Can Guppies and Betta Live Together in Harmony?

Can Guppies and Betta Live Together

Can guppies and betta live together? 

Given the notoriously aggressive nature of guppies, some would argue that these two different types of fish are best kept apart. Yet given the numerous benefits of owing guppies, many still would like to at least try to bring them together.

Can Betta Fish Live With Guppies?

The truth of the matter is that in a broad sense, yes, it is possible for guppies and betta fish to coexist in the same tank. However, doing so requires keeping several things in mind. Even then, the science of putting guppies and betta fish together is far from perfect. You may want to prepare yourself for at least some trial and error.

Tank Conditions For Guppies And Bettas

First, let’s get the ideal tank for bettas and guppies out of the way. This will include ideal settings for both. Once you have these elements out of the way, we can discuss factors like gender, size, and even the best ratio of betta fish to guppies.

In a nutshell, guppies and betta fish have fairly differing requirements for comfortable water. Water hardness is determined basically by how many dissolved minerals are in the water. This includes magnesium, calcium, and others. Hard water, which guppies prefer, will have a lot of that stuff. The pH is going to be somewhere in the range of 6.8 to 7.8.

Their thriving temperature range is between seventy-four-and eighty-two-degrees Fahrenheit. Guppies come to us from lakes and rivers throughout South America. While these requirements are important, the hardiness we mentioned before is going to give you a little wiggle room.

With bettas, we are talking about fish that traditionally like comparatively softer, more acidic waters. Originating from Southeast Asia, where you can find them in such places as streams and rice paddies, betta fish have an optimal pH of 7. Their ideal temperature is between seventy-eight and eighty.

What does this mean? Two things. One, betta fish have a lot less flexibility with these factors than guppies. Two, even with those figures in mind, there is still clearly a sweet spot in which both guppies and betta could theoretically live together comfortably. Furthermore, bettas are considered moderately resistant and adaptable. They can generally get used to harder water.

The following filtration levels are considered perfect for tanks with both of these fish:

  • 0 PPM (Parts-Per-Million) Ammonia
  • 0 PPM Nitrite
  • 20 (Maximum) PPM Nitrate

A water testing kit will help you stay on top of this.

The Ideal Tank And What To Put In It

One thing guppies and bettas have in common? Overcrowding will stress them OUT. To that end, you’re going to want a fish tank that’s at least 10 gallons. Our recommendation would be for something larger than that 20 gallons for a fish tank is probably best.

With 20 gallons, or even larger tanks, you’re ensuring there will be plenty of room for your bettas and guppies to cohabitate successfully.

Also, while guppies do not jump out of open tanks, betta are notorious for doing this. You will need a secured lid for your tank. This will not be an issue for the guppies.

In terms of what you should put inside your tank, beyond the perfect water, remember that guppies like things like black substrate, rocks, and live plants. Guppies and betta each like to hide sometimes. Plant life not only recreates the environment of guppies, but it also beautifies the tank. 

Ultimately, both guppies and betta need a rich plethora of live plants to be healthy and happy. There are a ton of great options out there, when it comes to the best live plants for guppies and more.

Plants can also help to keep the peace. A rich array of examples can prevent bettas from ever really becoming interested in guppies. Java ferns, guppy grass, and watersprites are all nice ideas to consider.

Now, with your tank and water requirements taken care of, we can focus on the fun part: Buying the fish!

Choosing The Right Guppies

We’re going to focus more on how to choose the right betta fish, as opposed to your considerations with guppies. The reason for this is simple. A tank of guppies is simply easier to establish, before you make the decision to add betta fish. While you can try to throw them all into an ideal tank together at the same time, this could blow up in your face.

The best way to go is to establish a guppy tank using the considerations for bettas highlighted above. Once you’ve created a comfortable place, you can begin to add your bettas. Male guppies can stress out the females with their mating aspirations, which can lead to problems. The idea ratio for guppies is generally seen as two females for every male. You definitely want more females than males, at the end of the day.

Male guppies also have a tendency to be the more colorful of the two genders. Such colors can look lovely in the tank, but they can also stir aggression in betta fish. This is particularly true of male betta fish. In other words, male guppies and male betta fish are just about the worst combination possible. Both are aggressive. Both can cause problems if left alone with each other.


Choosing The Right Bettas

The truth of the matter is that betta fish are not quite as aggressive as a whole as some claim. Semi-aggressive would be a better way to put it. This subject can be further elaborated on by understanding aggressiveness in terms of betta breeds and genders.

Yes, some betta fish breeds are more aggressive than others. For a cohabitation tank with guppies, this is a vital consideration. Delta betta fish and halfmoon betta fish are both examples of less aggressive breeds. Start there.

Also, there should obviously be a limit on the number of bettas that are living in the tank with the guppies. Even the less-aggressive betta fish breeds can still have issues in this arena, both with each other, as well with any other types you have in the tank.

While one single betta fish can still be a problem for the guppies, particularly in terms of biting fins and bullying behaviors, this is considered the best number for a combination tank. Because the male bettas are generally more aggressive than the females, the idea ratio will then be one female betta to your male/female guppy ratio.

Mixing Guppy And Betta Genders: Dos And Don’ts

Remember you also want more female guppies than male. In fact, unless you want to breed at some point (which can present its own problems in a tank shared by these two types), you may want to consider a tank of all female guppies and all female bettas. Female bettas aren’t as aggressive as males, but you also have a guppy gender with the lowest possible likelihood of triggering any aggression in females.

 If you’re committed to keeping male guppies in the tank, consider feeder guppies over the fancy ones. These tend to be duller in appearance and smaller, which eliminates two big triggers for aggression in bettas.

Can Guppies Eat Betta Food?

This is another important area. Not all fish food is alike. Relying on one product to feed both can be problematic at best.

The betta fish is a carnivore. This means you’re going to want to give them meat products with lots of yummy protein. Insects, worms, or even smaller fish (which is why it’s a bad idea for a prospective breeder to keep guppy fry and bettas in the same tank) are all the types of things you should focus on. 

Your feeding schedule for bettas should be roughly once per day. Some owners prefer to split up a daily serving into two portions at different points in the day. Rotate different betta fish food products to give them an ideal variety.

You should also consider feeding your guppies first. Why? Because guppies are omnivores. They can eat the betta fish meat products, and they will. Unfortunately, these meat products are not going to give them everything they need for optimal nutrition. You should be feeding guppies veggie-based products at least once per day.

Give your guppies the veggie pallets first. Chances are, the bettas will not touch that food. Once you’ve fed the guppies, you can give the bettas their food. The guppies will still steal the food, which can lead to a long list of problems associated with overeating. The smart way to get around this is to use something like a pipette to make sure the bettas are getting the food that’s meant for them.

Guppies are also known for eating the algae in your tank. This is another one of the benefits that people like about them.

Important Care Tips For Guppies And Betta Living Togethe

You now have a lot of the basics down, when it comes to how to create the perfect fish tank for guppies and betta.

Let’s wrap things up with a few general tips and ideas that we couldn’t cover in the text above:

Be wary of diseases which can impact both

For example, ich/ick is a parasite which can make both bettas and guppies deathly ill. Stress is the biggest cause of this condition, which is notable for creating a rash of white spots on either fish. Thankfully, there are lots of ich treatment products out there. Furthermore, poor tank conditions can also lead to fin rot.

Get a second tank

This one can be a little smaller than your main purchase. The main benefit of a second tank is that if something goes wrong with bringing bettas and guppies together, you can move one to your secondary with ease.

Don’t want to get a second tank?

Keep in mind that tank dividers are available. Using such a divider safely and correctly is highly dependent upon having a large enough tank. This is why most experts insist on a tank  of at least twenty gallons.

While your main concern might be on how the betta are going to treat the guppies, remember that the guppies can do things like snatch their food and nip on their fins. Should this happen, you’ll want to find and isolate the guppy causing the problem.

Remember that because of the specific tank conditions required for both guppies and bettas to be happy together, certain fish (such as many tropical examples) are not going to be suitable for your tank at all.

While less social and flexible than guppies, bettas still have the potential to live comfortably and happily with many other types of fish. Check out this YouTube video for a few examples of the different types of fish that can be tankmates with bettas. You are not limited to guppies by any means.


It almost goes without saying that you’re going to want to keep a very close eye on your tank, after you’ve moved the betta(s) in with the guppies, or vice-versa. If the betta has a good temperament, regardless of gender, it will probably do just fine.

If you choose to add additional guppies or betta to your tank, remember everything we covered about aggression triggers, gender, and ideal ratios.

With a little effort, you can absolutely create conditions suitable to guppies and bettas simultaneously.

Best Betta Fish Food: The Definitive Guide

Best Betta Fish Food

Deciding on the right fish food for your Betta can be a bit confusing and overwhelming. There are so many choices. How are you supposed to choose the right one? There’s pellet food, flake food, freeze-dried, frozen, and even living food. Should you feed your Betta plants and vegetables, or meat? What is best for your Betta?

This ultimate guide for Betta food will walk you through all the ins-and-outs of choosing and feeding your Betta the best foods for a healthy, nutritious diet.

What Bettas Eat in Their Natural Habitat

In their natural habitat of South East Asia, Bettas are generally carnivorous. Their diets consist mainly of insect larvae and small insects. Although Bettas do eat vegetation occasionally, they can’t live off of a diet of just plants. There is not enough nutrition in that kind of diet for your Betta. 

Bettas have short digestive tracks, which is one indicator of a carnivorous diet. They need a diet high in fiber and protein. They get their fiber from the insects they eat, which have themselves eaten foods high in fiber. 

What Makes up a Well-Balanced Diet for Your Betta

The best diet for your Betta will include fiber and protein in its diet. Fiber works to keep its digestive tract healthy and moving, while the protein works to keep them strong and healthy. 

In addition to fiber and protein, your Betta needs other things in their diets as well:

  • Foods containing enough moisture to aid in their digestion
  • A variety of vitamins
  • Phosphorus, which helps cell growth
  • Carbohydrates for energy
  • Fats, for storing energy
  • Calcium for strong bones

Buying high-quality food products will provide your Betta with all these things it needs to remain healthy and live a long, full life.

The Best 5 Types of Food for Bettas

When you go to the pet store, you will find five different kinds of Betta food:

  1. Flake food
  2. Pellet food
  3. Freeze-dried food
  4. Frozen food
  5. Live food

Feeding your Betta a diet rich in a variety of the five main foods, will ensure your fish is getting all the proteins, fiber, vitamins, and nutrients your fish need. A balanced diet will strengthen your Betta’s immune system, keeping it strong and helping it fight off any future illnesses. Providing a well-balanced diet will also go a long way in keeping your Betta from getting bored with meal times. 

Flake Foods for Betta Fish

Feeding your Betta flake food tends to be a less nutritious choice than other choices. It can be challenging to measure and ration out the correct amount you feed your Betta every day. You want to make sure you don’t overfeed your Betta.

Flake foods tend to sink a lot faster than the other types of fish foods. The uneaten food that sank too quickly will sit on the bottom of the tank and rot, which in turn will degrade the water quality, eventually affecting your Betta negatively.

One other thing to consider, flake foods do not resemble your Betta’s natural diet in the least, and if your Betta is a fussy eater, it may reject flake foods. For these reasons, flake foods are not as popular a choice when feeding your Betta.

However, there are some cases where Bettas won’t eat pellet food. In these cases, flake food is a good alternative for your Betta. If you plan to feed your Betta flake foods, you need to choose a brand that is made specifically for Bettas.

Don’t buy your Betta tropical fish food. They are full of plant and vegetable fillers, perfect for omnivores, but they fall short in providing the nutrients your Betta needs.

What Are the Best Flakes for Bettas?

If you prefer to feed your Betta flake foods, here is a list of the top Betta flake foods you can purchase for your Betta.

Omega One Betta Food

These gourmet wild salmon flakes are made especially for Bettas. With color boosting nutrition, these flakes are rich in the essential Omega fatty acids 3 & 6. The natural beta carotenes found in salmon will enhance your Betta’s coloring, taking it to the next level.

The Omega One Betta Food flakes will not dissolve in the water, which reduces tank pollution. Additionally, the starch content is significantly less than that of other fish flakes, reducing fish waste and keeping the tank cleaner for longer periods of time.

Min Crude Protein 43% / Min Crude Fat 12% / Max Crude Fiber 2% / Max Moisture 8.5% / Max Ash 8% / 100% Made in the USA!

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API Betta Fish Food

API Betta Fish Food is specially formulated to support healthy growth, in addition to keeping the tank water cleaner and clearer. Offering your Betta a balanced and complete diet, API Betta flakes also offer color-enhancing nutrients that will give your Betta’s coloring a boost. With nutritional proteins that aid in digestion, these flakes produce 30% less ammonia. Less ammonia and waster are released when your Betta consumes the proper amount of nutrients.

