Basically, betta fish are typically put up for sale in cups in pet stores which is fine for a short period. However, they really do require adequate space to swim. Meanwhile, while they would love a vast aquarium, sometimes space is limited, so a smaller tank is perfectly fine. Ordinarily, a general rule of thumb is the bigger, the better (especially if you plan to have multiple fish).

Generally, bettas like to exercise, and larger tanks allow them to do so. Meanwhile, it’s better for their health to get activity. Likewise, a larger fish tank allows for higher water quality. In any case, a betta fish tank should be at least one gallon, but ideally, it would be five gallons.

Betta Fish Tanks

Ordinarily, if you want to make sure your betta fish lives a long, happy life, you need to choose the best tank you can for his home. Accordingly, aquariums come in all shapes and sizes, and you have a lot of options.

Specifically, you want a betta tank that is attractive, easy to care for, and healthy for your fish.

Unfortunately, things get quite convoluted when it comes to the poor betta fish. Particularly, bettas are anabantids, which means they can gulp air above the water if they need to.

Hence, in the wild, this helps them survive for short periods of time in harsh, low-oxygen conditions and muddy, stagnant puddles.

Therefore, because of this ability to tolerate poor living conditions, people mistakenly get the idea that betta prefers tiny little tanks or bowls with no filtration. Even worse, people sometimes stick them in

  • plant vases,
  • bookends, “cubes” and
  • other horrible enclosures.

However, bettas do not belong in tiny little tanks anymore that you or I ought to live in a closet. Thus, just like any other tropical fish, bettas need space to thrive.

Ordinarily, if you choose a larger tank your betta will be healthier. Nonetheless, there are benefits for you, too. Similarly, larger tanks are easier to care for. That is, you’ll spend less time fussing with the tank and performing water changes. Hence, you’ll have a lot more room to decorate, whether that means live plants or artificial décor.

Lastly, choosing the right tank means a happier betta fish and a happier you.

Building a Betta Tank from the Ground Up

Ordinarily, tank kits are very popular for good reason. Specifically, they provide everything you need to assemble an aquarium in one package, minus the fish and the water of course.

In addition, fish tank kits come in sizes from under one gallon, all the way up to 55 gallons. Therefore, they are an easy and economical way to get into the aquarium hobby.

However, if you already know a bit about fish care, or if you are ready to do a little research, there is another way to go about building the perfect Betta fish tank.

Generally, many aquarium owners like to choose their own tank components rather than rely on a kit.

Likewise, you can start out with a basic glass or acrylic tank and a hood, and from there choose your filter, heater and other accessories. Meanwhile, this allows you to build a custom setup, without limitations based around the design of the aquarium kit manufacturer.

Particularly, this is a smart and fun way to create exactly the kind of Betta tank you want.

Setting Up Your Betta Tank

Ordinarily, once you purchase your Betta fish tank, you might be eager to put your new pet into place soon. However, it is critical to ensure that the tank is set up correctly to create the ideal environment for your fish to thrive.

Step 1: Clean Your Tank

Basically, before setting up your betta fish tank, it is essential to clean it with warm water, reducing contaminants in the tank when you fill it.

Step 2: Clean Your Gravel

Specifically, gravel is an integral part of any aquarium. However, frequently, when packaged for pet stores, dust will settle in the gravel. Therefore, it is essential to wash it thoroughly before placing it in your aquarium.

Additionally, you can easily clean gravel using a small hole sieve or colander. Particularly, place the gravel within it and allow the water to flow through it.

Step 3: Add Décor and Plant Life

Ordinarily, it is vital to add plants and décor not only for decoration but to provide spaces for your fish to feel like they are in their natural element.

Meanwhile, excellent additions to your tank include “caves” that your Betta fish can swim through. Also, to use for shelter if they choose to “hide” and tall grass plants that allow your fish to hide within them.

However, you don’t need to fill your tank to the brim with décor and plant life. Thus, when placing your décor, remember that your Betta fish must have access to the surface of the water so that it can breathe.

Other Ways of Setting up Betta Fish Tank

Step 4: Fill Your Betta Tank

Basically, the best way to fill your Betta fish tank is to put tap water into a container and allow it to sit out for 24 hours. Meanwhile, letting the water sit out helps for a couple of reasons:

  • to help reduce the chlorine content in the water and
  • to enable it to come to room temperature.

Ordinarily, tap water usually has chemicals added to make it safe for humans to drink. However, some chemicals may be harmful to your Betta fish.

Therefore, depending on the quality of your municipality’s water, it may be a good idea to use a water conditioner or treatment to ensure that it doesn’t contain any elements that could be harmful to your fish (i.e. chlorine).

