Purple Betta

Purple Betta: A Unique Fish for a Unique Aquarium

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If your favorite color is purple, and you love the Siamese fighting fish, then you’re in luck! You may know that bettas come in various colors, but did you know there was such a thing as a purple betta?!

To make them an even better betta (if you’ll pardon the pun), the purple variant of this species, although rare in color, is one of the most common types of betta fish. The Betta splenden is a super simple breed to care for. So even if you’re a beginner with a basic understanding of betta care, you can raise this fish just fine.

You don’t need to compromise on dull colors and an aquarium that doesn’t match your vibe just because it’s your first fish!

Purple Betta Info 
Common NamesSiamese Fighting Fish, Betta, Purple fighting fish
Scientific NameBetta Splenden
Minimum tank size5 - 10 Gallons
Beginner-FriendlyYes
BreedingDifficult
Lifespan2 - 4 Years
DietCarnivore
AggressiveYes
Water Temperature24°C - 26.5°C (75-80 deg F)
pH Level6.0 - 8.0 pH
Water Hardness5 - 25 dGH

Origins

Purple betta fish are usually a color variant of the common species, the Betta splenden (the type we typically picture when someone says the words “betta fish”).

This fish species originates from Thailand but can also be found in nature’s waters in other Asian countries, such as Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, and Vietnam. The purple fighting fish, however, is located in none of these places.

Very occasionally in nature, you will come across a betta fish that perhaps looks a little purple. But catch it in the right light, and you’ll see it’s a red or blue betta, with a slight tint to its scales due to breeding with a mate of another color. This is a rare occurrence, as betta  genetics in nature are usually relatively pure.

Bettas with a pure purple coloration, with no other tint to their scales, are extremely rare.

This is because the pure purple fighting fish result from selective breeding by people in the hobby who hope to produce more aesthetically pleasing fish. Not only do they have to be bred in captivity, but breeding this color is extremely difficult.

It has been found that male royal blue bettas and blue-and-red female bettas have occasionally been able to produce a pure purple baby when mating. Other purple fighting fish have been bred by mixing a pink male and a red female.

Sadly though, if you think this information will help you to breed a rare fish and make a fortune, you’d be mistaken. After all, if it were that easy, they would no longer be rare!

Breeding either of these couples does not guarantee a pure purple offspring, which is why finding one in the first place can be challenging!

Natural Habitat

Since the purple fighting fish can only be produced through selective breeding, fish with this purple coloration technically don’t have a natural habitat, as they can not be found in nature’s waters.

The purple betta is usually a color variant of the Betta splenden, frequently found in the shallow freshwaters of Southeast Asia, such as rice paddies, ponds, and slow-moving streams.

Due to the warm climate in their native Southeast Asian countries, bettas enjoy living in warmer waters and require a temperature of 24°C – 26.5°C (75-80 deg F) to stay happy and healthy.

The rice paddies, ponds, and streams in which they live also have a lot of debris and plants, such as Java moss and fallen twigs, which make an excellent environment for these fish to hide from one another (they are territorial, after all!) It also gives them plenty of things to do and explore.

Replicating this habitat in a home aquarium will ensure your purple fighting fish will thrive!

Appearance

Many purple bettas can appear in different colors under different lighting, despite appearing purple at first glance.

If you think you’ve found a purple betta, put it under a tank light, which might appear to have a blueish tint. This color fish is known as the blue-purple betta, though it may appear to have a solid purple body when observed in natural lighting.

However, a “true purple” betta doesn’t change color under a lamp. These fish look purple in any lighting you put them in – an extremely rare trait.

With so many different species of betta existing, it is possible that the purple betta’s appearance can also vary due to their breed. However, with the purple coloration being as rare as it is, the purple betta is usually a color variant of the splenden – the most common betta type.

This article will discuss the appropriate fish care needed for the purple betta as though it is a purple splenden (which it most likely is!). But if you think your new purple betta fish may be of another breed, it is imperative to do your research.

Different types of betta fish have additional care requirements, so to ensure your pet is getting everything he needs, you’ll want to make sure you know exactly what type he is and, secondly, learn how to care for him well.

That being said, even as a splenden (the most common betta breed), this purple fish is scarce, so it would be almost impossible to find a true purple of another species!

As with any splenden, tail types can also vary in the purple betta, ranging from the half-moon to the crowntail, which can alter their appearance. But no matter what their tail type is, there’s only one thing to say about this fish – They’re floaty, flashy, and very, very purple!

Varieties of Purple Betta

As with all betta, there are some subspecies you should be aware of, and these include the purple popsicle, purple salamander, and purple gas.

However, these subspecies are not all true-purple, as some have a blue tint to their scales, making them much more common than any pure purple subspecies.

They can also be found in a variety of different shades of purple and sometimes are even noted to be iridescent! Now, I’ve never seen one personally, but can you imagine how beautiful that must look! Like a little sparkly princess-mermaid-unicorn fish!

