There’s nothing more aesthetically pleasing than having an aquarium full of colorful fish.
To achieve this, most pet owners opt for a beautiful, and yet sometimes expensive Betta fish.
Due to their uniqueness, Bettas are also one of the preferred choices for breeders.
Naturally, this leads to the creation of hybrid species which are quite rare, and in some extreme cases end up costing a fortune.
Curious to see how pricey these breeds actually are?
You’re at the right place!
10 Most Expensive Betta Fish Breeds
Before we move on to the list, let’s first look at what affects the price of a Betta fish.
Bettas have been bred for ornamental purposes since the early 19th century.
Throughout the years, breeders have managed to create a plethora of unique species by focusing their attention on various traits.
Some selectively bred fish with unique tail shapes, while others were more engaged in creating one-of-a-kind color patterns. When the selected features stood out from those of other Bettas, the price of the selected breed went higher.
All of this led to an influx of Bettas with all manner of tail shapes and pigmentation patterns.
This, in turn, made the truly rare ones even more pricey.
On average, a common type Betta fish costs between $3 and $10, whereas the more fancy breeds reach between $30 and $60. The occasional rare betta fish from a dedicated breeder, however, can reach a price of around $150. But these prices are just averages for each class of Betta.
Having said that, it’s time to move on to the 10 most expensive Betta fish:
10. Twin Tail
Don’t let the name of this Betta type fool you.
It actually has a single tail, with a split at the base of it.
This, however, doesn’t make it any less appealing.
Twin Tails or Double Tails as they’re most commonly referred to are quite rare to find.
This in conjunction with the diversity of color patterns they come in, can substantially increase their cost.
Regardless of this, being at the bottom of the list means they’re still relatively inexpensive compared to other breeds.
The most expensive Twin Tail specimens can fetch a price of a few hundred dollars.
Author’s note: Bear in mind that Twin Tails aren’t as hardy as other Bettas. Being the result of a mutation, they are predisposed to various health predicaments such as fin rot and swim bladder disease.
9. True Purple Betta
True Purple Bettas are nearly impossible to find.
Just like every other ornamental fish, they don’t exist in nature and were bred with a specific purpose in mind. The difference lies in the fact that creating a fish with a single color shade is quite difficult.
Many breeders try to achieve this effect by crossbreeding blue and red bettas.
Unfortunately, the results seldom meet the expectations of buyers.
For this particular reason, most “purple” Bettas sold on the market actually have red or blue undertones which can easily be spotted using a flashlight.
There are many Bettas sold as “purple” but they simply imitate purple or have it mixed with other colors. These are not expensive by all means, as their prices range from $10 to $60 depending on the color pattern.
There are also subspecies of purple Betta fish such as the Purple Salamander and Purple Popsicle, but even those aren’t purely purple.
Author’s note: Breeding a purely purple Betta is an extremely demanding process. Most often than not, it results in a fish with a mixture of pink, red, and blue. This is why purple is widely considered to be the rarest color for a Betta fish.
With all of this in mind, it’s not a surprise that a purely purple Betta can go for a few hundred bucks or even more on the market.
8. Wild Betta Fish
Unlike the previous entries in this list, wild Bettas are completely natural.
This puts them at a somewhat disadvantage when it comes to the look of their tail fins.
However, they more than compensate for it with heavily saturated pigmentation.
The single most important feature which differentiates wild bettas from their ornamental cousins is their authenticity.
These fish aren’t weighed down by the different mutations that plague other betta fish and as a result, are more resilient.
This along with the fact that there are more than 70 different species of wild Betta Fish, makes rare specimens truly valuable.
The price of an uncommon wild betta is anywhere between $150 to $300.
7. King of Blue Eyes Avatar
“Over half moons” (OHM) are one of my favorite betta breeds.
The way they swim exudes an air of elegance, which makes them easily stand out from other fish.
Pair this with their diverse color palette, and you can easily see why they’re so popular among aquarists.
The king of Blue Eyes is no exception to this rule.
It boasts a splendid multicolored tail, with hues ranging from walnut brown to cyan and light blue.
The contrast between its tail and body makes for a truly stunning specimen.
The King of Blue Eyes Avatar was sold at an online auction for $533.
6. King of Gold Dragon
This half moon is well deserving of its name.
