Betta Fish & Corydoras – Can They Live Together?

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If you own a Betta fish and you find it a bit lonely these days, getting a suitable companion for its tank may be an amazing idea. Although Bettas can be quite temperamental sometimes, they certainly can live a peaceful life in smaller groups, too.

The most important thing is to choose the second species wisely. Many aquatic lovers ask themselves whether Betta fish and Corydoras can live together, so we are sharing a detailed answer to that.

From my experience, it seems that Bettas and Corydoras can share the same tank and can live together, as long as all general requirements are met. One of such is certainly an adequate tank size, which should be at least 10 gallons.

This will ensure that both species have their own space without getting in the way of the other.

Moving on, an amazing advantage are their water specifications. Indeed, Bettas and Corydoras catfish share remarkably similar needs. Although these are not exactly the same, there are middle-values that work perfectly for both parties, so keeping them stable is essential.

The pH level which suits both fish is around 7 while the best temperature has to be around 78-degrees Fahrenheit. Larger oscillations need to be avoided as they can be safe for one fish but extremely harmful for the other.

Finally, both species love being surrounded by live aquatic plants and lots of hiding spots.

To conclude, setting up an aquarium that will suit both fish is not that complicated at all. The biggest challenge will be in keeping them friendly instead.

Will a Betta Kill a Cory Catfish?

In theory, a Betta fish can kill a Cory catfish. However, in our experience, this happens extremely rarely and with quite aggressive Bettas only. Corydoras are bottom feeders while Bettas prefer spending their time either at the middle or at the top of the tank.

This ensures they do not disturb each other while feeding and, consequentially, to avoid any larger conflict. Additionally, Cory catfish is known to be quite a peaceful pet.

In some cases, Bettas can be a bit erratic and become aggressive over time, and there is nothing owners can do to prevent them from attacking. If you know that this is the case with your Betta pet, you may prefer to leave it alone.

How Many Corydoras Should You Get?

The number of Corydoras to get depends entirely on the tank size. If you decide to setup a smaller, 10-gallon tank, you can easily place at least 4 or 5 Cory catfish in it.

Moreover, getting a smaller group instead of a single catfish is highly recommendable. They love spending their time in groups and they feel much safer that way.

Benefits of Keeping Corys with Bettas

When keeping Bettas alone in an aquarium, all owners know how important it is to always avoid food leftovers sinking to the bottom.

A Betta will leave any residues of food and these will increase the nitrate levels soon enough, making the water become a dangerous place. However, when adding some Corydoras to that same aquarium, the problem is almost solved.

Indeed, Corys are bottom feeders. They spend hours foraging around the substrate and cleaning the tank from any possible food leftovers.

Nonetheless, Corydoras make wonderful algae eaters. This will certainly improve the overall cleanliness of your tank as well.

On top of that, Corydoras catfish are peaceful and friendly creatures. While Bettas can get quite aggressive over time, Corys tend to stay calm and avoid any conflict, as long as they have all the important conditions provided. Therefore, combining these two species into a single aquarium can be an amazing idea.

Can Corydoras Eat Betta Food?

Corydoras are omnivorous, so they will basically eat any food which reaches the bottom of the tank, including Betta food. However, food leftovers should not be their primary feeding source.

That is why we highly recommend providing them some sinking fish pellets every now and then, too. Ultimately, this will keep both species at ease, because the Betta will be busy collecting its food from the top while the Cory catfish will have enough time to eat those meals which it finds at the bottom.

If one of these fish feels as if they need to fight for food, this can seriously harm their relationship and lead to often confrontations.

Also, being careful not to overfeed them is another big must. Whenever feeding your fish, both Corys and Bettas, please keep in mind that feeding time should never exceed two minutes.

Best Corydoras Types for Bettas

There are several Corydoras types available and, in general, they can all function well with Bettas. However, we recommend choosing those types which are more active and which tend to stay smaller. To ease the decision up, below is a list of possibly great companions for your Betta:

  • Panda Cory
  • Bronze Cory
  • Sterba’s Cory
  • Julii Cory
  • Three Strip Cory
  • Pygmy Cory

Whichever of these amazing fish you decide to adopt, please make sure to carefully monitor their behavior during the first days. Intervening in dangerous and aggressive situations can be a life-saver for your fish pets.

Wrapping Up

If you are a real aquatic world lover, you certainly spend a lot of love and effort in setting up the perfect tank for your home. Having plenty of plants, decorative hiding spots and amazingly looking fish swimming around is just so relaxing and beautiful. But it is crucially important to choose the right fish species which can live in harmony, rather than fighting all the time.

If you are thinking of matching up your Bettas with a peaceful type as Corydoras catfish are, you just may succeed with no issue. Indeed, these two share similar environmental requirements, without the need of doing any major adjustments.

On top of that, they seem to live in perfect tranquility and happiness when there is nothing they are deprived of. And they may become the perfect roommates in no time.

Author Image Fabian
I’m Fabian, aquarium fish breeder and founder of this website. I’ve been keeping fish, since I was a kid. On this blog, I share a lot of information about the aquarium hobby and various fish species that I like. Please leave a comment if you have any question.
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