As I mentioned, the purple betta can also be found with various tail types, making each unique but equally gorgeous!

What Is the Rarest Betta Color?

As we have already discussed, the true-purple betta is a rare fish. Purple is one of, if not the rarest, betta color! But you may wonder, what other ultra-rare colors of betta are there? And how does the purple one compare?

Albino betta are one of the rarest colors. Unlike regular white betta, the albino lacks any pigment and has slightly pink tink to their skin and eyes. These fish cannot be bred, nor can they be achieved through selective breeding, so finding an albino betta can be a very challenging task!

A green betta is another rare color. Solid green betta fish don’t exist, so any betta you may find that is classed as “green” will appear turquoise!

Yellow and solid orange betta are another two scarce color variants. However, many fish can be found in similar colors, such as tangerine, which is quite common!

How Much Does a Purple Betta Fish Cost?

Since the purple betta is so rare, it’s no surprise they can be costly to purchase, so if you’re looking for one, be prepared to splash some cash!

Blue-purple betta can be found in the United States for around $20. This is a little more expensive than the most common colors or the bettas you can find in a pet store as they’re slightly less common, which is excellent as it means you don’t have to break the bank if you’re looking for something a little different.

A true-purple betta, however, is much more expensive. They’re so rare that it can be difficult even to find one for sale. If you’re desperate to get hold of one, though, be prepared for it to cost you a few hundred dollars.

Yep, that’s right—a few hundred.

Despite being a somewhat simple fish to care for (even for beginner betta owners), I can only recommend the purple betta for experienced betta owners purely because of their price point.

They’re costly, and you’ll want to be sure they’ll be able to live a long and healthy life to ensure you get your money’s worth!

Where To Find Purple Betta Fish?

As I’ve just explained, true-purple betta can be extremely difficult to find.

You’ll want to look for one from a reputable breeder, ensuring that if you’re gearing up to spend a few hundred dollars on this fish, you’re shopping cautiously!

Remember that websites can be deceiving. If you’re shopping for your fish online, you’ll want to ensure you’re getting what you’re paying for.

If possible, try to visit the fish before you commit to purchasing it. This sometimes can be difficult, but if you’re able to see the fish in person (and under a light at that!), you’ll be able to ensure that if you’re paying hundreds for a true-purple betta, and you’re not receiving a twenty-dollar blue-purple instead.

Being as rare as they are, it’s worth noting that pet stores won’t sell purple betta, so if you’re hoping to get one, you’ll have to do plenty of research to find a good breeder.

How Long Do Purple Betta Fish Live?

Unlike albino betta fish, the purple betta’s health is not affected by their color, as their unique look is achieved through selective breeding rather than being a mutation.

Therefore, as with any betta, you should expect your beautiful purple friend to live for around 2 to 4 years, given the correct care.

Care Tips (Grouping & Housemates, Breeding, Diet)

Purple Betta

Grouping

If you’re hoping to include a purple betta as part of a tropical fish community tank, the first and most important thing to ensure is that you have a large enough fish tank. This should be a minimum of 15 gallons for more than one fish, but as always, the bigger, the better!

Females can be paired with fellow female bettas. However, males must be housed alone as they’re pretty aggressive fish. So if you’re thinking of housing a true-purple with other bettas, this can become quite a difficult feat.

They’re hard enough to find anyways – narrow that down to a search for just a female, and you’ll have quite a task on your hands!

Due to their stunning and unique color, these fish can look just as eye-catching and beautiful when housed alone. Alternatively, accommodating a female with a couple of other females of varying colors, such as yellow or pink, can look great.

Suppose you’re hoping to create a community tank with various other fish. In that case, bettas can comfortably be housed with brine shrimp, snails, guppies with short tails (as males may otherwise mistake them for their kind, which can lead to fighting), clown pleco, khuli loach, and corydoras catfish.

These other fish may have different needs than your betta, so be sure to research housing and dietary requirements for each type of fish you intend to put in your aquarium before you buy them.

This way, you can be confident that the setup is appropriate for all inhabitants of your beautiful fish tank to live a happy and healthy life!

Breeding

Breeding is a good venture for anyone who has spent a lot of time struggling to find a true-purple betta fish on the market. However, it must be said that this can be highly challenging.

A royal blue male mixed with a blue-and-red female or a pink male combined with a red female are both good pairings to try breeding in hopes of achieving a purple baby.

This process, however, can be very challenging. If you have a lot of patience and are up to what could be an impossible task, you could certainly give it a go!

Bettas require quite a lot of care and attention to breed, and this in and of itself can be a challenging process, so despite how tempted you might be, this probably isn’t the best challenge for a first-time fish breeder.

However, if you have experience in breeding other fish types, or even if you’re already well versed in betta breeding, this could be a fun and exciting project to work on.

