The Beautiful Betta

The fish known as Betta comes in a variety of forms and colors. Although there are 28 known species, the best known is the Betta splendens, or Siamese Fighting Fish. They are great little pets but many people are confused by the different names describing them.

The Super Delta Tail

The Super Delta Tail is just a step below the Half Moon Tail, when spread it resembles the capital letter D, either forwards or backwards depending on which direction the fish is facing. The actual “Delta” tail is a fish whose tail is a bit shorter, the Half Moon, as seen below offers a longer, more spectacular display.  Unfortunately this fish is not displaying his tail, but you can see the wonderful example of how colorful they are. 

The Half Moon Tail

This is one of the most desirable tail shapes that breeders are striving for. The tail is a full 180 degree half circle and when flared it is beautiful (it is not fully flared here, and truthfully should be longer, although the fish is being called a Half Moon). Flaring is encouraged by having a mirror next to the tank, or by putting another tank containing another Betta next to it. Encouraging occasion flaring (without tormenting the fish) is a good way to keep a Betta healthy and active. The color of this fish is often called “Butterfly”

The Double Tail

These fish don’t actually have two tails, but what has occurred is that their tail is divided into two lobes, and upper and lower one. Interestingly enough breeding a double tail to a double tail results in deformed fish, so they should only be bred to fish with another tail type.

The Crown Tail

The picture is not the best quality,and the fish looks a little weak in the body, but you can see the features that make the Crown Tail special. The webbing between the rays is reduced, making the fins look more exotic. This fish have been in the pet stores for a few years now and are quite poplular.

The Veil Tail

The Veil Tail is basically an elongated version of the tail these fish would naturally have in the wild. It resembles the veil of a wedding dress. Although this form of tail is very common in pet stores, among breeders it is frowned on, and many shows no longer have classes for fish of this tail type.


This picture isn’t really demonstrating anything, I just thought it was an interesting shot, it does show some of the metallic looking possibilities in fin color. If you want to take pictures of your fish, do so in a brightly lit room and turn your flash off for best results. Encourage flaring to show your fish to his best advantage.

As Sold in Some Stores…

When you see a Betta for sale in a jar or cup such as this one. Do not pity it and purchase it. As hard as it may be, this fish will not be healthy and may suffer from back problems. Buying from people who sell fish in this way should be discouraged otherwise it simply condemns other fish to similar conditions when the seller orders more fish. Rather you might say to the seller “shouldn’t there be more water in the cup?” Let them know you do not accept this as a “normal” way of displaying or selling fish. They often keep the water level low because fish will jump out, however this can be prevented by simply putting a top on the cups with holes to let air in.


Bettas will normally fight even fish of opposite gender, unless the female is in her breeding pattern. Here we see two fish mating, you can see at the surface of the water, the male has already made the bubble nest. Once the eggs are laid he will tend them and the female should be removed. Breeding Bettas is a tricky thing and should only be undertaken when a person can realistically deal with finding homes for all the potential offspring (maybe 300).

For more information on Betta fish as pets click here.

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User Comments
  1. clay hurtubise

    On April 5, 2009 at 12:28 pm

    Interesting and informative piece.

  2. R J Evans

    On April 5, 2009 at 12:36 pm

    What a beautiful fish! Hope you don’t mind – I blogged it (and did the digg too!)

    Best regards


  3. Adam Henry Sears

    On April 5, 2009 at 1:36 pm

    Hi, Mark, how are you?
    Very interesting! Of course, I’ve always been fascinated with tropical fish anyway, ever since I was a boy. But interesting nonetheless! Thanks for sharing.

  4. Lovely Rayne

    On April 5, 2009 at 2:28 pm

    Interesante! Great content and gorgeous pics.

  5. Sandra A Flowers

    On April 5, 2009 at 5:27 pm

    gorgeous pics, I so love Betas,,

  6. Brenda Nelson

    On April 5, 2009 at 7:43 pm

    Thanks for adding about not buying from stores where they are in the tiny cups

  7. Verniel Cutar

    On April 5, 2009 at 10:43 pm

    I just love this page! The pictures are real good. They are soothing to the eyes.

  8. manya

    On April 6, 2009 at 2:28 am

    Very interesting article and captivating pictures!


  9. Christie Fournier

    On April 6, 2009 at 6:43 pm

    Do you think with the popularity of Halfmoons that Delta tail bettas will fall by the wayside? They are so popular now you can even buy them at PetCo. I see far fewer veil tails where I live but suspect that breeders will be moving away from Deltas soon too.
    Nippyfish: A Betta Blog

  10. Ruby Hawk

    On April 6, 2009 at 8:05 pm

    Betta’s are so beautiful, almost makes me want to keep fish again. I would if I didn’t have to keep the tank clean.

  11. Caroswen

    On April 25, 2009 at 11:37 am

    so beautiful, many pictures, very good article =D

  12. Prettywolf

    On October 12, 2009 at 8:01 am

    Very nice information. I’ve been keeping betta’s for a few years now and I really like the half moons the best. I get mine from a local breeder that I know very well and I’ve never gotten a sick fish or a dead fish from her and I’ve actually went to her house where she breeds them and its just so amazing to see her fish and the kind of treatment they get is great. She doesn’t keep them in bowls like a lot of breeders she keeps them in 10 gallons that are divided in half so she can keep more than one in a tank and her breeder tank is actually a 20 gallon long so that she has more of a chance for the female to live after breeding and gives her enough time to get the female out.

  13. funny geo

    On January 18, 2010 at 2:39 pm

    i am a fan of bettas thire the best

  14. Chris

    On October 22, 2010 at 11:28 pm

    I enjoy my veil tail which I got from Petco by the way and he was healthy and interactive from the moment I first saw him. He adjusted quickly to his new home. I think he is more fun than any other type of fish we have had in the past. I realize why they are so popular.

  15. Bob

    On October 1, 2011 at 3:54 pm

    When u said if there in a small cup they aren’t active and have a back problem it’s a lie I got a betta in that and no back problems and very active

  16. Mark Gordon Brown

    On October 7, 2011 at 10:50 pm

    Bob I personally would not take the chance and would not reward a store that kept fish this way by shopping there.

  17. Huisdierenverzekering

    On March 3, 2012 at 5:28 am

    Wow, amazing graceful and beautifully varied kind!


  18. Jesper

    On March 10, 2012 at 3:57 pm

    Love the Betta pics! I used to have a common red Betta in a five gallon tank. Kept the water flow low and he loved it. Much better than those plastic cups

  19. Katie

    On March 14, 2012 at 11:19 am

    Amazing photos and great information

  20. Literary Agency Delhi

    On May 16, 2012 at 8:01 am

    Very nice….i enjoyed it! :)

  21. Tshirt Exports India

    On June 2, 2012 at 1:49 am

    Betta is adorable. Nice post.

  22. Khairunisa

    On August 2, 2012 at 7:42 am

    excellent collection! i have seen 1st time collection like this. good work, keep it up. thanks,

  23. Adiphene

    On January 17, 2013 at 4:54 pm

    these fishes are amazing I really love them. thank you to upload these pictures.

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