In this blog, we are going to discuss the body language of betta fish. This blog will be helpful to new betta fish owners.
In this blog
- Is it easy to understand betta fish body language?
- The body language of betta fish when they are happy
- Betta body language when sad
- The body language of betta fish when they are angry
- The body language of betta fish when they are hungry
- The body language of betta fish when they are not in good health
- The body language of old betta fish
- The body language of betta fish during mating
- Frequently asked questions
Is it easy to understand betta fish body language?
Body language can tell us what mood or state a fish is in. If you are an experienced betta fish owner, it is easy to read your fish’s body language just by observing them, but as new betta fish owners, it will be a little difficult to understand whether they are happy, sad, angry, hungry or going through some internal or external health issue.
To know the same, we are going to discuss their body language in this blog in a detailed manner.
Betta fish normal body language
Active and responsive – Betta fish are very active and respond nicely to their surroundings. They are very intelligent species and can easily recognize their owners and whenever they see them coming near the tan, they come to welcome them.
If you show them a mirror for their mental stimulation, they may react to it by flaring their gills. This proves how active and responsive betta fish are to their aquarium surroundings.
Curious- Betta fish are always curious to know what is new in their tank. It could be a new tankmate, new decorations, new aquatic plants, or anything completely new in their tank.
Betta fish will nibble on live aquatic plants, which shows how active they are in their tank. You will find your betta fish doing some or the other thing in the tank because they have the habit of inspecting and exploring the new things in their tank.
The body language of betta fish when they are happy
- Happy bettas look vibrant and shiny
- Happy bettas swim effortlessly
- Happy bettas wave their beautiful pectoral fins to welcome their humans.
- Happy bettas have a nice appetite.
- Happy bettas don’t remain hidden
Happy bettas look vibrant and shiny
A happy betta fish will look vibrant and shiny. Their body scales will appear so mesmerizing when they swim around the tank. It is a treat to watch a vibrant, happy betta fish swimming in the tank.
If you keep your fish stress-free and feed them right and high-quality food, you’ll get to see this body language regularly.
Happy bettas swim effortlessly
Betta fish swim easily and freely when they are happy and their happiness is due to good tank conditions. They will swim with their beautiful and massive pectoral fins to display they are in good health.
Happy bettas wave their beautiful pectoral fins to welcome their humans
Betta fish can recognize their caretakers and whenever they see them coming near the tank, they show their excitement by waving their pectoral fins as a gesture to welcome them. Bonding with aquatic pets won’t be similar to four-legged pets but with regular interaction it is possible.
Happy bettas have a nice appetite
Healthy betta fish is a happy betta fish, because if you feed your betta fish healthy and their favorite food twice a day without skipping, your betta fish will be happy.
Feed your betta fish:
- Betta pellets specially designed for them.( High-quality pellets)
- Live food should be fed occasionally.
- Frozen or freeze-dried food should be fed occasionally.
Happy bettas don’t remain hidden
Hiding is a common trait in all betta fish and they do it to feel better under extreme stress. If all the tank conditions are perfect and bettas are getting the right care and attention they will prefer to swim around the tank and will avoid hiding much.
Betta body language when sad
- Sad bettas skip their meals.
- Sad bettas prefer to stay hidden.
- Sad bettas don’t interact with their humans.
- Sad bettas look lethargic and avoid swimming.
Sad bettas skip their meals
Betta fish can be sad for various reasons in their controlled environment. If your fish is sad the first thing they would do is, stop eating or lose their appetite.
Sad bettas prefer to stay hidden
Betta fish like to hide in their hideouts to rest and feel safe and secure, but when they hide all the time or conceal themselves in those hideouts it is not healthy.
You must check water parameters and other things in the tank. If tank conditions are normal your fish will interact and swim more and will avoid hiding other than resting.
Sad bettas don’t interact with their humans
If a betta fish like their owner they interact with their humans more often and always wait for them to come and interact. They even follow their owners’ fingers to show their love and affection for their owners.
If your betta fish is sad due to tank issues, bad tank companions, boredom, or other reasons they will not interact with their humans too. They will either hide or stay at one spot.
Sad bettas look lethargic and avoid swimming
Your sad betta fish will look lazy and will not swim the way they swim. Colder temperatures make betta fish lethargic by slowing their metabolism. You should check tank temperature, as betta fish need warmer temperatures to survive.
The body language of betta fish when they are angry
- Angry bettas look aggressive.
- Angry bettas flare their gills to display anger.
Angry bettas look aggressive
Betta fish are known for their aggressive nature and it is common in all the bettas be it a wild betta fish or a captive betta fish. They have been bred for similar purposes for several years and are commonly famous as fighting fish.
They get aggressive :
- If they are kept in compact tanks.
- If two male bettas are kept together.
- If they don’t get food on time.
- If they see their reflection in the mirror.
- Due to the presence of a nagging tankmate.
Angry bettas flare their gills to display anger
Betta fish show their anger or dominance towards other betta fish by flaring their gills. This is common in all betta fish.
Flaring is considered healthy when it is done for a specific purpose, but if your betta fish is flaring all the time then it’s not a healthy sign. You must check bettas tank to know if anything is troubling them.
The body language of betta fish when they are hungry
Betta fish tend to eat every day in the same spot and wait for their humans every day in that very same spot to get their food. Betta fish do have a biological clock that tells them it’s time to eat and they come to that spot every day when it’s their feeding time.
The body language of betta fish when they are not in good health
Abnormal swimming patterns in betta fish
Betta fish are known to swim actively and effortlessly in the middle and the upper regions of the tank. But if your betta fish is not well due to constipation, swim bladder disease, or parasitic and bacterial infections, they don’t swim much and prefer to stay in one spot.
It is therefore very important to keep the aquarium conditions clean and healthier for your betta fish to avoid infections.
The body language of old betta fish
If your betta fish is getting old, they will also become inactive like humans and will not move much. They will also lose their zeal to eat and swim. They will remain either hidden, rest on aquatic plants or rarely interact with their humans.
Even if all the aquarium settings are perfect, they will not be as active as before. It would be better to not disturb or stress your fish when they are aging.
The body language of betta fish during mating
Male betta fish will be seen building bubble nests during the mating time to attract female betta fish to lay eggs. This is a very healthy sign if your male betta fish is making a bubble nest and females reciprocating it.
If your male betta fish is not able to build a bubble nest or if the female is unable to deposit her eggs in those bubble nests, then it means they are incapable of mating or maybe they are not experienced.
It is very easy to understand your betta fish body language if you interact with your fish regularly. Interact more with your fish regularly to learn more about them, because if you are not aware of their body language you would be able to understand what they need or what is alarming inside the tank.
Frequently asked questions
What is the normal body language of a betta fish?
The normal body language of a betta fish is active, curious, responsive and interested.
Is it normal for old betta fish to remain inactive?
Yes, it is completely normal for old betta fish to remain inactive.
Is it difficult to understand a betta fish body language?
No, it is not difficult to understand a betta fish body language if you monitor or interact with them regularly.
Why is it important to understand betta fish body language?
A betta fish reveals everything through their body language like feelings of happiness, sickness, anger, hunger, and aggression. So, if you are aware of your fish’s body language, you can easily resolve their problems.
Are betta fish difficult to understand?
No, it is very easy to understand a betta fish. A regular interaction with your fish can make your bond stronger with them.