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Choosing Tank Mates for Betta Fish

Choosing Tank Mates for Betta Fish Betta fish, by nature, are both solitary and predatory. There

Betta fish, by nature, are both solitary and predatory. There is absolutely no way two male Betta fish can be housed together; even housing female Siamese fighters can be a daunting prospect, although it is very doable when considering the alternative of trying to house two males (read this article for more information on caring for female Betta fish). That being said, there are many other species of fish that do well living as Betta tank mates. There may not be any set "rules" about how to house these fish in community tanks, but I have gathered together some very good guidelines that will get you on the right track.

What Fish to Stay Away From

Any fish with long, showy fins and bright colors will be viewed by your Betta fish as a threat, and therefore will be dealt with as such.

Guppies. Guppies are notorious for nipping fins, and will happily munch as much of your Betta's tail as possible while swimming by. Nipped fins can get infected and lead to serious cases of fin rot, as well as severely stressing your fish out. And frankly, nipped fins just aren't that pretty.

African Clawed Frogs. While African Dwarf Frogs can be a potentially good tank mate, pet stores are notorious from not differentiating between the two. The clawed variety can do serious damage to anything that lives with it, except other Clawed Frogs.

Angelfish (due to their predatory instincts and large fins) and any species of gourami* (due to the fact that these fish are a closely related cousin to Betta fish) should not be introduced as Betta tank mates.

to Betta fish) should not be introduced as Betta tank mates. Betta fish are tropical and

Betta fish are tropical and their tanks must maintain a consistent (warm) temperature. They should not be mixed with cold water fish, such as goldfish.

Let's not forget that traditional methods of housing these beautiful fish (such as Mason jars and Betta boxes) do not meet the space requirements of one Siamese Fighter, let alone more than one animal (read more about caring for Siamese Fighting fish if that was news to you).

If you are considering introducing your fish into a community tank, it must be at the very minimum ten gallons (keeping in mind the water requirements of all other fish included, so as not to overstock); the aquarium must have a filter, and the water temperature must be regulated. Also keep in mind that when you are setting up a new aquarium, you must cycle it before introducing any fish, or you risk a very high mortality rate after transferring them.

Controversial Tank Mates

While many people have different opinions about what works and what doesn't, I thought I would share a personal story about Zebra Danios and Betta fish. Apparently the Danios make good tank mates because they are a schooling fish (who need to live in groups of five or more) and are quick; they can easily elude a Betta fish. People say that there is "safety in numbers" and schooling is what keeps the Danios safe. From personal experience, I am going to have to dispute that. I recently introduced a school of Danios into my heavily planted fifteen gallon community tank. Within twenty four hours, my female Betta ripped the head off one and the fins off another. She demolished them all except for one exceptionally large one, who is now swimming in lonely circles around my Cory Catfish.

So while the Zebra Danios are usually highly recommended tank mates, I would say they are very touch and go - remember to always have a cycled back up tank to place your Betta in if things go wrong.

Success Stories

Every Betta fish has a personality; because of that, some will be more accepting of tank mates than others. For example, I have a blue Crown Tail named Nova. He lived with two African Dwarf Frogs very happily, until the frogs eventually passed away. They left each other alone most of the time, and the rest of the time they showed very little interest in one another.

I also have a red and purple Veil-Tailed Betta whom I call Lucy. You might wonder why I am calling a

male fish Lucy; it's short for Little Lucifer. Lucy is the most vicious Betta fish I have ever owned, and I could probably put him in a 50 gallon tank with another fish and he would still demolish it. Barbecues shouldn’t end up being employed

on boats - hot charcoal offers off

dangerous amounts of CO as well as

blown embers could set your own boat


• Keep cabin ventilation clear to

prevent a new build -up regarding toxic CO.

• try to maintain fabrics from

cooking hobs to prevent them

from catching fire.

• check the actual flues associated with coal as well as wood

burning stoves for signs as well as symptoms of leaks

and blockages.

• Merely make use associated with the gas suggested

by your heater manufacturer.

Other sorts could burn as well hot.

• Dispose involving embers carefully.

If they’re even now heat they might

cause a new fire or perhaps build-up associated with CO.

• Ensure just about all hobs have shut-off

or isolation valvesI love Lucy, but he will be solitary for the rest of his life. However, I have put together a list of generally successful matches.

Setting up a beautiful and healthy community tank with Betta fish can be done, it's all a matter of how you do it. Just remember to take it slow, do your research, and always have a cycled back up tank on hand. There will always be a chance that your fish just will not get along. Good luck and happy fishing!

* While I definitely would not recommend pairing any species of gourami with a male Betta, I have successfully seen a sorority of females living with honey gouramis. It is quite touch-and-go; remember to always have that cycled back up tank in case you need it if attempting to mix gouramis and females.


remember to always have that cycled back up tank in case you need it if attempting
remember to always have that cycled back up tank in case you need it if attempting