September 27, 2023


Travel Anywhere

Betta Simplex Is A Unique And Interesting to Keep Wild Betta

Wild bettas are growing rapidly in popularity. With opening of previously unexplored areas of the world, more and more species are being discovered and becoming available.

One such recently described species is Betta simplex. Currently known only from only a few locations in southern Thailand, this species is rarely seen in the hobby and is listed as vulnerable on the IUCN red list.

Rarely reaching more than two inches Betta simplex is a small mouth brooding species, which is sadly very underrated. Although not as gaudy as species like Betta splendens this is a spectacular little fish. Displaying males in my opinion rival any B. splendens out there. Unlike other betta species, B. simplex tends to prefer neutral to slightly alkaline water conditions. In addition its small size makes it ideal for small tanks. The tank for this species should be well planted with numerous hiding places. Small pieces of driftwood make ideal tank decorations as well.

As is the case with all wild bettas tanks for this species must be very tightly covered, the jumping ability of this and other wild bettas is phenomenal. They will find any opening in the top of the tank and manage to jump through it with no difficulty. This is a peaceful species, which does well in groups and is very easy to breed. B. simplex is a paternal mouth brooder which means the male is the care giver for the brood. Although the male does the brooding the female is the one that initiates the spawning. The male broods the eggs/young for 9 -16 days at which time the young are released to fend for themselves. When breeding these fish it is in my experience best to breed them in a group of multiple males and one or two females. The reason for this is that the female will frequently initiate a spawning event almost immediately after the male releases his load of fry. This causes trouble for a lone male, as he will not have a chance to regain strength before he has to go another couple of weeks without eating. Given a chance the female will quite literally breed the males to death. Although many species will tolerate the presence of fry I have found this species to be very efficient fry predators. They hunt the fry down with an enthusiasm that must be seen to be believed.

This a great little fish that you give a chance if you find them.

Gordon Snelling