Female vs. Male Betta Fish: Appearance & Behavior (Which is Better to Keep?)

Bettas are one of the most beautiful and exciting tropical fish found at your local pet store. The characteristic long fins of males alone are impressive. Fins serve a useful purpose in identifying fish species. Bettas do not bond with females. Therefore, they are paired for a limited time to prevent injury and for breeding purposes only. Females are usually found in community aquariums and can reside with other species. Let’s start with the Female vs. Male Betta Fish guide.

Female vs. Male Betta Fish

Betta fish are colorful, easy to keep and have an attitude. Female and male bettas are similar, but some factors will be more desirable for your choice. Betta splendens is one of the most popular aquarium fish in the world. We, as fish owners, are obligated to be mindful of health issues.

Female vs. Male Betta Fish

Tell me the difference between a male and a female Betta fish?

This guide will describe the differences between male and female betta fish. You can quickly determine whether your fish is male or female when you consider a few simple factors. Fish keepers must differentiate the male and female sex of beta fish to maintain them in aquariums properly.

Betta fish: Appearance & Behavior Difference

Bettas represent a large part of what the ornamental fish trade can offer. Currently, the wrong way to keep them in small and unfiltered spaces still exists, but they are more widespread. Give me a chance to review the differences between male and female Bettas and their appearance and behavior.

Sexual dimorphism

Wild bettas are usually a brown hue with small fins and tails. Captive fish are bred and enhanced for their fabulous fins and rainbow colors. Females look and behave quite differently from males. Enthusiasts have used the basic betta gene of wild fish to create beautiful anomalies that result in the current strong sexual dimorphism of captive-bred ornamental lineage Betta. In other words, it is straightforward to distinguish the sexes, as betta fish are very different from each other.

Behavior – Male vs. Female Bettas

Male Bettas are notoriously intolerant, showing a high degree of aggression towards each other. They widen their gills, show their fins, and even try to bite their reflection if it’s visible. As female Bettas tend to be more friendly and sociable, these females can be kept together in female Betta communities or community aquariums without problems. Groups of Betta, when held together, usually end up with torn ends and dead males unless you create a vast space with lots of hiding places and provide enough barriers in sight range and nest building sites.

Female vs. Male Betta Fish

Which is the best sex for you?

If you want a modern setup in a smaller aquarium, the male Betta is an excellent choice. You could place it in an aquarium equipped to keep aquatic plants along with your fish, making it look nice. Female Bettas can add color to the current community tank; their behavior towards tank mates is so good that spectators will enjoy watching them.


Betta fish, known as Siamese Fighting fish, have won over aquarium owners for years. There are several available colors, shapes, and varieties of Betta, and many are regularly bred. Those who buy betta fish for their beauty do not fully understand their care needs.

Keep Bettas Together: Male and Female

An aquarium divider is the best way to accustom male and female bettas to your proximity. The best approach is to prevent the male from killing the female during courtship. If you prefer not to let two animals swim freely, keeping three or more females for each male helps in some ways. Every female in your path has a chance, rather than a single female being constantly stalked. After a litter of eggs is laid, male Bettas become dedicated parents and spend all of their time cleanings and aerating the nest eggs and chicks until they are ready to move!

Bettas female

Female bettas can have the same dramatic pigmentation pattern as males, but females are also a little smaller without the vibrant colors and the longer fin and display of fighting fish. Egg spots are on the bottom of the fish, just behind the ventral fins. This visual difference is called sexual dimorphism.

Bettas male

Male bettas are small, hardy, and colorful tropical fish native to Southeast Asia. They are carnivores and quickly eat anything they have never eaten before. Fins are mainly used to attract mates and show it to other males as a warning sign. Large fins can be clipped frequently and can increase the threat of disease and infectious disease.

Health and care

The main concern for a male betta’s health and well-being is tank layout. Ideal conditions are a large aquarium with a heating and filtration system. Plan for an inch of fish per gallon of water, ensuring the filter will contain the ammonia and nitrites in the water as the fish residue is absorbed. If pollutant levels reach dangerously high levels, it can kill your Betta. It’s critical, of course, to keep in mind that fish need a stable parameter setting that doesn’t fluctuate during the day. Dramatic changes increase the risk of illness and stress.


