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Apparently Betta Fish Mysteriously Disappear from Their Tanks

It’s a regularly Googled thing...
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There are many superstitions about lost pets. In Japan, it is believed that if your cat is lost, you need only to tell the stray cats in the neighborhood the situation, and they will guide your stray feline home. In Scotland, it is believed that a stray dog following you home portends good luck. But the mystery of betta fish disappearances is a new one for me. And yet, it’s shockingly common.

As numerous online sources can attest, better fish semi-regularly just….vanish from their tanks, never to be seen again. But what is going on?

In this video, a family has completely emptied out and dissected every item in their fish tank, searching for their missing fish. It’s not hiding in the filters, or among the decor. It hasn’t fallen behind the furniture in the room or been eaten by a pet. Where did it go?

In this video, a missing beta fish has actually reappeared in the tank after several months, even after the desperate owner has taken everything apart in a desperate search and even cycled the tank for a month and a half. Even weirder: it survived the ordeal!

So what’s going on? Is it a glitch in the matrix? Are the animals moving between worlds?

Wild betta fish have a natural habitat of marshes and floodplains, where bodies of water might be scattered and ephemeral. They are known for leaping from one to another in search of a better environment. In captivity, they do the same thing, and can be known to escape from even tiny openings in tanks. They can also confine themselves in tiny crevices in rocks, and filters. Their “labyrinth organ” even allows them to breathe air for short periods of time.

There are many reasons for betta disappearances, and their unparalleled “hiding” abilities make these occasions seem almost supernatural.

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