Betta Fish Eggs: 12 Fast Facts You Need To Know

If you’ve been raising your betta fish and they’re ready to mate, it’s time to learn everything you can about breeding betta fish and the journey ahead.

You don’t need to be an experienced fish keeper to breed betta fish. If you want betta fry in your tank, you need to give them warm water conditions and a proper diet rich in nutrients so they can get in the mood. It’s also thrilling to see the breeding process as the betta fish eggs turn into betta fry that will turn your tank into a beautiful betta fish nursery. 

many betta fish eggs at top of tank

You’ll need to know everything from how to tell when your female betta fish is ready to lay eggs to how the male betta fertilizes the eggs. With tips on speeding up the egg hatching process and survival rates, this guide has everything you need to know about betta fish eggs.

Do Bettas Lay Eggs or Give Birth? 

Female Betta fish lay eggs. So when you’re cleaning your tank and see a cluster of bubbles (bubble nests) on the water’s surface, it could signify that your bettas have started breeding. If you’ve never seen a bubble nest before, just look for a small cluster of tiny bubbles.

Betta Fish Eggs

When you notice the cluster of bubbles on the water surface, your betta fish are breeding. This nest is full of betta eggs. How do they get there? 

When the male betta is interested in a female betta fish, they will start creating a bubble nest. This is one of the most exciting things about the betta breeding process. 

Purpose of a betta fish nest: 

  • To protect the betta fish eggs as they prepare to hatch
  • For the female betta fish to judge whether or not the male betta is a suitable match for them. 

You’ll know the male betta has finished constructing the nest when they are by longer bothering with it. 

After the female betta is satisfied with the bubble nest, she will start laying eggs. The female betta fish lays between 50-300 unfertilized eggs from their egg hole. After this happens, the male betta fertilizes the eggs.  

The male and female betta fish will start interacting after this nest is built. After the male betta fish fertilizes the eggs, he will use his mouth to move the fertilized eggs into the bubble nest.

How Do You Know a Betta Fish Egg Has Been Fertilized? 

You can spot an unfertilized betta fish egg because it won’t have a grey spot around it. This egg also won’t be growing as fast as the fertilized eggs around them in the bubble nest. If you can’t see any small fry swimming within the white yolk sack, you can tell it’s an unfertilized egg.

Your male betta fish is more likely to eat the unfertilized betta fish eggs so that all the care and attention can be given to the fertile fry. Considerate, right? Well, not really, because your male betta fish could eat some fertilized eggs.  

Many fish keepers will remove the male betta from the betta breeding tank after they finish their business. 

How Many Eggs Does a Betta Fish Lay?

Betta fish can lay between 30 to 500 eggs when they are ready to breed. This isn’t a fixed amount because some betta fish have been found to lay even more than 500 eggs per batch. 

The number they lay depends on various factors like which betta fish species you’re breeding, the conditioning of these fish, and the water quality in their breeding tank. 

Factors Effecting The Number of Eggs a Betta Fish Will Lay 

If you want your female betta to spawn more eggs, you’ll need to consider the factors below.

Here are factors that affect the number of eggs a female Betta fish can lay : 


Breeding your male and female betta fish is recommended when they are around the same size. Bettas grow to a maximum size of 3 inches by adult age. 

When male betta fish are ready to mate, they will chase the female betta fish around. If the female betta is still young and smaller, they can quickly become stressed. 

A stressed female betta fish won’t lay as many eggs as you want. A small female betta also won’t have the strength to lay healthy eggs.


Conditioning fish is a common practice among fish keepers who want to promote or reduce specific behavior in their fish pets. The same can be done when you want your bettas to breed. 

You can condition your bettas to breed and spawn more eggs with the tips below:

  • Feeding them multiple times a day.
  • Increasing protein rich and live foods in their diet. 
  • Showcasing the betta fish to each other will also encourage them to start the breeding process.

Conditioning them will put them in the mood to spawn and encourage the production of healthy eggs. 

Once the eggs have been laid, fertilized, and are in the nest, only some of them will hatch to become Betta fish fry, that’s if the male betta fish doesn’t eat some eggs first.


How old is your betta? Betta fish become sexually active at around 2 to 3 months. But most aquarists suggest that you wait until the female betta is mature and ready to start breeding.

A female betta fish is fully grown at around seven months. They can comfortably handle the male Betta fish at this age without stress. This will help them lay healthier eggs than if the breeding process started when they were younger.

You shouldn’t also wait too long before breeding your betta fish. Betta fish only live for three to five years. So towards the end of their life, it won’t be as easy to breed them. And as female bettas grow older, they produce fewer eggs and become less fertile.


Yes, female bettas want an experienced male betta fish to mate with. A female betta fish that has already laid a couple of eggs will find it easier to breed with a male Betta fish than those with no spawning experience. 

Experienced bettas could produce healthier eggs that have a better chance of survival. Getting an experienced male and female betta fish is the best way to go because it also increases the number of fertilized eggs in the fish tank.

In some rare cases, inexperienced fish will eat some of the eggs before they become healthy fry. As scary as that sounds, bettas eating their fry isn’t anything new.

