How Long Do Betta Fish Live?

How Long Do Betta Fish Live?

2 – 3 years is a common lifespan of a domesticated betta fish, however up to 6 years is very achievable and 10 can be done! You just need to make sure you can give your Japanese fighting fish the best environment possible. This site wants to make that 10 year achievement possible for you and your Japanese fighting fish.

[highlight]Secret Betta Tip: Bettas are often adults when sold at pet stores. Ask how old the fish is to ensure you have your fish for the longest time possible or even get a very young betta from a breeder instead.[/highlight]

Keeping Your Betta Fish Healthy and Happy

You will often see these colorful little fish in small containers at the pet store. They are sold this way because they can’t be kept together in one large betta tank as the males will fight each other. These small tanks are not suitable living spaces for betta fish; they ideally need around 5 gallons of personal space in their tank. We have a page all about the best tanks for betta fish here.

If you decide to “save” one of these betta fish from their tiny prison, then you will need to buy your own betta tank, as well as betta fish food, betta fish plants and other accessories for your new pet.

As mentioned before ideally your betta tank will be at least 5 gallons, 1.5 – 2 gallon tanks have done the job for many owners but we feel 5 is the magic minimum number.

Betta specific fish food is great as it has taken into account the natural diet of the fish and has been produced to match (or close enough) the fish’s natural requirements.

An aquarium plant or two can provide a great retreat for your betta. It can also provide shade to help avoid algae growing so fast and can also help naturally filter out some impurities and nitrogen that will build up in the tank.

We have some information on the natural habitat of bettas and how your tank can be set up to replicate this on the homepage.

Lifespan of the Betta Fish

So, how long do Betta fish live?

How long do betta fish liveIf raised under optimal conditions, the betta fish can live to approximately six years, but in most cases a domesticated Betta fish will only live about half that time. This is because of the nutrition and living conditions are not always perfect. One advantage of having a betta as a pet is that it can be kept in a relatively small tank. The flip side to this is that the natural waste from the fish contaminates the water in the betta tank faster. Be sure to clean your tank out regularly – every week you should be removing 10 – 15% of your water and replacing it with fresh conditioned water.

Betta Tip: The female betta fish will usually live a bit longer by a few months than a male betta fish. However, most people prefer the males because they are much more colorful and have longer and fancier fins.

Help Your Betta Live Longer

If you want your betta fish to live as long as possible, then be sure to feed it with betta fish food like brine shrimp, blood worms and specially marked food for bettas. Japanese fighting fish have a tendency to be picky about their food, quite often general tropical fish food just won’t cut it and they will not eat it (look like divas and act like divas). But remember, overfeeding your betta can be just as bad as under feeding, a few pellets once a day (or half the amount and give once in morning once at night) will be just fine – once a week you can leave a day out, this helps to reduce the risk of constipation.

Another factor for how long do betta fish live is the water temperature in the betta tank. Be sure to keep the water at between 75 and 79 degrees Fahrenheit. There are special small heaters that you can use for bettas and with your heater you should always buy a reliable tank thermometer to keep track of the temperature. A 25 watt heater will do the trick!

However, if you choose to keep your betta in a small tank it is probably best not to use a heater at all. A tank heater in a small tank can lead to the water temperature rising very rapidly, which is not good for the Japanese fighting fish – it can be almost like cooking them. If you do choose to keep your betta in a small tank, try and locate it in a warm place in your home.

All in all, take care of your betta fish and you will get the enjoyment of its company for several years to come.

Did you find this interesting? So will your friends! Use the buttons on the left of the screen to share with your friends and followers 🙂

Any betta care tips of your own? We would love for you to share in the comment section below.


Subscribe today and receive a FREE Betta Fish Care for Beginners eBook

Are you a little betta fish crazy? Join over 4200 members and subscribe to our email newsletters for betta fish care tips, betta fish fun and a free betta fish care book.

Comments 93

  1. Momldoit October 22, 2012
    • @BettaInfo October 25, 2012
    • Tiffany October 26, 2014
  2. duraimurugan February 18, 2013
  3. loren March 4, 2013
    • @BettaInfo March 4, 2013
      • Rob March 4, 2013
      • Sam April 27, 2013
        • @BettaInfo April 27, 2013
        • Nerd June 16, 2015
      • jeanne May 17, 2015
        • @BettaInfo July 6, 2015
  4. Kyle March 5, 2013
    • @BettaInfo March 9, 2013
      • Kyle March 10, 2013
        • Aida May 2, 2013
    • Kailyn June 26, 2013
    • Nerd June 16, 2015
  5. Diego Alfonso March 20, 2013
    • @BettaInfo March 24, 2013
  6. BonAppetite March 28, 2013
    • @BettaInfo March 30, 2013
  7. sarah April 15, 2013
    • @BettaInfo April 15, 2013
    • Samantha April 22, 2013
      • Aida May 2, 2013
  8. Samantha April 22, 2013
  9. Gem May 20, 2013
    • @BettaInfo May 20, 2013
    • Livvy May 5, 2015
  10. Nikesh May 24, 2013
    • @BettaInfo May 26, 2013
  11. Drew June 7, 2013
    • @BettaInfo June 8, 2013
    • @BettaInfo June 8, 2013
  12. @BettaInfo June 21, 2013
  13. terri July 7, 2013
    • @BettaInfo July 7, 2013
  14. Spike July 8, 2013
    • @BettaInfo July 11, 2013
  15. Angela July 19, 2013
    • @BettaInfo July 20, 2013
      • Angela July 23, 2013
  16. Kris July 26, 2013
    • @BettaInfo July 27, 2013
  17. Angelina July 31, 2013
  18. Alice August 10, 2013
  19. sophie November 12, 2013
    • @BettaInfo November 12, 2013
  20. sophie November 12, 2013
  21. David November 19, 2013
    • @BettaInfo November 20, 2013
  22. Aliah November 26, 2013
    • @BettaInfo December 8, 2013
  23. K February 5, 2014
  24. Cassidy March 8, 2014
  25. olivia May 13, 2014
    • @BettaInfo May 21, 2014
  26. Nicole and Scalene June 4, 2014
  27. kim June 25, 2014
    • Ford+Ice Flake family January 5, 2016
  28. Frankie July 4, 2014
    • @BettaInfo July 4, 2014
      • Frankie July 5, 2014
  29. anita July 7, 2014
  30. Sapna July 27, 2014
  31. Hannah and Patriot August 11, 2014
    • Wayne August 17, 2014
  32. Betta Newbie August 29, 2014
  33. Kim August 30, 2014
  34. LeeAnne September 22, 2014
    • Hayley November 30, 2014
  35. Olaff's mom December 14, 2014
    • @BettaInfo December 30, 2014
  36. shelley January 24, 2015
    • @BettaInfo January 31, 2015
  37. Emily January 26, 2015
  38. Nathan January 31, 2015
    • @BettaInfo February 1, 2015
  39. sia February 24, 2015
  40. sia February 24, 2015
  41. Angelia Holmes April 15, 2015
  42. marcus June 17, 2015
  43. SummerLark July 28, 2015
  44. Jayson August 21, 2015
  45. betta pet August 25, 2015
  46. Hayacarla January 3, 2016
    • @BettaInfo January 11, 2016

Leave a Reply

Subscribe today and receive a
FREE Betta Fish eBook

Betta fish crazy? Yeah? Join our 5000 subscribers and get betta fish fun, updates and our betta fish care eBook sent direct to your inbox for free.