Can guppies live with bettas?
Yes, Guppies can live with Bettas; however, you must not just bring some bettas and add them randomly to your guppy’s tank or vice-versa. You would need to take some precautions before you add betta fishes to your tank full of guppies.
As we have seen earlier, both their temperaments are different. Hence, having some adjustment problems is valid enough. But if you take proper precautions, it won’t be too hard to manage these two attractive species in one tank. Also, you would want to ensure that the population of both these species is under check; mainly, the Guppies population, they are prolific and readily breed.
Guppy and betta tank requirements
When it comes to Guppies and Bettas, the environmental requirement, such as water parameters, lighting, etc., are similar and doesn’t mount any significant issues. Therefore, their environmental needs are one main factor that allows us in the first place to consider raising the question of whether these two species can share the same habitat. Hence, these two fish species can live with one another in the same tank.
The Guppies require the water temperature to be between 75- 82℉ (24-28°C). On the other hand, bettas can thrive in a water temperature of about 78-80℉ (25.5-27°C).
Besides, their pH requirements are also quite similar. For example, the ideal pH for bettas is 7, while guppies require the pH level to be 6.8-7.2. Hence, maintaining a pH range suitable for both Guppies and Bettas is not an Everest task.
Usually, pretty bettas prefer soft water in their dwelling between 3 – 4dGH. But, in contrast, guppies do not like to dwell in soft water; they need water hardness 8-12dGH. So, this is where bettas come forward to compromise on their demand for soft water. Thus, bettas can adjust and adapt to hard water conditions making it easier for guppies.
However, both guppies and bettas are clean fish and are equally sensitive to ammonia and nitrate levels in the water. Therefore, they typically prefer a clean tank. Hence, unless you have a third species that are messy, adding a moderate filtration unit with an optimum filtration rate will do the job.
Guppies and bettas Temperaments
Guppies and Bettas can live comfortably in the same tank when we make certain adjustments. The challenging factors in keeping these species in the same habitat are their temperaments and behavioral factors.
The brave little guppies love interacting with both their kind and other fish species in the tank. However, you can hardly find a guppy attacking or fighting with other fishes.
But bettas are the villains here! They are semi-aggressive by nature, which is quite a different personality from that of the guppies. And generally, they are aggressive to their own kind than the other species. Especially, you cannot keep two male bettas in the same tank unless the tank is sizeable with plenty of plants, decors, and hideouts.
Now, while you keep guppies and bettas together, the problem can become more concerning if there are more male guppies; male Guppies are bright with vibrant colors similar to Bettas; when the bettas see these vibrant male Guppies, they take them for their competition.
Another name for Betta is Siamese Fighter Fish; as the name goes, the males fight to establish their territories. The look-alike male Guppies can trigger their instinct of fighting to establish dominance in their habitat. So, it will constantly attack male guppies to mark their territory, which can cause tremendous stress, leading them to contract diseases and eventually resulting in death.
Although Bettas are semi-aggressive, they leave alone the fish that they do not discern as a threat. Therefore, the female guppies with dull and lackluster colors do not intimidate Bettas and escape their wraths.
Nevertheless, we should not forget Bettas are primarily a hunter species. Therefore, they may chase the female guppies; they might also nip their fins, and the damaged fins can cause fin rot and other diseases. To avoid this, you may keep the ratio to 3-4 female guppies and one male guppy along with one female betta, which will reduce the chances of disrupting the peace in the tank.
It is always better to introduce the betta when the guppies are adult; guppies are tiny fish, and the young ones can be an afternoon snack for any fish species over 2.5 inches (approx. 6cms). Also, it is better to introduce bettas into guppies tank than vice versa.
Betta and guppy ratio
Betta-Guppy ratio is a crucial factor in keeping them in the same tank. But, can Guppies live with Bettas? Sure, they can when the ratio between the two is maintained with few other adjustments.
While keeping bettas and guppies together in your aquarium, a correct ratio needs to be maintained.
For every one Betta, 4 to 5 Guppies can do the trick. However, keeping more than one Betta in a 10 gallon might lead to unnecessary chasing and biting; this may stress Guppies and attract diseases. Bettas can live alone; they don’t get lonely, unlike Guppies, Harlequin Rasbora, Galaxy Rasbora, White Cloud Mountain Minnow, Tetras such as Ember Tetra, Neon Tetra, Cardinal Tetra are all schooling and shoaling fish species. Therefore, keeping only one of its kind is perfectly healthy when it comes to Bettas.
The male-female ratio is another crucial factor while keeping the Guppies with Bettas. It is no secret the males in any species are far more aggressive than the females, and it’s no exception to Bettas and Guppies. Notably, a male Betta can be immensely aggressive and hostile. However, in both species, the males are far more vibrant and colorful, and it’s pretty fascinating to keep males from these two species in the same habitat, but surely, you do not want to yield to your temptation.
The correct gender combination is critical in keeping these two species in the same tank. You can strike right away to keep male Guppy and male Betta; they make nasty tank mates. Male Guppy’s vibrant colors will threaten the Betta, and it will chase and attack the Guppy.