Step 5: Check The pH Of Your Betta Tank Water

Basically, betta fish have specific requirements when it comes to the pH of the tank. Therefore, to keep a healthy tank, try to maintain a pH level between 6.5 and 7.5.

Similarly, most municipalities maintain water pH levels between 6.5 and 8.5, based on EPA guidelines.

Step 6: Filter Your Betta Fish Tank Water

Generally, every healthy fish aquarium requires a filter designed for the specific size of that aquarium. Meanwhile, before placing your Betta fish in your tank, it is best to allow water to filter for a day or two and to test the water’s pH levels.

Step 7: Heat Your Betta Tank Water (Optional)

Step 8: Add Your Bettas

Can a Betta fish live in a vase?

Basically, the answer, in short, is no. Generally, it is a common misconception that Bettas don’t require a lot of space. However, while it is true that Bettas in the wild live in shallow waterways, those waterways are very large.  

Additionally, bettas need much more room than a vase can offer. Thus, the smaller space, the quicker the water quality becomes toxic and dangerous to the fish. Likewise, smaller fish environments require so much more care. Generally, bettas love to swim and are active fish. Therefore, the minimum tank size should be 5 gallons but a 10 gallon tank is ideal.

Best Tank Size for Bettas

Generally, five gallons is the best tank size for betta fish. Basically, there are plenty of options out there for smaller tanks and other habitats. However, it is best that you avoid them.

Basically, smaller tanks get dirty way too fast and don’t provide enough room for your fish to swim around. Ordinarily, putting your betta in any tank smaller than five gallons is not a great idea.

Also, you need to do full weekly water changes with a tank under five gallons. However, if you move up to a larger tank with quality filtration you can do partial water changes at less frequent intervals.

Ordinarily, betta fish may not like the bubbles or currently created by the air pump. In fact, you might be better off without it. Again, this is the main reason to avoid small tanks that rely on air pumps for so-called filtration.

Also, do not put any other fish or critter in with your betta fish in such a small tank. However, if you want tank mates for your betta to consider a tank of at least ten gallons.

Specifically, do not rely on the air pump that comes with many small tanks to operate as a real filter. Instead, choose a betta tank with a decent in-tank filter or even hang-on-back filter.

5-Gallon Aquariums for Betta Fish

In like manner, a 5-gallon tank is perfect for your betta fish. Basically, it is small enough for a desktop or tabletop. Nevertheless, it is large enough to provide an adequate swimming room for a betta.

Meanwhile, there are some good reasons why bigger is better. Specifically, it all comes down to water quality, and space. However, not just space for your betta to swim, although that is important too, but space to provide all the needed elements for your betta fish to thrive.

Generally, betta fish need heat and filtration just like any other tropical fish. Thus, this is very difficult to accomplish in a tank under five gallons. However, there are nano filters and heaters available for tanks as small as 5-gallons, and these are smart addition to your setup.

Therefore, by making sure you meet these needs your fish is going to be

  • more resistant to disease,
  • enjoy better quality of life and
  • probably even live longer.

Additionally, the volume of water itself plays a role in the overall living conditions in your betta tank. Basically, all fish tanks accumulate pollution as time passes.

Therefore, if you think of a stream or lake, you can imagine how these bodies of water have natural processes. Particularly, those that ensure waste is properly eliminated and water conditions are adequate for life to thrive.

Likewise, in a home aquarium, you must intervene on behalf of nature and make sure those processes are happening. Specifically, this means cleaning your tank and performing water changes in order to dilute waste. In any case, the larger the tank, the easier it goes.

How Big Should a Betta Fish Tank be?

Generally, the recommended minimum tank size for Betta Fish should be at least 2.5 gallons or larger. However, a 5 gallon is likely the best size tank for Betta Fish.


Basically, the smaller the tank the more difficult it becomes to maintain a clean environment free of ammonia and toxins.

Also, small tank results in less room for error as toxins can build up much faster than a larger aquarium. Likewise, a small aquarium requires more frequent water changes and tank cycling.

Basically, the betta fish natural environment is tropical and they do best in aquariums that mimic this environment.

Do Bettas like big or small tanks?

Generally, betta fish like to swim and the larger the tank the better. Hence, the smallest tank size for Betta Fish would be 2.5 gallons.

How Often should you Clean the Tank?

Generally, this depends on the size of the tank and whether you have a filter or not. Specifically, you should clean tanks below 2.5 gallons with no filter at least three to four times a week. Also, you should remove 80-100% of the water.

However, if you have a filter in the tank, you should clean it once a week. Also, remove 25-30% of the water and vacuum the gravel. Meanwhile, once a month you should clean the filter using the aquarium water.

