Keeping different types of fish together can be tricky. Everything comes down to compatibility and knowing what the fish require in order to live together harmoniously, this is especially important when considering a goldfish tank.
There are many potential fish than can live with goldfish. In this article, I will be presenting you with 11 amazing fish that can live with goldfish and a few Dos and Don’ts. These fish can help to avoid boredom in goldfish tanks and help to keep them physically and mentally healthy. So let’s get started.
Does Your Goldfish Need A Tank Mate?
The answer is yes. Goldfish get lonely just like any other pet. They are social creatures, and having other fish around can help reduce the stress of being caged up in a tank all day. And, if you pick the right buddy, they won’t be as likely to eat your goldfish’s food, and their waste will actually be useful for your goldfish, it’s full of nitrogen that helps plants grow!
Benefits Of Having Goldfish Tank Mates
Here are a few reasons that might convince you to buy a tank mate for your goldfish:
- They will keep them healthy by eliminating stress.
- They will give them a companion to play with.
- They will provide them with a sense of belonging.
- They will encourage your goldfish to swim around more often, as they wouldn’t be able to do so without the company of a tank mate.
Of course, there are some fish you want to avoid which we will discuss later in this article.
Ideal Goldfish Tank Mate Characteristics
Goldfish are a fantastic pet, and they’re even better with a friend. But it’s important to keep in mind that goldfish have some unique needs when it comes to their ideal companion.
1- Can Live In The Same Temperature Range
You’ll want to make sure that both fish prefer the same temperature range. If your goldfish likes to swim around in the warmest areas of the tank, but their companion prefers cooler waters, that could cause some issues.
Actually, goldfish are cold-water fish. They can’t tolerate temperatures above 75 degrees Fahrenheit (23 degrees Celsius). So, please don’t add fish that need warmer water than this.
2- Same Size As Goldfish
They should be large enough so that goldfish won’t attack them and eat them. Goldfish have hearty appetites and will eat anything they can fit into their mouths, including small fish.
So, You’ll need to make sure that their companions are large enough otherwise your fancy goldfish can mistake them for food and eat them.
On the other hand, If you have small or medium-sized goldfish, avoid adding larger fish because they could harm or intimidate your goldfish. And also It’s best not to mix large and small varieties of the same species due to bullying behavior.
3- Can Survive The Same Water Quality As Goldfish
Choose fish that have similar requirements for water quality. If you’re going to keep goldfish, the water won’t be as clean as it would be if you kept other tropical fish. It’s best to add species that can tolerate this.
Goldfish thrive in a wide range of water conditions, but as I have mentioned earlier they prefer cool water (below 75 degrees Fahrenheit). They also do best with slightly acidic water (pH of 6.5 to 7), as well as alkaline water (pH of 7 to 7.5). This means you can add community fish that enjoy similar conditions without any issues.
4- Peaceful Behaviour
They should be peaceful so they don’t fight with the goldfish. The best goldfish companions have an easygoing, amicable nature that won’t cause harm or stress to your goldfish. It’s always best to choose a fish that is known to be peaceful and non-aggressive towards other species.
5- Similar Bio Load
The second important consideration is your tank’s bio-load. A term used to describe the number of living organisms and waste material in the tank environment. There are few fish that will increase the bio-load, which can make it hard for you to maintain good water quality and healthy conditions in your aquarium. When choosing fish to live with your goldfish, select species with a low impact on the environment, so you won’t exceed what your equipment can handle.
List of 11 Ideal Fish That Can Live With Goldfish
As you know fancy goldfish are social creatures and do well with other goldfish, but not all fish will make good companions. If you want to get a tank mate for your goldfish, here are some different types of fish that will make a good companion:
1- Hillstream Loach
The hillstream loach is a great choice as your goldfish tank mate. These fish have very specific needs that make them more suitable for advanced aquarists, but once you have the proper setup in place, the hillstream loach is a great addition to your tank.
Both of these animals need cool water and do best in temperatures in the low 70s (Fahrenheit). The hillstream loach also needs a good amount of oxygen in its water and a lot of currents, so it is important to have a powerful filter in the tank or set up a separate stream so that the loach can swim against the current.
