The Truth About Plakat Bettas | Is a Plakat Betta Right for Me?

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By Linh Nguyen Updated on 22 Feb 2023

Are you looking for a striking pet fish that is as beautiful as it is intelligent? Plakat bettas, also known as Siamese fighting fish, might be the perfect aquatic animal companion for you. These small but mighty members of the gourami family boast bright colors and impressive personalities. In this comprehensive guide to Plakat betta fish, we'll discuss why they make wonderful pets – including their hardiness and ease of care – as well as what makes them unique amongst all other types of aquarium fish. We will provide detailed information on how best to house your new betta in an aquarium setting; equip yourself with what they need to thrive; learn more about their feeding habits & diet; understand how their natural environment works so that you can better care for them long-term; and much more! Keep reading if you're interested in exciting facts about these gorgeous tropical freshwater fish and want tips for providing them with a safe and comfortable living space.

A White Betta Plakat Beautiful

A White Betta Plakat Beautiful

1. What is betta plakat?

Betta Plakat is a lineage of ornamental Betta fish created by crossing a Siamese line with a long-tailed betta (like Halfmoon or Doubletail). This is a strongly growing strain that branches out into many different types, with varying tail shapes, fins, bodies, and colors.

Plakat Bettas come in many different shapes, but the most common is one similar in shape to the Halfmoon Betta with a much shorter tail. In recent years, this fish has become popular because it combines the diversity of color and caudal fin spread of long-tailed Bettas with the vigor and versatility of a Siamese. Additionally, having shorter fins helps them be more agile in the water and reduces their risk for diseases like fin rot, tail rot, or fin tear compared to longfin fish.

The line of Betta Plakat fish is very diverse and has many different variations. They come in all colors, from blue, red, yellow, and white to rarer colors such as purple or orange. They also have all kinds of tails, such as Halfmoon or Double-tail. They can even be bred with other fish lines, like marble or samurai. With so many combinations and variations on offer, this has created an extremely diverse fish line called Plakat Betta.

Video introducing some beautiful Plakat betta fish samples

2. Identifying Plakat bettas

The Plakat Betta refers to the short-tailed bettas. Therefore, most of the short-tailed bettas on the market today are Plakats. To distinguish Plakat Bettas from wild Siamese Bettas, just look at their color and caudal fin. Plakat Bettas will have a variety of colors and a wider caudal fin, while the wild Siamese have only basic colors such as blue, red, and Cambodian with smaller fins and tails.

3. Plakat betta fish types

The Plakat (PK) Betta fish line is divided into three different types: Traditional Plakat, Show PK (or Asymmetrical PK), and Symmetrical PK ( or Halfmoon Plakat). Additionally, this fish line has also appeared with two more types of transitional fish; Transitional PK-Type 1, which is an intermediate form between Traditional PK and Asymmetrical PK, and Transitional PK-Type 2, which is an intermediate form between Asymmetrical and Symmetric PK.

To distinguish Plakat bettas from one another, it is usually based on the number of branches of the caudal rays, the shape of the tail, and the symmetry between the dorsal and anal fins across the body axis. Names such as Marble, Samurai, Hellboy, and koi... refer to different colors or strains of Plakat bettas.

For detailed instructions on how to identify and classify this line, read the article: "Classification of Betta Plakat Line: What's the Difference?"

Distinguishing between different Plakat Betta strains requires in-depth and thorough knowledge. However, a big challenge for most people—even Betta experts—is distinguishing a Plakat Betta from a female Halfmoon. Yes, they are actually quite similar. To distinguish it, we usually recognize it by the fin patterns of female Bettas. Still, it's really hard to be sure.

There are 3 different lines of betta plakat: traditional, show, and symmetrical

There are 3 different lines of betta plakat: traditional, show, and symmetrical

4. Plakat betta fish male and female

When young, male and female Plakat bettas are often very similar, as their bodies are not yet developed and their sexual characteristics are not clearly displayed. However, from around 2 months of age onward, we can easily distinguish them. Some distinguishing features include:

For male Plakat bettas

  • The fins will be longer, and darker in color.
  • Frequent fights with other animals in the pack.
  • Frequent foaming
  • The body of the male betta will be longer and slimmer.