The brass color of its body accompanied by its cellophane tail, give it a truly regal look.
Upon first glance, you might start thinking it may even grant your wishes.
Unfortunately, the only way to find out if that’s true would be to part with at least $570 of your hard-earned cash. Personally, I wouldn’t spend such a sum, for it’s still a Halfmoon prone to the typical Betta health issues.
5. Rose White Platinum Dragon
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that there’s another OHM on the list.
Unlike the King of Blue Eyes, however, the Rose White Platinum is of the Dragon betta variety.
You might wonder what makes this type of betta so valuable when there’s an abundance of dragon scales on the market.
While this might be the case, white is one of the rarest colors for a betta fish, which makes this specimen a true gem in the eyes of aficionados.
With a price tag of $680, the Rose White Platinum Dragon ranks as one of the most expensive betta fish ever sold.
Author’s note: Many hobbyists mistake white bettas with albino bettas. White betta fish have opaque milky white scales, whereas those of albinos are pink.
4. Crowntail Betta
Crowntails have arguably the most distinct-looking tail of all bettas.
Mistaking them for other breeds is borderline impossible.
This, along with their relative rarity, can make them quite expensive.
If you want to own a fine crowntail specimen, you would need to spare between $500 to $1000.
It’s good to keep in mind that the beauty of a Crowntail comes at a cost.
These bettas are prone to diseases that attack their fins.
That’s why it’s not uncommon for them to bend their tails, break a ray or suffer from fin rot.
3. Kachen Worachai’s Thai Rong Betta (Current World Record Holder)
by Cfaith (not the original Kachen Worachai betta but has similar coloration)
Named after its creator, the Kachen Worachai, also known as Thai Rong, is a plakat betta in the colors of the Thai national flag.
The increased popularity of plakats in Thailand and other parts of Asia has made them one of the prime choices for breeders.
And even though there have been previous attempts at creating a betta in the colors of the Thai flag, none has ever come as close as the Kachen Worachai.
This colorful betta surpassed the initial expectations of its owner who expected it to sell for a few hundred dollars. The Kachen Worachai Betta’s sale price of $1530, makes it the most expensive betta fish ever sold in the world to this day. This was the equivalent of 53,500 baht at the time of the sale, which was 15th of November, 2016.
The competition for the rare betta fish was so intense that it instantly went viral after Kachen had posted it in a private Facebook group for betta fish auctions.
Moreover, just on the second day the price bids reached $285, which by auction standards is impressive.
Kachen Worachai himself thinks that breeding a Betta with the exact colors of the Thai flag is a “1 in 100,000” chance.
He thinks he got lucky this time.
Up until Kachen Worachai’s record-breaking Betta sale, the most expensive fish ever sold was a half-moon Betta.
The highest price this one reached and was sold at was $671 (23,500 baht at the time).
2. Pee Kloaw Betta
The Pee Kloaw Betta’s unique feature was its thick red stripe across the gills, reminding something of a corset.
The Betta itself was white in color with a few darker scales and greyish accents across the tip of its tail and fins.
Such white mixed coloration is nothing impressive on its own, but the dark red stripe the Pee Kloaw sported alongside that was basically a miracle.
The Pee Kloaw Betta was, same as Kachen Worachai’s one, sold for $1530 (23,500 baht).
The reason Kachen Worachai’s betta is considered the record holder is that it was the first one to ever reach the record sale price.
1. Plakat Fantail Betta
The last entry in this list is more of a speculation than anything else.
During my visit to the Aquashella convention, I stumbled upon a breeder who claimed to have created a pair of fantail plakat bettas.
Fantails are quite a rare sight on their own.
Buying or even finding one is nigh-on-impossible.
At this point, they’re like mythical creatures, with only word-of-mouth accounts of their existence.
Unsurprisingly, I felt somewhat suspicious when I heard about these fantails.
When I finally did manage to catch a glimpse of them, my suspicions turned out to be unwarranted.
Even though they aren’t for sale, according to their creator, each could fetch a price of $5000.
Again, all of this is in the realm of speculation, so you should take it with a grain of salt.
Feeling discouraged by these prices? Don’t be.
There are other less expensive betta fish that look equally as impressive for the most part.
Feel free to share any thoughts or questions you might have in the comments below.