API Betta Flakes Fish Food .36-Ounce Container
  • Contains one (1) API BETTA FLAKES Fish Food .36-Ounce Container
  • Contains key nutrients for a complete and balanced diet for betta fish
  • Formulated to support natural color and for optimal absorption
  • Formulated to help fish more readily use nutrients which means less waste and clean, clear water
  • Feed twice a day the amount of food your betta will consume in three minutes

Tetra Tropical Betta Crisps

Designed specifically with your Betta in mind, these flakes will provide a well-balanced diet and keep your Betta healthy and happy. With fewer fillers than their competitors, these flakes provide 44% crude protein and 12% crude fat. Enhanced with color boosting ingredients.

TetraPro Betta Crisps, Fish Food with Natural...
  • BETTA FORMULATION: Nutritionally balanced diet is an ideal daily staple food for your Siamese fighting...
  • FOR DAILY FEEDING: Advanced nutrition for the discerning fish-keeper.
  • COLOR ENHANCING: Includes natural color enhancers for maximum beauty in your betta fish.
  • FLOATING PELLETS: Small, highly palatable, floating pellets for top-water feeders.
  • CLEAR WATER: Does not cloud water when used as directed.

TetraBetta Flake Medley Fish Food

Tetra BettaMin Tropical Flakes provide your Betta with the balanced nutrition needed to support a healthy immune system. Your Betta will love these small thin red flakes coupled with freeze-dried brine shrimp. Patented ProCare ensures your fish receives precise amounts of the Omega-3 fatty acids, in addition to the nutrients and vitamins that your Betta needs to stay healthy. Color enhancing technologies bring out your Betta’s natural colors, making them more vibrant.

Tetra 16838 BettaMin Flakes, 0.81-Ounce,Blacks &...
  • This Specialized Combination Of Small, Thin Red Flakes And Freeze Dried Brine Shrimp Is Formulated To...
  • Blended With Patented Procure For Optimal Health.
  • Does not cloud water.
  • This specialized combination of small, thin red flakes and freeze dried brine shrimp is formulated to...
  • Blended with patented ProCare for optimal health.

Tetra BettaMin Select-A-Food 1.34 Ounces, Fish Flakes, Variety Pack

Tetra BettaMin 3-in-1 Select-A-Food is perfect for providing daily variety for your Betta. Packed with nutrition and color enhancing nutrients, these flakes are sure to please your Betta and keep them from getting bored.

The multi-section canister offers three different Betta foods in one convenient container. Your Betta will enjoy the flake foods daily, in addition to the mini floating pellets, and then for an occasional treat, feed your Betta the freeze-dried shrimp pieces. 

Tetra BettaMin Select-A-Food 1.34 Ounces, Fish...
  • BETTA FORMULATION: Nutritionally balanced diet is an ideal daily staple food for your Siamese fighting...
  • 3 FOODS IN 1: Includes Tetra BettaMin Flakes, freeze-dried shrimp and TetraBetta Floating Mini Pellets in...
  • FOR DAILY FEEDING: Advanced nutrition for the discerning fish-keeper.
  • COLOR-ENHANCING: Works to enhance your betta’s naturally brilliant colors.
  • EASY-TO-USE DISPENSER: Canister top allows you to dial in the food you want.

Pellet Foods for Betta Fish

Pellet foods are the most common food Betta keepers use. Pellets are usually made of higher-quality ingredients. Pellets are also much easier to measure the amount you are feeding your Betta than flake foods. They are also more natural-looking, possibly resembling insect larvae to your Betta. 

When you choose a pellet brand, make sure that your chosen brand has at least 30% crude protein. The other ingredients should include dried meats with little to no fillers. 

What Are the Best Betta Food Pellets?

There is a multitude of Betta food pellets on the market today. With such an assortment, it can be hard to narrow down your choices. One thing to keep in mind when choosing the right pellets for your Betta is always to choose one with natural ingredients. Although, try to avoid a lot of plant matter in the pellets. Your Betta doesn’t need it. Instead, look for high levels of crude protein. The following are several brands we recommend.

Aqueon Dry Fish Food - Extruded

Formulated especially for Bettas, the Aqueon pellets are full of the nutrients needed to support a healthy immune system. The pellets are the perfect size to ensure you never overfeed your Betta.

With natural ingredients and no artificial colors, Aqueon takes a more holistic approach to feeding fish. The coloring for the pellets comes from the formula’s actual food ingredients, which help bring out your Betta’s natural coloring. 

  • Protein (min) – 37%
  • Fat (min) – 8%
  • Fiber (max) – 3%
  • Moisture (min) – 8%
  • Phosphorous (min) – 1%
Aqueon Pro Foods Betta Formula 1.4 oz
  • Nutritionally balanced for Betta
  • Developed around a betta's natural diet
  • Pellets float to allow for surface feeding
  • Contains color enhancers for vibrancy
  • Ideal for Betta, Gouramis and Paradise Fish

Omega Sea Betta Buffet Pellets

One of the most beneficial pellets you can buy to feed your Betta is Omega Sea Betta Buffet. With fewer fillers than other leading pellet brands, they pack a whopping 40% crude protein. Because they are made from salmon, they are also full of the vitamins, nutrients, fat, and fiber needed to keep your Betta healthy and enhance their natural coloring, as well. 

Omega One Betta Buffet 1.5mm Pellets, 1 oz
  • The only dry fish food in the world made directly from fresh seafood
  • 100% meal free
  • Rich in critical Omega 3 & 6 Fatty Acids
  • Natural beta carotenes in salmon provide extreme color enhancement
  • Naturally insoluble, reducing water pollution

Ocean Nutrition Attisons Betta Pro

Ocean Nutrition is perfect for people who might have a fussy eater on their hands. Not as large as other brand’s pellets, the smaller size of Ocean Nutrition will entice your fussy Betta to try them and like them. 

These pellets are rich in crude protein, 36%, with minimum fillers. Containing several different types of meat, these pellets come with plenty of vitamins and color boosting nutrients.

Ocean Nutrition Betta Pellets 2.65-Ounces (75...
  • Natural ingredient floating pellet food (+/- 1.5mm) for bettas six months and older
  • Supplies daily nutrition
  • Supports vibrant coloration
  • Includes a mini spoon to make feeding easy
  • Does not cloud the water when used as directed

Tetra Betta Floating Mini Pellets

These Tetra Mini Pellets will provide your Betta with a well balanced, highly palatable, and nutritionally rich meal. ProCare ensures precise amounts of the vitamins and nutrients needed to support your Betta’s immune system. They are also rich in proteins and Omega-3 fatty acids to encourage energy and growth. The natural color enhancing nutrients will improve your Betta’s natural vibrant colors. 

Tetra fish Aquatics Betta Small Pellets 1.02...
  • BETTA FORMULATION Nutritionally complete daily diet for your Siamese fighting fish (betta splendens)
  • COLOR-ENHANCING Includes carotenoids to enhance your betta’s naturally brilliant colors
  • FLOATING PELLETS Ideally sized for top-feeding bettas
  • PROCARE FORMULA Helps support fish’s immune system for optimal health and long life
  • FOR DAILY FEEDING Feed 2 to 3 times daily only as much as your fish can consume within several minutes

Hikari Betta Bio-Gold Baby Pellets

The smaller Hikari pellets are perfect for Bettas that have difficulty eating larger pellets. Although they were designed to be eaten by juvenile Bettas, they are still good for adult Bettas. 

These pellets are packed with 38% crude protein, and full of digestion aiding moisture. They do, however, contain a small number of fillers. The fillers won’t hurt your Betta, but they will not provide any nutritional value for your Betta, either. 

Hikari Betta Bio-Gold Baby Pellets Fish Food...
  • Scientifically Developed Diet For All Types Of Bettas
  • Optimally Balanced Nutrition Bettas Require
  • Contains Ingredients Uniquely Beneficial To Bettas
  • Color Enhancing Diet
  • Perfectly Sized Pellet

Freeze-Dried Food for Betta Fish

Freeze-dried food makes an excellent addition to your Betta’s diet. Packing more nutrition than either pellets or flakes, they will provide your Betta with a well-balanced meal. However, because they are freeze-dried animal meats, they lack moisture, which is needed for easy digestion. 

In many cases, crude protein for freeze-dried Betta foods will exceed 50%. Along with the increased amount of protein, they also contain fiber and roughage that is good for the digestive system. 

When used in conjunction with a diet of pellet foods, you can rest assured that your Betta will get all the vitamins and nutrients it needs to build up a healthy immune system. 

Live Food for Bettas

You can’t deny that live foods hold more nutritional value than any other food. After all, it’s what Bettas eat in their natural habitat. Your Betta will love a diet of small invertebrates, insects, and insect larva.

If you plan to give your Betta live foods, you should also incorporate some pellets and freeze-dried foods in its diet, as well, to make sure your Betta is getting a well-balanced diet. 

A diet of only live foods might tend to get a little costly in the long run. Another thing to consider is handling and storing live foods. You also need to be very cautious about parasite infections. Make sure you are buying your live foods from a reputable source because if they haven’t been properly taken care of, there’s more of a chance they could be infected. 

Feeding your Bettas live foods that are infected with parasites will cause them to become ill and possibly even die. 

On the upside, live foods will bring out the natural hunting behavior in your Betta. The best live foods for your Betta include:

  • Daphnia
  • Small insects
  • Brine shrimp
  • Mosquito larvae

Bloodworms, but only as an occasional treat!

Frozen Food for Betta Fsh

An excellent substitute for live foods is frozen food. It’s less expensive to buy and keep, and it includes most of the nutrients your Bettas need. One of the things to keep in mind when deciding between live foods and frozen foods is the hunting factor. With live foods, your Betta’s natural instincts will come out, and they will start hunting their food. They can’t do that with frozen foods, obviously. But, with frozen food, there’s a slightly less chance of your Bettas being contaminated as there is with live foods. 

Before feeding the frozen food to your Betta, you will want to defrost the food in a cup of the tank’s water. Frozen food is too difficult for Bettas to eat, possibly causing some damage. Be careful of overfeeding your Bettas too much frozen foods. All they need is a small amount in the mornings in addition to the evenings. 

Choosing the Best Betta Fish Food

When shopping for Betta food, you need to educate yourself on everything your Betta needs in order to stay strong and healthy. 

Choose Foods with High Protein

Being a carnivore, the most important staple in your Betta’s diet is crude protein. As we have stressed in this guide, it is important to choose a Betta food with a high percentage of crude protein. Don’t choose anything that has less than 30% crude protein. 

You should check the list of ingredients to see the protein content levels before buying. If it doesn’t give you the percentage or level, you can look at how many animal products are listed among the ingredients. When the bulk of the food’s ingredients are all animal-based, it’s probably a higher quality food. 

Avoid Foods with a lot of Fillers

In addition to looking at the protein levels, you should also pay attention to the number of fillers that are on the list of ingredients. A lot of fillers are listed under the name “fish meal” in the ingredients list. Fish meal can contain a variety of things, possibly even some meat. However, because you don’t know exactly what makes up the fish meal, you want to avoid it. 

In order to avoid unnecessary fillers, check the list of ingredients for anything that is not meat-based. Small amounts of fillers are to be expected in Betta food, but make sure the fillers don’t make up the majority of the ingredients. 

Avoid Foods that are Plant-Based

Bettas are carnivores, so you will want to avoid any Betta food that contains a lot of plant fillers, as well. The Betta’s body has not been made to easily digest plants. It is important to choose a food that has been specially formulated for Bettas, rather than common tropical fish food. These kinds of foods were made with omnivores in mind.

Avoid Ingredients that are Unidentifiable

If there are a lot of long, unpronounceable ingredient names in the list of ingredients that you are not familiar with, don’t buy it. The most beneficial foods for your Betta are the ones that have basic meat-based ingredients. Large amounts of chemicals will not be healthy for your Betta in the long run.

Avoid Pellets and Flakes that are Low-Quality

Cheaper is not better when it comes to the quality of your Betta’s fish food. You can identify low-quality pellets and flakes by their low prices and the list of ingredients. Again, look for unidentifiable words and fillers. You may be tempted to buy the cheaper, lower-quality Betta foods, but your Betta will not be as healthy and happy as it should be, and it could end up costing your more money in the future. 

What to Do When Your Betta Rejects its Food

When you notice your betta fish spitting out food, that could be a warning sign, at the very least, it could be because the food is simply too big for it to eat. Try cutting or grinding up the food before feeding your Betta. If you reduce the food’s size, your Betta should not spit it out. 

If you find your Betta spitting out frozen food, you should make sure you have fully defrosted the food in a small quantity of its tank water before you try giving it to your Betta again. 

