How to pick a betta fish?

In this post, we will answer the question “How to pick a betta fish”. We will also discuss a few characteristics you should look for before choosing your new betta fish.

How to pick a betta fish?

Even if you do not know how to choose a healthy betta, a short look at the fish itself may be enough to tell the difference between a healthy and unhealthy betta. There are a few basic tips and methods that might help you make a more educated decision, as well as a few things to avoid. 

What to Look for in a Betta Fish?

You can check online to see whether a reliable betta breeder is located near you. Some websites will deliver betta fish to your door. Many different betta breeders are selling their fish on eBay. You may inquire around in an online betta fish forum. Most individuals, on the other hand, will go to their local pet store and choose from their collection. 

Choosing a betta fish to bring home in person and seeing it swim around in its tank has several advantages to purchasing a fish based on a static image on the internet. That’s not to say there aren’t some extremely great looking and healthy fish to be found on the internet, but you can’t deny that seeing the betta in person helps you make a better decision. 

You might wish to carry a tiny flashlight and a mirror with you. If your pet store has dark lighting, the lamp is only for a better view of the betta. Just keep the light from being too intrusive to the betta. It is possible to convince the betta to flare for you by holding up the small mirror. This essentially means that the betta will flare its gills and expand its ends. 

If you have an ultraviolet flashlight, such as the kind used to inspect hotel rooms, bring that with you as well. By the way, if you return to that page and look at the last photograph, you’ll notice that someone’s “pet” is shining. When you shine a UV light on undesirable betta diseases like as “ich,” fin rot, slime cover fin, and gill injury, they will stick out like neon lights. High amounts of bacteria in the water, as well as UV illumination, will cause the water to glow a vivid green colour. 

It’s also a good idea to bring a vividly coloured object or wear brightly coloured apparel. Betta fish are attracted to shiny and bright objects. If you wear a brightly colored clothing or set the wallpaper of your phone’s display to a vibrant red color, you will have an easier time getting a reaction from the betta. This just allows you to assess the betta’s overall health and get a better look at its flaring fins and gills. 

Check out the container

The clarity of the water and any leftover food can give you an idea of how long the betta has been on the shelf at the pet store. 

When selecting a good betta fish, the first thing you should look at is the tank that the betta fish is placed in at the local pet shop. Betta fish are typically sold in little plastic containers that resemble the type of container you’d use to store leftovers from lunch the previous day. These temporary fish containers, which are hardly big enough to carry more than a cup or two of water, are frequently filled with blue-coloured water. The majority of the time, a sedative is administered to the water in order to keep the fish calm and quiet during the procedure.

You should consider the clarity of the water when choosing a betta

Even though the water will most likely be blue, it should still be checked for clarity. The amount of time that clear water has been present reflects how recently the water has been cleaned. There should be no uneaten food at the bottom of the bin. The clarity of the water and any leftover food can give you an idea of how long the betta has been on the shelf at the pet store. There are pet stores that do not replace the water regularly and allow garbage and uneaten food to build. All of this is to say that pure water is something to seek out. 

Another excellent suggestion is to give the container a quick sniff test before opening it. There should be no bad odor emanating from the betta’s tank. The bettas’ container will smell foul due to an overpopulation of dangerous microorganisms. When choosing a betta fish, you should search for one that lives in clean-smelling water. 

Is the fish in a heated environment? 

It is recommended that pet betta fish be kept in water that is between 78 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit, similar to the temperature of their natural environment (76 to 82°F). If the pet store where you wish to buy a betta fish keeps the temperature low and doesn’t do much to keep its betta fish warm, you should go elsewhere. Bettas get depressed and ill when they are subjected to intense cold for extended periods of time.

Look around at the other bettas for sale

You should contact the business immediately if you detect a large number of sick or otherwise unhealthy bettas getting sold. Some pet stores have a huge assortment of betta fish, and it’s not uncommon to come across a few who are sick. It’s common to have a few ill fish among many. 

The betta’s physical appearance 

Stress might cause the betta to lose some of its complete colours for a short period. 

The majority of people are drawn to betta fish because of their beautiful colours. While some betta fish are not inherently bright or vibrant in colour, the great majority of betta fish available for purchase in pet stores are. Or it should be. You can tell how healthy a betta fish is by looking at how brilliant and vibrant it looks in its container at the store. 

