Today I was at Barnes and Noble, and I got a book all about betta fish. I started reading it and learned some pretty cool facts about bettas.
Here they are:
Bettas belong to the group of Asian and African fishes called "Anabantoids". Anabantoids have an organ called a "labyrinth" in their heads which allows them to breathe air. So that when water quality is poor and there is not enough oxygen content in the water, the bettas won't die like most fish because they can swim to the surface to breathe the oxygen in the air.
And here is a little more about where bettas live:
Bettas are native to the Indo-China area, which includes: Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam. They are usually found in the warm waters in marshes, ditches, and most commonly flooded rice-fields. They like to live among rice plants because it gives them plenty of hiding places so they can get away from dangers and other betta fish.
And one more fact:
Bettas in the wild look much different from the ones sold in pet stores. The ones in pet stores have been bred to be colorful with long fins. In the wild they can be pretty colorful but they are not as bright and the fins are shorter. Long, trailing fins would not be practical for wild bettas.