So the tank parameters must always be kept in check to keep an eye on the ammonia, nitrates, and nitrites levels.
One of the biggest causes of Betta blindness is infections. Infections can be of three main types. These types are as follows;
- Bacterial infections.
- Fungal infections.
- Parasitic infections.
These infectious germs can enter the Betta tank in various ways. For example, they can be a part of the Betta feed. They can even grow in the Betta tank.
Bacterial growth in the tank is accelerated by ammonia, ammonia is present in the Betta waste. Fungal growth in the tank is caused by a too-moist or warm environment. Lastly, Parasites can be present in the organisms that Betta eats as food.
So there are numerous ways that your Betta might contract an eye infection. Such eye infections can cause the Betta to lose sight or even go blind. So one must look out for such threats at all times.
You can read more posts: Do Betta Fish Like Colored Lights?
How to Take Care of a Blind Betta?
Once it is confirmed that your Betta is blind or is losing sight, now is the time to take action. If properly cared for a blind Betta can also lead a happy and fulfilling life like a normal Betta. We shall now discuss the course of action one must adopt in order to take care of the Blind Betta. We will discuss these points in detail now.
Move the Betta to a Separate Tank
Now that you have identified that the betta has gone or is going blind you need to put it in a separate tank. The reasons for putting the Betta in a separate tank are given below;
To keep them Safe from Bullying
A blind Betta can be an object of bullying by its tank mates. The best option is to separate the Betta.
To keep the Infection from Spreading
If the blindness is caused by an infection then the tank mates are also at risk. So to keep the other fish safe, the infected betta must be separated.
To Give the Betta a Chance to Heal
If the blindness is caused by an injury then the Betta must be moved to a safe place to heal. By moving it to a different tank we ensure that it is not injured by any tank mates again.
Make the Tank Safe for the Betta
A blind Betta can collide with the decorations, heater, and filters present in the tank. To keep the Betta safe from injury you must remove all dangerous decorations and cover the necessary things with foam.
Feed it Skillfully
Betta has a very good memory. Even if they can’t see the food they will remember where it is given to them. So you must feed the Betta in a designated spot so that they don’t have trouble finding it.
If the Betta still can’t locate the food then you can use tweezers to directly put the food in its mouth or you can simply just put the food where the Betta sleeps. This could help Betta in finding it.
Check the Ammonia Levels in the Tank
High ammonia levels can cause cloudy eyes in the Betta. So the tank parameters must be kept in check. If ammonia levels are high then they must be brought down. Bacterial growth depends on ammonia concentration. If ammonia is not present in the tank then the Betta would be safe from Bacterial infections.
Use Aquarium Salt to Remove Infections from the Tank
If the Betta are having Bacterial, fungal, or parasitic infections then you can add 1 to 2 tablespoons of aquarium salt to the tank. This will kill the germs and improve the water quality. Keep in mind that this salt can be a part of the tank for 10 days and removed afterward.
The Bottom Line on Why did my Betta Fish Go Blind?
So I hope that now you are clear about whether your Betta is blind or not. You must also have an idea of what to do if the Betta is blind. Firstly you must stop feeling sorry for it! A blind Betta can live a very happy and normal life if looked after well. So don’t frown, we won’t let your Betta drown!