Whatever you do, don’t try to approach this as a profitable endeavor. True-purple bettas are extremely rare – they’re not easy to breed!

Sometimes you won’t be lucky enough for the chosen couples to produce purple offspring. They may even breed their entire lives without having one, but this is to be expected. It can take years to get a true purple if you ever do.

Diet

The Betta splenden (no matter the color!) can enjoy live, frozen, freeze-dried food and formed fish foods, such as pellets and essential fish flakes. You can give your fish just one type of food, or they can have a variety of all five.

Bettas generally are not picky eaters, so it doesn’t matter what food type you choose to give them, just so long as you ensure they’re getting all the nutrition they need.

They’re also a predatory species, so while ensuring a high protein content is crucial, giving them the right live and frozen food is too. These fish enjoy being able to feed on insects and small shrimp.

Suppose your purple betta is part of a community tank housed with omnivorous fish. In that case, you may want to consider buying different food types for your pets, as the carnivorous betta requires more protein in their diet than their omnivorous friends.

Bettas can go a couple of days without eating, but don’t make a habit of this. If you’re not around regularly, investing in an automatic fish feeder may be in your best interest.

A good feeding routine is to feed your betta once or twice a day with half-portion sizes. This regular eating helps aid digestion and prevents constipation.

Tank Set Up (Decor, Friends, Water)

Tank size

If you’re unfamiliar with betta care, you may have seen betta promoted as the fish that can live in small spaces – a tiny tank or even a fish bowl.

While the Betta is a hardy fish and can survive in these conditions, it will end up being very miserable, and it may also get sick easily if kept in too small of a tank.

To avoid this, you’ll want to get a large tank. As I always like to say, the bigger, the better!

This provides your fish with plenty of space to swim around, explore, hide and play and allows room to house friends if you intend to keep your pet fish as part of a community tank.

If a betta doesn’t have enough space in their tank, it can stunt their growth and make them sick, and if there’s not enough space for all their tank mates, this can lead to increased levels of aggression due to their territorial nature.

When living alone, a betta needs a minimum of 5 gallons to live happily and a minimum of 10 to thrive.

Suppose you’re hoping to house your betta as part of a community. In that case, 15 gallons is the recommended minimum, depending on how many fish you intend to accommodate, possibly even bigger than this, to prevent overcrowding and ammonia build-up.

Decor

If housing your purple betta alone, the decor is crucial in ensuring your aquarium looks good.

Want your tank to have a natural look? Driftwood, stones, and plants (both fake and real) can look lovely.

Does your purple betta have an obsession with princesses? Or perhaps vampires? Various ornaments and toys on the market can help jazz up an aquarium with a colorful or exciting theme.

When choosing plants for your fish to hide in, fake ones can work just as well as real ones, but these must be selected carefully. Some artificial plants are cheaply made and can have sharp edges, hurting your fish or cutting their fins.

If you’re looking for fake plants due to their low-maintenance nature, ones made of fabric or silk work much better than plastic ones.

If you’re OK with a little extra upkeep for the benefit of your fish and your plants, you may want to opt for live ones. Plants such as Java moss or Marimo moss balls are good choices for betta fish – It gives them something to play with too!

Live plants also give your aquarium a natural look and feel and have the added benefit of helping to oxygenate the water. What’s not to love about them?!

No matter your choice of decorations, be sure to include enough to provide your betta with ample space to play, hide and explore!

Water

The water in your tank should be at a pH of 6.5-8.0 to avoid the build-up of ammonia, which can poison your fish. The pH of your tank should also be checked regularly, as it can be very harmful if this level gets too high or falls too low for your fish.

To help reduce ammonia levels in the water, filter cartridges should be replaced monthly, and the tank should be given a deep clean twice a year. During this cleaning, the tank, substrate, and decorations should all be washed thoroughly to remove bacteria and algae.

Partial water changes should be done to keep the tank fresh. Ideally, you should replace 15% to 20% of the tank’s water weekly.

These partial water changes are essential to prevent your fish from getting sick. Over time, poop, dirt, and bacteria can build up and lead to various illnesses in your fish. Partial water changes should be done as changing the water can shock your betta.

One essential item for your tank’s water parameters is a tank heater! A heater will help to ensure the water is kept at a temperature of 24°C – 26.5°C (75-80 deg F) – the ideal temperature for a betta. This is an essential addition to the tank, as betta fish, native to the naturally warm freshwaters in Southeast Asia, can become sick if the water temperature is too cold.

Final Thoughts

Although the purple betta has the exact care requirements as any other Betta splenden of any different color, they’re truly unique. This beautiful fish with such a vibrant color, as rare as it is, makes them stand out in any home aquarium!

Due to them being so rare, they can be challenging to come across, so to those of you who have read this article and decided you needed one – good luck in your search!

And for any of you who may be patient enough to take on the challenge of breeding one of your own – even more luck!

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