How Long Do Betta Fish Live

How Long Do Betta Fish Live
Written by Daniel Paul

The Siamese fighting fish is known as Betta fish, and it belongs to the number of gourami family. It has a 3-5 year lifespan in captivity, which reduces 6-12 months for being kept as a pet. If given the perfect living conditions, Bettas can live up to 4 years in a domestic environment.

The average lifetime of Betta fish as a pet is about 4-5 years, and it doesn’t mean that your beta will be able to live a long life. While making a purchase, keep the real age of Betta into your mind, it must have spent some time already there in the shop. Males can have their vibrant colors and fins at a mature phase why females generally required a six-month lifespan to get ready for sale.

Look For Healthy Betta

To enjoy long and healthy with your pet prefers to go to a reputable pet shop. If you see pale skin,  ragged fins, and bulging eyes, or a clear sign of some underlying health condition, look for all possible signs of any disease and injury, the active beta will respond to you well from the other side of the glass tank.

Water Temperature And Tank

Small container or vase is not suitable to keep betta fish; it is unhealthy in many ways. Water at room temperature is probably not ideal for Betta fish’s living conditions, and it requires around 75-80 degree temperatures to maintain in the aquarium for perfect health conditions. Betta must have access to surface air to get fresh air for breathing. Cleanliness of water is crucial to provide Betta with filtrated water in the aquarium. They can suffer from fin rot with increased acidity in water, which can ultimately lead to severe health conditions

Fighting Habit

This genre of fish is prone to fighting that’s why famous as Siamese Fighting Fish, the possible injuries due to fighting reduces the life span of Bettas. Aquarium with compartments can keep the male Betta separate, but the studies showed that this still feels the depression when they look at the other mail in the same aquarium. It affects their mental health negatively, for the best option is to select one tank for a single Betta if possible.

How Long Do Betta Fish Live In The Wild

The Siamese fighting fish belongs to a native of Asia, around 1200 A.D wild Bettas found in Thai household captivities. Wild Betta is today among the most vulnerable threatened species; in the past, they used for competitive fighting for a long time. The wild beta is mostly found in natural habitats of Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam.


Wild Betta looks quite different from that one Betta available in pet stores, in dark brown color with dorsal stripes. This color proves helpful to deceive predators; still, they have a higher threat of killing due to their small size.

Power Struggle

Wild Betta lives in shallow water areas, mostly in streams, ponds, and rice paddies.   More than two males nearby will lead to a fight for dominance. They have an average lifespan of 3 to 5 years, but the power struggle fighting mostly leaves them with severe injuries.

It is a compelling reason for wild Betta fish to have a shorter lifespan; the injuries during the fight can ultimately lead them to death mostly during the third or fourth years of their lives. It is interesting that at the domestic level, we can make efforts to prevent Bettas from fighting, but it can’t replace it as the alternative of natural habitat.

Endanger Species

Universal reports indicated a rapid increase in pollution that leads to the loss of habitat for endangered species.  World beater is also suffering from environmental deterioration, especially the forming and development in Central Thailand has remarkably reduced the natural habitats for wild Betta.

How Long Does Male Betta Fish Live

Bettas very interesting and expressive animal, specifically made winters are famous for their aggressiveness towards other male members. It is vital to keep the male Betta in a separate tank. 


It is interesting to know that how Betta how the value of this kind of dominating behavior. They are mostly found in Thailand,  Brazil, and Cambodia, for shifting they are haphazardly put into the small containers. They are not prone to live in a suppressed environment, along with increasing toxin levels. This cruel behavior develops a strange sense of anxiety into Bettas, and as far as they feel free, they start fighting out in rage.

Wild Behavior

Bettas fights are still enjoyed in Thailand as it is a source of pleasure for people to see small creatures fighting for power. In wildlife, if two males compete, they will do it for a couple of minutes and then move aside to find another territory. If they fight in the tank it will continue till death of one member. 

It is better to use a tank with a compartment to keep male members separate either way or to keep one male with 2 or 3 females. Male Betta will not have fights with females, and it will be a peaceful situation until everyone has sufficient place to move and enjoy.

How Long Do Female Betta Fish Live

Queen of Aquarium

Female Betta is undoubtfully the queen of the aquarium. This tropical beauty has an aggressive nature. You should know how to handle her with loving care not to feel ignored. She recognized her owner and liked to socialize in her own space.

Social Life

People like to keep female Bettas as they can create a peaceful environment with less drama. While purchasing females will require some effort on your part, mostly you will find males. Remember that females are less violent but still, they will also fight, although it didn’t get dangerous as among males.


They are in the habit of establishing their territory and will not harm others until trespassers try to interrupt. It likes to occupy middle and upper levels in the tanks. So it can be elaborated that females can have a better life expectancy due to less violent behavior. Only if they saved themselves from unnecessary drama and kept under observation form stop fighting they can enjoy 4-5 years of life span.

How Long Do Betta Fish Live Without Food

Survival Days

If you have a Betta at home and plan to go for a trip for a few days, can your fish survive alone? Bettas are amazing animals to survive for a maximum of 14days without food, so they have a higher life expectancy than other fish that need daily feeding. After passing 3-4 days, their starvation period will start. A better idea is not to leave fish alone at home, leave him with some relative or neighbors place, so if you are going to extend your trip, you will not feel worried about your Betta feed.  

Betta's Are Carnivorous

Bettas are picky eaters they prefer to eat from the surface of the water, but it is a myth that they can rely on plants, Betta will never like to eat plant roots. These animals are carnivores, and they need a balanced proportion of protein in their diet.

