6 Tips For Picking A Friendly Betta

Last Updated on 2023-05-24

If you’re wondering how to pick a friendly betta fish, then you’ve found the right article! In this article, not only will you find about what to look for, you’ll also learn about whether bettas are as unfriendly as people say, and the most friendly betta you can choose!

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

Are There Any Friendly Bettas?

Although betta fish are typically classified as ‘fighting fish’, they are not always aggressive and, given the right conditions, can be successfully added to most community tanks! However, the friendliness can depend on their breed, gender, and individual personality.

Since they are often kept alone in tanks, people wrongly assume they are hostile or unfriendly. This is certainly not the case; bettas do well both in a community tank and on their own!

It’s also important to remember that many fish keepers favor male bettas due to their spectacular appearance, but they tend to be much more territorial than females. If you want to add males into your tank, you must first make sure there’s enough space for them to peacefully co-exist with more mild-mannered fish, then carefully observe its temperament, as occasionally you will encounter a male which won’t integrate and prefers to be kept solo.

Female bettas are more tolerant than their male counterparts and friendlier too. They are not as territorial as males, which means they are ideal for keeping in a tank with smaller fish or fish of comparable size.

However, both males and females respond well to their owners and can even be taught tricks.

How Do You Pick A Friendly Betta?

Whether selecting a betta to keep with other fish or alone, you can tell if it is thriving and happy by observing its appearance and behavior. As a general rule, the healthier the fish, the happier it will be, so always buy from a decent breeder. With that being said there are a few great ways to tell.

In short:

To know if your betta is friendly check to see if they’re in a community tank, and responding well to their tank mates. If you notice they’re acting aggressive, chasing other fish, or hiding and keeping to themselves, then they’re not very friendly.

Here’s a more in-depth analysis though.

1. Check Their Healthy

A healthy betta is a happy betta – it should have clear eyes, be vibrantly colored, have long flowing fins, appear vibrant and curious, and swim with ease. If it has visible skin problems, discoloration, milky eyes, or ragged fins, the betta is not healthy. 

(Find out more ways to tell if your betta is healthy or unhealthy.)

2. Check Their Responsiveness

How responsive is the betta? try to move your finger near the tank to see if he responds. If they react quickly, it’s a sign they’re healthy, alert, and energetic. 

3. Check For Tank Mates

Is he kept solo or in a mixed tank? If a male betta is housed solo and you want him to join your aquarium, check with the supplier as to whether he can be integrated into a community tank and also how long he needs to be quarantined before joining the rest of your fish.

(If you want to keep your betta with tank mates, then check out this article on the 30 best tank mates for him!)

4. How Does He React To Tank Mates?

Watch the betta’s response to his other tank mates; notice if he is swimming around them or past them without appearing stressed. If the betta is flaring his fins, chasing, or nipping at other fish, then this is a sure sign he’s not friendly and needs to be kept on his own. 

5. Use Your Intuition

Buying a pet is a personal choice, so choosing the right betta is often an intuitive process. Notice which fish you are most drawn to, whether he comes to greet you when you try to get his attention, and how receptive it is. 

6. He’s Not Hiding

Bettas hide when they’re stressed or sick. If the betta you’re looking at his hiding, but doesn’t look sick, then he could be getting stressed by the other fish in his tank. It’s only a matter of time before this stress turns into aggression, and he may end up attacking other fish in your community tank.

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What Is The Friendliest Betta Fish?

The Betta Imbelis, or Peaceful Betta, is considered the friendliest breeds of betta due to its passive temperament. This breed has a crescent-shaped tail fin and is much gentler than other bettas. It should be kept alongside other calm fish and will happily co-exist in a pair or multiple pairs if you have a larger aquarium. 

If you’re asking about specifically betta splendens then Veiltail bettas, which are brightly colored with long, impressive fins, are generally regarded as being the most easy going species of betta, making them a popular choice for new fish owners and hobbyists.

This variety of betta is ideal for integration into a community tank, given its friendly, social, and docile nature, as it will interact well with other species of fish. 


Now you know what to look for in a friendly betta fish, as well as the friendliest betta you can keep in your tank! If you look for the signs of friendliness, especially how they act with community tanks already, then you can’t go too far wrong.

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

Ultimate Betta Fish Care Guide
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