And yet, if you want to have both these males in the same tank, then you need to choose a much larger tank so that they don’t cross each other.
You can also choose a female betta with male guppies as the female Betta is less aggressive than the male. However, the male Guppy might try to mate with female Betta, but she will not like it one bit and get aggressive towards male Guppy.
Guppies and Bettas in a community tank
Having Bettas and Guppies with other freshwater fish with similar environmental requirements could also be a good idea to have them both in the same habitat. For example, Corydoras, Ghost shrimps, Angelfish, African frogs, Kuhli Loach, etc., can make good tank mates to both Bettas and Guppies. Sometimes you can keep them with tetras as well if you plan the tank.
Avoid keeping with smaller shrimps such as red cherry shrimp as Betta can have them for a meal. Nonetheless, some aquarists have succeeded in keeping red cherry shrimp with Bettas.
A large community tank subdues the territorial behavior of Bettas.
Choosing the right breed of Bettas
Can Guppies live with Bettas? Yes, of course, they can live together in the same habitat. However, not all the Betta species are suitable to live Guppies. There are 75 recognized species in the genus Bettas; they come in different colors, sizes, and temperaments; some are more aggressive than others.
Hence, while choosing the tank mate for Guppies or a community tank, you want to study the types of bettas and avoid choosing more aggressive and harmful types of bettas. Also, consider the betta size while selecting the breed.
You would want to avoid Betta types such as Crown tail betta, Plakat, Half-moon plakats, etc.
You may choose Veiltail bettas, Half-moon betta, delta betta, etc. that are less aggressive and boisterous breeds than the others. These betta breeds tend to live quietly and peacefully with guppies without attacking them.
Ideal tank setup for bettas and guppies
The tank setup significantly impacts whether they will live peacefully together or have WWE fighting sessions quite often. Therefore you would want to take due care while setting up the habitat for your two vivacious species!
The tank size matters
Picking an ideal size tank is the first and foremost factor. Whenever you introduce two or more fish species in the same tank that are not 100% compatible, it is better to offer ample spaces to avoid clashes. Overstocking the fish tank is the worst idea ever. It leads to heavy aggression and poses high health risks for your fish.
Bettas are territorial and boisterous; a large tank can help eliminate the chance of Guppies offending the Bettas with their curiosity.
So, in a 10-gallon tank, usually, you can easily accommodate 5 to 7 guppies. However, with Betta in the picture, you can have about 4 to 5 Guppies and one Betta.
Live plants and decors
Adding live plants and other decors provides them an aquatic environment much similar to their natural habitat. It also helps to demarcate their territory and allows less room for conflicts and trespassing. Hence, consider different species of live plants and decors in their tank.
Besides, this is good for your bettas too, as, at times, they prefer hiding in-between these live plants. So, here I have enlisted some of the best plants that you can add in the community tank of your guppies and bettas to offer them ample space for hiding demarcate their territories.
– Amazon Sword
– Guppy Grass
Plus, including rocks and decors such as driftwood, an aquarium house, tubes, shells, pots, etc. Now, you can find plenty of aquarium decors in the market to choose from.
Feeding bettas and guppies
While keeping these two fish species in the same habitat, feeding can be slightly tricky. But if you know how to feed them properly, you need not look back anymore.
The first thing you must know is that bettas are carnivorous by nature. Hence in the wild, they only eat insects and worms or even smaller fishes. So, to ensure the good health of your betta fish, you must offer them nutritious meat-based food.
For bettas, frozen blood worms are the best food option. Also, they prefer to have live black worms. However, try to feed them various foods to balance their dietary needs for vitamins and minerals.
On the other hand, guppies are omnivores. Hence, you need not worry about what to feed them. Guppies can easily live and survive on foods you provide to bettas.
However, always maintain a healthy balance between a proteinaceous diet and veggies for your guppies. Vegetable pellets or flakes are a good food option to feed them regularly. Also, you would want to feed them with blanched vegetables such as spinach, cauliflower, zucchini, lettuce, bell peppers, etc.
Now, there’s a problem with feeding these two fishes together. Guppies tend to gobble up bettas’ foods, making the latter deprived of their dietary requirements. So, how shall you provide these two fishes to meet their nutritional needs?
First, feed your guppies with vegetable matters. Being a carnivore, betta fishes won’t be interested in eating Guppy’s food. So now, as your guppies are full, you can offer meaty food items to your bettas. You can also use a pipette to feed your bettas, as it will prevent the guppies from stealing away special feed.
However, on some days, when you think of offering meaty foods to your guppies, you can feed both the fishes together.
Besides, to avoid bettas from eating away your guppies, make sure you deliver them a sufficient amount of food from time to time.
Can Guppies live with Bettas? – Wrap up
Sure, Guppies can live with Bettas as long as you are prepared to make certain adjustments and meet some conditions. For example, you would want to be prudent with the choice of betta types and sizes, the ratio of guppies to bettas, gender choice, and finally, the proper tank set up with plenty of plants and hideouts.
If you take care of these issues, sure you can enjoy both these colorful, vibrant species in the same habitat!