Why Is My Betta Jumping Out Of The Tank?

Why Is My Betta Jumping Out Of The Tank

A healthy and normal betta fish is one of the most interactive fish available. It swims around, is playful and the amount of playfulness will increase whenever you are around. But sometimes you might catch your betta trying to jump out of its tank.

Betta fish jumps out of tank if the water condition is poor with high build-up of ammonia. Also, if the tank is too small for the betta, it will try to jump in search of new space. Poorly matched tank mates can also stress out betta fish which leads to jumping out of the tank.

If your betta is jumping out of the tank regularly, then it is something you need to be concerned with. Bettas do not jump out of their tanks, act erratically unless there is something wrong.

Today in this article, we will get to know everything about why your betta keeps jumping out of the tank, and what you can do to prevent that.

gorgeous blue betta
owner: Jenna Marder Grenier

Here Is Why Your Betta Is Jumping Out Of The Tank

Truth be told there are many reasons behind why your betta is behaving this way.

1. There Is Something Wrong With The Fish Tank

The most common reason why your betta keeps jumping out of the tank is there is something wrong with the housing. If you are keeping your betta in a bowl, stop that immediately.

If you are keeping your betta in a fish tank, check if it is big enough for your betta or not. If it is too small for the fish, then is it quite natural for it to try to escape that.

A small tank does not allow a betta to have the movement it requires. It is very prone to toxin build-up as well. 

2. The Water In The Tank Is Not Healthy Enough For The Betta

If the tank and its size are not the problems, then it is probably the water inside. If you do not clean the tank regularly, there will be a lot of ammonia inside the tank, which will make living conditions for your betta quite hard.

Too much ammonia can cause ammonia poisoning for your betta. You will be surprised to know that this is a very common disease amongst bettas.

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If the ammonia build-up is too much for your betta, it will try its best to look for clean water which will lead to your betta jumping out of the tank. 

3. It Is Trying To Hunt Or Catch Something

The environment around the fish tank matters a lot. A betta is known as a gutty fish that eats almost everything. If you are keeping your betta in a place where there are a lot of flies around, then it is possible that your betta is trying to hunt or catch a fly. And in the process of it, it keeps jumping out of the tank. 

gorgeous colorful betta fish
owner: Gabrielle Perry

4. Your Betta Is Very Stressed

One of the many reasons your betta keeps jumping out of the tank is because it is stressed. Stressed bettas act very erratically. It gets very jumpy and swims around at a very weird pace.

There are a lot of reasons a betta can be stressed. A poor sleeping cycle, not enough time to rest, lesser space in fish tank, etc can stress a betta out pretty easily.

5. There Is Nothing Wrong With Your Betta, It Is Just A Little Jumpy

If all the reasons mentioned above are not causing your betta to jump out of the tank, then there is nothing wrong, to be honest. I have been saying this since the beginning that, bettas are very active fishes.

It is possible that you got one of the very overactive bettas who just like to jump out of the tank for fun. 

How To Stop Your Betta From Jumping Out Of The Tank?

Now that we know why your betta is jumping out of the tank, there are a few things you can do to stop this from happening.

1. Change The Fish Tank ASAP

The ideal housing for a betta should be a fish tank. But that’s not it. The fish tank should be at least 5 gallons or more for one betta fish. A betta is a very active fish. A healthy betta likes to swim around the tank a lot.

If the tank is not big enough for it to move around freely, it will constantly try to escape. Other than this, you can also decorate your tank with enough plants to keep your betta entertained and out of boredom. 

If you are keeping multiple bettas in one fish tank, make sure it is big enough to house all the fishes together.

2. Clean The Water Inside Regularly

If you do not clean your tank regularly, you should start doing that. Cleaning and changing the water will allow your betta to live in a very healthy environment. It will stop trying to look for clean water out of the tank as well.

Changing 30-50% water is recommended, so try to do that at least once a week. This will allow the betta to have the clean water it is looking for. You should also clean the fish tank at least once a week. 

If you are keeping multiple fishes in one tank, you should ensure you are cleaning it regularly to stop ammonia build-up. If you are keeping matters that can decay into the water, then cleaning the gravel to get rid of that is a must.

colorful betta in planted tank
Owner: Josh Winderlich

3. Keep The Tank In A Very Clean Place

As I have said, the environment around the tank matters a lot. Always make sure you are keeping the tank in a very clean place. If there are a lot of flies around the tank, your betta might try to catch those. Be sure to keep your betta in a fly-free area. 

See also  Why Is My Betta at The Bottom of The Tank? [11 Reasons]

4. Try To Figure Out What It Is Stressed About

Bettas can be stressed about many things. One of the main reasons is not getting enough rest and sleep.

If your betta has a poor sleeping cycle, it will behave very jumpy and erratic. Make sure you are keeping your betta in a quiet place that allows it to rest properly.