As long as you take care to provide the right environment for both animals, they should get along fine. Keep in mind that both fish are bottom feeders and will compete with each other for food if there isn’t enough to go around.
It’s also important to mention that while loaches are generally peaceful fish, they can sometimes be aggressive towards other loaches or anything that gets too close to their home base (they like to live under rocks or wood).
2- Brochis multiradiatus
The Brochis multiradiatus is a freshwater fish that is also known as the Emerald Catfish. These are small fish and can grow up to a maximum of 3 inches long.
This is an ideal tank mate for goldfish because they can withstand similar water conditions and have similar dietary requirements.
They can live together because they don’t compete for space, food, or other resources. Both species are herbivores and their diets consist of algae wafers, vegetables, and fruits. They will eat commercial flakes or pellets as well but only if they contain vegetable matter.
Another reason why these two species can live together is that they don’t compete for space. Brochis multiradiatus are bottom dwellers and goldfish stay in the middle to top of the tank. This means both species will have ample room to swim without clashing with each other.
Both species prefer calm water with little flow. This is important since Brochis multiradiatus are weak swimmers and high currents will stress them out.
3- Dojo Loach
Dojo Loach is an excellent tank mate for goldfish. There are several reasons why Dojo loach and goldfish can live together.
First, they are both cold-water fish. They can survive in water with a temperature between 65 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit, which means that you do not need to buy a heater to keep the water warm.
Second, they have similar dietary requirements. Both fish eat live foods such as bloodworm and tubifex worms. You can feed them flake food as well.
Third, they have similar living habits. Both Dojo loach and goldfish are bottom feeders that spend most of their time on the bottom of the tank or inside the gravels.
However, if one of the grows bigger you should still keep them in separate tanks if possible because they will require lots of space to swim around freely. Dojo loach also requires lots of space to move around in the tank because it is social fish that does not enjoy being alone inside the tank. And if you have a large tank, then you are good to go.
4- Bristlenose Pleco
Bristlenose Pleco is an amazing tank mate for goldfish. There are various reasons why Bristlenose Pleco and goldfish can live together in the same aquarium. Some of these reasons include:
Bristlenose pleco helps in cleaning algae from the surface of the tank. They do not share the same kind of food as goldfish, therefore they don’t compete for food. They do not harass your fancy goldfish or any other fish around them.
Goldfish are coldwater fish that can survive in temperatures as low as 65 degrees Fahrenheit. The bristle nose catfish is also a coldwater fish, which means it can survive in similar temperatures as goldfish. Both of these fish are native to China, where the water temperatures are cool throughout the year, which means they have adapted to living in similar water conditions.
5- White Cloud Mountain Minnow
White Cloud Mountain Minnows (Tanichthys albonubes) are excellent tank goldfish tank mates. They can easily live together in the same aquarium and will even breed together. There are several reasons why White Cloud Mountain Minnows and goldfish can live together in the same aquarium.
White Clouds have a temperament that is similar to goldfish. They are peaceful and non-aggressive, so they won’t pester or nip at your goldfish. They are also very hardy fish and can tolerate a wide range of water conditions, which makes them a good match for messy eating fish like goldfish which produce a lot of waste.
White Clouds are also bottom feeders, which means they will share the scraps from your goldfish’s meals. This will take care of any leftover food that would otherwise sink to the bottom of the tank and pollute the water.
White Clouds grow only to about 2 inches long and do not require as much space as goldfish.
They are an active schooling fish that loves to swim around a tank, but they don’t grow very big and don’t need lots of room like many fancy varieties of goldfish do.
6- Variatus Platy
Variatus Platy is a great tank mate for goldfish. There are several reasons why Variatus Platy and goldfish can live together.
First, they have the same water conditions needs. The pH level should be above 7.0 and the temperature should be around 70 degrees Fahrenheit. This is important because the fish will be living in similar water conditions.
Second, they have the same temperament. They will not eat one another and they will not attack one another. This is important because you want to make sure that the fish do not get hurt when living together.
The only problem they have is the differences in their bioloads and waste production, this is the one thing that might cause problems for platy/goldfish cohabitation.
