While Bettas are amazing fish to have in your aquarium, you’ll also want to keep other fish to make it more diverse and beautiful.
And one of the other popular aquarium fish is Guppies.
And if you want to keep both (Betta and Guppies), you need to know whether they can co-exist peacefully or not.
It all depends on how aggressive your betta fish are and their living conditions.
Guppies might be peaceful, but they can also annoy your betta fish.
The Big Question: Can Betta Live with Guppies?
Yes, Bettas and Guppies can live together.
Guppies are the most compatible companions for betta fish. Their mild-nature foils the short-tempered personality of betta fish.
Guppies do not nip fish fins or annoy the betta for the most part. From an outsider’s perspective, you get to raise two attractive types of fish. Plus, their environmental requirements often overlap.
Having similarities make it easier to keep them in the same space. It also makes fish keeping for two fish more manageable.
Nevertheless, it’s easier said than done. There are different factors that can lead to chaos if you aren’t careful.
Here are some things to consider:
- Betta fish can get aggressive and territorial. Choose varieties from both species that have a milder temperament.
- Never place a male betta and male guppy fish together. It can only lead to fights between these attractive, egocentric fish.
- Putting male betta fish with female guppy fish can also be problematic. The male fish might try to breed with the wrong species.
- Raising female guppies with female bettas is the best pairing for this endeavor.
- You must adhere to healthy feeding schedules, entertain your fish, and clean the tank. These controllable variables play a significant role in the growth and development of your fish.
How Many Betta Fish and Guppies Can Live in the Same Tank?
The answer can be debatable.
However, many fish owners recommend keeping three guppies and one betta together. You can add to the 3:1 ratio when you place them in a bigger tank.
Preferably, this tank must have five-gallon more water than the original aquarium.
Choose a tank that has enough room for four fish. Having sufficient space reduces fights and makes other fish-keeping tasks easier.
These include cleaning, feeding, and regulating water parameters.
Testing Temperaments: How to Keep Betta Fish & Guppies Together?
Do these fish fight? Do they overcrowd during feeding time? How to prevent fights when one fish has the upper hand?
We answer these frequently asked questions amongst other beta care fish advice.
There are five golden rules to ensure that betta fish and guppies get along.
They are as follows:
Rule # 1: Choose a Big Tank
Putting betta fish and guppies in a small fishbowl can be a recipe for disaster. Bettas have a territorial nature. They do not like other fish invading their private space.
Big aquariums and medium-sized fish tanks work well in this scenario. The ideal size would be 10-gallon tanks. They can house at least four fishes without any trouble.
It provides sufficient room for both species to mark their territories, often at opposite ends. Additionally, it reduces the risk of fish fights inside the tank.
Rule # 2: Understand the Environmental Requirements
Two fish species can only survive together if their environmental requirements are compatible. That’s why we chose guppies as suitable companions for betta fish.
These fish share many similarities when we focus solely on their ecological needs.
Here’s a quick comparison of essential environmental factors:
1. The Ideal Temperature
Guppies can tolerate water temperatures between 75°F to 82°F. The optimal water parameters for bettas fall within this range.
The latter prefers a temperature of 75-80°F. Fish owners can maintain this temperature to ensure that both fish thrive in their new home.
In this case, guppies may adjust the internal temperature to live in slightly warmer conditions.
2. Optimal pH Levels
As freshwater fish, bettas need neutral pH levels (i.e. 7).
While guppies like 7-7.2 pH levels.
The overlap in water parameters enables you to maintain a balanced environment. Select a pH level that works well for both fish.
3. Soft vs. Hard Water
Betta fish thrive in soft water. It can prove unfavorable for guppies. Luckily, bettas can adapt to hard water conditions.
Both fish are sensitive to high ammonia levels. They might fall ill if the toxic conditions aren’t stabilized immediately. Clean the fish tank regularly to mitigate any health risks.