Bettas are feed on pallets mostly, pallets proves useful for them as they are full of proteins. You may also research to find nutritionist food options for your Betta to have a longer life span.  

Survival Without Food

If you are going on vacation for more than four days, you will have to change the water, about 50-100%, before the day you decided to leave. Here it depends on the type of the tank as well; if it can hold around 2 gallons of water, relieved set 80%  water change before leaving home.  Every passing day the toxic level of water will get higher due to the natural expel of ammonia.  The extra rotten food in the water and the waste of fish will go to increase the acidic level of water.  This living condition can prove fatal to the fish if it persists for a few more days.

Bettas can survive for many days without food, but still, it depends on other factors too. A fish with ideal health conditions such as clean and warm water will have a higher life expectancy to survive for two weeks. No doubt that Betta belongs to the rare species of animals that can have a relatively longer survival rate. 

How Long Do Betta Fish Live In A 1-Gallon Tank

Betta fish can live in a 1-gallon tank, but the life expectancy will not be more than one year. Attend with 1-gallon capacity is not a suitable habitat for Betta fish. Beta has a complex nature, so they don’t feel comfortable in less space; they need ample space and clean water to stay healthy. 

If you are keeping your beta in a 1-gallon bowl, it requires a hundred percent chance of water once a week. If you do not repeat the process weekly, it will increase the toxins level due to the waste of fish. As far as the fact is kept in poisonous water, it will start suffering from suffocation and cotton fins

How Long Do Betta Fish Live In A Bowl

If you are keeping a Betta fish in the bowl with perfect conditions, you can expect it to live around 4 to 5 years. Don’t Ignore the fact that at the time of purchase, they might be already 1 to 2 years old. The survival is bowl is a very rare so it could be around few months of time with hardest efforts.

Bowl In Not For Bettas

It is not a good practice to keep Betta fish in bowls; they need a larger space to move freely. All the environment and size of the ground can prevent Betta fish from regular physical activity, and that low water in the bowl can quickly raise the toxins’ level to danger the life of the pet.

 A ceramic bowl with a larger water capacity can be suitable for Betta fish; still, it requires regular cleaning and water change in alternate days. 

Bettas are Explorers

Bettas are the real explorer, and it is observed that they like to swim around the tank and see different things in their environment. If you are keeping your beta in ideal temperature with the best living conditions, you probably can decorate the bowl with Venice Mall accessories. They are compassionate and emotional; that’s why they need proper housing embellished with decorations and vibrant colors.

 A bowl is not advisable to keep Betta fish for a more extended period; you may have to choose a gallon or a plastic tank to keep the animal in proper space.  

Tips To Increase Your Betta's Lifespan

  • When you buy Betta, make sure it is not suffering from any hidden health condition if you have some experience with purchasing Betta, that great, if not, you can take help from a vet.

Buy the pet from a reputable store to avoid any nasty surprise in the future. There is a possibility that fish may not be in ideal health conditions due to negligence about diet or water impurification.    

Look for these alarming signs as an indicator for an underlying health issues

  1. Pale color
  2. Blogging yes
  3. torn fins
  4. Scratches or Injuries     
  • When you are going to bring Betta at home, make prior arrangements for housing it comfortably. A tank with 5-gallon capacity is suitable to keep 4-5 Bettas, don’t forget to decide male territory by placing separator. As male will fight back with other males that will cause injuries and restlessness among all members.
  • It is a myth that wild Bettas live in paddies, so it will be easy for them to tolerate cold and dirty water. Thailand’s climate is temperate that warms water naturally while at home you have to arrange a heater to maintain the temperature within 75-80 degrees.
  • You must arrange filter, Betta will soon start deteriorating all the beauty and charm if kept in filthy water. The filter will do the job to clean water and convert ammonia into something less harmful Even with the filter, and you must have to change all water to remove nitrates from the tank.  
  • Bettas need a sufficient quantity of protein in their food to look and feel good. Pallets are quite suitable to feed Bettas. Another way is to prepare something interesting for them. You can make food by mixing some bloodworms and shrimps to add taste in it. An in wildlife they love to eat small insects from their natural habitats.
  • Placing some plants in the aquarium will add more charm to the environment; besides, it will increase the water’s oxygen level. They will not the plant, just nibbling is their habit, it will soothe their instinct to keep near plants

Plant enriched environment will stimulate their scenes towards peace; they will feel relaxed and serene. A variety of water plants are available in the market as Anarchies, Java moss, and Java fern to decorate inside the tank. It will provide them with a space for hiding as well in the situation of distress during the fight.

Key Take-Aways

All the above discussion is about Bettas’s social life and living conditions, and it is not realistic to decide all the facts for calculating life expectancy in a single figure. Well, it all depends on providing facilities that can better determine the life span. Still, here is an overview of the average figures about Betta’s life duration.

  • betta fish as a pet: average 4-5 years
  • betta fish live in the wild: average 2 years
  • male betta fish: average 2-3 years
  • female betta fish: average 3-4 years
  • betta fish without food: maximum 14days
  • betta fish in a 1-gallon tank: 6-12 months
  • betta fish in a bowl: few months hardly
  • Tips to increase your Betta’s lifespan

To keep Betta as a healthy pet and enjoy more significant life spam, the owner must take care of all these things.

  • Health: check at time of purchase
  • Tank: appropriate capacity
  • Temperature: 75-80degrees
  • Water: filter and changing
  • Diet: Proteins and homemade
  • Plants: to replicate the natural habitat

If these all conditions satisfied fully, you may be able to have a great time with fish. It will be amusing to keep enjoying the mesmerizing beauty of this adorable creature.