We now have a whole page dedicated to the beautiful short-finned Plakat Betta. Learn where they came from and how to pick the perfect Plakat.

Q: MJ wrote,

What is a Plakat Betta?

A: In Western countries a Plakat (pronounced pla-COT) bettas are a short-finned variety of Betta Splendens. The bettas were originally selected out of rice patties in Thailand and Southeast Asia and bred for their fighting abilities. Plakats have large strong bodies, large jaws and small fins. Unlike the long finned variety commonly sold as pets, Plakats require short fins so they can move quickly in a fight and suffer less damage when paired with another male. In Thailand, both the long finned and short finned bettas are called Plakat Thai. They refer to the short finned specifically as Plakat Morh and the common long finned variety as Plakat Cheen which translates to “Fighting fish from China.”

Plakats aren’t found easily in local fish stores but can be purchased on Aquabid.com or from a Thai breeder directly. Because they were bred for fighting their temperament may be more aggressive than the long finned variety and consideration to tank mates should be given when preparing a home for these fish. It’s important to note that while betta fighting is common in the Thai culture these fish are protected under animal fighting statutes in many countries including the United Kingdom, Australia and most of the U.S.

Plakat Betta
Ryujin BCP pic Originally uploaded by Tinnyland.

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Reader Interactions


  1. Pyros says:

    If you’re interested in getting a plakat, I’ve noticed my local petsmart is selling them as “dragonscale” bettas.

    • Christie F. says:

      Dragon actually describes the characteristics of the scales, not the tail type. Dragons are highly metallic in appearance and usually favor a silvery hue (though they can come in gold, copper and other warmer shades as well.) You can have a long tail dragon or a plakat dragon like the one at your Petsmart.

  2. FunkZilla says:

    So Plakats are not a subspecies of betta imbelis? so they should inter breed with veil tails crown tails and such? I have a beautiful iridescent purple body mustard fin white butter flied male with very large big ear trait. is he still considered “Plakat” with big ears? other fins are standard short plakat style. I would love to find him a lady. but i need more info on betta breeding. con you recomend a source of info i can access through the internet?

  3. FunkZilla says:

    Also my plakats will not take any prepaired foods such as betta bites or freeze dried blood worms or tubifex. No flake either. they take it in an spit it out and it just funks the tanks up. I have them housed in 1.5 – 2 gallon globes. Planted with java fern anubus hornwort duckweed an other various plants an stones an drift wood. I have been “farming” mesquito larvy as it has been very unseasonably warm. they love it. is it ok to feed till i find a better source of live cultured foods?

  4. ARCL says:

    So plakat is not considered as betta? Sorry I’m so curious.

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