Another possibility for your Betta’s food rejection could be digestive trouble, usually in the form of constipation. Treating constipation is easy. You can try fasting your Betta for two or three days and then try feeding it some daphnia. 

Or, you could have a fussy eater on your hands. If this is the case, you can try fasting your Betta for two days and try giving it the food again. Just remember to remove any uneaten food from the tank in order to avoid it sinking to the bottom and rotting. This will negatively affect the water conditions and eventually make your Betta sick.

If Your Betta Stops Eating

Not eating is usually a sign that something is wrong with your Betta. If you notice your Betta is not eating, you need to start ruling out stress factors, constipation, swim bladder disease, or food issues.


Your Betta needs a diet rich in protein, fats, carbs, vitamins, and nutrients. In order to get this well-balanced diet, you need to avoid the cheaper, lower quality foods. 

You should also consider feeding your Betta a variety of foods, such as pellets for everyday meals, supplemented with either frozen or freeze-dried foods, and live foods a couple of times a week. 

Although flake foods are fine, you don’t want that to be the only food your Betta eats because most of the time, this type of food is filled with plant matter, which does not hold any nutritional value for your Betta. If you feed your Betta the flake foods, you should supplement your Betta’s diet with another type of food that we have recommended to give them a well-balanced diet. 

In summary, the best food you can feed your Betta will be live foods. But you have to be careful about buying them from a reputable source. You don’t want to buy contaminated food that could cause your Betta to fall ill or possibly even die. Live foods also bring out your Betta’s hunting instincts. 

Bloated Betta Fish 101: Symptoms, Causes, Treatment & Prevention

Bloated Betta Fish

What do you do if you notice your Betta fish has suddenly become fatter overnight, for no apparent reason? Your mind starts cycling through all the possible reasons this could happen. You may even call the pet store or your vet to see why your betta is bloated, but all you get is a list of possible reasons for the bloating. 

While that can be helpful to a certain degree, you need more information about bloated Betta symptoms, causes, and treatments. This guide will help you recognize, diagnose, and treat the cause of your Betta’s bloating.

In Addition to Bloating, What are Some Other Symptoms?

Fish are small, and it may be difficult to recognize bloating in the beginning stages. If you notice their belly beginning to protrude, start paying attention to other possible symptoms to diagnose the ailment correctly.

Bloated Betta

The Most Common Causes for Bloated Betta Fish

Constipation is the most common cause of bloating in Betta fish. Swim bladder disease is the next most common disease, and after that is dropsy. Luckily, for constipation and swim bladder disease, the treatments are simple, and your Betta fish will recover quickly. Dropsy, on the other hand, can prove to be fatal, unfortunately.

Constipation: Symptoms, Causes, Treatments

Treating and preventing constipation is actually very simple and easy. Nine times out of ten, the bloating your Betta is suffering from is caused by constipation.

Symptoms Of Constipation

If you suspect your Betta fish is constipated, there are other symptoms you should look for that will help you diagnose constipation in your Betta fish.

Can't Pass Stool

While this seems like an obvious symptom, it is actually hard to detect. Only through careful observation will you be able to determine whether your Betta is able to pass stool or not. If you do notice that your Betta fish is constipated, you should keep an eye out for other symptoms, as well.

Lack of Appetite

Bettas love to eat, and because of this, it’s very easy to overfeed your Betta. So, when your Betta stops eating, you will notice right away that something is up. In combination with not being able to pass stool, lack of appetite is a definite sign of constipation in your Betta fish. 

Causes of Constipation

There are a couple of reasons your Betta fish can become constipated. Educating yourself on the reasons for constipation in Betta fish is the first step to preventing this from happening in the future. After all, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. 

Poor Diet

Your Betta’s diet is vital to their health. A poor diet of cheap food can cause constipation and bloat. Feeding your Betta a diet that includes high-quality pellet food rich in vitamins, nutrients, and proteins, as well as live food and even frozen and freeze-dried foods, will help prevent constipation. 

Lack of Exercise

Bettas need at least a 5-gallon tank to live in. Anything smaller can cause boredom and depression due to the lack of room they have to roam around and exercise in. Exercise is important in keeping you Betta fish happy and stress-free. Not being able to exercise freely can cause constipation and bloat. 

How To Treat Constipation

Treating your Betta’s constipation is simple and doesn’t require a lot of effort on your end. To get your Betta’s bowels functioning properly again, you can fast (don’t feed) them for two to three days. Once the fasting is over, you can feed your Betta fish a diet rich in fiber, which will help clean out its digestive system and relieve the constipation. Live foods such as brine shrimp, mosquito larvae, and daphnia are full of the fiber they need. 

If that doesn’t work, you can try feeding your Betta fish tiny pieces of a fresh or frozen pea. Make sure you take the outer layer off the pea first, offering only the inside of the pea to your Betta fish.  

You can also try giving your Betta an Epsom salt bath, which acts as a muscle relaxant. To do this, 

  1. Pour one half of your Betta’s tank water into a clean container. 
  2. For every gallon of water, add one tablespoon of Epsom salt.
  3. Soak the fish in the salt solution for 15 to 30 minutes.

Remove Betta fish immediately if it shows signs of stress, or if it has a bowel movement.

A dysfunctional swim bladder didn't stop him from being king

Swim Bladder Disease: Symptoms, Causes, Treatments

If you have completely ruled out constipation, then another possible reason for your Betta’s bloating could be swim bladder disease. This disease isn’t really a disease. It’s more of a disorder affecting a fish’s buoyancy, causing them to flip over.

However, it’s a little tricky to diagnose because constipation can cause swim bladder disease, and sometimes swim bladder disease can cause constipation. When constipation causes swim bladder disease, it’s usually due to overfeeding and high levels of nitrates. 

Swim Bladder Disease Symptoms

A variety of symptoms can be attributed to swim bladder disease, and are usually easy to spot.

Difficulty Swimming

Besides having a bloated stomach, if you notice your Betta fish has difficulty swimming, this is a good indicator that your Betta fish has swim bladder disease. Some of the difficulties include:

  • Lopsided swimming
  • Floating at the top of the tank’s water
  • Sinking to the bottom of the tank
  • buoyancy issues
  • Unable to remain in the correct position
Loss of Appetite

Suffering from swim bladder disease is stressful for your Betta fish. This can cause your Betta fish to lose their appetite and stop eating. Swim bladder disease can also cause them to be unable to eat, especially if they’ve reached the stage where they are unable to swim towards the food when you feed them.

Curved Back

When swim bladder disease goes untreated for too long, you might notice your Betta’s back beginning to curve. The curved back is very noticeable and unnatural looking. You will need to start treatment immediately to avoid losing your Betta.


Lethargy is another symptom of swim bladder disease. If your Betta hovers in one place without attempting to move around anymore, it could be a sign that they are in pain or stressed. 

Various Causes of Swim Bladder Disease

Swim bladder disease can be caused by several different things, making it difficult to diagnose correctly. Here are some of the more common causes.


Constipation due to overfeeding is one of the most common reasons for swim bladder disease. If your Betta fish is bloated and is having difficulty swimming, there is a good chance it is caused by constipation. 


Injuries to your Betta fish can also cause swim bladder disease. The injuries can be inflicted by other fish in the tank nipping at or being aggressive towards your Betta fish. There is also the possibility of your Betta injuring itself on something in the tank. If your Betta fish jumped out of its tank, it could have damaged itself when it landed, which could also cause swim bladder disease.

Parasites & Bacterial Infections

Bacterial infections and parasites can also cause your Betta to have swim bladder disease, although it’s not as common. If you suspect this to be the cause, keep an eye on your Betta’s stool. Bacterial infections and parasites will cause their stool to be white and stringy looking.


There are several reasons your Betta might go into shock, including:

  • Constant changes in lighting
  • pH changes
  • Temperature changes

If your Betta is in shock, correcting these issues should cure the swim bladder disease issue. 

Swim Bladder Disease Treatment

Depending on what caused the swim bladder disease, there are several different ways of treating this condition, and in some cases, it will correct itself. Here are a few suggestions:

  • If overeating is the cause, you should try fasting your Betta. 
  • If constipation is the cause, try giving them an Epsom salt bath. 

If shock is the cause, you will need to correct the reasons it went into shock first. Once that is corrected, your Betta fish should go back to normal.

Care & Treatment of Dropsy

Dropsy: Symptoms, Causes, Treatments

If you have ruled out swim bladder disease and constipation, dropsy is another possibility. For your Betta, the chances of surviving dropsy are slim, although there are a few rare cases where fish have recovered from dropsy. However, euthanasia is usually the most humane option when dealing with dropsy.

Symptoms Of Dropsy

If your Betta fish is suffering from bloat and you suspect dropsy, be on the lookout for these other symptoms.

Pinecone Scales

One sure sign of dropsy is pinecone scales. This is when your Betta’s scales stick out the wrong way, making it resemble a pinecone. Once your Betta fish has reached this stage, surviving dropsy is rare. The pinecone look is caused by the organs swelling from the damage, causing your Betta’s body to swell up as well. This bloating causes the scales to be pushed out from its body, making it look like a pinecone. At this point, the organs have become too damaged for your Betta fish to survive. 

Curved Spine

Another symptom of dropsy is the spine curving outwards due to the organs swelling. If the spine is curving sideways its dropsy, but if the spine is curving vertically, this is a sign of tuberculosis. 

Causes of Dropsy

Sometimes it can be difficult to pinpoint what caused dropsy because there is a multitude of causes. Generally, dropsy is caused by a physical or environmental stress your Betta fish is suffering from.

Poor Water Quality or Diet

There’s a higher risk of dropsy when your Betta is kept in a tank with poor water conditions or is not fed properly. Poor water conditions and food inflicts unnecessary stress on your Betta fish, which causes it to begin weakening. Once that happens, its immune system will no longer be strong enough to fight off illnesses.

Internal Damage

Internal damage, such as the following, can cause dropsy:

  • Bringing your Betta fish home from the pet store
  • Having your Betta shipped to you
  • Moving it around, switching tanks
  • Fighting
  • Injuring itself on an object in the tank

If the damage is severe enough, it will cause its organs and tissues to begin swelling, leading to dropsy.

Illness & Disease

Unfortunately, your Betta is more likely to develop dropsy if it is already suffering from another disease or illness. It’s vital to begin treatment immediately if you suspect your Betta fish of being sick, in order to keep dropsy from developing.

Treatment Options for Dropsy

While dropsy is usually fatal, you can try treating the causes of dropsy as well as changing the water frequently. If you suspect the cause is a bacterial infection, you can try administering an antibiotic. Another option is trying methylene blue dips. However, the chances of curing your Betta fish of dropsy remain slim. 

Malawi Bloat: Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment

Malawi bloat is extremely rare, and chances are your Betta probably does not have this.

Symptoms Of Malawi Bloat

However, there are a few rare cases where this has happened—unfortunately, it’s usually too late to save your fish once the symptoms start showing. 

Trouble Breathing

While trouble breathing is one of the symptoms for Malawi bloat, it is also the symptom of several other conditions. However, if your fish is hanging out at the top of the tank, struggling to get air, this is a sign of Malawi bloat. Other possibilities include temperature shock, ammonia poisoning, or not enough oxygen in the water. 

Lack of Appetite

Once your Betta contracts Malawi bloat, they will lose their appetite and stop eating. However, a lack of appetite can be contributed to many other illnesses, as well. 

Causes of Malawi Bloat

Malawi Bloat is caused by either bacteria in your tank’s water, or possibly by a parasite. The best way to avoid contracting Malawi bloat is always to keep the water conditions perfect, and only feed your Betta fish food that has come from a reputable source.

Treatment Option for Malawi Bloat

Malawi bloat is fatal, unfortunately. However, if you want to try to save your fish, see a specialist or a vet.

Tumors Causing Bloat in Betta Fish

It’s rare, but there are rare circumstances where a tumor can cause your Betta fish to bloat. Unfortunately, once a tumor develops, the most humane option you have is euthanasia. 

Bloating Due to Producing Eggs

If your female Betta begins to bloat, has verticle white stripes running across its body, and a tube or a white spot on its stomach (where the eggs will come out), your Betta is producing eggs. 

What Do I Do if My Betta Fish Is Bloated?

At the first signs of bloating, you should start diagnosing and treating your Betta immediately to ensure it remains healthy, if possible. 

Quarantining Your Betta

If you do not suspect constipation to be the cause for the bloating, you should transfer your Betta to a quarantine tank if it is part of a community tank. This will hopefully keep your other fish safe, and it will also make treating your Betta easier.

Begin Treatment

Once you have diagnosed and quarantined your Betta, you should begin treatment immediately. Keep your Betta in the quarantine tank until it has fully recovered. 

Monitor the Symptoms

You will need to closely monitor your Betta fish every few hours to make sure its symptoms do not worsen.