Your male bettas can fish smaller. Although he’s not very good at swimming, he does a great job when he’s hunting. While you can keep it with other fish, it’s best not to keep it in a tank with docile, lush-tailed species such as guppies or zebrafish. It will work better to keep you in a small tank than in an eclectic group. In some cases, a male Betta fish in a community aquarium is essentially a life and death battle for the survival of the fittest.

How do I tell if a Betta is male or female?

The difference between adult male and female betta fish is primarily in terms of fin length. Plakat fish are thought to be the closest to wild-type Betta splendens, but this is less certain since breeding Betta plakats is artificial. Egg stain is an ‘ovipositor’ that serves as a passageway for eggs during laying. The large opercular membrane in the fish’s gills increases the size of the enlarged gills and extends below the crown, giving the appearance of a beard. Males often dilate their gills in the presence of another male Betta when they present themselves to a female.

Pet store stocking

In my experience, it’s usually male betta fish available for sale in small pet and fish markets. The male of the species is more visually appealing with stunning bright colors and flowing fins. You can buy female bettas too, but a majority of aquarists sell the males only. If you purchase a betta in a tiny-town pet store, ask the animal’s owner which one’s older or more young. If you have suspicions take it, he is male. If you have experience as a fishkeeper, you could tell the gender.

How to choose between a male and a female Betta Fish

The attributes of all female and male betta fish are numerous, and you can keep one or both of them in your fish room, depending on your aesthetic preferences and purposes. The first and most crucial step in the process is designing the aquarium that will house your fish. But if your heart loves colorful fish but prefers a streamlined appearance with a strong personality, a Betta is a worthy and spectacular fish for any aquarium.

Female vs. Male Betta Fish For Small Tanks

Male and female Betta fish are excellent choices for tanks ranging from three to 10 gallons. Betta fish contain a labyrinth organ that can help bettas breathe atmospheric air, just like us. These fish are hardy and adaptable, and both make excellent beginner fish.

Aggression or behavior

Betta fish is a breathtakingly popular fish. Males are more aggressive and have a more fighting drive than females. Females are less aggressive than males, but remember that you should be careful not to include just one pair of females in your tank, so you have nowhere to dissipate aggression. These fish can sometimes become aggressive in stressful situations. This species is well known for its territorial character. Keep single males and females in groups.

Female vs. Male Betta Fish

Tail and fins

There are more than hundreds of betta shapes based on color and personality. Males often have large fins, but some species have short fins. Due to its long fins, unique behavior, and exuberant colors. Females have a slightly narrower body and generally short tails.


Male Betta fish have a larger body, are more exuberant and brighter. Also, female fish have less vibrant or darker colors.

Body size & shape

The most critical sign of knowing a fish’s gender is its body shape. Male Bettas are flatter, thicker, and longer. Women are often short and tight. Male Betta fish can grow 2.5 to 3 inches, while females can only grow 2 inches. Both males and females have the same characteristics; we can have sex after the animals reach maturity.

Wild vs. Domesticated Betta Splendens

Wild betta fish look utterly different from what you find in pet stores. Male wild bettas do not have fluttering fins and a gamut of striking colors typical of the ornamental lineage raised in captivity. Females look very similar to males, although they are slightly smaller. Wild betta fish have shades of grayish-green with long, smooth fins.

Female vs. Male Betta Fish

Egg Spot

Females have egg spots between the anal and ventral ends of the tail (where eggs are laid); males do not have this type of spot.

Male and Female Flaring

Whenever your betta fish sees a threat, it expands its gill plate outward. This forward expansion to show more colors and its physique is called Flaring. Both female and male fins are more prominent when enlarged.

Stripes on the body

These horizontal stripes enhance the glamor and beauty of women. The lines on their body represent their sexual maturity and demonstrate that they are ready to mate; they are a female pattern.


Betta fish are easy to keep and very pleasant to look at, especially if placed correctly in a proper aquarium. Keep your aquarium clean and calm, providing what your male and female fish need. Pay attention to differences in behavior and color when purchasing your new fish. As always, aquarists should maintain the optimal setup for the highest quality fish you’ll ever see.

Marcelo Pedraz
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