Bettas are frequently anxious due to their confinement in small containers at the store. Betta stress is exacerbated by the increased foot traffic in pet stores and the continual fondling of the bettas’ containers. Stress might cause the betta to lose some of its complete colours for a short period. You’ll probably notice an improvement in colour depth once you’ve brought your new betta home and given it some time to adjust to its new environment. Keep this information about color loss and distress in remember if you have had your betta at home for a time and believe anything is wrong with it or with the aquarium. In general, it’s an excellent indicator. 

On the betta’s body, look for horizontal running “racing stripes”. While holding a fish with black stripes may seem enticing, owning a betta with black stripes is not a good idea. These lines, sometimes known as racing stripes, indicate a stressed betta. The stress stripes on lighter-coloured bettas stand out more than those on darker-coloured bettas. Once the fish has been taken home and placed in a proper aquarium, the stress stripes will disappear. 

Observe the fins of the betta for further information

Betta fish are prone to have had their fins torn or gotten distorted while remaining in the pet store environment. Even if this is a typical occurrence, it is nonetheless upsetting to witness. 

When a healthy betta is posed, its fins appear bright, complete, and full. Even if this is a typical occurrence, it is nonetheless upsetting to witness. Poor handling during shipment is a common cause of betta fin damage. The lovely fins of the betta are occasionally nibbled on by other fish in aquariums where the bettas are housed. Bettas have even been known to bite their tails when stressed. 

When a betta’s fins are ripped or damaged, there is an increased danger of infection. If not treated promptly, bacterial diseases such as fin rot can cause major difficulties in the fish. In general, though, all you need is a warm, clean aquarium with plenty of space for your betta. Water that is fresh, clean, and warm will do wonders for a betta who is otherwise sick. 

Take a look at the betta’s physique

Small white patches on the body should be avoided. The body, belly, and scales of a healthy betta should be smooth and flushed, with no protrusions. If you notice something more than a clean fish body, such as lumps or rough spots, it is possible that the fish is not feeling well. An ulcer or tumour on the betta’s body could be indicated by abnormally lumpy patches or swelling. If any of the betta’s scales are gone, the fish may have had serious bodily damage at some point. 

Small white patches on the body should be avoided. There is a parasite ailment termed “ich” that has a scattered salt appearance and is very communicable (to other fish). It is doable, but it’s not something you would like to take home on your latest betta fish on the first day of ownership. A fungal infection would most likely cause more fuzzy white patches on the body or at the ends. This is also not something you want in a new pet fish.


In this post, we answered the question “How to pick a betta fish”. We also discussed a few characteristics you should look for before choosing your new betta fish.

If you have any thoughts or doubts, feel free to drop us a comment below!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): How to pick a betta fish?

How can you know whether a betta fish is in good health?

A betta with healthy gills is the one you want. Two gills must be capable of opening and sealing independently of one another. If a fish is gasping for oxygen and one or both of its gills aren’t opening and closing, it’s a sign that it’s sick. Poor health might also be indicated by red markings around the gills. 

What is the best betta fish? 

Veiltail. Veiltail bettas are one of the most popular betta fish breeds, with long, stunning fins and vibrant colours. Due to their easy-going nature, most new hobbyists begin with veil-tails. 

What is the rarest betta fish colour?

Albino bettas are almost often mistakenly identified as clear, cellophane, or white bettas by observant onlookers when they are reported or placed up for auction. These are all beautiful fish to have in a tank and aren’t very common. But they can’t compare to a true albino. 

Is Betta imbellis a peaceful species? 

Betta splendens is known for fighting, but Betta Imbellis is noted for being tranquil. Betta Splendens are aggressive and possessive of their territory, making them unsuitable for an aquarium with other fish. 

Is it correct that female bettas are less hostile than male bettas? 

Females are less hostile than men, yet they are willing to fight if the situation calls for it. They enjoy establishing a hierarchy and claiming territory for themselves. Injuries are less common since the battles are less brutal than when evils fight. Female Bettas tolerate other species well, therefore the hostility is usually focused on other Bettas. 

Is it real that betta fish become depressed and lonely? 

Betta fish are possessive by nature, and they should not be kept in the same tank as other betta fish since they will fight and injure one another, sometimes resulting in death. In their tank, they are unlikely to get lonely, but if it is too small, they may become bored.


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