Credit: Josh Isaak

How To Prevent Bloat In Your Betta Fish?

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Preventing bloat is a lot easier and less expensive than treating bloat.

Keep the Water Clean

Clean water is one of the most important things your Betta needs in order to maintain good health and prevent possible illnesses. Depending on the size of your tank, you should be performing weekly water changes. If your tank is larger, you can do the water changes less frequently. Water changes help by removing:

  • Ammonia buildup
  • Waste buildup
  • Bacteria
  • Parasites

High-Quality Food

A well-balanced diet and high-quality food will also reduce the possibility of illness, stress, and bloat in your Betta. A varied diet of nutritional Betta pellets, live foods, frozen, and freeze-dried foods will provide the protein, vitamins, and nutrients need to keep its immune system strong and healthy enough to fight off illnesses and diseases. 

Some of the best live foods for your Betta include daphnia, brine shrimp, and mosquito larvae. Bloodworms are great for a treat every once in a while. 

Avoid Aggressive Tank Mates & Sharp Objects

Injuries from sharp objects in the tank or aggressive tankmates can cause possible infections or stress, which can lead to other illnesses. First of all, avoid putting sharp objects in the tank. Second, you also want to monitor the behavior of all your fish in your community tank. If one of your fish is being aggressive towards others, you should remove that fish from the tank or use a tank separator to keep the other fish safe. 

Use an Adequately Sized Tank

Anything under five gallons will not be big enough for your Betta fish. The perfect water conditions are very difficult to maintain in a small tank. Plus, a small tank requires frequent upkeep to keep the conditions at a healthy level. A five-gallon tank will give your Betta enough room to exercise and play. It will also help reduce the chances of water fluctuations, that will eventually stress and possibly even kill your Betta.


Bloating in Betta fish is a common occurrence, and fortunately, most of the time, it is easily treatable. 

  • There are reasons your Betta is bloated. Most are common and easily treatable, with the deadly causes being rarer.
  • The leading cause of bloat is constipation. Inactivity and a poor diet can cause constipation.
  • You can treat your Betta’s constipation quickly and simply by fasting your Betta for two to three days, then feeding it daphnia.
  • Swim bladder disease can cause your Betta to bloat. Injuries, water fluctuations, and constipation can cause your Betta to contract swim bladder disease.
  • Swim bladder disease symptoms also include lethargy, a curved back, loss of appetite, and trouble swimming.
  • Swim bladder disease has different treatments depending on what is causing the disease. 
  • Bloating in your Betta could also be caused by dropsy, which is usually fatal. The primary symptoms of dropsy are curved spine, pinecone scales, as well as bloating. 
  • Internal damage, poor diet, disease, and poor water quality can cause dropsy.
  • By the time your Betta starts showing symptoms of dropsy, it is usually too late to save it. The damage from the disease has already been done.
  • In extremely rare instances, the bloating could be caused by a tumor or Malawi Bloat. Both of these conditions are fatal. 
  • The cause of your female Betta’s bloating could be her producing eggs.
  • To prevent your Betta from bloating, remember to:
    • Maintain good water conditions
    • Feed it a healthy and nutritious diet
    • Keep it in a tank that is five gallons or larger
    • Avoid aggressive tankmates
    • Don’t put sharp objects in the tank

We hope this guideline will help you prevent any future possibilities of bloating in your Betta. Or, if your Betta is suffering bloat, we hope that this guide will help you to recognize the symptoms, diagnose the cause for bloating, and begin the appropriate treatment right away.

Why is My Betta Fish Not Eating? Reasons & Solutions

Betta Fish Not Eating

If you go through all the trouble of setting up a tank and taking care of your fish, you obviously want them to do well and live healthy, happy lives. So, when you notice one of your Bettas is not eating, that is worrisome. 

Usually, it’s nothing you need to worry about. However, there are some cases where their lack of eating is a symptom of something more serious. Either way, you should do some investigation to either rule out the serious issues or begin treatments if needed. 

This guide will take you through all the reasons why is your betta fish not eating and what you should do about it. 

Why is My Betta Fish Not Eating?

There are a variety of reasons your Betta may have stopped eating. One thing to consider is that even when you think your Betta has stopped eating, it may actually be eating without you being aware of it. Keep an eye on your Betta during feeding time, and make sure there aren’t any other factors affecting your Betta’s appetite.

Could My Betta Fish Be a Finicky Eater?

More often than not, you will discover that your Betta is not eating because it’s a finicky eater. Suddenly changing foods on your Betta can cause them to stop eating. If you suspect this to be the case, try feeding it their previous food. If they eat that food without any problems, then more than likely, you Betta is just being finicky. 

The Solution to Finicky Eaters

There are two possible solutions, one being simple and the other a little more difficult. Obviously, the easiest solution here is to feed your Betta fish the food it likes instead of trying to switch foods on them. However, doing so can cause more issues in the long run.

It’s quite common for Bettas to prefer a certain brand or type of food. The issues occur when you are unable to purchase that particular brand or type of food. 

In order to avoid a scenario such as this, you should diversify your Betta’s diet, feeding them a wide range of foods. One of the things you can do is to offer your Betta fish a variety of different foods until it is no longer fussy about what it eats. 

Another option is to stop feeding your Betta fish for a couple of days, thereby putting them on a fast. Once the fast is over, you should try to feed your Betta fish the foods that it didn’t want to eat originally. After having fasted for a couple of days, your Betta should be happy to eat whatever you feed it. 

Could My Betta be Unaware That it is Food?

In the case of flake food and pellet food, your fish may not realize that what you’re feeding them is actually food, especially if you’ve never tried to feed it to them before. 

Typically betta fish breeders only feed their fish a variety of frozen, live, and freeze-dried foods. By the time you purchase your fish, they are already used to that type of diet. Introducing flake and pellet foods may take a while because your fish may not realize that it’s actually food. 

The Solution to Introducing New Foods to Your Betta

For this situation, the best thing you can do for your Betta fish is to continue offering them that particular food until they begin eating it. Typically, it will take two to seven days to adjust to the new food and begin eating. If they insist on not eating the food after this time period has passed, you might have a finicky eater on your hands. 

Try not to let your Betta go more than three days without eating. At this point, you will be causing more harm than good. Make sure you have backup foods that you know your Betta fish will eat, just in case. 

Another thing to remember is to remove any food that goes uneaten from their tank within ten minutes to avoid the food sitting in the tank and rotting, producing harmful ammonia

Could My Betta Not Like Food That is Still Frozen/Freeze-dried?

Freeze-dried and frozen foods are good for Bettas, but some fish will not touch the food until it has adequately thawed. If your Betta fish is ignoring the food altogether, it may be because the food hasn’t softened yet from being frozen. 

Some freeze-dried and frozen food will begin to expand when it starts absorbing water again. This causes a problem when your Betta eats the food too fast. The food might continue to expand in their stomachs, which can cause constipation and possibly swim bladder disease

The Solution to Feeding Your Betta Frozen and Freeze-Dried Food

The simplest solution is to make sure the food is sufficiently thawed out before you give it to your Betta fish. To ensure the food has been properly thawed out before you feed it to your Betta, try putting the food into a small amount of tank water and let it thaw out before serving it to your fish.

Why is My New Betta Fish Not Eating?

When you introduce a new Betta fish to your tank, it’s natural for them to refuse food at first. Moving to a new tank and getting used to living in a new environment is stressful for a fish. If you bought your Betta online and it was shipped, the stress of being shipped can sometimes be overwhelming. 

(Check out the safe and easy way to introduce your new betta fish to a community tank)

The Solution to Getting Your New Betta to Eat

The most simple solution for getting your new Betta fish to eat is giving them time to get used to the tank and settle in. Try turning the aquarium lights off for a day or two. Feed them in the morning and again in the evening. If your Betta fish still doesn’t want to eat the food you fed it, remove the food after ten minutes to keep it from polluting the tank.

Am I Overfeeding My Betta?

If you aren’t paying attention, your Betta fish might actually be eating without you realizing it. Did you know that your fish’s stomach is approximately the size of its eyeball? If you are feeding it too much food, your Betta fish won’t be able to eat all of it, and you will notice food floating on the surface of the water. This could lead to you making the wrong assumption about your Betta fish is not eating.

The Solution to Overfeeding Your Betta

The solution is pretty straight forward, once again. Don’t overfeed your Betta fish. Your Betta only needs one or two pellets of fish food twice a day. If you’re feeding your Betta flake food, all it needs is a small pinch, the equivalent in size to the pellet food. Remember, don’t try to feed it more than its stomach will hold.

Could the Quality of the Food Cause My Betta to Stop Eating?

When buying fish food in a chain pet store, you want to avoid the really cheap brands. The cheap brands are made up of cheap ingredients. If your Betta fish has stopped eating its food, it could be because the quality is poor. 

The cheaper foods don’t offer the balanced diet that your Betta fish needs to stay healthy. Even some of the good quality foods may be lacking in a healthy balance of vitamins, proteins, and nutrients.

The Solution to Poor Quality Foods Causing Your Betta to Not Eat

Bettas need a diet rich in variety to maintain optimum health. When feeding your Betta a high-quality pellet, you will all need to add frozen, live, or freeze-dried food to its diet. 

Occasionally, feeding your Betta fish live foods mixed in with their freeze-dried daphnia and betta pellets will provide the balanced diet your Betta needs.

Could a Problem With the Water Temperature Cause My Betta to Stop Eating?

The water temperature of your Betta’s tank needs to be just right. Because they are cold-blooded, the water’s temperature has a significant impact on their energy.

If the water’s temperature is too cold, it will slow down your Betta’s metabolism, which results in lethargy. A slower metabolism will also slow down the digestion of food, and it will not eat as much as usual.

You may not realize that the colder water temperatures can cause temperature shock, killing your Betta fish. 

The Solution for Water Temperature Irregularities

If you don’t already have one, you should look into getting a heater for your tank to ensure the water remains at a steady temperature of 78°F. Even if the general climate is warm, all it takes is a colder night to change the water temperature in smaller tanks drastically. 

Could a Change in My Betta's Environment Cause Them to Stop Eating?

Even the smallest change in their environment can affect a Betta’s sensitivity. If the water parameters take a downward turn, this can affect your Betta’s appetite. Ammonia spikes are usually to blame. However, any foreign chemical that gets into the tank can also affect your Betta’s eating. 

Sometimes, even a simple water change can throw off your Betta’s environment enough to cause them to stop eating for a while. The new water will have a different ammonia level, pH level, etc., than what your Betta fish is used to. Your Betta fish will go back to eating properly once they become adjusted to the new water from the water change. 

The Solution to Ensuring Your Betta Eats After Routine Water Changes

Normally, if your Betta refused to eat after a routine water change, all you need to do is wait for the next feeding, then try again. If they still refuse to eat, double-check the tank’s water parameters to make sure there are no issues that need to be resolved. Once resolved, you Betta should go back to eating normally.

What if My Betta is Sick?

When your Betta is sick or has a disease, its appetite will be the first thing to suffer. You will see other symptoms that will clue you in that there is something else going on. Swim bladder disease, constipation, and dropsy call all cause your Betta to lose its appetite. 

The Solution for Feeding a Sick Betta

If you suspect that your Betta is sick or has a disease, you need to respond quickly. If left untreated, many diseases can prove to be fatal. If you are unsure of the type of illness or disease your Betta may have, check out some of the other articles on our website for more information.


There are a variety of reasons your Betta has stopped eating. Most of these reasons are really a big deal, but there are some reasons that you should be concerned with. To recap:

  • Your Betta could be a finicky eater. If so, purposely feed it a variety of foods until it eats them willingly. 
  • Your Betta doesn’t know it’s actually food. Keep trying until it catches on and begins to eat. 
  • Your Betta doesn’t like frozen or freeze-dried foods. Soak the foods in a little bit of tank water before giving it to your Betta to eat.
  • Your Betta is stressed out. Turn off the lights for a couple of days, then try feeding it again.
  • You aren’t aware that your Betta is actually eating. Watch your Betta carefully when you feed them and make sure you don’t overfeed them. 
  • Your Betta doesn’t like cheap food. You should only feed your Betta high-quality foods to ensure it gets a balanced diet.
  • Poor water parameters caused your Betta to stop eating. Monitor your water parameters regularly.
  • Your Betta is sick. Monitor the symptoms and treat any illnesses or diseases quickly.

The key to keeping healthy and content fish is ensuring that you monitor their health, behavior, and environment on a regular basis. 

Important Guide to Betta Fish Water Temperatures

Betta Fish Water Temperatures

Betta fish are freshwater fish whose natural habitat consists of tropical regions. They are also called Siamese Fighting Fish because of their fascinating history of being bred as a fighting fish. In their native habitats Bettas live among the marshes and shallow ponds of Asia, especially the regions around Southeast Asia.