Overall, these fish can live comfortably together with a few compromises. You have the responsibility to maintain peace by monitoring the environment.
Rule # 3: The Importance of Aquatic Plants
Place lots of aquatic plants inside your fish tank. These natural fixtures serve as aesthetical and mentally-stimulating objects for your fist. They also function as good hiding spots.
Guppies might need these concealed spaces to hide from betta fish. It generally happens when there is some animosity between the species.
That’s especially true in scenarios where the betta has become very angry.
Alternatively, guppies can find refuge there if the betta becomes aggressive. Alternatively, betta can conceal themselves when they want quiet time.
Owners must be wary of guppies that nibble and nip aquatic plants. Bettas might also take a bite if they are in the mood.
That’s why you should choose non-poisonous plants. Otherwise, an impromptu snack can become fatal for your fish.
Five best aquatic plants for your fish tank
- Java fern/moss
- Betta bulbs
What if these plants are unavailable in a local market? You have two options. You can shop online to find the right aquarium plants.
If it’s not urgent, you can ask the pet store to recommend fish-safe plants.
Rule # 4: Beware of Food Fights
Ideally, you should have no trouble feeding both species without any trouble. Since your betta will most likely turn away from plant-based offerings.
Nevertheless, it does not mean that your fish will stick to their feed. Hungry guppies might want a bite of your betta’s meaty treats.
Likewise, bettas can nibble pellets that you threw in for the guppy.
You can prevent this from happening by:
1. Practicing Spot Feeding
Designate feeding spots for each fish. That way, they will know where to find food. Having a proper feeding area eliminates the risk of overeating.
It also stops them from moving around the tank to pick up the fish’s food.
2. Maintaining Proper Schedules
Feed your guppies before the betta. That’s because the omnivores might want to sneak off with the betta feed.
It’s unlikely that your betta will share the interest in plant-based pellets.
3. Using a Fish Net for Feeding Fish
Get a small fish net to keep your guppies away from bettas during feeding time. If that doesn’t work, you can place a divider between the two fish.
That way, both fish can eat in peace without any disturbances.
Bonus: Do Guppies Eat Betta Fish?
However, guppies tend to eat small fish. They even eat their offspring in some circumstances. It’s advised to house guppies of similar ages and sizes in the same tank. Adult betta fish are less likely to appear as food to the placid guppies.
Avoid putting baby betta with bigger fish as they might tempt a hungry guppy.
Rule # 5: Safety Tips for These Tank Mates
In theory, betta fish and guppy can and should live in harmony. The only potential threat challenges you’ll face are their reaction to changing surroundings.
If something triggers your betta’s wild side, you must have a plan B to keep them safe.
Here are some ground rules for the tank:
- Purchase a spare tank (or a tank divider) beforehand. That way, you can separate the fish if the situation gets territorial.
- Choose dull-colored guppies as tank mates. It makes them appear non-threatening to your hot-headed bettas.
- Always put your guppies inside before the betta. When you add betta after guppies, it will view the tank as a shared home. This simple hack prevents the betta from forming a territorial attachment with the tank.
- Monitor fish behavior and look for physical signs of bullying between tank mates. Change tanks if something seems amiss.
- Take fish to the vet if they have lost their appetite or show physical signs of distress.
- Test water samples regularly to maintain the ideal pH levels and temperature.
- Use a fish-safe thermostat to keep an eye on the temperature.
In short, be extra vigilant when you house betta with a guppy. You never know what will happen once these fish start living together.
These attractive fish will only behave well when they’re supervised and monitored.
The Verdict: Can Betta Live with Guppy?
In the end, it depends on their physical environment and instincts. If you’re interested in housing another species with your betta, guppies are the right choice.
The latter share similar environmental needs and have a gentle temperament. It means they are less likely to intimidate your betta and trigger an aggressive reaction.
However, preventive measures are necessary for your fish’s safety. Use this guide as a blueprint to ensure this experiment goes smoothly.
Best of luck!
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