If you’re looking for a fish that can live with bettas, you’ve come to the right place. I’ll introduce you to some of the most popular options and help you decide which one is right for your aquarium.
Can betta fish live with other fish?
Bettas are a type of freshwater fish that are native to Southeast Asia. They are also known as Siamese Fighting Fish because of their aggressive nature towards other bettas. If put in the same tank as another Betta fish they will fight and potentially even kill each other. This can also be a problem when adding non-betta tankmates to a bettas aquarium. While bettas can be aggressive towards other fish, there are a few types of fish that can live peacefully with bettas. If you’re considering adding fish to your betta’s tank, read on for a list of the best options.
What are the different kinds of fish that can live with bettas?
There are a few things you need to consider before adding any tankmates to a betta tank. First, you need to know bettas are very territorial. It is best to pair bettas with fish that either dont compete with the betta for the same territory, or fish that bettas do not see as a threat. Second, because of bettas long, flowy fins, it is best not to introduct and fish that will nip at the bettas fins and injure it. You will also need to ensure you have enough space for the all of the fish to live comfortably as well as have adequate room to hide. When in doubt, it is best to either keep your betta fish alone or have an extra tank ready to rehome if needed. In this article, we will discuss the different kinds of fish that are most likely to live peacefully with bettas.
Tetras are a generally a peaceful, hardy community fish that come in a variety of species and colors. Smaller, less agressive species like Neon Tetras, Rummynose Tetras, and Ember Tetras usually are not seen as a threat by bettas. They are also fairly fast moving so if the betta does begin to pick on them then they can escape quickly. They make an ideal tank mate for the betta, as they can tolerate similar water conditions and temperature ranges. It is best to avoid bigger tetras like Black Skirt Tetras and Congo Tetras as they can be more aggresive and nip at your bettas fins. Most tetras like to move in small shoals of six or more so you need to have an appropriately sized tank to provide all of your fish plenty of room.
Guppies are another small fast fish that are one of the best choices for fish to live with bettas. Similar to tetras, guppies will not be seen as a treat to Bettas and will not try to compete with them for food or territory. Guppies are peaceful, easy to care for, and thrive in similar water conditions to a betta. Similar to bettas, guppies come in many different colors and patterns, so you’re sure to find a variety that you like. One potentual issue is guppies are known for breeding rapidly which could quickly over crowd your tank. For that reason it is often recommended to keep only females or have a seperate tank to move babies to.
Corydoras are a great choice to keep with bettas. Corys are bottom-dwellers so they will stay out of the betta’s way and not compete for the same territory. They small and not aggressive, which makes them a good tankmate for bettas. Corydoras are social creatures, so it is best to keep them in groups of at least six. Corydoras come in a variety of colors and sizes, so you can find one that fits your tank’s aesthetic.
Bristlenose Plecos are a smaller variation of the Common Pleco that only gets to 4-6” long making then fairly easy to care for. Similar to corys they are a peaceful bottom-dwelling fish so that will keep to themselves. Plecos are a popular betta tankmates as they can help keep your aquarium clean by feeding on food that your betta has missed. Because of their size and messiness it is recommended to have a tank of at least 20 gallons to house a Bristlenose Pleco.
If your betta is particularly aggresive and can not be housed with any other fish, another options to consider is snails. You can choose common “pest” snails like Pond Snails, Ramshorn Snails, or Bladder Snails, or you can go with larger varieties like Nerite Snails and Mystery Snails. Snails will be able to hide in their hard shells to protect themselves from bettas and require almost no care to thrive. They also do a great job of cleaning up algea and waste. However, “pest” snails are given their moniker because they can quickly reproduce and overrun a tank. While this not really an issue in terms of water quality or overcrowding, it can become and unsightly and hard to manage problem if it gets out of hand.
Some betta owners have had luck keeping their bettas with freshwater shrimp known as Neocaridina Shrimp. These shrimp are small and harmless to your betta and are a great way to add intersting pops of color to your aquarium. These shrimp come in many colors like Red Cherry Shrimp, Sunkist Orange, Blue Velvet, and many more. While these shrimp pose no threat to your betta, it is very possible for your betta to see them as a tasty treat. Its possible to decrease that threat by establishing you shrimp community before introducing your betta, so your betta sees them as a natural part of the aquarium instead of food being added. However, it is best to have an extra tank at the ready in case things go bad.
While there are many different types of fish that can live with bettas, not all of them will get along. Bettas are very territorial and aggressive, so they need to be kept in a tank by themselves or with other peaceful fish that won’t disturb their home. It’s important to do your research and choose fish that are compatible in size, temperament, and diet. Even if you do your research and choose a safe tankmate for your betta, you must know it could still not work out so you will need to be ready to rehome your fish so they all stay safe.