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Betta And Cory Catfish – Friend Or Foe?

Doesn’t it sound like a good idea to invest in a new fish tank or aquarium for your house?

Fish tanks can potentially prove as an aesthetically pleasing addition to your home. But, what about the fish types that you are going to have in it?

Having multiple kinds of fish in the aquarium is undoubtedly the most common wish a fish aquarium owner would have.

But, will it be suitable to add whatever you like into your fish tank? If not, then how are you supposed to find the right companions? Well, we are here at your service.

You would have heard about the mismatch and its consequences when it comes to keeping various fish.

However, not all combinations result in granting you a bad experience. There are many fish types that prove to be amazing tank-mates. A popular combination of such types is Betta and Cory catfish.

Betta and Cory catfish can prove to be one of the best choices for you to keep together in your aquarium.

However, you will be in need of maintaining certain conditions. Let us take you through all the details in this article.

What Are Cory Catfish?

Video: “Cory Catfish Care Guide”

Wouldn’t it be helpful if you dive into some basic information about Cory catfish at first?

Most often, Cory catfish are also referred to as Corydoras Catfish, Cory Cats, and Cory Fish. This is a very common freshwater fish.

We have some basic information for you if you are looking for ways to provide the best atmosphere to these incredible species.


Origin Of Cory Catfish

Mostly Cory catfish originate from South America. There are numerous types of these fish that you can see there.

However, the good news is that you do not have to get too much into types, as all of them can easily live with Betta fish.


Color Of Cory Catfish

The best thing about this fish type is that they are available in several patterns and colors to enhance the beauty of your tank.

So, having them will definitely make your aquarium more colorful and appealing.

What Are Betta Fish?

Video: “Betta Fish Care Guide”

A widely known fish in the fishery sector is the Siamese fighting fish, also recognized by the name Betta.

Bettas are a part of the tribe of gourami and are considered to be highly defensive. In fact, males are prone to show a high level of aggression in them.


Origin Of Betta Fish

These bettas emerge from Thailand from the reservoirs of the Mekong and Chao Phraya rivers.

In small, almost saline ponds, including certain marshes, wetlands, and paddy fields, these fish mostly stick out.


Color Of Betta Fish

The best thing about Betta is that they are found in many exotic colors that are bound to make your fish tank look bright and beautiful.

Red, orange, yellow, brown, steel blue, turquoise/green, purple, pastel, white, and multi-colored fish are the colors available to you as fish keepers.

Owing to numerous levels of pigmented skin, Bettas are identified in several multiple colors.

What Conditions Do Betta And Cory Catfish Require?

Just having the basic information does not mean that one is able to keep them. For this, you will have to get the details of their requirements as well.

It is the foremost vital step to ensure that the conditions of the water are suitable for them to live. Here is our take on all the details that you will want to know for keeping Bettas and Corydoras together.

Following these points will lead to creating a healthy and peaceful environment inside your tank for better growth of your fish. So, let’s not waste any more time and get going.


Water’s pH Level

Cory Catfish Do not require too much of a hard nature of water for living healthily.

You will have to maintain the pH level of your fish tank ranging from 7.0 to 7.8. Within this range, your Corydoras will thrive happily and healthily as well.

Whereas, when it comes to Betta fish type, you will have to maintain the pH of your tank’s water at 7.0. Corydoras can easily and healthily live at this level, but as for Betta, you will have to avoid alkaline water.

So, maintaining the pH level to 7.0 will suit both Betta and Cory catfish to live and develop better.


Water Temperature

Another equally important factor is the temperature of your tank’s water. You simply cannot take this point for granted, as the whole healthiness of the environment depends heavily on this one.

As for Betta fish, the range of perfect temperature is from 74 degrees Fahrenheit to 70 degrees Fahrenheit.

However, as far as the ideal temperature is concerned, 78 degrees Fahrenheit is known to be the best for them.

Now, have a glance at the range of water temperature required for Cory catfish. You can heat up your tank from 70 to 78 degrees Fahrenheit for the better growth of Corydoras.

