Betta – Female
Betta splendens

Care Level




Reef Compatible


Plant Safe


Max Size

Less than 2

Minimum Tank Size






Water Conditions

Neutral (6.2 to 7.8 pH), intermediate water hardness (6 to 18dGH), 65 to 78 degrees Fahrenheit


General: Female bettas are an interesting species to keep, due in part to the fact that unlike males, females of the same species can be kept in an aquarium with one another. Bettas are found all throughout the swamps and streams of Thailand, although due to their extreme popularity have become invasive in numerous tropical countries, including Malaysia, Indonesia, and Brazil just to name a few. They typically inhabit bodies of water low in oxygen, and utilize a breathing organ called the labyrinth to take in oxygen from the air. Female bettas do well in an aquarium without as strong water current, so a sponge filter might come in handy. Many aquarium hobbyists will use sand as the substrate and add leaf litter and driftwood to provide structure and add tannin to the water, which mimics the betta's native habitat. Female bettas especially do well in planted aquariums.

Dimorphism: Female betta fish are smaller than males, have shorter fins, and are typically less aggressive.

Fecundity: It is best to condition the male and female betta separately by feeding them live and frozen food before trying to get them to spawn. Make sure the spawning tank has a tight fitting lid so a humid layer of air can form above the bubble nest the male will eventually create. Males will initiate the spawning process by blowing a bubble nest , where the female will eventually lay her eggs. After the eggs are deposited into the bubble nest and fertilized, the male will defend the nest. At this point it is best to remove the female. The fry will typically hatch within one to two days and will remain in the bubble nest for around four days. They will be very small and will require infusoria at first. Once they grow to a larger size they can be fed live baby brine shrimp.

Water Chemistry: Bettas prefer water with a pH ranging from 6.2-7.8, a temperature ranging from 65-78F, and a hardness level ranging from 0-25KH.

Aquarium Diet: Female bettas will accept most flake and small pellets that are being sold on the market. They also like live foods such as black worm, blood worm, and brine shrimp, and frozen foods. Many hobbyists will feed their bettas portions of peas if they appear to be having digestive issues, as this diet can help fix problems it may be having.

Compatibility: As stated before, female bettas can be housed in the same tank as other female bettas. It is best to avoid fish that are similar to female bettas such as gouramis. Female bettas can be kept with other peaceful fish that do not have long fins that can be nipped, such as tetras, corydoras catfish, harlequin rasboras, zebra danios, and endler guppies.

Author: Aquatics Unlimited