Lights are another reason your betta might not be getting enough rest. A healthy betta needs at least 8 hours of rest for it to function properly. Be mindful of that as well. It is important that you keep the lights off at night so that your betta can get a good sleep.

5. Keep An Eye On Your Betta

If your betta is just an overactive one then it might be a good idea to always keep an eye on it. If that is not possible for you, then cover the top of your tank to ensure its safety.

This might be the best solution if your betta does not stop jumping out of the tank. An average betta fish can jump up to 3 inches or more out of water. This is why it is important to stop your betta from jumping out of the tank as soon as possible, or it might end up hurting itself.

However, before you resort to this, make sure you have tried all the other things on the list.

If your betta does not stop jumping out of the tank after all this, then it is just an overactive one and no underlying issues are causing this behavior. 

Why Is My Betta Fish Jumping At Night?

Several reasons are responsible for the such unusual behavior of betta fish. As mentioned before, betta fish may try to jump out of the water due to environmental inconsistency, poor water quality, predators, stress, etc.

If your betta fish jump at night, it may want to escape from the tank. The triggering factors may make your betta fish stressed, which can lead to jumping out of the tank.

Generally, betta fish remain active in the daytime and sleep at night. If there’s a reflection of lighting into the water of your betta fish tank, your betta fish may get shocked. Out of the shock, betta fish may jump at night. For this reason, you should add a lid to your betta fish tank.

What To Do If Your Betta Has Escaped From The Tank?

This is a very scary thing that can happen to your betta. As it is a fish, it is quite a general thing to know that a betta will not survive out of its tank for a long time. This is the worst-case scenario that you should be prepared for if you have a very jumpy and active betta who just likes to jump out of the tank.

Keeping an eye on your overactive betta is a must. I have mentioned this before as well, if it keeps jumping out of the tank, then you should cover the tank when you are not around. If you find out your betta has escaped, start looking for it immediately.

A betta can’t survive without water for more than 10 minutes. Its gills will slowly start to dry, which will hinder its breathing. Your betta will not just lie around on the floor, and it will struggle quite a lot as it is no longer under water.

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To improve the gill function of your betta, you can add a little amount of aquarium salt to the tank. If your betta is lying at the bottom of the tank, then do not worry. It is just resting. Allow it to rest for a while and it will be just fine. Contacting a veterinarian is a great idea as well.

gorgeous white betta
Owner: Jessica Spivey

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you revive a betta fish that jumped out of the tank?

Reviving a betta fish that has jumped out of the tank requires immediate action. The first step is to splash aquarium water over the fish and observe if it’s alive or not. If the fish is moving, place it back in the tank. If it’s not moving, gently pick it up and place it in front of the filter or a bubbler. 

Can a betta fish survive if it jumps out of the tank?

A betta fish can survive if it jumps out of the tank, but it depends on how long it has been out of the water. Betta fish have a labyrinth organ that allows them to breathe surface air, which can keep them alive for up to 2 hours out of the water if the organ stays moist.

However, if the fish is too dry, this jumping act out of the water could become fatal. 

How long can a betta fish survive out of water?

The survival time of a betta fish out of water depends on several factors such as moisture, temperature, and access to air. 

There have been no scientific experiments to determine how long a betta fish could survive out of water, but the estimated answer is between 30 minutes to at least 6 hours, depending on conditions.

How high can betta fish jump?

Betta fish are known to be excellent jumpers. They can jump up to 2-3 inches height. According to some sources, in extreme cases, betta fish can even jump up to 6-7 inches.

Why does my betta fish jump when I feed him?

Betta fish are known to jump when they are being fed, and there are several reasons why they exhibit this behavior.

One reason is that betta fish are natural hunters and jump to catch prey in the wild. Therefore, when they see food, they instinctively jump to catch it.

Also, betta fish have a keen sense of smell and can smell food from a distance. When they smell food, they become excited and jump in anticipation of the meal. 

The jumping behavior can also be a sign of excitement or happiness, as betta fish are intelligent and can recognize their owners.

Do betta fish jump out of bowls?

Betta fish can jump out of bowls. They need space to swim and explore, and a bowl may not provide enough space or stimulation, which can lead to stress and jumping behavior.

In Conclusion

There you have it. Everything you need to know about why is your betta jumping out of the tank.

Bettas are one of the most unique fishes ever. Maintaining a healthy life for your betta is not that hard. You just need to keep an eye on your betta and its movements and you will be able to prevent any sort of mishaps from happening while taking care of your betta properly.

Muntaseer Rahman

About Author

Hello, I’m Muntaseer Rahman, the owner of AcuarioPets.com. I’m passionate about aquarium pets like shrimps, snails, crabs, and crayfish. I’ve created this website to share my expertise and help you provide better care for these amazing pets.


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