For female Plakat bettas

  • There are signs on eggs.
  • The fins will be short and not full, and the ventral fin shaped like a comb.
  • Has a shorter body.
  • The female's belly is quite large, so the female will look a bit fatter than the male.
  • An egg-laying organ, which looks like a grain of salt, is located just below the abdomen, between the edge of the anterior ventral fin and the ventral fin.
A female Plakat with two colors orange and white

A female Plakat with two colors orange and white

5. Plakat betta fish facts

NamePlakat Betta (Betta Picta)
ClassifyTraditional Plakat, Show PK (or Asymmetrical PK), and Symmetrical PK ( or Halfmoon Plakat)
Lifespan2-3 years, up to 5 years
Size2-3 inches
PersonalityMore aggressive than other lines 
Tank size2.5 – 10 gallons
HabitatQuiet water environment, many aquatic plants
Temperature75 - 80°F
PH level6.8 - 7.8
Hardness (measured in dGH)4 - 10
Ammonia and nitrite levels0 ppm
Food & dietHigh-quality, protein-rich foods

5.1. Lifespan

Plakat betta fish have a relatively short lifespan, usually living between 2-3 years. This is significantly shorter than other types of bettas, which can live up to 5 years or sometimes even longer. Plakat bettas are known for their hardy nature and active behaviour, making them ideal for beginner fish keepers. They require a clean, stable environment and adequate nutrition to thrive and they are also very resilient to environmental changes.

5.2. How big do Plakat bettas get?

The Plakat betta fish is a smaller variety of the more traditional betta line. It typically reaches only 2-3 inches in size when fully grown, whereas the standard betta can reach up to 6 inches or more. This makes the Plakat an ideal choice for smaller aquariums and tanks where space is limited. Because of its small size, it is also much easier to care for than other varieties of betta fish. The Plakat's body shape is usually quite flat compared to the rounder bodies and longer fins found on other types of bettas, which gives them a unique and attractive appearance. While they may not be as flashy as some of their larger cousins, they make up for it with their low-maintenance care requirements and their unique look. 

Overall, the Plakat betta fish is an excellent choice for those looking for a smaller variety of betta that doesn't require too much maintenance or space. They can be kept in tanks of all sizes and still offer plenty of personalities, making them a great addition to any aquarium.

5.3. Are Plakat bettas aggressive?

Plakat bettas are a type of fish that have been selectively bred for their aggressive behavior. As compared to other breeds of fish, Plakatbettas can be quite territorial and will often attack or bully tankmates if they feel threatened or territorial. Because of this, it is important to house them in large tanks with plenty of space and hiding places for the other fish, as well as provide environmental enrichment such as plants, rocks, and driftwood where the Plakat betta can establish its own territory. This aggressive trait has made them popular among aquarium enthusiasts who want to observe fights between two male fighters without having to resort to violence themselves. Additionally, these fish may also display more aggression when stressed due to overcrowding or inadequate water quality, and should be monitored closely to ensure their health. Overall, Plakat bettas can make for great additions to the home aquarium as long as tankmates are chosen carefully and proper care is taken to meet their needs.

A Yellow Halfmoon Plakat Betta

A Yellow Halfmoon Plakat Betta

6. Plakat Betta Care

6.1. Habitat

Plakat bettas tend to prefer a more vegetated habitat with dense plant growth than other species; however, they can still be found in open-water habitats too. As a result of their origin and natural preference for thick vegetation, many hobbyists find the Plakat betta lines easier to keep in captivity as it closely resembles their wild environment.

Plakat's habitat requirements are much more limited than those of other types of betta lines; they require very little space for swimming and grow best in small tanks or bowls with no current. The Plakat is also an excellent choice for aquariums since it prefers still or low-flow environments which helps reduce the amount of maintenance needed to keep them healthy. Additionally, the Plakat's smaller size compared to other Bettas makes them well-suited for smaller tanks and bowls.

6.2. Tank size

A betta Plakat fish should be kept in an aquarium that has a capacity of 2.5–10 gallons. It is best to choose an aquarium size that will allow for plenty of swimming space and the right amount of water filtration. A larger tank can also help keep the water clean and provide a more natural home environment for your betta. 

As a general rule, betta Plakat fish tend to be more active and comfortable in larger tanks. As such, it is recommended that you choose the largest tank size possible for your particular needs. Additionally, you may want to consider adding live plants or other decorations inside the tank to provide enrichment opportunities for your betta Plakat and make their home feel more natural.

6.3. Water parameters

When it comes to keeping betta Plakat in an aquarium, the water parameters need to be carefully monitored in order to ensure their health and vitality. The ideal temperature of the tank should be between 75-80°F, with a pH level between 6.8-7.8 and total hardness (measured in dGH) between 4-10. Keeping ammonia and nitrite levels at 0 ppm is also very important as they can cause stress or even death if left unchecked. Ammonia can come from uneaten food, waste materials, or tap water that is not properly conditioned prior to use. A weekly 25% water change is typically enough for the healthy maintenance of most tanks. However, more frequent changes may be necessary depending on the size of the tank and the amount of waste produced. Additionally, a high-quality filter should be used to keep the water clean, while adding live plants can help improve oxygen levels in the tank. Following these parameters is key to keeping betta Plakat happy and healthy in their aquarium homes!

