Can Betta Fish Jump Out from Fish Tank?

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If your Betta fish has jumped out of the tank or even if you are just concerned about it, then keep on reading.

I’m going to explain to you why they jump out of the tank, how to prevent it and what to do if it already happened.

Every fish species has its own personality. Since Bettas are one of the most common breeds among fish keepers, the reasons why they jump out of the tank are quite clear today.

Of course, if the conditions are right and your Betta is completely healthy, then it really shouldn’t jump out.

Now let’s see how you can prevent your little guy from doing it.

Prevent Your Betta Fish From Jumping

There are various things fish keepers can do in order to prevent their Bettas from jumping out.

It is certainly better to take care of all the precautions instead of waiting until this first happens. The first thing that can lower the chances of them jumping out is to change the water regularly.

There should be no decaying matter in the tank whatsoever. Furthermore, the temperature and acidity of the water should not deviate much from the ideal values.

Keep them in a tank that is big enough so that they have plenty of space to swim around.

The minimum size is 5 gallons per Betta Fish but 10 gallons is even more preferable. Of course, the surefire way to stop them is just to cover the top of your tank with something.

However, this doesn’t mean that the underlying issues shouldn’t be treated.

The last thing that is crucial is to ensure a regular day and night routine for them. With a good light routine, they are going to have a healthy circadian rhythm.

Betta Fish Jumped on the Floor – What Should You Do?

You need to get there and pick the Betta Fish up as fast as you can. Your fish can potentially die if it dries up too much on the floor.

Once the Betta jumps out, it can survive for up to 10 minutes on average. Put it back into the tank. Don’t be surprised if it swims down to the bottom and stays there for a while.

After all, it is quite a shocking experience for them to stay on the floor for a few minutes. Also, his gills have to get wet enough so that he can breathe properly.

We recommend you to pour in some aquarium salt, which will help the gills get back to normal.

How Long Can a Betta Fish Live Out of the Water?

After the Betta Fish jumps out, it has about 10 minutes to get back to the tank. If you don’t get there within 10 minutes, then chances are that your Betta is not going to live.

This is simply because its gills and whole body are going to dry up and it’s basically going to drown outside the water.

This 10-minute window is rather small but humans can’t survive for a long time underwater either.

How High Can a Betta Fish Jump?

Compared to how slowly and peacefully Bettas usually swim around in the tank, they can jump surprisingly high when they want to get out. These small and delicate creatures are actually quite energetic.

They can get the momentum for jumping in a couple of seconds. Then, you can sometimes see them jump as high as 2-3 inches out of the water. This can surely get them out of most aquariums. If your betta is bigger and stronger, it can jump even higher than that.

Here is a great video which shows how high can a male and female betta fish jump:

Can Bettas Jump on Command?

Since we are talking about a fish species that is rather smart, they certainly can. If you train your Betta Fish properly, he is certainly going to be able to do it. It is not an indifferent activity for them either, as they tend to jump out of the water for mosquitoes in the wild.

At first, the Betta has to get used to your presence. You need to feed it for a while until the fish starts to trust you. Then one day when it’s feeding time, stick some betta food on the end of your finger with some water. Hold your finger above the water and wait until the Betta jumps for the food.

You need to do this plenty of times so that he gets used to doing the trick.

Why do Bettas Jump?                              

The reason why Betta Fish jump out of the aquarium is because they don’t feel well. There is something wrong with the water, the tank or their circadian rhythm. The temperature has to be between 75 and 80 °F, the acidity between 6-8 pH and the water thickness 5-35 dGH.

The water in the tank shouldn’t deviate much from these values. Also, the Betta has to have a healthy sleeping cycle. You should make it clear for your fish when it’s time to sleep by switching the lights off in the right time every day.

The Betta Fish might want to jump out if there is not enough space to swim around. And the last thing that might cause them to jump is if the water is not cleaned regularly and gets contaminated.

Can a Betta Fish Survive a Jump?

The Betta Fish can only survive a jump if you save it in time. As we mentioned it before, this species has a maximum of 10 minutes to live outside the water. If it takes you more than 10 minutes to get there, then chances are your Betta is not going to survive.

Fish are highly dependent on water and once they dry up, it can be fatal for them. It’s okay if their body dries up a bit but once their gills get completely dry, they are basically going to drown.


That is pretty much all the information you need to know when it comes to Bettas jumping out of the tank. In the end, most of the problems are the results of poor water conditions or parameters, not enough space and poor lighting.

Therefore, if you take care of your fish and your fish tank the proper way every day, chances are that nothing bad is going to happen. If you catch your fish jumping out of the tank then you should really take a close look at the current conditions in the aquarium. It means that your Betta doesn’t like the situation that much.

Author Image Fabian
I’m Fabian, aquarium fish breeder and founder of this website. I’ve been keeping fish, since I was a kid. On this blog, I share a lot of information about the aquarium hobby and various fish species that I like. Please leave a comment if you have any question.
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