Particularly, if you use tap water you will kill all the beneficial bacteria that spring up in your filter. Also, tank maintenance varies from tank to tank based on how many fish are in a tank and whether there are live plants. However, as a general rule water changes should be done every week

10-Gallon Betta Tanks

Basically, a 10-gallon tank is the ultimate betta fish setup, and the best choice if you have the space. Specifically, in a tank this big you’ll have plenty of room to decorate betta’s home, and he’ll have enough area to swim.

Particularly, a 10-gallon tank is a standard size in the aquarium industry. Therefore, you’ll have many more choices when it comes to accessories. However, you can always build a unique betta tank that not only gives your fish everything he needs, but looks amazing.

Specifically, a 10-gallon tank is able to establish itself as a small ecosystem. That is healthy bacteria colonies in the filter and substrate that will help break down waste.

However, in a home aquarium, you need to assist nature in managing waste. Meanwhile, a larger tank gives you the space to make sure you accomplish this.

Therefore, this means a healthier tank, healthier Betta, and a lot less work for you. Also, instead of weekly cleanings, you can learn to do easy water changes once or twice per month.

Basically, this is less stress on the betta, since you won’t have to remove him from the tank every seven days. Likewise, it means less stress on you and a more enjoyable fish-keeping experience.

However, don’t think a single betta needs to live in a tiny tank! Ordinarily, a well-planted or decorated 10-gallon tank with a single Betta in it looks amazing!

Can I put a betta fish in a 10-gallon tank?

Of course, you can! In fact, this is a great size for your betta fish as it will allow you to start to incorporate a few tank mates for your Betta fish.

How to Choose the Right Betta Tank Type

Basically, now that you understand a little more about Betta fish, it’s time to select a tank that is a good fit for you and your lifestyle. Likewise, you should take into consideration your fish’s needs.

Meanwhile, there are a lot of things to look for, including:

  • The tank size
  • How much “decoration” to place in the betta tank
  • Water testing, filtration and also heating
  • Other equipment to include in the betta tank

How Often Does a Betta Tank need to be Cleaned?

Ordinarily, how often you need to clean your Betta’s tank depends on the tank size. Hence, smaller tanks accumulate toxic levels of waste more quickly and need much more frequent cleanings and water changes.

Also, you may have to change out 30-50% of the water every few days and clean the tank once or twice a week.

Particularly, larger tanks with filters need less frequent water changes and even fewer cleanings. Meanwhile, it’s a good idea to change out 10-15% of the water every week or two. Also, your tank can go for several weeks without a full cleaning.

Basically, the thought of fully cleaning your Betta’s tank may seem intimidating at first. However, it’s really quite simple. Thus, here are the supplies you’ll need:

  • Freshwater
  • Containers for fish, water, and gravel/decorations
  • Soft brush or sponge
  • Sink

How to Change a Betta Fish Tank Water

Prepare Your Water Ahead of Time

Basically, when you clean your Betta tank, you’ll want to perform some sort of water change. Thus, whether you’re changing 10%, 20% or 50%, you should have your water already prepared before you start the cleaning process.

Also, like all fish, Bettas can’t survive in unconditioned tap water. Therefore, if you’re using tap water, put the amount that you need in some sort of container. In addition, use a water conditioner to neutralize chlorine and other chemicals harmful to your fish.

Some Tools You Will Need

  • Gravel Vacuum
  • Fish Net
  • Algae Pad
  • Waste Remover
  • API Aquarium Starter Pack

Remove Betta from Tank

Ordinarily, before cleaning, you’ll want to remove your Betta fish from the tank and put him somewhere calm and safe.

Therefore, fill a bowl or cup with tank water, and use a small fishnet or sterile container to gently scoop your fish out of his tank. Likewise, put him in the tank water you’ve set aside and he’ll have a place to swim around while you clean his living space.

However, make sure you place a cover on top of this container. Betta fish are great jumpers.

Remove Decorations

Next, start taking all the decorations, accessories, plants and hiding places out of the betta tank. Meanwhile, taking these out will make it easier to clean the rest of the tank. Also, you will have to clean many of these items.

Remove Tank Water to Save

Particularly, use a cup or bowl, scoop out a portion of the tank water and set it aside. Specifically, if you’re doing a 50% water change, set aside half the water in the tank. However, you’ll be adding this back in when you’re done the cleaning.

Other ways of Changing Water in Betta Tank

Pour out Remaining Water

Once you scoop out the water you’re going to save, you can dump the rest of it. Therefore, slowly pour the water out, making sure that your gravel doesn’t fall out.

Finally, pour your gravel into the bowl holding your betta fish tank decorations.

Clean Decorations

Specifically, run warm water over the decorations and accessories from your tank. Thus, use a soft scrubber or brush to scrub off any slime and dirt stuck to the surface.

However, do not use soap on the decorations or anything else in your tank. Ordinarily, even if you rinse it off well, soap residue can still remain and harm your fish.