Bettas have the ability to adapt to environmental changes quickly, even though they can be somewhat high maintenance. The most important thing to remember when taking care of Bettas is to maintain the proper water temperature. 

The water temperature significantly affects a Betta’s homeostasis. If there are any fluctuations or variations from the appropriate water temperature, your fish’s metabolism will get off balance, which can cause a variety of health problems and even infections.

Most Bettas are curious and friendly when it comes to their owners. When not cared for properly, you Betta can become aggressive towards other fish, as well as depressed. Their aggressiveness has been exploited among the pet traders, compromising their habitat.

Because Bettas live in tropical climates, they can survive in mild water temperatures. However, Bettas do have an armor system for defense against sudden climate changes. Moderate increases in your tank’s water’s temperature will not affect your Betta. However, extremely low temperatures and high temperatures can cause severe issues with your Betta’s overall health.

This guide will walk you through everything you need to know about maintaining the correct temperature for your Bettas. All it takes is a little effort to ensure your Bettas have the proper tank maintenance, meeting their needs for the healthiest environment you can give them.

The Ideal Water Temperature for Betta Fish

Because Bettas are naturally tropical fish, their ideal water’s temperature ranges between 76°F – 82°F. If you plan to house your Betta in a smaller tank, we recommend nothing smaller than five gallons.

Making sure that the water temperature remains between 76° – 82°F will ensure your Betta’s optimum health. Experts agree that your Betta’s water temperature should not go below 74°F or exceed the recommended 82°F. If the water’s temperature drops too low or goes too high, your Betta could get hurt or sick and possibly even die.

The Reasons Bettas Need These Temperatures

For Betta’s, balancing their body’s internal temperature, or homeostasis, can be sensitive. Differences in the water’s temperature can affect your Betta’s homeostasis severely, which could, in turn, compromise their immune systems.

If you witness fatigue and weakness in your Betta, as well as abnormal behavior, a dangerous fluctuation of the water’s temperature may have occurred. Considering that the natural habitat for your Betta is a tropical one, maintaining the water’s temperature is essential for your fish to live a long, healthy life. 

Unfortunately, mimicking your Betta’s natural environment with all the organic nourishment that is available in the marshes and rice paddies is impossible. However, you do have command over the water temperature, which you can mimic from their natural habitat. 

In their natural habitat, the water’s temperature remains steady all year long. Therefore, your Bettas can not handle wide fluctuations is their water’s temperature. Because Bettas can’t adjust their own internal body’s temperature, they are greatly affected any fluctuations in the water’s temperature around them. 

When a fluctuation in the water’s temperature occurs, these changes will negatively affect your Betta’s feeding, respiration, and their ability to swim. By consistently maintaining the proper water temperature, your Betta’s metabolism system will remain healthy, thereby extending your Betta’s life span. 

When the Water Temperature Gets Too High

Because it does not contain as many oxygen molecules as cold water does, hot water can cause severe damage to your Betta’s metabolism system. In an effort to get more oxygen into their bodies, your Betta will begin to breathe rapidly and even stay at the surface of the water, gulping oxygen. 

You might also see them swimming erratically, which will cause your Betta’s metabolism rate to increase. The higher metabolism rate can quickly deplete them of energy, causing extreme fatigue in your Betta. 

This level of fatigue can have adverse effects on your Betta’s overall health. If continued, the high metabolic rate will cause premature aging, causing their lifespans to shorten significantly. 

When the Water Temperature Gets Too Low

Colder temperatures will have the opposite effect on your Betta than hot water. Instead of speeding up your fish’s metabolism, the cold water will slow their metabolism rate down significantly. 

When temperatures drop below 74°F, your Bettas will not be able to maintain a healthy body temperature, which will make it extremely difficult for them to function and survive in the colder water temperatures.

The cold water will make your Bettas lethargic. You will see them in the bottom water level of your tank, swimming slowly or not at all. Because the water temperatures tend to be warmer towards the bottom of the tank, your Bettas will seek out that warmth rather than trying to get more oxygen. Your Bettas are also in danger of starvation because they will stop eating when the water is too cold.

When the water temperature drops drastically, your Betta is in danger of slipping into a coma. While in the coma, their metabolism will slow down to the point where they become defenseless against infections, diseases, and bacteria, all of which can damage their immune system to the point where your Betta could die. 

The Importance of Maintaining the Proper Water Temperature

The water temperature from their native habitat remains at a steady temperature, which Bettas are most accustomed to. However, your aquarium’s water temperature can fluctuate with the changing weather conditions and the room temperature.

Any water temperature outside of the healthy range of 76 to 82°F will have your Betta struggling for survival in those extremities. The water temperature fluctuations will concentrate whatever damage that occurs to the metabolic and immune systems. These fluctuations in the water temperature can have several different results.

Temperature Shocks

Extreme hot and cold water temperatures can cause your Betta to suffer temperature shock, which leads to lethargic behavior, coma, and even death, eventually. 

Changes in Their Metabolic System

Your Betta’s body temperature will fluctuate along with the water temperature. Homeostasis kicks in when the Betta’s body becomes too cold, causing a decrease in the metabolic activity, which helps it preserve the body’s warmth. The decrease in their metabolism will cause appetite loss, fatigue, lethargy, and finally, a coma. 

However, your Betta’s metabolic activity will increase, causing your Betta to display hyperactivity when the water temperature becomes too warm. Your Betta’s overall health will be in danger of becoming stressed, leading to an burnout of energy. Your fish will become extremely distressed as it endures increased changes in their metabolic activity. 

Respiration Issues

The oxygen levels will change along with the water temperatures, as well. When water temperature decreases or increases, the oxygen levels will fluctuate, causing adverse reactions in your Betta. 

As mentioned previously, oxygen levels will drop dramatically when the water temperature gets too hot. You will see your Betta hovering at the surface of the water, gulping air in order to get enough oxygen in their system. The low oxygen levels will hinder their respiration, which will eventually damage their metabolism’s rate. 

Immune system

The stress and distress that your Betta goes through when there are fluctuations in the water’s temperature will eventually damage your Betta’s immune system. The water’s temperature can cause bacteria to breed in the water when the fluctuations become extreme. If a Bacteria infestation occurs, your Bettas will be in danger of infections and diseases. 

An infestation of bacteria, along with a weakened immune system, will cause your Betta to get sick faster and more often. As your Betta’s immune system weakens, your Betta will be vulnerable to a variety of diseases and conditions. 


When fluctuations in the water’s temperature cause the immune system to weaken, it won’t be able to fight off possible diseases and infections effectively. For example, your Betta can contract fin rot, which is quite common in Bettas. Fin rot is where bacteria will attach itself to, and feed on, the Betta’s fins, eventually spreading across the entire body. 

Parasites can also breed in extreme water conditions, attacking your Bettas and inducing infections that can range from mild to critical. Water fluctuations can also cause internal issues, such as appetite loss and constipation. When the water temperatures drop and become too cold for your Betta, it will stop eating and eventually starve. 

Maintaining a Constant Temperature

As you can see, maintaining the water’s temperature is essential for your Betta to survive and remain healthy. Incorporating the following suggestions in your routine will go far in ensuring the water temperature in your Betta’s tank remains at an ideal level.


Using a thermometer will help you to monitor the water’s temperature in your Betta’s tank. Buying a separate thermometer will give you more accurate results than the tank’s thermostat. Floating thermometers with suction cups will work well for maintaining the water’s temperature most accurately. 


A heater is essential in maintaining the water temperature of your Betta’s tank. When you buy a quality heater, you can rest assured that it won’t break down and work more efficiently. Poor quality heaters have a tendency to overheat the water, which is dangerous for your Betta. Using a heater in conjunction with a floating thermometer will ensure your Betta’s tank will stay at a consistent, healthy temperature.

You might also be interested in: Betta Fish Heater – Your Betta Will Love [2020]

Water Changes

When performing partial water changes in the tank, you must make sure the water’s temperature does not change. Drastic changes in the water’s temperature will cause your fish to go into shock. If the water temperature does get too cold or hot during a water change, you can help bring the water temperature back to normal by adding water or installing a heater. 

Setup Your Tank in the Ideal Spot

If you live in a region with extreme hot or cold temperatures, you will want to keep your aquarium tank far from the doors and windows of your home. In colder regions, heaters and lamps placed close to the aquarium will help maintain the water temperature. 

For climates that are warmer, avoid setting up the tank near direct sunlight. Use air conditioners and fans to keep the water’s temperature from fluctuating too much in the heat. 

Aerating the Water

Fluctuations in the water temperature can cause a decrease in your tank’s available oxygen levels. One thing you can do to ensure that the oxygen levels in the tank’s water remains steady, is to purchase an aerator. This will ensure there is enough oxygen in the water for your Bettas to breathe comfortably.


Your Betta’s health will be adversely affected when there are changes in the tank’s water temperature. Mild deviations can be tolerated, as long as they are minimum. However, drastic changes can risk your Betta’s health by weakening their immune systems and reducing their oxygen levels. 

By following the advice outlined in this guide, you will be proactive in ensuring your Bettas live a healthy, happy, long life. 

Do Betta Fish Actually Get Lonely

Do Betta Fish Get Lonely

Do you ever wonder if fish get lonely, swimming around in their tank all by themselves for their entire lives? You have to wonder if they possibly get bored, as well, doing the same thing day after day with no change. 

Do fish actually get bored and lonely? Keep reading to learn how you can keep your Bettas from getting bored and lonely, and actually make them happier and more content in their home environment. 

Do Betta Fish Get Lonely?

No one really knows for certain whether Betta fish actually get lonely or not. Although fish enthusiasts generally believe that Bettas probably do not get lonely. Bettas have a reputation for being a solitary fish due to their aggressiveness towards each other, as well as towards other fish species

However, it is believed that Bettas do, indeed, get sad. Evidence shows that Bettas commonly become bored, depressed, and even stressed. It’s your job as the fish enthusiast, to provide everything your Betta needs in order to avoid these unhealthy conditions. By providing stimuli, hiding places, vegetation, and shade, you can be sure your Betta will be happy and content.

Do Betta Fish Prefer Being Alone?

Although Bettas tend to be a solitary fish, that doesn’t necessarily mean that they like to be alone. Each Betta has a different temperament. Some Bettas are more territorial than others and won’t tolerate any other species in their tank. In contrast, other Bettas may actually become more social living with other species in a community tank. 

There is one hard and fast rule for Bettas – never putting two male Bettas in the same tank. They are known as Siamese Fighting Fish for a reason. They are very territorial and aggressive towards other male Bettas. If they feel their territory is being threatened, they will fight each other, usually unto death. 

Nonthreatening species might actually make your Betta happier in their tank. Mollies, platies, snails, shrimp, and some catfish make great tankmates for Bettas. With other fish swimming around, it might make your Betta feel less lonely and more content. 

When there are other fish swimming around the tank along with your Betta, it could indicate that there are no threats in the tank, and there’s nothing for your Betta to be afraid of.

Keeping Bettas with Other Fish

If you prefer to have your Betta in a community tank along with other fish, there are some things you will need to know.

The Tank Should Be Big Enough

Ensuring the tank is large enough for your Betta and other fish to live happily without getting in each other’s territory is one of the most important things you can do as a fish owner.

A five-gallon tank is great for a Betta alone. However, if you want to add more fish to the tank, you will need a bigger tank, starting at ten gallons or larger. In fact, some fish, such as the red tail shark, require at least a 55-gallon tank.

Provide Plenty of Hiding Spaces

If you have a community tank with a Betta as well as other fish, you will want to provide plenty of hiding spaces for all of them. Your fish will feel safer when they have a lot of hiding places, which will make them feel more secure about swimming around in the open.

Monitor the Tank

When first introducing new fish to your Betta, you will need to make sure that you monitor your Betta’s behavior, and it doesn’t get aggressive towards your other fish. You will need to make sure your Betta is not bullying the other fish, as well as monitoring the other fish to make sure they are not bullying your Betta!

If you do see aggressive behavior in your fish towards one another, you will need to either place a divider in the tank to separate them or buy a new tank.

Carefully Choose Tank Mates

You will want to do a little research before going out and buying a bunch of fish. You want to make sure that you are choosing a suitable tankmate for your Betta. Other fish with long, flowing tails and bright colors should be avoided. 

You will also want to avoid buying any fish that occupy the area around the top of the tank because this is the Betta’s territory. If your Bettas feels that another fish is threatening its territory, it will probably attack them.

Bottom feeders make excellent tankmates for your Betta, considering they occupy opposite areas of the tank. Your bottom feeders will stay around the bottom of the tank, and they won’t clash with your Betta.

Do Female Bettas Get Lonely?

