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Betta Color Varieties

Single Solid Colored Bettas Bicolored Bettas Patterned Bettas

Dark Colored

Dark Bodied


Light Colored

Light Bodied





Single Solid Colored Bettas


Dark Colored

Red - This lovely specimen was bred by Leng Lim . Reds should be a brilliant 'cherry' red color. They should not have any iridescence (blue, green, purple) or opaque showing. Their ventrals should be all red with not white.

Black (a.k.a. melano)- This fish was bred by Bonnie McKinley. Blacks should have a very dark 'black mollie' color to them. They should not show any iridescence or opaque. There are two different types of black available - the True Black or the Black Lace. True Black females are infertile, so steel blue females carrying the melano gene are used for breeding to True Black males.

Black Lace - Black Lace Bettas are the least desirable of the two Black subtypes. These Bettas are more of a translucent black when compared to the True Blacks. Picture courtesy of Faith & BETTA TALK.

Blue - This betta is owned by Jeff Hiller. Blues should be a royal blue in color with out any other color present. Blues should also be lacking any opaque and their ventrals should not be white. Often times Blues will have a red wash in their caudal and/or anal fin, which is considered a fault. This is a prime example of what a blue should look like.

Steel Blue - This great example of a Steel Blue Betta was bred by Tom Stagner. Steel Blues should be a gunmetal blue color. This fish has white ventrals which is considered a slight fault.

Turquoise - This cute little guy was bred by Liz-Hanh Morin. Turquoise Bettas should be slightly darker then the mineral turquoise. It should appear a single shade all over verses a mixture of blue and green. This color had a rocky start in the show ring because it is often confused with the common green color. This fish has two faults. The first is the red wash in his anal fin and the second is the turquoise color is not distributed as evenly as it should be.

Green - The ideal Green Betta should be a grass or forest green color. There are two different shades of green. This Betta is known as the preferred True Green. The Betta below is the Common Green variety. Photo by Leng Lim.

Common Green - Notice how the Common Green is closer to the turquoise in color. Bred by Liz-Hanh Morin.

Light Colored

Yellow - This is a good example of a Yellow by Kevin Pelletier. A bright lemon yellow is best and any red is a slight fault. This Betta does have a little red near his caudal and anal fin and would not be placed over a similar yellow who was lacking red.

Clear- Clear Bettas have a transparent body and fins but the colors from the organs cause the body to appear pink. Any other color is a serious fault. There are two types of Clear Bettas. The Albino or the Cellophane. This Betta is an Albino and in addition to colorless fins and a rosy his eyes also lack pigment and therefore, appear red . This Betta belongs to Team Kayoti.

Cellophane - This is a type of Clear Betta. Cellophanes should have dark eyes and a flesh colored body. Betta photo courtesy of Faith & BETTA TALK.


Pastels - Pastels are Bettas which lack a dark underpigment. They can not be red or show any opaque pigment at all. The male Betta on the left is a Pastel Blue. A light sky blue color is preferred for Pastel Blues and any green tones is a fault. His only fault is the clear in his fin tips. The female Betta on the right is a Pastel Green. Pastel Greens should be a light green color and should not have any blue tones. These Pastels were bred by Tom Stagner.

Opaques - Opaque Bettas lack a dark under pigment and show an opaque coloring that covers the body. These fish, bred by Kevin Pelletier, are Opaque Whites. Opaque Whites should have a dense white color. Genetically these fish are Opaque Steel Blues but colors are not named according to genotype so most people refer to them as Opaque Whites. Also available are Opaque Blues and Opaque Greens.

Opaque Green - These Bettas should be a light, powder green color. Any blue tones are a fault. This Betta was bred by Frank. The lighting used when taking this photo causes his fish appears to have patches of colors of different shades but in actuality, he does not.

Bicolored Bettas


Dark Bodied

Dark bodied, bicolor Bettas have a body that is one of the six dark colors. Its fins must be different color than its body but can be either dark or light colored. The two colors should be separate where the fins join with the body and contrast between the two should be obvious. Color faults are given according to the appropriate colors - a dark, bicolored betta with a red body and black fins will be knocked down if it has iridescence on it's body or and iridescence and opaque in it's fins.