Clean Gravel

Particularly, a lot of the waste and debris in your Betta tank accumulates in the gravel. Hence, this can be the dirtiest part of your tank.

Also, run warm water over the gravel while gradually rubbing your hands through it to loosen slime and dirt.

Clean and Scrub Tank

Put Gravel and Decorations Back in Tank

Basically, now that you are through with your tank cleaning, gravel, and decorations, you’re ready to put everything back together.

First, pour the gravel back right into the bottom of the betta tank. Also, arrange it so that it’s evenly spread out.

Next, put in your decorations and accessories and arrange them how you want it to be.

Finally, reattach any 

  • heaters,
  • filters,
  • thermometers and
  • anything else that you took away before cleaning.

Refill Tank with Old and New Water
Put Your Betta Fish Back In

Fantastic Betta Tank Mates For a 10 Gallon Tank

White Cloud Minnows

Care Level: Easy
Size: 1-2 Inches
Temperate Requirements: 60-72 °F
PH Range: 6.0-7.0

Particularly, native to Chinese mountain streams. The White Cloud Mountain Minnow is an ideal fish compatible with betta fish. Meanwhile, this is a peaceful and easy-to-care-for fish that won’t nip at the fins of your betta fish.

Neon Tetra

Care Level: Easy
Size: 1.5 Inches
Temperate Requirements: 68-77 °F
PH Range: 6.0-7.5

Ordinarily, Neon tetras are small freshwater fish that get along well with Bettas. Likewise, they will add color and activity to your betta fish tank and they are great for beginners.

Ember Tetra

Care Level: Easy
Size: 1 Inch
Temperate Requirements: 75-82 °F
PH Range: 5.5-7.0

Specifically, like the other fish on this list, the Ember Tetra is generally peaceful and submissive. However, unlike bright Neon Tetras, Ember Tetras have a dull color that won’t attract a Betta’s attention.

Particularly, these qualities make this fish another great tank mate for your male Betta fish. That is, because they won’t annoy or seem threatening to your Betta fish.

Harlequin Rasbora

Care Level: Easy
Size: 1.5 Inches
Temperate Requirements: 73-82 °F
PH Range: 6.0-7.0

Ordinarily, this may be the ultimate male Betta fish tank mates because they naturally coexist with Bettas in the wild without a problem.

In addition, Rasboras are small and not aggressive or nip at fins. Therefore, chances are low that your Betta will see them as threatening.

Celestial Pearl Danio [Galaxy Rasbora]

Care Level: Easy
Size: 2 Inches
Temperate Requirements: 67-72 °F
PH Range: 6.0-7.5

Basically, the Celestial Pearl Danio is a relatively, easy-to-care-for fish. Also, it does best in a well-planted aquarium of at least 10 gallons.

Other Fantastic Betta Tank Mates For a 10 Gallon Tank

Silver Tip Tetra

Care Level: Easy
Size: 2 Inches
Temperate Requirements: 64-82 °F
PH Range: 5.8-8.5

Particularly, this is a quick sleek tetra with shimmering white/silver fin tips. Meanwhile, it will do best in groups of 6 in a community tank of small peaceful fish.

Pygmy Cory

Care Level: Easy
Size: 1 Inch
Temperate Requirements: 72-79 °F
PH Range: 6.4-7.4

Generally, the Pygmy Corydoras is the smallest species of Corydoras Catfish. Thus, it actually only grows to about 1 inch in length.

Meanwhile, Corydoras are bottom feeders so they generally won’t interfere with your Betta fish.

Albino Cory

Care Level: Easy
Size: 1.5 Inches
Temperate Requirements: 74-80 °F
PH Range: 7.0-8.0

Cory Catfish (General)

Care Level: Easy
Size: 1.5 Inches
Temperate Requirements: 72-80 °F
PH Range: 7.0-8.0

Panda Cory

Care Level: Easy
Size: 1.5 Inches
Temperate Requirements: 72-80 °F
PH Range: 7.0-8.0

Ghost Shrimp

Care Level: Easy
Size: 1.5 Inches
Temperate Requirements: 72-80 °F
PH Range: 7.0-8.0

Generally, these are almost translucent and are very pale in color, which means they are unlikely to attract the attention of your Betta fish.

Also, they’re small and will stay out of the way. Therefore, your Betta fish will most likely leave them alone.

Nerite Snail

Care Level: Easy
Size: 0.5-1 Inches
Temperate Requirements: 72-80 °F
PH Range: 7.5-8.0

African Dwarf Frog

Generally, African Dwarf Frogs are excellent companions for your male Betta fish. Particularly, because there’s no way your fish will mistake them for another male Betta so it will have little reason to attack.

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