It’s well known that male Bettas will not tolerate other male Bettas in the same tank. So, what about female Bettas? Females are similar to the male Bettas in that they are solitary fish and generally don’t have a problem being alone. 

However, you can keep a sorority of female Bettas as long as your tank is large enough. A sorority is a group of female Bettas. The females in a sorority will establish their own unique territories, but they are capable of cohabitating peacefully. They also don’t care if other fish enter their territories. Aggression will sometimes happen, especially if they establish a pecking order. 

If you plan to keep a sorority of Bettas, make sure that your tank is large enough to house them, a minimum of 29 gallons should give them plenty of places to hide. You will still need to monitor your sorority to make sure that none are getting aggressive toward any others. If you do witness aggression, you should separate them with a tank divider or putting them in a separate tank altogether. 

When starting a Betta sorority, you will want to introduce each Betta to the tank one at a time. Introducing them all at the same time will wreak havoc on the ammonia cycle, as well as causing an issue if all of them are aggressive towards each other. You will then need to start adding tanks or putting in tank dividers. 

On the other hand, if you only add them one at a time, you will only have to worry about moving one Betta if something doesn’t go right. Female Bettas can get aggressive, as well, sometimes worse than males. Their smaller fins make them faster swimmers, and they can chase and attack other fish without mercy. Monitoring your tank for this kind of behavior is essential for the health of all your fish.

A Mirror Can Help

Adding a mirror to your tank will stimulate your Betta by making it seem like there are other fish in the tank with your Betta. Your Betta will flex its muscles while getting exercise. Once you take the mirror away, your Betta will think it “won” the fight.

Using a mirror will also trick your Betta into thinking it’s not alone. It will see its reflection in the mirror and think it’s another fish swimming along with it in the tank. This will prompt your Betta to start patrolling the tank more, which will keep him from getting lonely.


Bettas don’t get lonely the way humans do. Instead, they tend to feel safer when there are other fish in the tank with them. As long as your Betta has a good temperament, it is beneficial for their health if they live in a community tank.

Remember, when adding tankmates to your community tank along with your Betta, you need to be sure to add fish that will not cause your Betta to become aggressive. Long flowing tails and bright colors can agitate your Betta and make it aggressive. 

Female Bettas enjoy company more than they enjoy being on their own. They tend to do better in community tanks than male Bettas do. Sororities are good as long as your tank is large enough to accommodate all of them. However, if your female becomes aggressive towards the other fish in their tank, you will need to separate them to keep your other fish safe.

Betta Fish Ich: Symptoms, Causes, Treatment That Hobbyists Must Know

Betta Fish Ich

One of the most common diseases among freshwater fish is ich, or ick, also called white spot disease. Bettas are highly susceptible to this uncomfortable disease, and death can occur if it is not treated in time. Before treating betta your fish ich, rule out any other possibilities to avoid any adverse effects. 

What is Ich?

Ichthyophthiriasis is a protozoan disease that causes white spots to appear on your fish. Although it’s common in freshwater fish, it tends to be most common for aquarium fish. It’s believed that the close contact and occasional stress that can occur in aquariums can cause ich. 

Symptoms of Betta Fish Ich

White spots that appear on your Betta’s body is the most common and obvious symptom of ich. Although the white spots tend to develop on the body, there are instances when they also appear on the fins.

Sometimes, if the ich spots are small, they might resemble white dust, but you will still need to treat them. However, if the “dust” appears to be yellow or gold in color, then it’s most likely Velvet, which is a parasite that can end up killing your Betta if left untreated. 

Lethargy and loss of appetite will accompany ich. While they are not exclusive to ich, these symptoms are a definite indicator that your fish is suffering from some kind of illness or disease. 

Another sign of ich is seeing your betta rubbing on things in the tank. Once it realizes it has a parasite, it will try to rub it off its skin. Excessive rubbing can cause wounds and sores. If you begin to see signs of wounds and sores, watch carefully for rubbing and look for the tell-tale signs of white spots. 

If you do not see the white spots, but your Betta is still rubbing against things in the tank, it could be a sign of gill flukes or anchor worms. 

Although Bettas are loners, if you begin to notice that your Betta is acting much more reclusive, you should investigate. If you find your Betta actively avoiding other fish or hiding for long periods of time, it could be because your Betta is feeling threatened due to a weakened immune system. 

Another common sign of illness in fish is the clamping of fins, which is caused by extreme stress. Also, because ich affects your Betta’s gills, it can cause distressed breathing if it isn’t caught and treated in time, which could result in respiratory failure and prove fatal. 

What Causes Ich?

Ich is caused by a ciliated protozoan Ichthyophthirius multifiliis, which is a parasite. It affects several different varieties of freshwater fish. However, it’s the most common disease you will find in fish aquariums. 

All new fish that you buy will need to be quarantined before putting them in the community tank because ich may be present in the water, and it’s highly contagious. It’s possible to bring home a new fish that already has ich if they haven’t been taken care of very well. 

Stressed out fish are more likely to catch ich. If they are living in poor water conditions or poorly heated water, they are more likely to catch ich. The ich parasite will also attack aging Bettas, as well. 

How to Treat Ich in Betta Fish

Rapid detection and action are essential for keeping your betta healthy. Otherwise, ich can be fatal if it is not treated properly. Most fish enthusiasts who have owned fish for a long time have had encounters with ich and have subsequently treated their fish at some time or another.

Treating ich is relatively easy; just follow the steps below.

  1. Isolate your Betta in a quarantine tank, so they don’t infect the other fish in your tank.
  2. Slowly begin increasing the temperature in the tank to anywhere from 81 to 86 degrees Fahrenheit for ten days. Because ich parasites love cold water, it leads to a prolonged life cycle and an increase in the reproduction rates. Warmer waters will slow this down while you are treating your Bettas and the tank’s water. 
  3. However, there is less oxygen in warmer waters, so you might consider adding an airstone to your tank. By increasing the oxygen in the tank’s water, you will be giving your Betta’s immune system a much-needed boost. 
  4. Rid Ich Plus is a great medicine for treating ich. It contains formalin and malachite green, which has proven to be a strong and effective treatment. Be sure to follow the medicine’s directions and only give your Bettas the recommended dosage for treating ich. 
  5. You will also need to change out the water every day by 25 – 50% to lower the elevated medication levels, as well as removing ich tomites and trophonts. 

Continue to follow the medication’s directions through to the end of the medicating cycle. Although the ich protozoan only has a life span of seven days, it will only be vulnerable to the medication for two of those days. You will need to be sure to continue the medication until the end of the treatment to ensure that they are completely gone. 

Ich Stages

As mentioned previously, the ich protozoan has a life span of seven days, but it will reproduce rapidly unless it is treated and cared for properly. Ich has three distinct life stages in tropical freshwater aquariums. In order to effectively treat ich, you will need to understand those life stages.

Trophont Stage or Feeding Stage

During this phase of the life cycle, the parasites are attached to your Betta, and they are visible and feeding. During this phase, they are not susceptible to any treatments.

Tomont Stage

During this phase, the adult parasite will release from your Betta and fall into the tank, attaching to another object or the substrate. They will begin to divide by binary fission up to ten times very rapidly during this stage. This is the reproductive stage for the parasite.

Theront Stage

Although the ich parasites can not be seen with the naked eye, they are a free-swimming parasite during this phase and become vulnerable to any treatment you administer.

At this point, they only have 48 hours in order to attach themselves to a host, or they will die. This is the phase in which you need to be medicating your fish and treating your tank. This is essential for the elimination of the ich parasites and recovery for your fish. 

How to Prevent Betta Fish Ich

Although ich is a common disease and easy to treat, if your Betta catches ich, you will need to treat the entire tank. Preventing ich is much easier than treating ich. Here are some steps that will help you prevent your fish from contracting ich in your aquarium.

  • Only purchase your fish from a reputable source, and only purchase healthy fish that are free from any signs of disease.
  • Never purchase any fish from a tank that has a diseased or dead fish in it. 
  • Always quarantine new fish before introducing them into your community tank. You should quarantine them for a minimum of two weeks in a tank that has the water conditions your Betta prefers, as well as lighting, heating, adequate filtration, and a hiding spot for your fish.
  • When buying plants, do not buy them from a dealer that keeps them in a tank among any fish, they could be contaminated. However, if you do purchase plants that have been in a tank with other fish, you can bring them home and place them in the quarantine tank for at least four days.
  • If you are purchasing your Betta online, you should choose as direct a source as possible to reduce handling stress and save on shipping costs.  
  • Frequent inspections of your fish are necessary to catch and immediately quarantine any fish with signs of ich. Once they are quarantined, you can begin treating them immediately for ich. 
  • Keep your tank’s water conditions stable and avoid any kind of fluctuation in the temperature, ammonia levels, and pH levels. Fluctuations of this sort can be very stressful to your fish, which can result in your fish contracting ich.
  • Feed your Bettas a healthy diet of flaked, frozen, and freeze-dried foods that have been stored properly and are not out of date. 
  • Make sure you don’t overstock your fish tank. If your tank has too many fish for that particular size of tank, you are risking your healthy fish becoming stressed, diseased, and eventually dying. 
  • Employ frequent water changes on a regular basis while maintaining the proper water conditions and quality. 

While ich might be one of the most common diseases for aquarium fish, with preventative maintenance, your fish can remain safe from catching it. By following the guidelines we have laid out for you in this article, and rapidly treating any fish that become infected, you will reduce any damage that this potentially deadly disease can cause.


Can ich be cured?

Yes, as long as you quarantine the infected fish and begin the proper treatment immediately, ich is quite curable.

How contagious is ich?

Ich is very contagious and will spread rapidly among fish inhabiting the same tank. Ich happens to be a living organism that resembles a white dot the size of a grain of salt. Usually, it will begin on the tails and fins of your fish, then spread to other parts of the body.

The white dot will appear flat on the body at first, but will eventually become raised in the late stages. It is similar to a skin infection, which can be dangerous for a fish. 

Because of binary fission, one spot of ich can divide itself up to ten times very rapidly, multiplying into hundreds of parasites. Ich needs to attach itself to a live fish in order to survive, and will eventually die if there aren’t any live fish to attach itself to.

You need to treat ich immediately, or it will quickly infect your other fish, and if left untreated, they will die quickly. 

Can ich kill Bettas?

Ich is very easy to treat, and as long as you catch it immediately and begin treating it, your Betta has a strong chance of surviving it. However, if you do not spot ich right away and it’s allowed to begin multiplying, it will build up quickly, and eventually, your Bettas will begin to die.

Can Humans catch ich?

It is very rare for a human to catch a disease from a fish. Humans can not catch ich. The only thing a human could possibly catch from a fish would be a bacterial infection, but that is incredibly rare.


Because fish enthusiasts have become more dependent on medications, ich and other such diseases have adapted and become stronger over the past decades. This explains why most instances of ich can’t be cured unless you use medication. 

Ich can also attach itself to live aquarium plants. By remembering to quarantine any new living plants you bring home as well as new tank mates, you can prevent the potential spread of ich among your community tank. 

There is good news, though. If your Bettas does end up catching ich, they will develop a slight immunity, or tolerance, to ich once you have cured them of it the first time they catch it. It’s highly unlikely that your Betta fish will contract ich at any time in the future after having had it once. 

Prevention is the key. Preventing your Bettas from catching diseases like ich is much easier and less stressful than treating your diseased fish. Make sure that you care for your Betta fish properly as well as maintaining the water quality and tank conditions to reduce possible environmental stressors.

A healthy diet of high-quality flake foods and pellets, freeze-dried foods, and live foods will go a long way in keeping your tank cleaner and your Bettas and other fish healthy and safe from most diseases, including ich. 

Betta Fish Tumor 101 (Symptoms, Treatment & Prevention)

Betta Fish Tumor

Like most pet owners, fish enthusiasts have to deal with sick fish occasionally. Though this is not pleasant, most fish diseases can be cured with a little attention and effort, even betta fish tumor.

Below, we will discuss identifying a tumor on your betta fish, the treatments available to heal your fish, and how to prevent future tumors.

Can Betta Fish Get Tumors and Cancer?

Yes, betta fish can develop tumors and cancers in much the same way as humans and other animals.

How Likely Is It Your Betta Will Get A Tumor?

Although tumors are somewhat rare in bettas, they are one of the least threatening illnesses your betta can catch. Before panicking, do some investigation to rule out ulcers and abscesses, which sometimes look similar to tumors. Fluid retention, constipation, and swim bladder disease can also cause tumor-like spots to appear on your betta’s body. 

What Are Betta Fish Tumor Symptoms?

If you spot any bumps under or on your betta’s skin, it might be tumors. Tumors come in different sizes, from tiny to huge. Large tumors can affect your betta’s buoyancy and make swimming more difficult. 

