Badis Badis: Full Care Guide, Breeding, Tank Size & Diseases

With a strange name that appears twice, badis badis is a unique fish which is rather small yet is able to change into a number of colors depending on its mood. Also known as Blue Perch, the fish belongs to the family of the Badidae in the order of Perciformes.

Badis Badis Care

Badis badis are tropical fish that prefer water temperatures ranging from 72 to 77 degrees Fahrenheit. The badis badis can live with fish of the same size since they are not very violent. They like swimming in waters with little vegetation but enough mud to promote the growth of certain aquatic plants.

Origin of Badis Badis

Native to several rivers in India including Tumapao River found close to Duma, Yamuna River in the Himachal Pradesh State, Dibru River Basin and Mahanadi River in Orissa State among others. Other countries where the fish can be found include Bangladesh, Nepal and Pakistan.

The fish inhabits rivers with slow-moving waters that are not only shallow but wide as well. They enjoy swimming in waters with marginal vegetation yet turbid with sufficient mud that promotes the growth of certain aquatic plants. For this reason, the fish is unique to India where most rivers are used for the irrigation of rice and as a result are brownish in color.

Appearance of Badis Badis

badis badis

Badis Badis has a long yet slender profile that measures about 8cm when mature. Other characteristics to help identify the fish are:

  • A dark spot above the base of the pectoral fin.
  • Dark markings can be spotted on the dorsal fin. The same applies to the base of the dorsal fin where only a single marking is found.
  • On the flanks are dark markings that come in a series.
  • Possesses lateral line scales.
  • Has a color pattern that comprises of at least 11 vertical bars.
  • Red and black pigmentation on the caudal peduncle and flank.

Females are slightly smaller and appear less colorful as well. However, they are more round than the males. On the other hand, males are more slender but possess quite attractive colors that become more pronounced during breeding when they seek attention from females.

Tank Requirements

From experience, most hobbyists affirm that various types of fish do well in large water tanks as opposed to small aquariums. This can be attributed to the fact that in their natural habitats, they enjoy free-flowing waters in non-restricted areas. For this reason, it is often better to house fish in sizeable tanks that offer them sufficient space to swim and play.

For the badis badis, here are some tank requirements that you need to take into consideration when housing them:

  • A tank that is no less than 30 gallons.
  • A substrate comprising of sand and gravel. Some rocks and pebbles should be present to provide a kind of cover when the fish needs to rest.
  • Plant species that will provide shades and hiding places. Tanks with plant life look more natural.
  • Driftwood twigs, plant branches, and leaves that float on the water.
  • Water temperatures at between 15 and 25 degrees Celsius.
  • A pH of 6.0-7.5.
  • A water hardness of 54-258ppm.

As a matter of fact, cave-like structures that will be essential when the fish is to breed. Hobbyists often use coconut shells that have been divided into half, or pots made of clay that have some holes drilled into them. The clay pot parts can be designed to mimic the shape of the half coconut.

Badis Badis Diet

Fish that eat essential nutrients do not suffer from ill-health occasionally and grow very fast. Well-fed fish also maintain an attractive color, looking quite beautiful in the process.

The badis badis is capable of changing into a variety of colors, sprucing up a tank. For maximum utilization of this characteristic in the badis badis, provide essential feeds, by occasionally alternating the foods to avoid monotony.

Classified as micro-predators, they mainly feed on insect larvae, worms, crustaceans and zooplankton. In captivity, they do not easily feed on dried feeds. Instead, offer them glassworm, daphnia and Artemia.

While they tend to be shy, under low light, they feed well and may have issues with obesity if a lot of food is provided to them. To keep this to a minimum, perhaps having other tankmates to help clear some food is a necessity.

Foods like tubifex and bloodworms should not be provided to the fish as they are reported to make them susceptible to fish disease.

Breeding Badis Badis

With distinct differences between the males and females, a hobbyist can breed the badis badis in captivity. They are referred to as cave spawners who form temporary bonds during times of breeding. For successful breeding, the following could be done:

  • Remove other tankmates so that the fry can survive. Remember, some fish species eagerly feed on fry whether it belongs to them or other tankmates.
  • Decide whether to put in one male in the tank with the female or a variety. If more than one male is to be put into the tank, ensure there are caves for them to inhabit during this period. The tank should be big enough to house them too.
  • As the males fight for female attention, they will exhibit bright colors.
  • While in their caves, combative males will attempt to drag the female into the cave during which they may lock lips. The willing female then accepts the offer before spawning takes place. A female may lay anything from 30 to100 eggs.
  • After the eggs have been fertilized by the male, the female is ejected from the cave while the male stays put. During this point in time, the male will defend the eggs while fanning them using its fin.
  • After about 2-3 days, the eggs hatch but the fry are still weak and only begins to swim in about 7 or 8 days.
  • As soon as they begin to move, the male is likely to begin feeding on them so it is important to remove it from the tank.
  • At this stage, the fry are still young and should be fed on micro-worms. Artemia nauplii can be added to the feeds too.

Badis Badis Tankmates

The badis badis is not very aggressive and can tolerate same size fish. Some of the recommended fishes include some type of tetras, less aggressive corydoras and even angelfish if the tank is big enough with a lot of plant coverage for hiding.

Last important point to note

As it changes color quite rapidly, it is sometimes confused with the chameleon fish. When shopping for badis badis, a hobbyist must be careful otherwise a different species may be provided instead of the badis badis.