In this aspect, you will have to keep the temperature maintained at the borderline.

78-degree Fahrenheit will suit you, as both Betta and Cory Catfish will be able to live amazingly well at this temperature.


Stability Of The Tank

Maintaining the stability of your tank’s water is yet another crucial fact upon which you will have to pay much attention.

If you fail to maintain this factor, the fluctuating water temperature and pH level will undoubtedly be damaging for your fish. Hence, stability works to make the conditions favorable for both Betta and Cory fish.


Nitrate Level

If you want to ensure a healthy and lasting lifespan of your fish, it is a must for you to keep an eye on the level of nitrate inside your fish tank.

Exceedingly high nitrate levels can be seriously damaging to the healthy life-cycle of your fish.

Whenever the levels of nitrate exceed, Cory Catfish’s stress levels will increase with it.

Due to this issue, the fish can become more vulnerable to different types of diseases. For the avoidance of this problem, the best thing for you to do is checking the nitrate levels regularly and ensure that it remains 0 ppm.



Betta and Cory by JohnnyMrNinja (CC BY-SA 3.0)

Keeping the substrate stable is also as important as the stability of the temperature and pH level. Fish tanks require frequent vacuuming, which can result in the disturbance of the substrate.

So, a constant try from your end is needed to keep the substrate undisturbed.

But why is this so important?

The disturbance at this level can have adverse consequences on the ideal environment that you are trying to create for the fish. Substrate disturbance can result in enhancing the stress levels of your fish.

Other than this, the old feces and food particles will also come back at the top, which can be extremely unhealthy. This would boost the levels of bacteria and eventually allow a whole host of pathogens to be exposed to your Cory Catfish and Betta.

But, which material is appropriate to choose for the substrate?

Choosing gravel and sand as a mix will definitely suit both Betta and Cory Catfish. If you intend to use only gravel, then do ensure that it is not too sharp to damage the barbels of your fish.



The lifespan of Cory Catfish and Betta are similar to the one that most of the fish have.

Both these fish can live up to five years if maintained healthily.


Size Of Cory Catfish

As far as the size of Cory Catfish is concerned, they do not grow too big. This is why you will not need a larger tank to keep them.

The average size to which these grow in between 1 and 2.5 inches. This size makes them quite easy for you to manage in your tank even when present in groups.


Size Of Betta Fish

Similar to the Cory Catfish, Bettas do not grow much in length as well. This similarity makes it appropriate for you to put them into the same tank.

Betta fish are able to grow from 2.5 inches to a maximum of 3 inches in length.


Size Of Tank

You may have heard about the fact that it is okay to keep your Betta fish in small areas without a proper tank.

Undoubtedly, these fish can easily survive in those areas, but we don’t only want survival, do we?

We want the health of our fish as well.

So, as a rule of thumb, do remember that a bigger tank is always a great option.

A tank size that can accommodate 10 gallons of water will be sufficient for you; as we have mentioned before that these fish types are not too big in size.


Tank Decorations

Is it just enough to have fish in your tank? To make it look more beautiful, decorations are compulsory for your aquarium. So, what to opt for when it comes to decorations?

If you want your tank to look appealing and soothing at the same time, do invest in multiple healthy live plants.

Having plants in your aquarium will suit your Betta and Cory Catfish as well, as both of them love plants. Moreover, this will also present a more natural and aesthetically appealing look.

It will also prove as a great idea if you try adding some rocks and driftwood into the tank. Both these things will undoubtedly be quite helpful as your fish will be able to get numerous places for hiding away. In this way, they explore better in a limited area.

However, as far as breeding is concerned, some of you may also want to increase their number of fish. For this purpose, a suitable thing to add to your fish tank is plants with wide leaves.

This addition will definitely aid the procedure of spawning of your fish.


Tank’s Lid

It is a must for you to cover your tank with a lid. Are you surprised to hear this as such an important point? We’ll tell you why.

