Why Is My Betta Fish Hiding and What To Do?

Bettas are very active and energetic fish; they can be seen swimming actively near the surface or around the middle of the tank. They are very territorial and, in many cases, aggressive and hiding can be treated as a part of their behavior. If you notice your Betta hiding that doesn’t have to be treated as unusual behavior but if it is then it can be easily solved.

You may be asking yourself – why is my Betta fish hiding. Find out why by reading this article on what could be causing a Betta fish to hide.

Why Is My Betta Fish Hiding

What does it mean when your Betta fish hides?

For most Bettas hiding is just normal behavior and there is no need for alarm. There can be a lot of reasons why your Betta is hiding. For instance, your Betta could be exploring a new home and its new territory or it could be nervous for some reason. In many cases, hiding is just a part of its personality. 

Is it normal for a Betta fish to hide?

In the majority of cases if you observe your Betta and notice that it is hiding you can treat it as normal. However, there are some reasons for this kind of behavior that can be considered. We are going to present the most common reasons to help you understand your Betta`s behavior.

Why Is My Betta Fish Hiding? Most Common Reasons

  • One reason could be connected to the water quality. If you do not keep regular maintenance of the water, it can easily get dirty and become toxic. It is very important to regularly check the level of chlorine, nitrates, nitrites and ammonia that can be toxic and fatal to your pet. If a Betta feels endangered due to this reason it will try to avoid it by hiding. Check the parameters and keep them within limits.
  • Noise and vibrations can also be the reasons for hiding because they scare Bettas like most other fish so they will start hiding. Do not tap the tank, knock at the glass or place it near a source of vibrations. Constant exposure to noise and vibrations can cause stress to your Betta and lead to more serious problems. 
  • Bettas love tanks with plenty of plants and a lot of hiding places, that makes them feel safe. If you have a tank with large open spaces your Betta is going to try new hiding places behind the filter or decorations in the tank.  We advise you to have a lot of live plants and decorations inside the tank that will provide your Betta with enough hiding places.
  • If you introduce a tank mate that is highly aggressive it can cause your Betta to start looking for shelters. This can cause stress for your Betta and provoke other health issues. However, this rarely happens because in most cases Bettas are those who are aggressive and bully other tank mates. Be careful when you choose a tank mate for your Betta.
  • If your Betta is injured or ill it will feel vulnerable and try to hide. Inspect your pet, check if there are visible signs that something is wrong and try to solve them if there are any.
  • If the light is too bright and Bettas don’t have enough shade like in their natural habitat it may start hiding. The best is to have adjustable light and some floating plants to provide shades.
  • The current may be strong and makes it difficult for a Betta to swim. You could try changing the direction of the filter so it doesn’t bother your Betta that much or adding some holes in the output hose or add an extra sponge to cover the nozzle of the filter. 
  • If your Betta is depressed try adding a tank mate or provide new decoration. You can just rearrange the tank so that it becomes more interesting and offers better new spaces to explore.

What to Do if Your Betta is Hiding

If you know that hiding is a normal pattern of behavior with your Betta then you don’t need to do anything. However, if that’s not the case here is the list of things you can do to identify the real cause and eliminate it. 

  • Provide hiding places with lots of live plants
  • Add driftwood and decorations
  • Check the filter current, if it is too strong slow it down a bit
  • Check the water conditions and toxic matters
  • Check your Betta for injury or illness
  • Make the tank more interesting by introducing a mate
  • Check if the light is adequate
  • Eliminate loud noises and vibrations

After you have checked the list of reasons and possible solutions why is your Betta hiding you are ready to act or just let it be. 

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