The common Betta fish is already beautiful enough as is, but did you know that there are actually many different types of betta fish? Now, this may get a little confusing, because Betta fish are often categorized by the types of fins and tails they have, as well as by their color patterns and variation.
Different Breeds Of Betta Fish
This may not seem all too difficult to grasp, but the problem is that there is often quite a bit of overlap and betta fish varieties. For instance, there can be a Betta fish with a certain fin type and color, another with completely different fins and colors, and many more that may share color or fin characteristics, but not both. Bear with us as we do our best to talk about all of the different variations of Betta fish that you can get your hands on.
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There are two real ways of distinguishing Betta fish from one another, the first being their tails and fins, and the other by their color. Keep in mind, there can be overlap between the two, which is where the confusion comes into play between betta fish types.
How Many Types of Betta Are There?
When it comes to betta fish types, there are quite a few of them out there, 26 in fact, and some of them are quite rare too.
Here is a list of the different kinds of betta fish out there.
- Betta splendens (most common)
- Emerald green betta
- Peaceful betta
- Betta mahachaiensis
- Spotfin betta
- Betta albimarginata
- Krabi mouth brooding betta
- Betta channoides
- Penang betta
- Spotted betta
- Betta brownorum
- Betta rutilans
- Betta Persephone
- Betta burdigala
- Betta pallifina
- Betta livida
- Betta strohi
- Betta miniopinna
- Betta mandor
- Betta chloropharynx
- Betta hipposideros
- Betta spilotogena
- Betta chini
- Rose petal betta fishv
- Betta tomi
- Royal blue betta
Betta Fish Types: The Tail Differentiation
The first way to differentiate between different breeds of Betta fish is by examining their tails and their fins in general. There are over a dozen different breeds that can be differentiated between when looking at their tails, so let’s cover all of the betta fish fin types before we do anything else.
Here are the main different types of betta fish tails;
Veil Tail Betta Fish
The Veil Tail Betta fish is the most common type that you will find in fish and pet stores. This Betta fish is characterized by a very long tail with long anal and dorsal fins, plus the fins droop down from the caudal peduncle. When it comes to breeding, the Veil Tail’s genes tend to be dominant, and are therefore not preferable breeding Bettas.
They are usually not allowed in shows and competitions anymore due to their bloodlines being drastically diluted due to excessive overbreeding. The Veil Tail Betta fish can be found in many different colors including Red, yellowish orange, and some that have mixtures of green and orange as well.
Plakat Betta Fish
This type of Betta fish is also another very common one, and is closely associated with the natural Betta Splendens that can be found in the wild. This type of Betta fish has a very short and round tail. Due to their short tails, this type of Betta fish is often mistaken for a normal male Betta. However, to a trained eye, the difference can be spotted because male Plakat Betta fish will have longer ventral fins than females, and also have a rounded caudal fin and a sharply pointed anal fin, unlike females.
There are actually 3 main types of Betta fish that can be classified as a Plakat, those being the traditional Plakat Betta fish with a rounded tail, sometimes with a point, the Half Moon Plakat Betta fish, where the tail has a 180 degree spread, and the Crown Tailed Plakat Betta fish, where the tail can either be rounded or have a 180 degree spread with points that resemble the points on a crown.
Keep in mind, these variations of the traditional Plakat Betta fish are due to interbreeding between various species of betta fish. These fish usually come in duller colors such as a dull red, brown, yellow, or orange.
Crown Tail Betta Fish
This has become a hugely popular type of Betta fish due to their perceived beauty. They are called crown tailed Betta fish because their tails are usually rounded with a 180 degree spread. Their tails have spikes or points which closely resemble a crown. Their tails are characterized by a reduction in webbing in between the membranes, resulting in a spikey appearance.
Technically speaking, for a Betta fish to be classified as a crown tail, there has to be a minimum of a 33% reduction in webbing when compared to the traditional Betta fish. The webbing reduction can vary greatly, anywhere from 10% to a full reduction, thus leaving more or less only spikes.
