Can Betta Fish Live In A Bowl Without A Filter?

A few things that have always perplexed us are how many individuals cram their Betta fish into the most minor areas. People believe that because Betta fish exist in small places in nature, they will prefer living in tight spaces in confinement. The issue is that everything doesn’t operate that way. Putting your fish in a small area is not the same as a Betta living in the wild. Bigger spaces, such as bowls, may be preferred by some. Here, we’ll discuss if you really can keep a Betta in a bowl and, maybe more significantly, how to keep them satisfied while doing so. We’ll also discuss whether a fish tank is a better option for a Betta than a fishbowl. 

Can Betta Fish Live In A Bowl Without A Filter

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Short Answer 

The short answer would be yes. Bettas can live in a bowl. But, without a filter, the answer would be a no. You will need to change the water constantly if you are keeping the Betta Fish in a bowl. Several factors need to be taken into consideration before you keep your Bettas in a bowl. Keep reading to know more!

Can Betta Fish Live In a Bowl Without a Filter?

A Betta fish can theoretically live in a fishbowl. However, you must ensure that it is properly configured. This entails making sure it’s the proper size. You’ll also need to ensure that it has a good filtration system and the appropriate decorations. While a Betta fish would never like to live in a fishbowl, it is possible to make it hospitable if you know what you’re doing. The Betta Fishbowl would need the following factors in place:


Betta fish have to be engaged regularly. This necessitates a large amount of open water in which they can swim. The more room you have, the better. Yes, Betta fish survive in tiny bodies of murky areas in the natural environment, but we can bet that there will be much more significant water than 2.5 gallons anyplace a Betta fish lives.

Betta Fish Laying on The Bottom of The Tank

Even if space for swimming wasn’t an issue, smaller fish aquariums have far less water surface area. This can make breathing difficult for the Betta fish. Betta fish have been known to die in smaller fish bowls due to a lack of oxygen. You’ll need 5 gallons of water in a fishbowl at the very least. However, this can be not easy to accomplish. This is due to the fact that just a few firms produce 5-gallon fish bowls. As a result, you’ll have to invest in a fish tank. It is not suggested to keep the Betta in a tiny fishbowl. The beauty of its enclosure should not take precedence over your Betta’s happiness.


In any fish enclosure, there must be some form of filtration system. In a small fish aquarium, it becomes much more crucial. There is a lot of garbage produced by fish. Bacteria and filth can begin to grow in the fishbowl as a result of this. If it isn’t filtered away, your fish will have no choice but to eat it. They may become ill if they swallow it. This may result in their death. A water filtration system installed in the fishbowl will assist in keeping the fishbowl as clean as possible. You’ll need to replace the water and clean the fish tank regularly as well. In fact, you should clean your fish tank at least once a week on average.


In a fish aquarium, gravel is the ideal substrate to utilise. Betta fish require warm water to survive. The temperature of the water should be between 75 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. If the temperature drops below that, the Betta will become chilled. When they become chilled, their body’s numerous systems begin to shut down. Betta fish living in cooler waters, for example, will have a weaker immune system. This means they are more likely to become ill, which, in turn, means they are more likely to live a shorter life span. 


Betta fish are notorious for jumping out of their tanks, especially when the water is shallow. This means that you’ll need to cover the bowl with a lid. If there is no lid, we can guarantee that the Betta fish will ultimately jump out. Remember that the lid will keep other animals from the fishbowl, such as dangerous insects or cats and dogs. 

To know if male and female Betta fish can live together, click here!

Do Betta Fish Require A Filter? 

betta fish in bowl

Even though most bowls are too small to fit an average-sized aquarium filter, betta fish can be effectively kept in fishbowls. So, yes, a betta fish can live without a filter in a bowl. Furthermore, the powerful current from an aquarium filter will cause more harm than good in a small bowl. The current will almost certainly toss and stress your fish, especially since bettas are not the finest swimmers. However, proper care is essential for your fish to live in such an environment. So much so that many new fish owners mistakenly believe that bowls mean less labour and are less expensive, resulting in neglected betta fish suffering from a variety of diseases and having a shorter lifespan. To keep your fish safe in the bowl, read the following tips: 

  • Make significant water changes regularly. At least twice a week, replace 30 per cent of the water. Toxic wastes and chemicals like ammonia will be kept out of the fishbowl as a result of this.
  • Avoid overfeeding your betta. Any leftover food will break down and emit ammonia into the water in a small bowl. Your fish will become ammonia poisoned if there is no filter to remove the ammonia.
  • Clean your fishbowl regularly. Make sure the glass, substrate, plants, and decor are all free of debris. 
  • Live plants can also aid in the purification of your water column. So think about putting a plant or two in your betta bowl. Make sure the plant doesn’t take up too much of your betta’s already restricted water area.

How Long Can A Betta Live in A Fishbowl?

The longevity of a betta fish, like that of humans, animals, and pretty much any other living species on the planet, is determined by how well it is cared for and the environment in which it lives. A betta fish can survive up to three years when kept in captivity in an aquarium or a fish tank. However, when housed in a fishbowl, a betta fish can only live for a year or even less. This longevity is contingent on the betta fish receiving sufficient nourishment, living in a clean tank, and being well-cared for. Betta fish have a three-year lifespan that begins when they are born, not when they are purchased. After turning one year old, a male betta fish acquires colourful fins and a beautifully streamlined body. It is commonly sold in pet stores at that time.

On the other hand, a female betta fish grows entirely by the time she is six months old. The lifespan of a female betta fish is longer than that of a male betta fish. On the other hand, male betta fish are more popular than female betta fish because they are fancier and more colourful. 

What Should You Put in Your Betta Fish Bowl?


Betta fish are intelligent creatures. This means they’ll need something to keep their minds active. Here, a little bit of decoration goes a big way. They can swim in and out of small plants and artificial caverns of various sizes. Ensure that any decor you use in the aquarium is aquarium safe. They could kill your fish if they aren’t. Fake plants should be avoided if at all possible. This is because they are frequently made of solid wire. This can cause significant harm to your Betta fish. This means that actual plants should always be used.


Gravel is fantastic for filtering the water a little bit, which means it can help remove some microorganisms. Not all of it, at least. Gravel isn’t something the Betta fish can eat. So, you do not have to be worried about them grabbing food from the bottom of the bowl. If there was sand down there, there’s a reasonable probability that Betta swallowed it. This has the potential to kill them. Gravel doesn’t float either. This is critical because Betta fish are incredibly fragile, especially near their fins. It means that your Betta’s fins will not be ripped to bits by a rogue substrate.

Air Bubbler 

It’s critical that the water in which your Betta is kept be well-oxygenated. This implies the Betta will be able to breathe, which is crucial for any living creature. The top of most fishbowls is relatively narrow, which is an issue. This will stop oxygen from readily flowing into the basin. This is a problem. Due to their tiny living spaces, Betta will frequently need to obtain oxygen from the water’s surface. They may suffocate if there isn’t enough air coming in from the top of the dish. 

Wrapping Up

Although some individuals maintain their Betta fish in a bowl, this is not advised. Finding a bowl that is the correct size for a Betta fish is challenging. Even if you do, other than looks, a fishbowl has no benefits over a tank. A Betta Fish in a bowl will be far less happy than if they were swimming around in a nice, airy fish tank. It’s also not a great idea to keep the Betta in a bowl without a filter. The water’s toxicity can be increased if the filter is not there.

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