The badis badis is a lovely fish that will automatically spruce up a tank. It is therefore a very cute addition to the aquarium.

Common Diseases And Their Treatments

Even though they are hardy fish, they can suffer from some common fish diseases. To take good care of your colorful Badis Badis, you should know about those diseases and how to treat them. So have a look at the below-given points. 

Protozoan Parasites

Different types of protozoan parasites can affect the health of your badis badis. When they attack, your fish will develop a white spot near fins, gills, and body. On the other hand, your fish may rub against objects placed in the tank. Chilodonella and Costia can develop cloudiness. Well, such conditions are treatable, and you can use any fish anti-parasitic medication. Just add it to the water. 

External Parasites

These parasites enter into the tank through the live plants kept in the fish tank. Besides, they can come with live food or new fish. You can see them with your naked eyes—for example, anchor worms, argulus or fish lice, flatworms, or flukes. 

You can deal with these dangerous external parasites by treating the tank water using anti-parasitic medication. You should take out the affected fish and place it in a quarantine tank. Then, give your fish a salt bath. 


If the tank’s water condition is poor, it can develop fungus. When your Badis Badis have fungus, you can see grey or whitish spot on the body or around the mouth. To treat fungus-related diseases, you can apply anti-bacterial medicines to the water. And don’t forget to add a few spoons of salt to make the environment comfortable for your fish. 

Infections Caused By Bacteria

Well, most fish tanks can come with different types of bacteria that can be very harmful if they have other diseases. Some common symptoms of these infections can include ragged fins, shredded fins, ulcers, white spots around the body, poor appetite, and more. Well, don’t panic if your little fish has bacterial infections, as this condition can be easily treated by using salt baths and fish anti-bacterial medications. 


Obesity in these fishes is very normal. But it is a fact that this condition is very difficult to diagnose if the fish keepers don’t know how the fish is supposed to look. Also, in the case of females, detecting obesity will become more challenging as they have eggs. 

They will act normal, but you will find the fat. Some of the major reasons leading to obesity are too much food, lack of swimming space, fatty foods, and more. To treat this condition, give a small amount of fish food once a day. 


This is a condition developed due to the accumulation of gas, unpassed food, and fluids. You may think that your fish has eaten too much, but sometimes there can be some other reasons.  When it happens, your fish may stop pooping. As a result, they can avoid swimming and become inactive. 

Bloating can be caused by internal tumors, constipation, intestinal blockage, and more. To keep your fish safe from this, give them healthy fish food. And frequently treat the water with anti-bacterial solutions. 

Facts About Badis Badis

  • Looking at the bright colors of Badis Badis, some may think that they are cichlids, but they are from the Badidae family.
  • These fish may act very aggressively with other fish species, but in general, they are peaceful. 
  • Even though the fishes are small, they are hardy and can demonstrate a longer lifespan than other smaller species.
  • If you keep Badis Badis as your pet, prefer to keep one male with two to three females.

Are Badis Badis Right For You?

There is no doubt that Badis Badis can bring some amazing colors to your home aquarium. But there is one thing that you should keep in your mind. Even though they are timid and peaceful fish types, sometimes they can become very aggressive if there is not enough space in your aquarium. 

A well-planted tank will allow them to create their territory, and such an environment will make them feel properly sheltered and safe. When it comes to feeding, you will find them as demanding fish. As they are fussy eaters, they don’t prefer to consume flake food. If you think you can take good care of your Badis Badis, then bring some Badis Badis now. 


What Are Some Good Badis Badis Tankmates?

As per the experienced fishkeepers, the perfect tank mates for your Badis Badis are their species. Just make sure you have provided them with enough space to comfortably get along and enjoy a stress-free life. 

Before putting them in a tank with other fish, you need to understand their temperament level with other fish. For example, Badis Badis are skittish around larger or active fish, and you should not keep them with cichlids or bettas as this can lead to a disaster. 

However, rasboras and Gouramis are two popular types of fish that can be good tankmates. But prefer to keep your Badis Badis only with their kind. However, you can also keep pygmy Corydoras, marbled hatchet fish, toucan tetras, ember tetra, and cherry shrimp with your Badis Badis. 

How Many Badis Badis Should Be Kept Together?

If you use a small aquarium with a 10-gallon capacity, then keeping one male Badis Badis with three females will work well. If you want to keep only males, make sure that the tank has sufficient hiding spots. To keep a school of five to six Badis Badis, you will have to use a 20-gallon aquarium.  Offer them sufficient space to swim around to keep them stress-free. 

Are Blue Badis And Badis Badis The Same?

Yes, Badis Badis and Blue Badis are the same. They are tiny species and love to live in freshwater. They belong to the family Badidae of Anabantiformes. However, they will vary in terms of color. 

Blue Badis’ initial color can be mottled red, tan, and brown with vertical stripping. However, when they reach maturity, male Badis can develop an intense red with iridescence blue combination. 


Well, it can be said that Badis Badis are fun and beautiful fish, and they are perfect for small fish tanks. So, if you are a beginner, then you can go for this species. Even though Badis Badis are quite straightforward to maintain and keep, you will find the process rewarding. 

When offered the right environment and recommended water parameters, you can breed Badis Badis in an aquarium without any issues. But, before buying then, go through this comprehensive Badis Badis care guide properly and make sure that you can follow the steps. And prefer to keep them with only the compatible tankmates.

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