There are actually many different variations of the crown tail, those being the single ray, double ray, crossed ray, and sometimes even triple or quadruple ray. When it comes to pricing, crossed rays are going to be the most expensive kind.
This type of Betta fish is prone to fin curling if they don’t get enough light and if their water is not at the exact parameters needed for a healthy Betta fish. The Crown Tail Betta fish is known to be extremely aggressive when it is breeding time, much more so than other types of Betta fish. This type of Betta fish can vary wildly in color from blue and red, black, red and orange, all the way purple, blue, and red all mixed together.
Half Moon Betta Fish
Many people who love Betta fish like the half moon tail type. These Betta fish are characterized by a tail that has a full 180 degree spread and forms a capital D when flared. The tails and fins on this type of Betta fish are more or less totally straight-edged. Their tails, dorsal, and anal fins are known to be much larger than most other types.
Due to their very large tails and fins, the half moon Betta fish is often prone to tail-biting and fin damage, either due to other fish or swimming into things. Their large tails also makes the half moon Betta fish fairly hard to breed because the males have a hard time wrapping up the females. The half moon Betta fish can come in several color variations including a copper color, pink and red, and black and slightly bluish too.
Delta & Super Delta Betta Fish
This type of is very similar to the veil tail and the half moon varieties. When it comes to their tails, the delta and super delta Betta fish have less than a 180 degree spread when fully flared, usually more like 120 to 160 degrees. There is an easy way to differentiate the deltas and super deltas from the veil tail.
Simply pretend to draw a line from the nose to the tip of the caudal fin. On a delta or super delta Betta fish, there would be a fairly equal amount of fin on either side of the line, top and bottom, whereas on a veil tail, most of the fins would be below the line. The delta and super delta Betta fish often come in dark blue, green, and turquoise color variations.
Double Tail Betta Fish
This type of Betta fish has a special genetic trait that actually causes the tail to grow in two lobes instead of one, thus effectively forming two separate tails. The same genes that cause the double tail usually also cause the dorsal and anal fins to be very broad and wide, and also cause the body of the Betta fish to be shorter than normal.
This type of Betta fish is often bread with crown tails, half moons, and plakats too. Due to their short bodies, double tail Betta fish are prone to swim bladder problems as well as lower survival rates for fry.
Comb Tail Betta Fish
This is a very unique type of Betta fish. The comb tail Betta fish is not a naturally occurring species in the wild. It can only be achieved by breeding a crown tail Betta fish with another species. This type of Betta fish often has the typical droopy fins of a veil tail which is combined with long rays on all of the fins. Due to their breeding, the comb tail Betta fish can come in a variety of colors.
Rose Tail & Feather Tail Betta Fish
This type of Betta fish is more or less a very extreme variation of the half moon Betta fish. They have the classic 180 degree tail spread of a half moon Betta fish, but with an extremely excessive branching of the rays on the fins and tail, thus giving it a ruffled look. Those with moderate ray branching are known as rose tail Betta fish, while those with extreme ray branching are typically referred to as feather tail Betta fish.
Both the feather tail and rose tail Betta fish are very hard to breed because the same gene mutations that cause the ruffled tail can also lead to scale and fin problems, both things which may also affect their overall health. These types of Betta fish can come in colors ranging from snow white to dark black with orange accents, and blue, green, and turquoise too.
Round Tail Betta Fish
This is a fairly rare type of Betta fish that is very hard to find in pet stores, thus making it a very expensive breed to go with. As the name implies, these things have round tails and fairly round fins. They can be compared with the large tail of a plakat and can sometimes be mistaken for a delta Betta fish.
However, a good way to differentitate them is that the round tail Betta fish will have a very rounded tail, whereas a delta has a straighter edges on its tail. Moreover, the tails of the round tail Betta fish are much fuller and longer than that of a plakat Betta fish. The color of this type of Betta fish can vary wildly between pink, purple, orange, black, white, and a mix of all of the above.
