Do Betta Fish Eat Shrimp and Other Fish? 0 54

Do betta fish eat shrimp?

Given their alternative name of Siamese or Japanese “fighting fish”, bettas have a reputation for being aggressive.

Exactly how aggressive depends on the personality of the individual fish, but there is no doubt that bettas will sometimes fight other fish.

But do they eat other fish? And do they eat shrimp? Read on to find out…


Do betta fish eat other fish?

We should start by saying that betta fish are highly territorial. They will live quite happily on their own, and prefer to do so. That doesn’t mean you can’t keep other fish with bettas, but you do need to be careful.

If you keep a betta fish in a tank with other fish they aren’t going to suddenly devour every other fish in the tank, but they may do damage. If a fish dies from this damage, or another cause, then your betta fish may eat it.

Here are a few important things to remember when keeping betta fish with other fish:

  • Never choose companion fish that are prone to nibble. This will not go down well with your betta.
  • Always make sure fish have a place to escape to if they feel nervous.
  • Keep other fish, such as neon tetras, in shoals of at least six.
  • Make sure your tank is big enough. 10 to 15 gallons is a good size tank if you’re keeping other fish with your betta.
  • Bottom dwelling fish such as plecs often make good tank mates for bettas.

If you remember all of these things then you should be able to keep other fish with your betta. However, you also have to remember that all bettas have different personalities. Some are more vicious than others.

If you’re keeping other fish with your betta just be aware that bettas do fight, and have been known to kill other fish: not for food, but for territory. Bettas will only eat other fish if they are already dead, but territorial fighting can often be the cause of that death.

Do better fish eat shrimp?

People often want to keep shrimp, such as ghost shrimp or cherry shrimp, in their fish tank. But is this a good idea if you have a betta fish? Will your betta fish eat shrimp?

The answer to this is, yes they often will!

This doesn’t mean that betta fish can’t live in the same tank as shrimp. It just means you have to be very careful. Here are a couple of points to think about.

  • Know your betta and how aggressive it is. The more aggressive the betta, the more likely it is to want shrimp for dinner!
  • Smaller shrimp are always more likely to get eaten.
  • It may be worth having a hiding place in the tank that only the shrimp can access.
  • Always try introducing just a few shrimp at first, in case your betta eats them.

Betta fish prefer being on their own, but you may want to brighten your tank by keeping other fish with your betta. You can do this successfully as long as you keep the right type of fish. If you don’t then your betta may injure or kill them. If a fish is already dead then a betta fish may eat it.

If you want to keep shrimp with your betta then be prepared for casualties. Bettas do eat shrimp, but that doesn’t mean they will. You can put them together and they may exist quite happily in the same tank. It’s a question of taking a chance and seeing how your individual betta responds.

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3 lizards that are great for first-time owners 0 124


Unusual pets have become more popular and accessible in recent years, with many more people considering exotic pets than before. Reptiles have become particularly popular, with the range of lizards available in the UK wider than ever. Here, we’ll list a few of the best lizards for beginners in terms of pet care.

Bearded Dragons

The single most popular reptile on the market today, bearded dragons are docile and friendly, and have no problem being handled by humans. Aside from this quality, bearded dragons are also a manageable size when fully grown, with the largest species reaching around 60cm tip to tip. This means they’ll be large enough to handle with ease and safety, but not so large that caring for them becomes a burden.

Leopard Geckos

Geckos are another type of lizard that has become exceedingly popular with first-time reptile owners. There are many owners and dealers who strive to own as many different species of gecko as possible. Most geckos are fast, and the sticky pads on their toes mean they can scale walls and escape from handlers fairly easily. However, leopard geckos are slow, docile, and lack the sticky toe pads. This makes them an easy and beautiful addition to your first vivarium. Furthermore, leopard geckos are quite hardy, and not as susceptible to diseases. They’re also smaller than bearded dragons and other common domestic lizards, with adults typically reaching a maximum of 25cm. This makes it easy to set them up with a comfortable and compact vivarium while you get used to reptile care.


Like bearded dragons, uromastyx enjoy human contact, which makes them perfect for owners who have only ever cared for mammals before. Furthermore, unlike many other reptiles, they feed almost exclusively on plants. This makes them easy to shop for, and a no-brainer for anyone who’s squeamish about insects. Having said that, uromastyx can be a strain on your energy bill, requiring a basking spot kept at 35 degrees Celsius to stay happy and healthy. Still, if you can afford this and love the look of these distinctive lizards, a uromastyx can make a great introductory pet lizard.

Essential considerations when buying a tortoise 0 126

Keeping a tortoise as a pet

If you love reptiles, you may have toyed with the idea of owning a pet tortoise. These are truly fascinating creatures, having lived alongside the dinosaurs. Over millions of years of evolution, tortoises have grown to require fairly specific needs. However, they can be loving and fairly low-maintenance pets if you approach tortoise care in the right way. Here are a few things to think about before getting your tortoise.

Choosing a breed

Tortoises are very diverse animals, and different breeds will work better for different lifestyles. Russian, Bell, and Forest Hingeback tortoises are fairly small, growing up to 8.5”. Red Foots are a mid-range breed, growing up to 14”, while African Spur Thighs are a notably large breed, with some adults weighing well over 150 pounds. While vivariums and similar enclosures are fine for young tortoises and particularly small breeds, most will require some outdoor space to keep them in.

General supplies

As with any unusual pets, you need to ensure you have all the right supplies to keep your tortoise happy and healthy in its new home. When kept indoors, your tortoise will need a basking light to draw energy from, as well as a florescent UVB light to help it process vitamins and minerals healthily. To ensure the UVB rays are enough for your tortoise, set reminders to yourself to change them once every 6-8 months. A large water bowl is needed for drinking and soaking. Finally, your tortoise will need a heating pad. This will warm its belly, and help with its digestion.


Like many other animals, infant and adolescent tortoises will need extra nutritional care to help them grow healthily. To this end, make sure you’re keeping them on a balanced diet of crispy, easily-digestible food, like grasses and leafy green vegetables. It’s also a good idea to get them some calcium and vitamin supplements. As their jaws mature, you can move them onto more solid foods like fruits. Fully-grown tortoises will be able to manage darker leafy greens, along with a wider range of go-to reptile food, such as fruits, earthworms, and crickets. If you’re ever unsure of what you should be giving your tortoise based on their age and breed, consult your vet.

Find out more about caring for your pet tortoise