If you’d like to keep bettas, you’re in luck-there are a massive variety of betta breeds to choose from. These breeds can be distinguished via many different ways, from colors to fin combinations.
The sheer variety of breeds available is all the more staggering and fascinating considering that in the wild, bettas are nowhere near as attractive or colorful. Wild-caught bettas are only available in plain, matte olive and green colors, the better to hide from predators. If they were brightly colored, they would stand out like sore thumbs even in the murky, vegetation-filled waters many of them hail from. Fortunately for us aquarists, tank-bred bettas are nothing if not spectacular-and they’re only too happy to put on a show for their owners.
First of all, color-wise, practically the entire range of the spectrum is covered by tank-bred fighting fish. Solid-colored fish, very similar to wild fish colors, are readily available, from olive and green to dark blue and red, even brown and black, and even colors like turquoise or cream. Colored bettas are uniformly colored all throughout; no breaks exist. Both metallic and matte versions of solid-colored bettas exist.
Next, of course, are the multi-colored betta variants. There are bi-colored bettas, whose fins are in one particular color and whose bodies are another-and one of the most spectacular of all these bettas is the renowned “butterfly betta, whose fins are one color but whose edges are transparent, and whose bodies are another color. Then there are tricolored bettas, such as speckled bettas, piebald bettas (whose bodies are marbled) and so on.
And then there are the betta varieties that are distinguished from one another thanks to their fins and tails. Rather common is the veil tail, whose tail is long and flowing and droops when the fish is still. Then there are the halfmoon and delta-tail bettas whose fins are large and full and whose tails are D shaped. One of the most spectacular is the crown tail, whose tail is both long and full and features ray extensions. Lastly there are the heart and fuse tail bettas and other varieties that feature multiple tails-bettas that feature more than one tail.
When it comes to the betta world, variety, it seems, is more the rule than the exception!