Discover the Difference Between Lavender & Salamander Betta Fish!

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By Linh Nguyen Updated on 29 Apr 2023

Betta fish have long been a favorite among aquarium hobbyists and enthusiasts alike. Their vibrant colors and unique personalities make them an eye-catching addition to any tank. However, not all bettas are created equal, especially when it comes to the Lavender and Salamander varieties. Many people struggle to tell the difference between these two types of betta fish – but it doesn't need to be that way! With this blog post, you'll learn how to differentiate between a Lavender betta and a Salamander betta. Plus, we'll share tips on how to properly care for these two species in your aquarium. By the end of this article, you'll be able to confidently recognize which type of betta you have in your tank, and know how to give them the best possible care. So keep reading to get started on the right foot with your Lavender and Salamander bettas!

1. What is a Lavender beta fish?

According to Victoria Parnell, "Lavender" is a fish with a blue/ pink/ or purple body, red fins, and a white caudal rim. Its iridescent pattern is very characteristic; it appears as if on a red background one had lightly brushed a layer of blue or chalk, yet it remains thin enough to still see the color layer beneath.

Most of the Lavender fish that we see on the market are red butterflyfish with a blue infection that makes the fish's color turn into a characteristic light pink-purple tone.

Some redfish infected with steel blue is also called Lavender. However, in such individuals, the pink-violet effect is much less vibrant. 

Here are some pictures of Lavender:

A Halfmoon Lavender betta fish

A Halfmoon Lavender betta fish

A Rosetail Lavender betta

A Rosetail Lavender betta

A Plakat Lavender betta

A Plakat Lavender betta

2. What is a Salamander beta fish?

To find out what a Salamander Betta is, let's talk about Mustard Gas (MG) first. Since the early 1990s, breeder Jude Als has introduced MG fish. According to his definition, MG fish has a blue body and a three-rimmed tail that is blue-yellow-black (or white).

Jude also copyrighted the name "Mustard Gas," so no one is allowed to sell bettas under this name without his consent. One of the breeders who bought fish from Jude was Marianne Lewis, who outcrossed and sold the blue-bodied, yellowtail fish under the name MG. Jude reminded her to change the name of the line, so Marianne used a different name to avoid trouble. Can you guess what it is?... Salamander!

Today, the word "Salamander" is used to refer to red butterfly fish infected with green. This results in a fish with a dark purple-pink body and a purple-rimmed tail base turning red.

Even more interestingly, in today’s salamander herds there are non-red genes and sometimes they produce yellow hybrids. Logically, the player immediately assigned them the name “yellow salamanders” (to distinguish them from the purple ones). The irony is that these “yellow salamanders” are actually the blue/yellow bicolor that Marianne calls salamanders! In this case, it could be said that the stray found its way home.

A Halfmoon Salamander betta

A Halfmoon Salamander betta

3. Distinguishing Lavender and Salamander bettas

It can be said that Lavender and Salamander fish today are related to each other; they are quite similar in structure and color composition, differing only in the lightness and intensity of the colors.

So, to be able to distinguish, let's focus on pink-purple and blue. Other colors, such as green and steel, are considered unsuccessful.

Lavender has a light purple-pink body and a purple-rimmed base of the tail.

Salamanders have darker, pinkish-purple bodies and purple-rimmed bases on their tails.

Thus, the degree of violet in Salamanders is higher. The tails of some individuals have three clearly-colored edges including purple, red, and white.

Distinguishing between Lavender and Salamander bettas

Distinguishing between Lavender and Salamander bettas

Although they differ slightly in color, the Lavender and Salamander bettas are actually related, possibly even brothers in the same school. Therefore, they possess similar physical characteristics and require similar care regimens.

Here is some information about these two fish species, hopefully, it can be of help to you.

4. Overview of Lavender and Salamander betta

4.1. Variations

Both Lavender and Salamander are used to refer to colors in bettas; thus, this strain will have many different tails and body shapes. The most popular will be the Superdelta, Halfmoon, and Plakat lines; however, other fish lines such as Crowntail, Doubletail, or Giant will be rarer.

Another special thing, the Dumbo ear betta line is said to come from the Lavender line. So we often see Lavender and Salamander individuals with rather large pectoral fins compared to other bettas.

4.2. Size

As mentioned above, there are many variations in tail and body type for the Lavender and Salamander lines; thus, they also come in different sizes. For example, a Halfmoon Lavender or Dumbo Salamander will be 4-6 cm in size. Meanwhile, the Plakat line is smaller, ranging from 2 to 4 cm.

4.3. Lifespan

Lavender and Salamander are two bettas that were born in the same tank. Both fish have an average lifespan of around three years, depending on their living conditions and care. With proper nutrition and clean water, these bettas can reach up to five years old.

