A week ago on June 18th, I was ready to seek out four female bettas for my betta sorority for the 10-gallon tank I have. Right now, only 3 fish occupy it: Julian & Oscar (Julii cory catfish) and Violet (crowntail female betta). When I first got the 10-gallon tank at the beginning of February, the plan was to have 2 cories, 1 female betta, and 3 female platies. By mid-February that was the case, or so I thought.
One of the platies wound up being a male, though I was assured at the time of purchase by a PetCo employee that it was female. During the 3 months I had the platies, one of my females got pregnant and had babies twice. The 10-gallon is not big enough for that. By this time, Violet was in her own 2½ gallon tank because she was bloating pretty bad due to eating the platies’ flake food and not her own betta pellets. While having the baby fish was cute, this couldn’t go on indefinitely.
So I got rid of all the babies (two people volunteered to take them) as well as the 3 adult platies. I am 99.99% sure that one particular female platy was pregnant and on the verge of having her 3rd batch when I got rid of them. Platies are livebearers, so they do not actually lay their eggs. The babies are born alive. I feel confident all of the fish went to good homes.
I wanted a betta sorority. Violet has such a cute little personality (yes, she is a fish, and if you don’t have fish you wouldn’t understand). I put Violet back into the 10-gallon tank on June 1st when the ammonia levels finally neutralized. It had been almost a month since the platies were gone, but the ammonia levels spiked for some reason. Considering how much waste platies produce, you’d think ammonia would not be an issue with just 2 cory catfish in a 10-gallon.
So a week ago, I was ready to seek out Violet’s tank mates. I skipped PetSmart (which is closest to me) and went to PetCo since that is where I got Violet. It is a 30 minute drive – and they had zero female bettas. What a disappointment. I stopped by PetSmart on my way home, and they only had 3-4 female bettas. Two of them looked too much like Violet, and one didn’t really interest me. I couldn’t bring home just 1 more female betta. I’ve read you cannot have just 2 female bettas together.
I went by PetSmart again this past Monday, and no new female bettas. They said they get new fish every Tuesday, so I stopped by again yesterday after Zumba. They had at least 12-15 female bettas, most of them crowntails. But too many of them looked alike. I wanted variety. There were 2 I really liked, but the plan was to get 4 females to complete the sorority. I stood in PetSmart for at least 15 minutes debating what to do. I had wanted to check out AquaBid.com and see what was available, but I was hesitant since I hadn’t used the site yet, and most of the bettas come from overseas. I finally decided to wait. Too many of the PetSmart bettas looked like the same color as Violet.
So last night, I spent hours looking through AquaBid, selecting the 4 ladies I would purchase. Hours. It took me a while to finally narrow it down to just four because there were so many beautiful ladies, and by the time I was done, I had a headache from looking at my computer screen so long.
These are the ones I purchased. The pictures were taken from the AquaBid auctions. Don’t quote me on the definitions I’ve given regarding the colorations and types. I didn’t even know what some of the names meant on the auctions until I Googled them last night. I hope to God the breeders are 100% certain these are all females! You can keep females together in a community tank usually, and I have read some who have a male betta in with females, but that isn’t as common due to the fighting nature of the males. They’re not called Siamese fighting fish for no reason.
1) A mustard gas halfmoon plakat female. Mustard gas refers to coloration, though if you Google it, you’ll see there is controversy as to what can be truly called a “mustard gas” betta. Halfmoon refers to the span of the caudal fin, in this case a 180° span, forming a D shape when fanned out. Plakat refers to the fin type; in this case, shorter fins.
2) an orange halfmoon female.
3) Pink salamander butterfly elephant ear/dumbo halfmoon plaket female. That’s not a mouthful at all. From my research online (it’s confusing!) this is what I’ve gathered. Salamander refers to fish with 3 colors (as you can see below, her head varies from her body, and her fins have the white outline). The distinct outline on the fins (any color is possible I think, but this female’s is white) makes her a butterfly, so it refers to coloration also. Elephant ear (also called dumbo) refers to the larger pectoral fins, which I think is absolutely adorable! Since being active on my Aquarium Tails Instagram, I have discovered elephant ear bettas and have wanted one ever since!
4) Purple salamander butterfly elephant ear/dumbo halfmoon plaket female. This one had a video also.
I cannot wait for them to arrive! I am hoping all of them get along once they establish the pecking order. Now I just need to think of some names.