Fish of the Week: Betta Fish

This is Leroy, the betta fish. Courtesy of Dr. Jessie Sanders.

Betta fish (Betta splendens)

Also known as Siamese fighting fish, betta fish are a common pet fish. The males are known for being very aggressive towards other males and other combative fish; however, females are able to cohabitate peacefully. Do not combine male and female betta fish! Beta fish come in a variety of bright colors and have long, sweeping fins, however, wild varieties of betta fish are brown and green with short fins. Betta fish will usually live about 2-4 years with proper housing and nutrition. Although they are usually marketed to live in small fish bowls, it is recommended that they are housed in a larger tank (5-10 gallons) with proper filtration and regular water changes. If you are combining multiple females, the tank size should be approximately 5-10 gallons of water per fish.

Need a handy guide? Check out Petco’s Betta Caresheet


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