Both betta lines require daily care and attention in order to stay healthy and happy. They need a clean tank with plenty of hiding spots and decorations as well as a well-balanced diet of high-quality food. Additionally, they should have regular water changes every one or two weeks in order to ensure that their living environment is safe from any toxins or pollutants.

4.4. The behavior

The Lavender and Salamander betta fish is a beautiful, vibrant species of fish with an extraordinary personality. They are known to be quite active and interactive, often engaging with their owners in exciting ways. They can become very curious about new objects in their environment and enjoy exploring them. These fish are also playful and love to swim around the tank, displaying their energy and enthusiasm for life.

In terms of temperament, these fish tend to be quite peaceful. Despite sometimes being aggressive towards other bettas in the same tank, they typically do not show any signs of aggression towards other species of fish or invertebrates in the tank. As long as there isn't overcrowding, this species will usually get along just fine with other fish and invertebrates.

Overall, the Lavender and Salamander betta fish is an excellent species for novice aquarists due to its calm nature and simple care requirements. With proper nutrition and maintenance, this beautiful species will thrive in any home aquarium!

4.5. Prices

The Lavender and Salamander bettas are among the most sought-after breeds of betta fish. Their stunning colors, unique patterns, and striking fins make them a must-have for any serious collector or hobbyist. They can fetch a hefty price tag due to their rarity; prices range from $25 to over $100 each depending on the breed's quality and desired traits. 

These two beautiful betta species require special care in order to remain healthy, making them more challenging than other common varieties. They cannot be kept with other fish as they will fight, and regular water changes are essential for optimal health. The limited availability of these types of bettas means that the prices for them will remain high and the demand will stay strong. 

Overall, These are a unique and sought-after breed of fish that can be difficult to find and expensive to acquire. For those willing to put in the time and effort, however, these breathtaking beauties can bring color and life into any aquarium home.

A Halfmoon Lavender betta with a dark purple body and tail.

A Halfmoon Lavender betta with a dark purple body and tail.

5. Care

5.1. Habitat, water quality, and temperature

When it comes to their habitat, lavender, and salamander bettas prefer lots of open swimming space as well as some plants for hiding places and security from other tank mates. Java moss, hornwort, Anubias, ferns, and cryptocoryne species all make suitable additions to betta tanks. Additionally, adding driftwood and rocks can provide hiding places and help create an attractive aquarium environment.

They thrive in warm water with a temperature of around 78-84 degrees Fahrenheit (26-29 Celsius). The pH should be slightly acidic, between 6.5 and 7.0. To keep the water clean, perform regular partial water changes of 25-50%, being sure to match the temperature and pH carefully.

To keep your bettas healthy, it is important to maintain good water quality by performing regular water changes with aged water that has been conditioned for the fish’s needs. Last but not least, be sure to quarantine any new fish before adding them to an established aquarium!

5.2. Food and nutrition

Good nutrition is essential for the proper health and development of any species, including Lavender and Salamander bettas. In order to ensure that your fish are getting all the nutrients they need, it’s important to provide them with a balanced diet. A variety of high-quality foods should be offered throughout the week so that they can get an adequate amount of vitamins and minerals necessary for optimal growth.

It’s best to stick with high-end commercial foods such as flakes and pellets specifically designed for betta fish. These types of food offer complete nutrition in a convenient form. They also have longer shelf lives than live or frozen foods, making them more cost-effective in the long run. Avoid generic “fish foods” or generic flake mixes as these can be lacking in nutrition.

Live and frozen foods are also great options for adding variety to your betta's diet. Live brine shrimp, blackworms, and other aquatic invertebrates are the preferred snacks of most bettas. Frozen bloodworms, daphnia, mysis shrimp, and krill can also provide a healthy dose of proteins and vitamins to support growth. Additionally, you might try supplementation with an herbal tonic such as garlic or Spirulina to help boost immunity and promote shiny scales.

5.3. Maintenance mode for fish tank

To keep Lavender and Salamander bettas healthy in an aquarium, regular maintenance is essential. This includes replacing a portion of the water regularly to ensure that nitrates don't build up, as well as performing partial water changes at least every other week. Additionally, reducing uneaten food to prevent bacterial growth is also important. To maintain good water quality, a reliable filter should be used along with weekly testing of the pH and ammonia levels. Regular gravel vacuuming or substrate cleaning must also take place to remove any buildup of waste or decaying material from the tank.


All in all, it is easy to say that distinguishing a lavender and salamander betta fish actually requires some expertise and knowledge. While the differences in their appearances may be difficult to notice or even discern from the general view of them, with closer inspection, one can easily spot the subtle nuances that clearly separate one from another. In addition, if you are a beginner aquarist, you will definitely want to educate yourself about proper caring for bettas in order for them to remain healthy and happy. After reading this article you should have gained a better understanding of both types of betta fish, as well as easy ways to tell them apart without much effort. If there is something that I have missed or you ever find yourself confusing those two fish – let me know in the comment below!

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