How Many Betta Fish In A 10-Gallon Tank (Male & Females)

If you’re wondering how many betta fish you can keep in a 10 gallon tank, then you’ve found the right article! In this article, not only will you find out exactly how many bettas you can keep in a 10 gallon tank, you’ll also learn some great tank mates you can keep with them!

So keep reading to find out everything you need to know!

Can Bettas Live In A 10 Gallon Tank?

Bettas require a lot of room, contrary to popular belief. Much more than tiny vases and bowls can provide them.

In fact, the smaller the area, the faster the water quality deteriorates and becomes hazardous to your betta. And smaller tanks require even more attention. With that in mind…

You can keep our betta in a 10 gallon tank as long as you’re keeping the water quality high, and you’re providing plenty of entertainment and high quality food, in these conditions your betta will thrive.

How Many Betta’s Can You Put in a 10 Gallon Fish Tank?

A single male betta or 4-5 female bettas can live in a 10 gallon tank. You can also keep 2 males with a tank divider, however, it would be preferred to add other tank mates such as corydoras or ember tetras to reduce the chance of the males becoming aggressive towards each other.

And unless you plan on breeding your betta’s you shouldn’t keep males or females together, unless it’s incredibly briefly.

How Do You Calculate How Many Betta Fish You Can Keep?

To calculate how many betta fish you can keep is simple.

The rule is 1 inch of betta fish per gallon of water. With females growing to two inches max you can keep 5 in a 10 gallon tank. The same would be true for males, however, due to their aggression, only one is advised.

How Many Female Betta Fish Can You Have in A 10 Gallon Tank?

If you plan on keeping a betta sorority, then you need to make sure you’re not overstocking your tank.

Although they are not entirely calm, female bettas are less aggressive than males. Unless they believe they are the dominant female in the tank, then they might become territorial.

So a 10-gallon tank minimum is what I’d recommend for maintaining a sorority. Due to space and bioload constraints, anything less than 10 gallons will be quite risky.

You can put 4-5 female betta fish in a 10 gallon tank. The rule of thumb is 1 inch of fish per gallon of water, and with female bettas growing to between 1.5-2 inches in length, 4-5 will fit perfectly.

(Betta fish care can be challenging if you have no idea where to start. Click here to read a complete Betta fish care guide!)

Do Female Betta Fish Create A Hierarchy In Their Tank?

Female bettas in a tank will create a hierarchy pretty soon after being introduced to each other. During this time, one or two of the bettas will become the superiors, and the rest will become more docile.

In fact, even when there are three females in a tank a dangerous hierarchy may still occur, as two may end up bullying one, which is why it’s vital you keep 4 or more. (and why a tank bigger than 10 gallons might be better.)

How To Keep Female Bettas In A 10 Gallon Tank?

If you plan on keeping a sorority of females in a 10 gallon tank, then you need to make sure you’re taking care of a few things.

1. Heater And Filter

First of all, you should make sure you’re using a high quality filter and heater to keep the water parameters in tip top shape. Bettas need a temperature around 76-80°F, and ammonia levels at 0ppm to thrive.

2. Plenty Of Hiding Places

You should also make sure you’re giving your females plenty of hiding places. When the hierarchy is being formed, the more docile females may end up becoming bullied.

By adding lots of hiding places, you’ll give them places they can retreat too and feel safe.

3. Feed Everyone Enough

And lastly, when you’re keeping a few fish together it can be hard to check all of them are getting food. So keep an eye on making sure each betta gets a nice pellet of food when you’re feeding them. It may even be worth adding more food to the tank, and then fishing out whatever isn’t eaten after a few minutes.

How Many Male Betta Fish Can You Have in A 10 Gallon Tank?

Male Betta fish are known to be aggressive, hence their other name, “The Siamese Fighting fish.” Because of this…

You should never house more than one betta in a 10 gallon tank, unless you’re using a tank divider. And even then, it could still cause massive stress to both fish.

Why You Should Never House Male and Female Bettas Together in a 10-Gallon Tank

Housing a male and female betta together in a 10-gallon tank will result in disaster.

Both fish can be aggressive, with males being particularly aggressive, and if your male doesn’t like the female he will aggressively chase her and wear her down.

However, in some cases when a betta pair is placed in the same tank, they may fight right away. But in other cases, they may try to reproduce, you can never be certain though, until you put them together.

What Other Fish Species Can Live with A Betta in A 10 Gallon Tank?

Just because you can’t keep bettas with other bettas in a 10 gallon tank, doesn’t mean your betta has to be alone. Here are some great tank mate choices for your betta.

1. Ember Tetras

These 1-inch red-orange tetras give a splash of color to any aquarium with 10 gallons or more capacity. Make sure you’re keeping at least five or six of them so they can school together.

(Find out more about what tetras you can keep with bettas.)

2. Pygmy Corydoras

Pygmy Corydoras are small bottom dwellers that shouldn’t attract the attention of your betta. Because they are bottom dwellers, you can expect them to completely stay out of your bettas way in the tank, as they’ll prefer spending time amongst their own kind.

(Find out more about keeping your betta with corydoras catfish.)

3. Cherry Shrimp

You don’t have to just keep fish in your tank either. Cherry shrimp are incredibly easy to look after and make any fish tank pop. If you’ve never kept tank mates with your betta before, just beware, if he doesn’t like them, he may end up eating your cherry shrimp.

(Find out more about keeping cherry shrimp with bettas.)

4. Lambchop Rasboras

Lambchop rasboras are another great for your tank, and a small school of them will fit perfectly in a tank with your bettas. Just make sure you’re giving them lots of places to hide, and lots of places to swim freely as well!

(Find out all the rasboras that can live with bettas.)

5. African Dwarf Frogs

And once again, if you’re looking for something a little bit more unique then you can either consider adding a couple of African Dwarf Frogs to your tank as well!

While they may look aggressive, they’re actually very peaceful until it comes to feeding time, where caution would need to be advised.

(Check out this article for a complete guide of 30 tank mates that can live with your betta.)

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some frequently asked questions that people have about how many betta fish they can keep in a 10 gallon tank!

Can You Keep Male Bettas In A 10 Gallon Tank With Other Fish?

You can house male betta fish in a 10-gallon communal tank with other fish. However, you need to make sure you’re picking the right tank mates for them. Certain rasboras, shrimp, and snails, all make great choices.

Is 10 Gallon Too Big For A Betta?

There is no tank size that is too big for a betta. In fact, the bigger the tank, the happier your betta will be. The water parameters will be more stable, and your betta will have more place to swim and hide! Not to mention all the additional tank mates he could have.

How Many Betta Fish In A 10-Gallon Tank (Male & Females)


Now that you know you can either keep one male or four to five females in a 10 gallon betta tank! Just ensure you’re keeping the water quality high, and providing plenty of hiding places for all your fish, and your bettas will be happy for many years!

If you liked this article, make sure to check out the rest of the website! Otherwise, have a great day!