Do Betta Fish Need a Heater? 0 68

Do betta fish need a heater?

Many people assume that betta fish do not need a heater in order to survive. This is why betta fish are often popular with people who don’t have a lot of money to spend on a setup. However, more often than not, betta fish do need a heater.

Remember, bettas are tropical fish that thrive in temperatures of between 74 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Just because they may survive without a heater in their tank doesn’t mean they are happy or at their fittest. 

Linked to the question “do betta fish need a heater?” are the equally frequently asked questions, “can betta fish live at room temperature?”, and “can betta fish live in cold water?”.

It’s easiest to look at each question separately. We’ll start with the easiest to answer first!

Can betta fish live in cold water?

If anyone ever asks you whether betta fish live in cold water, just tell them straight, the answer is no! As we’ve already mentioned betta fish are tropical, and they need to live in water with a temperature which should ideally be between the mid-70s and 80 degrees Fahrenheit.

If you put a betta in cold water it will become lethargic and ill. Eventually it will die.

Can betta fish live at room temperature?

Whether betta fish can live at room temperature is not quite as straightforward.

If you live in a home where the room temperature is such that the water in the tank stays between 74 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit, then your betta fish can survive in that tank.

However, the problem is that most room temperatures tend to change. It’s very risky to rely on room temperature to keep a betta fish fit and healthy. It’s always a good idea to have a heater in the tank. This brings us to our final question.

Do betta fish need a heater?

In order to remain healthy, and live to a good age, betta fish need to live in water of the right temperature. If the water isn’t consistently between 74 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit then they will not be in the best condition they can be. This is why it’s so important to have a reliable heater in the tank.

Here are a few important points to remember when keeping water temperature consistent for your betta fish.

  • Make sure you buy a reliable heater.
  • You don’t just need a heater, you need a thermometer too. This helps you make sure the water is always the right temperature.
  • Smaller tanks are always harder to heat consistently. They are easily affected by changes in room temperature. It doesn’t take much for the temperature to rise and your fish to die. Larger tanks, over 5 gallons, are easier to heat consistently.

Many people will tell you that their bettas do fine without a heater in the tank. And it is true that they can sometimes live without a heater. Remember though, for your fish to thrive, they need to live in water that is always between 74 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. The only way to ensure this is the case is to have a reliable heater and to check the water temperature regularly.

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3 lizards that are great for first-time owners 0 125


Unusual pets have become more popular and accessible in recent years, with many more people considering exotic pets than before. Reptiles have become particularly popular, with the range of lizards available in the UK wider than ever. Here, we’ll list a few of the best lizards for beginners in terms of pet care.

Bearded Dragons

The single most popular reptile on the market today, bearded dragons are docile and friendly, and have no problem being handled by humans. Aside from this quality, bearded dragons are also a manageable size when fully grown, with the largest species reaching around 60cm tip to tip. This means they’ll be large enough to handle with ease and safety, but not so large that caring for them becomes a burden.

Leopard Geckos

Geckos are another type of lizard that has become exceedingly popular with first-time reptile owners. There are many owners and dealers who strive to own as many different species of gecko as possible. Most geckos are fast, and the sticky pads on their toes mean they can scale walls and escape from handlers fairly easily. However, leopard geckos are slow, docile, and lack the sticky toe pads. This makes them an easy and beautiful addition to your first vivarium. Furthermore, leopard geckos are quite hardy, and not as susceptible to diseases. They’re also smaller than bearded dragons and other common domestic lizards, with adults typically reaching a maximum of 25cm. This makes it easy to set them up with a comfortable and compact vivarium while you get used to reptile care.


Like bearded dragons, uromastyx enjoy human contact, which makes them perfect for owners who have only ever cared for mammals before. Furthermore, unlike many other reptiles, they feed almost exclusively on plants. This makes them easy to shop for, and a no-brainer for anyone who’s squeamish about insects. Having said that, uromastyx can be a strain on your energy bill, requiring a basking spot kept at 35 degrees Celsius to stay happy and healthy. Still, if you can afford this and love the look of these distinctive lizards, a uromastyx can make a great introductory pet lizard.

Essential considerations when buying a tortoise 0 126

Keeping a tortoise as a pet

If you love reptiles, you may have toyed with the idea of owning a pet tortoise. These are truly fascinating creatures, having lived alongside the dinosaurs. Over millions of years of evolution, tortoises have grown to require fairly specific needs. However, they can be loving and fairly low-maintenance pets if you approach tortoise care in the right way. Here are a few things to think about before getting your tortoise.

Choosing a breed

Tortoises are very diverse animals, and different breeds will work better for different lifestyles. Russian, Bell, and Forest Hingeback tortoises are fairly small, growing up to 8.5”. Red Foots are a mid-range breed, growing up to 14”, while African Spur Thighs are a notably large breed, with some adults weighing well over 150 pounds. While vivariums and similar enclosures are fine for young tortoises and particularly small breeds, most will require some outdoor space to keep them in.

General supplies

As with any unusual pets, you need to ensure you have all the right supplies to keep your tortoise happy and healthy in its new home. When kept indoors, your tortoise will need a basking light to draw energy from, as well as a florescent UVB light to help it process vitamins and minerals healthily. To ensure the UVB rays are enough for your tortoise, set reminders to yourself to change them once every 6-8 months. A large water bowl is needed for drinking and soaking. Finally, your tortoise will need a heating pad. This will warm its belly, and help with its digestion.


Like many other animals, infant and adolescent tortoises will need extra nutritional care to help them grow healthily. To this end, make sure you’re keeping them on a balanced diet of crispy, easily-digestible food, like grasses and leafy green vegetables. It’s also a good idea to get them some calcium and vitamin supplements. As their jaws mature, you can move them onto more solid foods like fruits. Fully-grown tortoises will be able to manage darker leafy greens, along with a wider range of go-to reptile food, such as fruits, earthworms, and crickets. If you’re ever unsure of what you should be giving your tortoise based on their age and breed, consult your vet.

Find out more about caring for your pet tortoise