Best Betta Fish Tank Mates
Typically, betta fish are solitary creatures and they are very territorial. There is a reason why the other name that they are known by is Siamese fighting fish. They tend to fight with other fish that they consider a threat. Any fish that is very colorful or has large fancy fins is likely to be considered a threat and the betta fish will attack it. As well, males and females should not live in the same tank.
Betta fish females can live in the same tank but there should be at least three of them and this usually only works if they were raised in the same aquarium. If there are two one of them will be more dominant so it will likely bully the other one. If there are three of them they will form a hierarchy. One may still do some bullying though because they all have their own personalities. If this happens you will have to put them in separate tanks.
There are some fish that can live peacefully with a betta fish though and therefore make great betta tank mates. If you are not sure, ask here and we can help answer your questions.
There are some fish that you should not put in the same tank as your betta fish. One of them is the Anabantidaes fish. They can also breathe air from the top of the tank and they are close cousins of betta fish. For that reason, they are likely to be aggressive towards each other. Cichlids are also known to be very territorial and can be aggressive, too, and should not live with betta fish. Other fish to avoid include angel fish, discus, rainbow sharks, and goldfish.
Some of the fish that can live in the same tank as a betta fish include Otocinclus and Corydoras (small catfish), snails, neon tetras, and ghost shrimp. These fish are very mild tempered and do not threaten the betta fish in any way. Mollies, swordtails, cardinal tetras, and dwarf rasboras – all part of the minnow family – usually do well with betta fish.
The most important thing is to watch your batta tank mates carefully. At the first sign of aggression, remove one of the fish. Remember that the betta fish wants to be the best looking fish in the tank and if there are other fish that have bright colors or big fins, he will feel threatened. Female betta fish are similar and can be very aggressive as well.