How Often Can Betta Fish Lay Eggs?

If you’re getting betta fish for the single purpose of breeding, you’ll be happy to know that bettas can lay eggs every couple of weeks. But this only depends on certain factors like the betta species and the breeding tank environment you place them in.

A sick or stressed betta won’t be able to mate as frequently or lay as many eggs as a healthy and mature betta fish. As mentioned above, getting an experienced male or female betta fish can also increase the frequency of laying eggs. 

So if you’re planning on filling your fish tank with Betta fish fry, you must ensure the male and female Betta fish are healthy and up to the task.

How Long Do Betta Fish Eggs Take To Hatch? 

Betta fish eggs take two to three days to hatch, while other bettas take more than a month. But this all depends on certain factors like water quality and water temperature. 

If you want to know why your betta fish eggs are taking too long to hatch, here are factors you should know:

Factors Effecting The Hatching Time of Betta Fish Eggs 

Water quality

Poor water quality could be the difference between life and death for your betta fish eggs. If the water is dirty or contains high levels of toxins like ammonia, it will harm the betta fish and their eggs.

The dirt particles can also clog the eggs’ pores, reducing the amount of oxygen they can get for their development. This will lengthen the hatching time for the betta fish eggs. 

A stressed betta fish isn’t good, either. Stressed male betta fish could eat the betta eggs if they’re hungry, so you need them to be calm when they are mating.  

To avoid these scenarios, you should add a filter to the breeding tank to keep the water clean. This is only one reason why beta fish need filters for their tanks. Using a water test kit will also help you maintain the proper water parameters for these fish.

Water Temperatures 

The water temperature will also affect the rate at which the eggs will hatch. Cold water will prolong the hatching process, while suitably warm water will help with the development of the betta eggs.

With warm water temperatures of around 75 degrees Fahrenheit, you can expect hatching to take a day, but colder water temperatures can prolong this by an additional few days. 

Betta Fish Species

The betta fish species in your home aquarium will determine how long the eggs will take to become betta fry. Betta fish species like mouth-brooding bettas will lay eggs that take longer than a couple of days to hatch. 

A mouth-brooding betta fish’s eggs will take an average of one month to hatch. While other betta fish eggs hatch in three days or a month, the betta microstoma eggs take longer than 30 days to hatch.

Do you know which betta fish species you have? 

Mouth-brooding Betta Fish

The mouth-brooding betta fish is larger than other betta fish species. Their eggs are also a different color compared to other betta fish eggs.

Unlike other betta fish, the mouth-brooding betta fish doesn’t create bubble nests. These betta fish species will hatch the betta eggs inside their mouths. 

As unusual as it seems, this is an adaptive behavior for mouth-brooding bettas because, in their natural habitat, the currents were too strong and couldn’t allow them to create bubble nests on the water surface. 

So they must carry them in their mouth to protect them from the strong currents.

But there are some advantages to carrying their unborn offspring in their mouths: 

  • The mouth-brooding betta fish can protect them 
  • Being carried in their mouths also provides plenty of oxygen for the gills and fin development of the betta eggs. 

Sadly, the mouth-brooding betta fish can’t eat while carrying the eggs. So it’s a huge sacrifice they are making to breed.

This betta fish care guide will help you know how to take care of betta fish after they hatch.

Breeding Behavior To Remember: 

  • You can tell that a female betta fish is ready to mate when its skin colour darkens and they start to exhibit different patterns on its body.
  • The female betta’s egg hole also opens more frequently, indicating they’re ready to lay eggs. 
  • The male betta fish creating a bubble nest on the water surface indicates they’re ready to start mating with the female betta fish. 
  • You will have to remove the male betta fish after fertilization because they can end up eating the eggs.


What should I do after my betta fish lays eggs?

Immediately after the female betta fish lays eggs, you should remove them from the breeding tank to give the male betta fish a chance to fertilize the eggs. After fertilization, you should remove the male betta fish because, as mentioned above, they can end up eating those eggs. 

Do Betta fish eggs need a bubble nest to hatch? 

Not all betta fish eggs need a bubble nest to survive. Mouth-brooding betta fish will carry the eggs in their mouths because they don’t create bubble nests on the water surface.

Can female Betta fish lay eggs without a male betta?

Yes, a female betta fish can lay eggs without a mate. But they will not be able to hatch because a male betta fish has to fertilize them first. The unfertilized eggs will rot and affect the tank’s water quality due to the increased amount of ammonia.


And that’s everything you need to know about breeding betta fish and what to do after your betta lays eggs! Seeing a betta fish create new life is exciting to watch, but you should be prepared because these fish can produce over 100 eggs per batch. 

If you don’t want so many eggs, you should consider which betta fish species you are breeding.  

But no matter which betta species you have, you should provide the proper water temperatures, diet, and water quality to ensure your bettas are healthy enough to breed and promote egg hatching.

While not all of them will survive to become betta fish fry, you can still have a good time raising a couple of healthy betta fish in your home aquarium.

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