Monday, September 25, 2023
HomeFreshwater FishFreshwater Aquarium BasicsCan Betta Fish See in The Dark? (Betta Vision Q&A)

Can Betta Fish See in The Dark? (Betta Vision Q&A)

Ever found yourself peering into your betta fish tank, wondering, “can betta fish see in the dark” and “do betta fish like the dark?” Curious if they can navigate their underwater world when the lights go out or if they’re comfortable in dim environments?

In this blog, we’ll unravel the mysteries behind betta fish vision in the dark and provide you with insights to ensure your finned friends thrive, day and night.

Do betta fish see in the dark?

Betta fish can perceive their surroundings in complete darkness, but their vision is severely limited in those conditions. Absolute darkness not only impairs their eyesight, but it can also lead to heightened irritation for these fish.

While bettas possess horizontal streaks that allow them to sense nearby objects, they struggle to clearly see things in the dark. To support their well-being, it’s recommended to provide food during daylight hours or under appropriate aquarium lighting, as they face difficulty locating their food in darkness.

can betta see in the dark
can betta see in the dark

Betta Fish night vision

Unlike birds of prey with vision, betta fish have relatively weak eyesight. Their eyes work differently from humans; they possess monocular vision, meaning each eye sees a distinct image.

However, an intriguing aspect is their limited depth perception – the ability to gauge distance is a challenge for them. While there’s no such thing as a betta fish glow in the dark, their eyes do have unique adaptations.

Interestingly, betta fish’s simultaneous view of two images doesn’t enhance depth perception as one might expect. To compensate, they rely on pressure sensors along their sides to detect water pressure, aiding them in estimating proximity to objects.

Do Bettas Like Being in the Dark?

To shed light on this topic, betta fish don’t favor daylight darkness, but the story changes at night. Similar to humans, betta fish usually sleep in the dark, they prefer a dark environment to rest. Placing lights in their tanks during the night isn’t logical.

Imagine having a bright light in your face while trying to sleep – it’s unsettling. Bettas, similarly, appreciate darkness at night for uninterrupted sleep. Interestingly, their innate pressure sensing ability safeguards them from collisions in the dark.

Source: True Aquarium 


Does betta fish like dark places?

Betta fish hail from tropical regions with moving waters. While they possess night vision, they lean towards dimmer surroundings due to their origin in murky waters with limited sunlight. Yet, it’s essential to note that they require at least ten hours of daily light exposure for their overall health and balance.

Are betta fish scared of the dark?

Betta fish possess the ability to see in the dark. However, they might display surprise when exposed to abrupt changes in lighting due to their limited iris control. Certain bettas might react by flaring their gills and fins when the lights are turned off.

This response could suggest feelings of fear or aggression. It’s important to note that some bettas naturally change color while sleeping in the dark, which is a normal phenomenon and not indicative of stress.

Can betta fish eat in the dark?

Betta fish are not nocturnal creatures, and their poor vision makes it difficult for them to eat in total darkness. They rely on natural sunlight to locate food, which means feeding them in complete darkness isn’t ideal.

If there’s a bit of ambient light present, they might manage to see or sense their food. For their optimal feeding, it’s advisable to provide meals during the daytime when they are more active and responsive to hunger cues.

- Advertisement -

Should healing betta be kept in the dark?

It’s not advisable to keep healing betta fish in total darkness, but providing reduced light and maintaining warm water can aid their recovery from illnesses or injuries.

Diseases like fungal infections can be exacerbated by factors such as stress, poor water quality, or overfeeding. To facilitate healing, ensure their tank is clean, well-filtered, and spacious. This environment, along with appropriate lighting and temperature, can contribute to their recuperation.

Why does my betta hide in the dark when i turn the tank light on?

When your betta fish hides in the dark upon turning on the tank light, a few factors could be at play:

  • Light Sensitivity: Bettas prefer a balanced day-night cycle and might find excessive light uncomfortable. Adjust the lighting to simulate natural lighting conditions.
  • Security and Hiding Spots: Your betta could be feeling vulnerable due to insufficient hiding places or plant cover in the tank. Adding more hiding spots can alleviate their unease.
  • Health Concerns: Hiding might indicate illness or injury. Observe closely for any changes in behavior, appetite, or appearance, and consider seeking veterinary guidance if needed.

Can betta see their eggs in the dark?

Betta fish have limited night vision due to their small iris, which restricts the amount of light entering their eyes. Their preference is not to be active at night.

Consequently, it’s improbable that they can clearly see their eggs in the dark, unless there’s external light or exceptionally clear water conditions.


The world of betta fish vision holds its own captivating secrets. “Can betta fish see in the dark?”. While they might not excel in darkness, their unique abilities to sense pressure and adapt to various light conditions make them truly remarkable creatures.

Whether you’re an experienced aquarium enthusiast or just dipping your toes into the aquatic realm, understanding your betta’s visual preferences can enhance their well-being.

For more intriguing insights into the fascinating world of aquatic life, dive into the treasure trove of blogs waiting for you at National Park Aquarium. Unveil the wonders of underwater existence and unlock a deeper connection with your aquatic companions.

(Vote: 1 Average: 5)


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Most Popular