6.4. Tank Mates

When keeping betta Plakat fish, it is important to choose tank mates carefully. These fish tend to be very territorial and may become aggressive towards other species that are too similar in appearance. However, if chosen correctly, much peaceful community fish such as guppies, platies, tetras, and Corydoras make good tank mates for the Plakat. It is also possible to keep some invertebrates like ghost shrimp or snails in the same tank with the Plakat, though they should not be kept with larger and more aggressive species.

Aquatic plants can also benefit the habitat and help provide hiding places for all inhabitants of the aquarium. Java ferns, water wisteria, and Anubis are all popular choices for Plakat tanks.  When selecting tank mates, it is important to ensure they are compatible with the size and temperament of the Plakat. Properly chosen tank mates can create a peaceful and balanced home for this unique betta breed.

6.5. Common possible diseases

Betta Plakat fish, like all other aquarium species, are prone to a number of diseases. Some of the most common ailments include fin rot, skinny disease, bacterial infections, and parasites. Fin rot is an infection of the tissue around the fins which can lead to them becoming discolored or falling away entirely in severe cases. Skinny disease is caused by poor nutrition and can cause rapid weight loss in otherwise healthy-looking fish. Bacterial infections can be caused by poor water quality, while parasites such as Ichthyophthirius Multifiliis (Ich) are usually introduced into tanks through contaminated items such as plants or décor. You should use a reliable source when purchasing supplies for your tank in order to minimize the risk of introducing disease. Regular water testing and tank maintenance can also help prevent the spread of these diseases. If your Betta Plakat does become ill, let to seek professional advice from a veterinarian or aquarist in order to ensure the best possible outcome.

6.6. Food & diet

Betta Plakat fish are carnivores and should be given a diet of high-quality, protein-rich foods. Live or frozen bloodworms, brine shrimp, daphnia, tubifex worms, and black mosquito larvae are all excellent choices for betta Plakats. You can also feed them freeze-dried foods such as krill, plankton, and daphnia. Pellets or flakes that contain plenty of protein can also be offered to your betta as part of their regular diet. Be sure to limit their feeding to twice a day with only enough food that they will consume in under two minutes. Overfeeding can lead to health problems so you should stick to the recommended feeding schedule.

A Fancy Plakat with three main colors: red, black, white

A Fancy Plakat with three main colors: red, black, white

Plakat betta fish come in a variety of colors, patterns, and shapes. The most popular type of Plakat betta is the "Traditional" or "Classic" Plakat which has a short body and small fins. Other popular varieties include Halfmoon Plakats, Double Tail Plakats, Hellboy Plakats, and Plakat Koi. Each type offers unique characteristics that appeal to aquarists. All have beautiful colors ranging from deep blues and purples to bright reds and greens.

Read the article: a collection of pictures and videos of betta Plakat fish so you can learn more about this unique fish line.

8. Breeding

Breeding Plakat betta fish is a process that takes patience and dedication. It involves selecting the right pair of healthy, vibrant fish and providing them with a clean aquarium environment that meets their needs. The breeder must also provide the correct diet to ensure optimal health and well-being for both the male and female betta. During breeding, it is important to monitor temperature, and water quality, and sense aggression from either partner in order to intervene if necessary. Breeding Plakat bettas can be an exciting challenge with the reward of new fry when successful but requires careful monitoring throughout the entire process. With patience and attention to detail, breeders may find themselves successfully rearing beautiful Plakat Betta fry!

For more detailed instructions, read the article: Breeding Plakat Betta Fish - Experience, Tips, And Tricks


Plakat Betta is a unique species of aquarium fish. They provide a more naturalistic and interesting look to your tank with their vibrant, bright tails contrasting against their sleek bodies. Plakats can live up to five years in the right environment, but paying attention to water temperature and other factors that can affect their health is crucial for ensuring the best care for the pet. With there being so many different breeds and species of betta, it can be difficult to discern what type and gender may be best for you. Some types of Plakat Bettas are aggressive by nature and should not be housed with another territorial fish. Overall, If you're looking for an interesting fish that also has entertaining behavior then Plakat Bettas are definitely worth considering! If you have any questions or would like to share your own experiences with these little guys, let me know in the comment below.

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