On the other hand, if the tumor is internal, you will probably not see it. If your fish has difficulty eating and swimming, it may have an internal tumor. If so, your betta will quickly become unhealthy. Unfortunately, internal tumors can’t be healed, and your betta will die. For these situations, the only humane thing to do is to euthanize your fish, so they don’t suffer.

Betta Fish Has A White Tumor

Your Betta Fish Has A White Tumor?

Typically, the bump you have spotted is most likely not a tumor. It’s very rare for a Betta fish to develop a cancerous tumor. Instead, the bump your fish has developed is usually an abscess or an ulcer. Both of these types of bumps resemble tumors. Fluid retention, constipation, and swim bladder disease can also resemble a tumor.


If you spot a white bump on your Betta’s body, it’s probably an abscess rather than a cancerous tumor. Bacterial infections are the main cause of Abscesses. There are various ways your Betta can develop a bacterial infection, such as injuring itself on something sharp within your fish tank. Or, the damage could be caused by another fish nipping at your Betta. You could accidentally cause an abrasion when changing the water or when handling your Betta. 

Abscesses will usually heal themselves. However, if the water in the tank is not changed out frequently and kept healthy, bacteria will infect the site of the wound and infection will begin. 

If an abscess is not treated properly, it will grow until it’s too large for the fish’s skin to contain it, and then it will burst, leaving a large, open area on its body that will become infected, and the entire cycle will begin again.  

Treating A Betta Fish Abscess

If you notice a bump on your fish’s skin, you need to remove it from its main tank and put it in a quarantine tank alone. To set up the quarantine tank, you will need to make sure that the water is set to the same conditions as the main tank. Your quarantine tank will need lighting, heating, an adequate filtration system, as well as a hiding place.

Your quarantine tank needs to be maintained regularly to ensure the tank remains clean, especially after the abscess bursts. Frequent water changes is a must. 

When your Betta is sick, it will feel vulnerable. Providing a place for your Betta to hide in the quarantine tank will keep your fish from becoming stressed out. In a pinch, a plastic plant pot with smooth sides will work. Just set it on its side in the tank and partially bury it in the substrate and you will have created an affordable and safe hideout for your fish.

You could also add plants to the quarantine tank instead of a cave of some sort. Plants are a great hiding spot for your Betta to recuperate in. However, avoid fresh plants as they can sometimes carry unwanted bacteria and parasites that could further harm your Betta. 

If the abscess is not too large, your fish will have a better chance to survive it. You will want to treat the tank’s water with the appropriate antibacterial aquarium product. You can find them online or in your local fish store. Follow the directions, using the recommended dosage. 

It Might Be An Ulcer

Ulcers are common for Betta fish. They look like sores with a red area around the lump on the fish’s skin. Ulcers can make your fish lethargic and cause them to lose their appetite, which eventually will make them look emaciated. 

Bacterial infections are the main cause for ulcers in Bettas. Even when you have cleaned and maintained the tank regularly, there are still bacteria that will remain in the water. Under normal circumstances, this bacteria will not harm your fish. However, if your Betta becomes stressed due to unfavorable conditions in their environment, such as poor water quality, they will become vulnerable to infection from these bacteria.

Treating A Betta Fish Ulcer

As we mentioned previously, it’s important for you to remove your Betta from its main tank and transfer it to a quarantine tank if you see any signs of an ulcer. 

Once the ulcer heals, fungal infections are frequently a possibility. It’s crucial to continue with frequent water changes for at least three weeks after the ulcers have been treated successfully. 

Adding salt to the tank’s water after the first water change will help to encourage the healing of the wound. You only want to add one-fourth of an ounce per gallon of water to reduce the osmotic effect that water has upon entering the ulcer, as well as disinfecting the wound.

After each water change, you should add about 30% of the salt you originally added to maintain the water’s salt content. Monitoring the water’s salt level is easy with the use of a hydrometer. Also, you will want to add an antibacterial aquarium product into the water. Once the ulcer is completely healed, you can return your Betta to its main tank again. 

Where Can Tumors Be Located?

The tumors can appear anywhere on the fish’s body. However, as we mentioned previously, not all lumps are tumors. In fact, there are places on your fish’s body that will develop lumps that are not tumors after all.

Here is a brief guide meant to help you determine the cause of any lumps tht appear on certain areas of a Betta’s body.

Tumor On Your Betta Fish’ Head

Lumps that form on a fish’s head are quite common. Although Bettas can develop tumors on their head, bacterial infections can also cause lumps to develop on their heads. One of the most common bacterial infections is columnaris. This infection will cause tumor-like lesions to develop around the Betta’s mouth and gills.

Lumps on Betta's side

Tumor On Your Betta Fish’s Side

If you spot lumps on your Betta’s side, it could be a variety of possibilities, usually easily treatable. Although the lump might be a cancerous tumor, it is more likely to be swim bladder disease or a bacterial infection.

It Might Be Betta Fish Swim Bladder Disease

If your Betta’s side looks swollen and lumpy, it could be swim bladder disease. The swim bladder is an organ filled with gas that allows the fish to navigate up and down in the tank’s water. This works the same way as a buoyancy aid for a diver. 

One of the tell-tale signs of a fish with swim bladder disease is that their abdomens will appear swollen and become lethargic. They will sink to the tank’s bottom or involuntarily float on the surface of the water. Your Betta can also develop an unbalanced or lopsided position while it’s swimming because it won’t be able to stabilize itself. 

Swim bladder disease is usually caused by overfeeding and constipation. The easiest way to treat swim bladder disease is to abstain from feeding your Betta for a couple of days to all the digestive system to digest whatever food remains in its stomach. Luckily, swim bladder disease isn’t contagious, so you will not need to transfer your Betta to a quarantine tank. You can also talk to your local pet store for other possible treatments.

Bacterial infections

Bacterial infections can develop when your fish has been injured or another fish has nipped it. These infections will often look like lumps on the sides of your Betta. These lumps can become infected and turn into abscesses, as mentioned previously. 

Over-the-counter antibacterial products can be used to treat the water if you have any concerns that your tank has been infected. The OTC antibacterial products will clear up any infections relatively quickly. Be sure to quarantine your infected fish in a separate tank as soon as possible while treating the main tank. 

Tumor On Betta Fish’s Stomach

Lumps that develop on your Betta’s stomach are the most common. Although these lumps can actually be tumors, there are a variety of other culprits as well. A bacterial infection, constipation, swim bladder disease, and dropsy can all cause lumps on your fish’s sides and stomach. 


Constipation is a common cause for lumps to develop on your Betta’s stomach, and fortunately can be treated easily. If your fish becomes lethargic, stops eating, and hasn’t passed any feces lately, it’s probably constipated. 

Constipation can even cause swim bladder disease. It can also be treated the same way you treat swim bladder disease, by withholding food for a few days. Once you are ready to feed your Betta again, offering it live and frozen food, such as mosquito larvae or bloodworms, is better than feeding it flakes or dry pellets.

Some of the more experienced fish enthusiasts will add a day of fasting each week to their Betta’s feeding schedule. This will also help prevent constipation in your Betta

Tumors in Betta's gills

Tumors in Betta fish’s Gills

Gill hyperplasia is another condition that is known to cause lumps and tumors of the gills. However, this usually only occurs when the gills have been damaged by a physical injury, or bacterial or parasitical infection, or toxins such as nitrites, nitrates, and amonia.

Rather than properly healing, the newly developed gill tissue will grow, covering the damaged area and form a lump that looks like a tumor. The lump will grow larger over time, as new skin forms. Only in some severe instances of hyperplasia can the lumps become permanent. With most minor cases you will see that after the lumps disappear, the gills will become normal again.

How Do You Treat Tumors in Betta Fish?

Unfortunately, there is no effective treatments or cures for most tumors and cancers. If the tumors or cancer is internal, they are usually not diagnosed until the diseasae is in the advanced stages. If you are able to diagnose the cancer early, it is usually inoperable due to the tumor’s position and location. Most fish with cancer or tumors are humanely euthanized for this reason.

However, some tumors are treatable, such as gill tumors, caused by a thyroid issue, and treated by medicating the water in a quarantine tank with iodine.

How to Prevent Tumors in Betta Fish?

As long as you are proactive in choosing and taking care of your Bettas, you can greatly diminish the possibility of them developing any kind of tumors or cancer.

  • You always want to buy from a reputable breeder. Avoid inbred fish. They are more likely to have problems, including developing cancerous tumors.
  • Use and maintain an efficient filtration system will help keep the tank water clean and healthy. Also, changing 25% of the tank water each week will help prevent any bacteria buildup.
  • Feeding your Betta a diet rich in quality foods will give them the proper levels of nutrients and protein they need to stay healthy.  
  • Immediately quarantine any fish that you suspect might be ill in any way before they are able to infect the healthy fish in your tank. This will stop the contagion from spreading.


Although there are several different causes for lumps on your Betta’s body, most can be treated if caught early enough. Cancer, unfortunately, is not one of those. If you have ruled out all other possibilites for illness in your Bettas and you suspect the lumps to be cancerous, you will need to consider euthanizing your fish. It’s the humane thing to do.

Do Betta Fish Sleep? 6 Fun Facts You Need To Know

Do Betta Fish Sleep

If you’re a new betta owner then one of the most common questions you may be asking yourself is “do betta fish sleep?”  Well, this is not a silly question. For someone who have ever had a betta fish, you might have experienced a time when they look lifeless.

So much so that you truly think they might be dead. However, they might just be asleep. Usually, they do this at night when you are already sleeping, but this really depends on the specific betta.

They each have their own personalities and this includes how often, and when they like to sleep. You could also mistake them for being awake, even though they are truly sleeping, due to the fact that they don’t have any eyelids. You should refrain from tapping their tank when they are motionless for this reason.

Do Betta Fish Sleep?

Yes, all fish need sleep. Although some fish do not sleep in the same way that land mammals sleep, they do rest. Betta fish are a prime example of this and one way you can tell they are sleeping is due to being motionless. They will do this often at the bottom of the tank, or near the surface of the water.

When this is happening, they may also react slowly to anything that is going on around them, or simply not respond at all. Most bettas will do this at night, so you might not catch them in the act unless you look in on them during the night.

How To Tell Your Betta Is Sleeping

There are a few ways you can tell your betta is sleeping. You could see them lying motionless, not paying attention to anything that is going around in the tank. It could be lying near the surface, or at the bottom of the tank in an L-shape. Some will even lay sideways. Or, you could find it hiding in places like the vegetation, or rocks in the tank. These provide the perfect spots for your betta to hide and feel safe enough to sleep when needed.

Do Betta Fish Sleep?
Bob Is Sleeping

Where Do Bettas Sleep?

Betta fish will sleep in the enclosure that they are housed. This could mean that they fall asleep at the bottom of the tank where you can easily see them. Near the surface. You can find them hiding in places like decorative houses, wood, vegetation, etc.

Anywhere they can find and feel comfortable doing so. It will also be easier for them to do so if you turn off the fish tank lights and lights in the general area for them to know when it is truly nighttime.

How Many Hours Do Bettas Sleep?

This is hard to recommend due to each betta fish being different. If you find that your fish is active during the day, you can assume that they are getting the right amount of sleep at night.

However, if you see that they are very inactive during the day, they could not be getting the rest they need. Try turning off fish tank lights and surround lights in the room the tank is kept, to give your fish the ability to know when it truly is night.

Do Betta Fish Need Darkness To Sleep?

When it comes to betta fish the answer is complicated. Turning the lights off will give your fish the ability to know when it is night time and they can develop a sleep pattern.

However, you will find that bettas will also take naps during the day when there is light. You should give 8-12 hours of light and 12-16 hours of darkness for bettas to get an adequate amount of sleep and develop a sleep pattern.

Do Betta Fish Hibernate?

Betta fish do not hibernate, so if you see the loss of activity it could mean that your fish tank temperature is too low. Your tank should not fall below 76 degrees F due to your fish potentially going into temperature shock.

You should do whatever you can to get your heat up to the levels that are needed, due to temperature shock being extremely dangerous. This could severely impact your betta, if not result in death.

How Do You Ensure Your Betta Fish Sleeps Well?

Bettas are like humans and require an adequate amount of rest. It is a good idea to get your betta fish on a sleep pattern where they know when to go to bed.

Turn the lights off in your tank, and make sure there aren’t bright lights in the direct vicinity. If you see your betta sleeping, let it sleep. Do not tap on the tank to see if there is something wrong, due to them being motionless.

Make sure your tank is at the proper temperature, if it gets too cold you could be sending your betta into temperature shock. Each betta fish is different, so figure out your betta’s sleeping pattern. Are they active during the day, meaning they are getting enough rest at night?

Do they like taking naps during the day? Is their behavior consistent, or has something changed? If they are acting differently, start looking into what can be changed to help them.