Half Sun Betta Fish
This is a very selective breed of Betta fish as it can only be achieved through special breeding. The half sun Betta fish is a mix between the half moon and the crown tail betta fish. The half sun Betta fish will have the full 180 degree tail spread of a half moon Betta fish combined with a slight crowning of the fins, which means that they have slight spikes. Since this fish is a mix between two others, the colors can vary extremely.
Over Half Moon Betta Fish
This type of Betta fish is a very extreme variation of the half moon Betta fish. The over half moon Betta fish is just like the half moon, except that the tail, when flared out, can be well over 180 degrees, in some cases up to 240 degrees. These things also have a varying color scheme and can be pink and red, blue, and purple and red too.
Spade Tail Betta Fish
The spade tail Betta fish is pretty much like the round tail, except when the tail is flared, it forms a spade instead of a circular shape. These can come in various colors and patterns, but are usually associated with being bright red or orange.
Different Betta Pattern Variations & Colors
Apart from having different tails and fins, Betta fish can also be classified by their patterns. These things can have very many different patterns. Let’s talk about the most dominant pattern types for the Betta fish.
A common type of Betta fish is the solid colored Betta fish. This means that they only have one solid color from front to back. Solid colored Betta fish are often bright red or orange, however can also be blue, white, or even black at times.
This pattern variation is also known as Cambodian. This is when the body of the Betta fish is quite pale or almost colorless when compared to the tail and fins. The fins and tails of the bi-colored Betta fish will be solid in color, hence the name bi-colored.
The body will be one color, usually very pale, and the fins will be another, usually very bright. These can come in the form of a pale blue body with bright green fins, or the other way around, or a pale pink body with bright red fins. This can actually also work the other way, where the fins are translucent and the body is of one solid bright color.
The butterfly pattern is another fairly common pattern that can be found among Betta fish. This coloration pattern consists of a body that is solid in color and extends outwards to the fins. Sometime the body can be one color, with the inside of the fins being another. Either way, this coloration comes to an abrupt stop with a fairly straight edge. Once the color stops, the rest of the fins will be either white or transparent.
The increased interbreeding of Betta fish has made the marble pattern a very common sight, not to mention fairly popular too. This is a neat type of pattern because it looks marbled and can consist of various colors on both the body and fins. There is also the fact that the coloration may change with age.
This type of pattern on a Betta fish is kind of like that of a bald eagle in the sense that no matter what the color of the body or fins may be, they will always have a really pale face. The body is usually solid in color, but may also be butterflied to a certain extent.
The mask pattern is not what you would think. Generally speaking, Betta fish have a paler face in comparison to the rest of their bodies. The mask pattern actually means that the face of the Betta fish is the same color as the rest of the body. The color can vary greatly.
This is a very interesting pattern that has been created through selective breeding. There is often a very strong and rich base color with the scales on the main part of the body being a pale iridescent color. The base color is usually red, and the scales often copper in color.
This is a pretty neat pattern, mainly because it consists of 3 or more different colors which are not organized into any particular pattern.
Different Types Of Betta Fish Colors
Betta fish can come in many different colors so let’s talk about the most common color variations that these neat little fish can come in, the below should help answer your question "what kind of betta fish do i have?".
Colors Of Betta Fish
Red is a very dominant color in Betta fish. Many solid pattern Betta fish will feature a bright red color.
There are also many different blue Betta fish, or at least those which have blue included in the pattern. There are a few different shades of blue which are most common. These shades include steel blue, where the blue is very cold and looks almost grey, royal blue, which is very deep, rich, and vibrant in color, turquoise, which looks kind of green in the right light, and baby blue too. Of these, the soft baby blue is the least common color to be featured on a Betta fish.
Green is a very rare color which you do not often see on Betta fish. However, there are turquoise Betta fish which are a mix of green and blue.