The Betta fish that you are going to have in your tank has an active nature. They like to jump high more often. During this activity, it is possible for them to come out of the tank without you knowing.

Betta fish has got this trait due to a specific purpose. When present in the natural wild settings, these fish jump from one on to another pond in search of food.

However, you will also notice the jumping trait in you, Cory Catfish. But, they do not carry any purpose at the back of this activity.

So, for the safety of your fish, it is one of the most significant points out of all.



Whether a beginner or a professional, every person who likes keeping fish is aware of the fact that Bettas are not the best when temperament is the topic of focus, for finding the right tank-mates, temperament is crucial to consider.

In case of a type that is going to share the aquarium with Betta, this point becomes even vital. Due to this reason, Cory Catfish is the type that comes to mind instantly.

The fact that Betta fish like to swim on the upper surface of the tank makes it easy for both these creatures to live healthily with each other.

Cory Catfish are known to be present at their favorite part, the bottom of the tank. This top and bottom phenomenon help in maintaining a reasonable and healthy gap in both types. Hence, there is minimal chance of threatening the environment for your Cory Catfish.

Why even minimal chance?

Well, this is because the Cory Catfish will come on the top for the sake of food. Hence, the distancing shield between both the fish will get finished.

While Betta is aggressive, Cory Catfish is one of the noblest types of fish. These are known to be quite social, especially when present in groups.


Filter Usage

If you want to make the conditions of your tank even favorable for your fish, do use a filter with your tank.

If not used, you will have to change the water of your tank more often to get rid of all the toxins. Doing this is more hectic and difficult as well.

With the help of a filtering system, you can efficiently maintain a healthier tank environment for your fish and avoid fluctuations as well.



The feed that you are going to give to your fish is the most integral part that will make them healthy and active. So, let us discuss the diet of both Betta and Cory Catfish in detail.

Cory Catfish are present at the bottom of the tank most of the time. There, they are hunting for food. They can even feed on the leftovers of Betta fish.

You may also catch them feeding on plant matter or praying upon the insects that are present at the bottom of your tank.

These fish types usually dig into the substrate in search of food. However, for fulfilling the required appetite, you will still have to feed them, as they won’t be able to find enough on their own.

These fish are omnivores in nature. That is the reason why they can feed on numerous items. These include live, frozen, pallets, and flakes. You can feed these items to both, but Betta fish will require a bit more meat.

Using sinking wafers can potentially prove as a good idea to feed your Cory Catfish better. These wafers will go down to the bottom of your tank and makes it easy for the Corydoras to feed on them.

However, to prevent overfeeding, you will have to follow a certain routine for feeding your fish. Feeding Betta and Corydoras twice a day is sufficient. Plus, do remember to not feed them for longer than two minutes.

Investing in high-quality food will deliver promising and prominent results by making the health of your fish better. So, do not opt for the cheaper and low-quality options at all.

The Bottom Line

Whether you are a hobbyist or a professional, you would definitely love to fill your aquarium with multiple patterns and pleasing colors. If so, then Betta and Cory Catfish can be your perfect combo to keep in your fish tank.

They may differ highly regarding the temperament, but the fact that they maintain a proper distance from each other makes them able to be kept easily together. The colors of Betta and the patterns of Corydoras will undoubtedly brighten up your fish tank.

As these species demand hiding places and live plants, the addition of such decorations will make the whole set-up even better.

The needs or requirements of both these species may not be identical, but they do share some common requirements. These include the pH level and temperature of water, diet, size of the tank, etc.

The key to set-up a perfect aquarium is by keeping the best tank-mates in it. Plus, do not forget to have a constant routine of filtration of your tank.

Provide these creatures a happy and healthy environment to live in, and they will make your whole set-up aesthetically pleasing and ever-green.

Aaron Boyd
Aaron Boyd

Hello, I’m Aaron Boyd, the proud owner and author behind Aqua Movement. I hope my article was able to answer your questions. If you want to learn more about me, click the home icon above.

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