Dark Bodied Bicolor - This Betta, owned by Faith & BETTA TALK, is an example of a dark bodied bicolor. His body is Steel Blue and his fins are Black. Notice how the colors have obvious contrast and are separated at the joining of the fins and body. This particular Betta would be faulted for clear fin edges and uneven distribution of color on the body.

Black/Yellow a.k.a.. Chocolate - This is the only recognized subtype of the dark bodies, bicolors. Fins are a yellowish color and the 'black' body is reduced to a more brown appearance. This picture was provided by Faith & BETTA TALK.

Light Bodied

Light bodied, bicolor Bettas have a light colored body and a different color in their fins. The same standards for dark bodied bicolors apply for light bodied bicolors. The body and fins colors must contrast and be separate at the body and fin junction. Color faults are given according to the different body and fin colors.

Light Bodied Bicolor - This Betta was bred by Lee and Walt Johnson. His body is flesh or clear colored and his fins are Blue. This particular Betta placed first in the California Betta Society's May 1999 IBC International Show.

Clear/Red a.k.a. Traditional Cambodian - This is is a Traditional Cambodian bred by Faith & BETTA TALK. Cambodians have a flash/clear colored body and fins of a different color. The Traditional Cambodian had red fins. Bettas with a flesh colored body with fins of a color other than red are collectively called Cambodian Any Other Color (AOC).

Patterned Bettas



Butterfly Bettas come in any color but the fin colors are banded. Points are awarded on the contrast and crispness of the banding pattern and not on the body or fin color. The two different color bands should be other different colors with obvious contrast. They should form an oval around the body of the fish. There are two different forms of banding. The first is a two band pattern where the fins have two color bands. The second form is a multiple banding pattern with three or more bands. The number of bands determines what percentage of the fins each band should occupy ( 1/[number of bands] of the fin area on all fins). The body color and the color of the first band can be a single color, bicolored, marbled or multicolored.

Single color Butterfly - This kind of Butterfly has a single colored body and the fin band closest to the body must be the same color as found on the body. Theses Bettas are named in sequence of Body color/Inner band - Outer band(s).

Blue/Blue-White Butterfly by Faith & BETTA TALK.


Red/Red-White by Dave Desmaraia.


Red/Red-Clear/Black multiple band by Faith & BETTA TALK.

Bicolored Butterfly - This type of Butterfly are bicolored Bettas but they have a band on the out side of their fins.

Clear/Red-White a.k.a. Cambodian Butterfly by Tom Stagner. This fish would be faulted because it's inner bands bleeds into it's outer band in this fish's tail.

Marble Butterfly - This type of Butterfly has a marbled body. The inner band can be either solid or marbled but a marbled band would probably disturb the bands uniformity.

Marble-White Butterfly by Betta Bytes. As you can see this Betta's marble inner band caused some blending and bleeding into the outer band.

Multicolored Butterfly - This Butterfly's body and inner band are multicolored. The outer band(s) can contain more than one color.

Multicolored-Red/Clear Butterfly by Team Kayoti.


The Marble Betta is a patterned Betta that lacks the fin banding like the Butterfly and the colors on the body and fins create a marbled effect. There are currently two types of Marbles - The Traditional Marble: a dark bodied fish with a white head or face, and the Colored Marble: a fish with many colors. Marble's body and fins must show at least two colors of a dark and light mix. Marbles that have clear definition of colors are preferred over Marbles with blending.

Piebald or Traditional Marble - This Betta lacks the colors of red, green, blue and steel blue that are seen on Colored Marbles.

Piebald Marble bred by Faith & BETTA TALK.

Colored Marble - The face and chin area stay white or flesh colored but the body and fins can show a mix of red, green, blue, and steel blue. The body of the fish must have some flesh color.


These Bettas have two or more colors but do not fit in the other Patterned Betta categories. The colors should have a high contrast to each other.

Multicolor bred by Faith & BETTA TALK.