This is a really neat coloration which Betta fish can have. It consists of a blue, green, or iridescent blue body, with some blue rays in the fins. Most of the fins will usually be red. With these Betta fish, the fins will often be much brighter in color than the rest of the body.
Many people find this type of Betta fish to be the least attractive in terms of color. They usually have a pale pink pastel colored body with translucent fins. The fins may show hints of blue or green. These Betta fish also have black eyes. Some of the scales on the body may also show some hints of blue or green color, but not for the most part.
Another Betta fish which is not renowned for its beautiful color is the opaque variety. These actually have a gene problem which causes them to be of a misty white color, sometimes very pale pink, and they have hazy eyes. Interestingly enough, the genes which cause this color may also cause other health problems in terms of the internal organs. Are white betta fish rare? yes, these are very rare and hard to find.
Yellow & Pineapple
Many Betta fish colorations have to do with genes. In the case of the yellow and pineapple colored Betta fish, there is a gene which removes the red coloration from their scales and tail. These Betta fish can range from a pale yellow to a very creamy and deep yellow. To be clear, a pineapple Betta fish is one where they have a darker color definition around the scales, making them look kind of dirty.
Orange Betta fish are very rare and hard to find. They can have the color of a rich orange tangerine, but will usually look red in sunlight. There are also variations known as Dalmatian orange, which means that they are pale orange in color with blotches of bright orange.
The black Betta fish is actually pretty common and there are three main types of them. There are Melano blacks, fertile blacks (also known as black lace), and copper blacks with iridescent. Melano blacks are known to be infertile, and they may have some dark blue coloration on the fins. Fertile blacks are of course fertile as the name implies, they tend to be the darkest black of all black Betta fish. The copper blacks usually have a black body with black fins adorned with copper colored fin rays.
Purple Betta fish are perhaps the rarest of them all. They can be found, and when they are present, a purlple Betta fish will have a dark purple body with violet or orange fins.
This is a neat bi-colored Betta fish. They are characterized by a green or blue body with orange or yellow fins.
Chocolate colored Betta fish will have a very dark creamy brown body, with the fins being a lighter brown and often featuring some yellow.
This is a fairly popular type of Betta fish. When they are under weak light, they often appear silver or brown, then when put under light, they will show copper, blue, and purple highlights.
The albino Betta fish has only ever been found in existence a few times. They are extremely rare, they are pure white, and it is due to imperfections. These things go blind at an early age, they have short lifespans, and are ridiculously hard to breed. As a pet owner, it is not recommended that you keep an albino Betta fish.
Commonly Asked Questions
What Is The Rarest Color of Betta Fish?
There are several rare types of betta fish out there. Some of the rarest types and colors of betta fish include deep black betta fish, totally white betta fish, true purple betta fish, and fully green betta fish. Fully orange betta fish are also quite rare.
Do Betta Fish Change Colors?
Betta fish do change color on occasion, although it is usually not a good thing when this happens. Generally speaking, if a betta fish is happy and healthy, it may be super bright in color, brighter than it usually is.
The brighter the betta fish is, the happier and healthier it is, but with that said, they should not change color per say. However, some betta fish do change color, and it is often a sign of illness, disease, stress, or old age, so not good things.
Do Betta Fish See Colors?
Yes, betta fish do see color to a certain extent, but not nearly as well as humans do. It is proven that betta fish can distinguish between certain colors such as green, red, blue, yellow, and other such colors.
However, betta fish do not see color in depth, or in other words, they can’t really differentiate between various shades or hues of the same color.
How Do I Choose A Betta Fish?
There are several factors that you should consider when choosing a betta fish that is right for you. Here are some of the factors to keep in mind.
- How large of a tank do you want to get, as different betta fish require different amounts of space.
- Some betta fish are more peaceful than others, and more willing to live in community tanks, another thing to consider.
- Of course, one of the main considerations you will always make when choosing the right betta fish for you is the color pattern. Which one appeals to you the most?
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We hope you have found this article helpful and that it has given you some insight into the many different types of Betta fish, each of them beautifully unique.