He doesn’t know that he is in captivity. He doesn’t know you don’t have any intention of giving him a female. He only wants to be ready if one turns up.
Either he has worked out that he depends on you for everything, and his internal monologue is as follows:
“This big monkey gives me my food, fresh water and everything else, so when he sees I am ready to breed, he will also provide the female”.
Or else he has gone through a kind of utilitarian monologue in his brain, saying to himself:
“The existence of a desire for something predicts that it exists. I desire food when I am hungry and food comes. I desire for there to be an existence of God, and then God comes to me in my dreams. Now I desire the existence of something else, I don’t know what it is yet, but I know it must be something to do with that thing up there I got strangely driven to build out of my sticky saliva, and air. And when the thing that it is for comes along, I’ll know what it is.”
I don’t believe in euthanasia, for animals just as for humans. I do believe in dying with dignity which means not surrounded by other fish pecking his eyes out before he is even dead. So I would give the fish normal conditions in which it would be comfortable if healthy, low light, and solitude. Once it is really dead you can feed the body to other fish, flush it down the toilet, whatever. But the life, while it is there, is sacred, and should have dignity, even for a fish.
Whatever science could say about its neurones and synapses, he was your pet.
A couple of Saturdays ago I started a series which was intended to reproduce my inputs on Quora over here on this blog, as a repurposing and collating of them as well as a way of making sure I don’t lose my own content.
As explained last time to group answers around themes and I have a little sheet where I am preparing them for these Group posts, based on the format I’ll be doing today.
Please remember that my answers vary a lot from facetious to informative usually depending on my mood, the time available and what I think about the question. Be prepared for a rather broad range of approaches to questions.
If you want to discuss or ask anything else around these themes, please get a discussion going in the comments. It’s what the comment facility is there for. I hope it is not onerous to log on and make some kind of utterance.
As mentioned in the title, the theme for today is Betta splendens, and these answers were given by me all in late 2015 or the first half of 2016. It seems very random that I emerged as an expert on this species in Quora as I haven’t had an awful lot of them myself but I do know a thing or two about them.
Personally I would not keep him in a bowl at all. Just because an aquarium fish is hardy and will accept unnatural temperatures without dying and can breath air so that it is not affected by poor oxygenation it does not mean that the quality of life of a fish will be pleasant in a bowl.
A person needs to deserve to be looking after animals, you know, and the basis of that deserving is giving the animal a pleasant life. I would give a Betta a heater/stat and filter, gravel and plants and decent lighting and regular water changes and good food just like any other aquarium fish.
The specifics for Betta males is you can’t keep two of them together and you should avoid keeping them with fish that are likely to nip their lovely flowing fins. But you can keep them with small catfishes like Corydoras or Ancistrus no problem. I think it is nicer for them to have that kind of tank mate than be stuck on their own.