As we can see, bettas do in fact sleep. They also happen to sleep in very odd positions, which can lead many to think that they are in fact dead. If you see your betta fish near the surface, at the bottom, motionless they could just be sleeping.

In order to save yourself from a scare every time you see this, you should turn off the tank light and surrounding lights when it is time for them to go to bed. This will help develop a sleep pattern where they can rest peacefully at night, and be active during the day. Do remember that each betta fish is different, some may like to take naps during the day as well.

When you need to look into why they are being inactive is when this is not a normal occurrence. This could be due to lights interrupting their sleep schedule or even a tank that has a temperature less than 76 degrees. Otherwise, let them sleep as needed.

Betta Fish Tank Mates | Huge List Of 50+ Fish That Can Live With


Are you looking to set up a community tank full of a variety of colorful and strikingly exciting fish? Bettas are the perfect eye candy for your community tank. Their colors are vibrant, and their finnage is flamboyant. 

However, Bettas have a terrible reputation for being aggressive and territorial fish. This can make finding compatible tankmates for your Betta difficult. In general, Bettas are perfectly happy by themselves. But if you want a community aquarium with Bettas, we have the best advice for you today.

Betta Fish Tank Mates Overview

In their natural habitat in the wild, bettas can live among other bettas peacefully. They only show aggression when a male Betta feels his territory is being threatened by another male Betta, as well as during the breeding season. 

However, their temperament becomes more aggressive when placed in captivity and aquariums. Stressful environments and selective breeding are the leading cause of this aggressive behavior. 

When choosing tankmates for your Bettas, you should choose a peaceful fish. They should be a shoaling and fast swimming species, as well. You do not want to pick fish that have a reputation for nipping other fish’s fins. Bottom-dwelling fish work well because they tend to stay away from the Betta’s territory. 

Tetras are perfect tankmates for your Betta. They are a shoaling species and are generally peaceful. They are smaller than Bettas, only growing to around one or two inches, depending on the particular species. Here is a shortlist of compatible Tetras:

  • Neon Tetra Has a red stripe that goes halfway down its body, smaller, one-inch in size 
  • Black Neon Tetra – Similar to the Neon Tetra, but with a horizontal black stripe down the length of its body, adding variety to the tank
  • Cardinal Tetra Has a long red stripe down its body, and is a little larger than the Neon Tetra, growing to be around two-inches in size
  • Ember Tetra – Ember in color, smaller, around one-inch in size, they are fast shoaling fish
  • Rummy-nose Tetra – White with a black and white striped tail and a red head
  • Diamond Tetra – Sparkly, diamond colored, hardy, social and active, they do not nip fins
  • Silver Tip Tetra – Tend to be a little more aggressive, nipping at other Tetras
  • Glowlight Tetra – Silver in color with an iridescent orangish-red stripe that goes from nose to tail

Rasboras make excellent tankmates for your male Betta. In their natural habitat in the wild, you can find them cohabitating in the same water as Bettas. They grow to be two inches in length. They are a peaceful but social species that need to be kept in groups of more than eight.

  • Fire Rasbora – A fiery orange color with silver down its back
  • Harlequin Rasbora – Orange and silver with a black triangle from its fin to its stomach

Being bottom dwellers, Catfish make great tankmates for your Betta, as well. They don’t tend to be very active fish, and they won’t invade your Betta’s territory. 

  • Otocinclus Catfish – Also called “Sucker Fish” or “Dwarf Fish,” has rows of plated armor covering its body and an underslung suckermouth
  • Cory Catfish – Silver with black speckles, has armor plating and a flat underside, as well as a short face

Here are some other fish species that make ideal tankmates for your Bettas

  • Kuhli Loach – Small eel looking fish that get more active at night while Bettas sleep
  • Female Guppy – Only female, no male Guppies because they have long, bright-colored fins
  • Pleco – A sucker-mouth catfish, with armor-like scales covering upper body and head
  • Endlers – Colorful green, red, and black fish with a forked tail, only grow to be one-inch long
  • Glass Catfish A transparent fish, also called ghost fish, grow to be around five inches, best for larger tanks
  • Short-fine Molly – Silver with a yellow-tipped tail, they live in the upper region of the tank
  • Celestial Pearl Danio – Bluish-gray bodies with white speckles and orange fins, shoaling fish
  • Short-finned Platy – Colors vary, short fan-shaped fins, schooling fish that grow to one-and-a-half inches
  • White Cloud Mountain Minnow – Bronze-brown color with a fluorescent line running down its body, shoaling fish

Two Male Bettas in the Same Tank

You can not have two male Bettas in the same tank, regardless of how big the tank is. As we mentioned before, male Bettas have a bad reputation for being aggressive with other males, often fighting to the death when they feel threatened. This usually happens when two male Bettas try to occupy the same space; they will become territorial and start fighting each other. 

two Female Bettas in same tank

Two Female Bettas in the Same Tank

Female bettas aren’t as aggressive as their male counterparts. You can have more than one female in a tank as long as the tank is large enough to give them their own space. 

Because every betta is different, occasionally, you might get an aggressive female. If one of your females starts picking on the other, you should consider removing the aggressive one from the tank and giving it a tank of its own.

When you have female bettas, you can add colorful fish in the tank with them without worrying about their tankmate’s coloration. You can also keep fish that are slightly larger than the female bettas. You don’t want to go too large, though. If the fish is big enough, it will try to eat your bettas.

A Male and a Female Betta

If you plan to keep one male and one female Betta fish together in the same tank, you will need a large, rectangular tank that is at least 30 gallons or more. You will also need plenty of plants and decorations that can be used as hiding spots for the female in case the male starts to get aggressive with her. The plants will help to break the betta’s line of sight. 

If the male does attack your female, you should consider removing either the male or the female and giving it a tank of its own. 


Best Tank Mates for Female Betta

Females aren’t as territorial as males and don’t mind when other fish might invade their space. Because of this laid back attitude, you can keep more of a variety of fish when you have female Bettas. 

As always, each fish is different, and there is a possibility that you will get a more aggressive female than usual. Whatever species you do decide on as tankmates for your female Bettas should not have a reputation for nipping other fish’s fins.

Bottom-dwelling fish make perfect tankmates for your female Bettas. Since they won’t go near your Bettas, they won’t upset or annoy them. 

  • Pygmy Cory – Silver with a black stripe down its body
  • Panda Cory – Silver with black spots on its body
  • Clown Pleco – Sucker-mouth fish, brown with yellow stripes
  • Clown Loach – Resembles a tiger with orange and black stripes
  • Yoyo Loach – White with black stripes

Another good choice for tankmates is fast swimming and shoaling fish. If you have an aggressive female, they won’t single out any specific fish if they are shoaling together.

  • Mosquito Rasbora – Silver with a black stripe down its body
  • Penguin Tetra – Silver and white fish with bold black stripe
  • Red Eye Tetra – Silver with black fins and reddish colored eye
  • Blue Tetra – Blue colored with a silver belly
  • Gold Tetra – Golden colored with black fins
Male Betta

Best Tank Mates for Male Betta

When you have male Bettas, finding compatible tankmates can be challenging. You will need to choose tankmates carefully because the males are very territorial and aggressive. They will attack another male, and sometimes a female if they feel like the other fish is invading their space. 

Another thing to consider is males do not like smaller, brightly colored fish. Fish that are red in color need to be avoided altogether because they will trigger your male Betta’s aggression. The male Bettas will also pick on slow swimming fish, as well. Avoid fish with long fins because your males will attack them and kill them.

Shoaling fish are good choices for tankmates for your male Bettas for the same reason as the females; the males won’t single out any specific fish to attack if they are shoaling together.

  • Black-line Rasbora – Silver with a thin black line that ends with red tail
  • Head and Tail Light Tetra – Reddish-orange color around the eye and on the tail
  • Colombian Tetra – Silver and blue body with orange fins
  • Green Neon Tetra – Silver with a fluorescent green stripe down its body
  • Dawn Tetra – Golden colored with black spots on bottom fin and tail

You also want fish that will not trespass into your male Betta’s territory. Fish that occupy the bottom of the tank are perfect options. 

  • Candy Striped Pleco – Yellowish-brown with darker brown or black stripes
  • Snowball Pleco – Black body with white polka dots
  • Bristle Nose Pleco – Also known as Bushy Nose, black body with yellowish spots
  • Albino Cory – Catfish with whitish-pink albino coloring
  • Zebra Loach – Golden colored body with black zebra stripes

When you start to add vegetation and decorations to their tank, you increase the variety and complexity of their environment. Doing so will reduce the aggression your males show towards other fish since they won’t be in their line of sight all the time. All of the vegetation and decorations also provide plenty of places for the other fish to hide. 

Betta Sorority Tank Mates​

Betta Sorority Tank Mates

When you have a tank with five or more female Bettas, you have a Betta sorority, also called a Betta harem. If you plan to have a sorority of Bettas, you will need at least a 30-gallon tank. There should be a variety of decorations and plants, giving your Bettas adequate hiding spaces. They also need lots of room to swim freely.

Even though the females tend to be less aggressive than the male Bettas, each fish is different. Some females can be territorial and aggressive. You will need to choose wisely when considering tank mates for your female Bettas. 

Some of the best tankmates for your sorority are:

  • Guntea Loach – Grey belly with a black back
  • Cory Catfish – Silver body with black spots
  • Guppies – female are best, comes in a variety of colors, 
  • Black Neon Tetra – Golden body with black stripe and neon silver stripe
  • Neon Tetra – Silver body with red strip below the neon green stripe
  • Cherry Barbs – Red body, do not pair with male Bettas

Tank Mates in 5 Gallon Aquarium

Because a five-gallon tank is already so small, we don’t recommend adding tankmates with your Betta. A five-gallon tank is perfect for one Betta since Bettas are not social fish anyway. Instead, they keep to themselves, away from any other fish, regardless of how big or small the tank is.

For a five-gallon tank, you can add live plants to break up the monotony of the tank. Java Ferns and an Amazonian Sword Plant or two would be perfect for your Betta’s tank.

If you don’t want to bother with maintaining live plants, you can add a few artificial soft silk plants. Avoid heavier artificial plastic plants. They could possibly end up damaging your Betta’s finnage.

If you decide that you do want tankmates for your Betta, try ones that are non-fish, such as shrimp and snails.

Tank Mates in 10 Gallon Aquarium

If you want an aquarium with a Betta and other fish, then you should go with a ten-gallon or larger tank. Once again, you will need to set up the tank with plenty of vegetation and decorations to interrupt your Betta’s line of sight and provide hiding spaces for the other fish species. You can even add Bogwood logs to separate the areas of your tank and obstruct your Betta’s line of vision.

The most ideal tankmates for your Betta in a ten-gallon tank are bottom-dwelling fish, such as Catfish and small Loaches. Non-fish tankmates such as frogs, shrimp, and snails are a great addition to this size tank.

More Tank Mates That Can Live With Bettas

If you would like to do something a little different with your tank and not include other species of fish, you can try adding non-fish tankmates to your aquarium that are compatible with your Betta.

When choosing a non-fish tankmate, you want to choose ones that are too large for your Bettas to eat, but they still need to be small enough that they don’t cause any harm to any of your fish.

Below are the best snail tankmates for both your female and male Bettas

  • Malaysian Trumpet Snail – This is a nocturnal species, which is perfect because they only get active when your Bettas are sleeping. They will also keep your tank clean. They will hide in the sediment during the day. 
  • Nerite Snail – These snails will hide in the sediment during the day as well. Because they require brackish water to breed in, you don’t have to worry about them overrunning the aquarium.
  • Mystery Snail – Comes in a variety of colors, will clean the tank and eat left-over food. They also grow to a size big enough that you don’t have to worry about them becoming fish food.

If you want more variety and color with the added bonus of algae maintenance, you can add shrimp to your tank. Make sure you don’t pick the ones that are small enough for the Bettas to eat, instead pick the larger ones, and they’ll be safe. The adult Cherry Shrimp and the Ghost Shrimp make ideal tank mates for your Bettas.

If you want even more variety and a touch of exotic, you should consider adding an amphibian to your tank. The African Dwarf frog is a peaceful frog that will not bother your other fish and makes a great tankmate.

You might also be interested in: Types of Betta Fish – By Tail, Pattern and Color


As long as the tank is large enough and there is plenty of vegetation and decorations to break up the Betta’s line of sight, any of the fish we mentioned in this article would make great tankmates with your female Bettas and male Bettas unless specifically noted.

A five-gallon tank is the smallest you want to have with just one Betta, anything smaller is considered cruel. 

A ten-gallon tank is the smallest size for keeping other fish with your Bettas.

Lastly, a 30-gallon community tank is the smallest size we recommend if you want to keep a sorority of Bettas.

After reading this article, we hope that you will have the confidence to keep Bettas in your aquarium.