7- Longfin Rosy Barbs
Longfin Rosy Barbs are also great goldfish tank mates. Here’s a look at why these two species can live together.
Rosy Barbs aren’t aggressive fish, but they can be nippy on goldfish fins. The size difference between Longfin Rosy Barbs and goldfish means that the Rosy Barbs can’t do any real damage to the Goldfish. Goldfish are simply too big for the barbs to even attempt to nip their fins. What’s more, the barbs have long finnage that goldfish find irresistible, so they’ll try to bite at them instead!
Longfin Rosy Barbs are tropical fish that thrive in a little warmer water than what goldfish need to survive.
However, this doesn’t mean you can’t keep both these species together as long as you follow one important rule: don’t let the water temperature drop below 75°F (24°C).
This temperature is suitable for both species, so they’ll be comfortable living in it together. In fact, your Longfin Rosy Barbs will thrive under these conditions.
8- Cherry Shrimp
You might be wondering, can shrimp live with goldfish? Well, there is one shrimp that can live together with goldfish. And It is called “Cherry Shrimp”. Cherry shrimp is also one of the fish that is suitable as a goldfish tank mate.
The following are some of the reasons why cherry shrimp and goldfish can live together in a tank:
- Cherry shrimps are very peaceful creatures that do not have any intention to hurt or harm any other fish inside the aquarium.
- They cannot match the speed of goldfish; hence, they are not threatened by them.
- Cherry shrimps are bottom dwellers that do not even try to compete for food with other fish inside the aquarium.
- Cherry shrimps also love clean water just like goldfish, so owners should make sure that their aquariums are always clean.
- Goldfish will not eat cherry shrimps because they think that they are too small and they can barely notice them because of their size.
9- Giant Danio
Danios are peaceful and highly active fish, which is a perfect match for goldfish in general.
I have done a lot of research on whether Giant Danios and goldfish can live together. I will explain why Giant Danio is also an amazing goldfish tank mate
First, they are both coldwater freshwater fish. So they can tolerate the same temperature and water conditions.
Second, Giant Danios are schooling fish. So if you have more than one Giant Danio, then they will hang out with each other and leave your goldfish alone.
Third, Giant Danios are peaceful fish, which makes them an ideal tank mate for goldfish, who don’t like aggressive fish.
The last reason why Giant Danio and goldfish can live together in a tank is that Carnivorous fish like Goldfish are very likely to eat smaller fish that fit into their mouths. However, this is not an issue with Giant Danios because they don’t prey on smaller fish or even baby goldfish. And due to the large size of Danion fish goldfish won’t be able to eat them as well. This makes them one of the safest choices when it comes to keeping fish with goldfish.
10- Khuli Loach
The Khuli loach is an interesting choice for a goldfish that can live together in a tank. Their size and appearance, combined with their behavior and requirements make them an outstanding choice to have as a goldfish tank mate.
The Khuli loach is a peaceful fish that does not have any aggressive behavior unless threatened by another fish or when provoked by a bigger fish. It feeds on the waste food left by other fishes in the tank and also feeds on the algae that grow on the surface of rocks and plants thus cleaning up the tank.
The size of these fishes is small which makes them easy to get along with bigger fishes like goldfish without having any problem. They do not even harm other fishes in the tank irrespective of their size and will most likely swim away if they feel threatened.
The Khuli Loaches are active bottom dwellers with an active lifestyle which makes them ideal for keeping with other bottom feeders like goldfish.
11- Checkered Barb (Puntius Oligolepis)
One of the best goldfish tank mates is the checkered barb. This species is a great choice to have as a goldfish tank mate. It is not only beautiful with its rich black and white coloration, but it also has very specific reasons why Checkered Barb and goldfish can live together in a tank.
Checkered barbs are peaceful and non-aggressive fish, so there will be no territorial aggression. The barb is not a fin nipper. They don’t harass other fish, so they won’t disturb the goldfish’s long flowing fins.
These barbs are good scavengers, which means they can eat the food your goldfish has missed.
They can live in the same water conditions as goldfish. Goldfish originate from slowly moving rivers, ponds, lakes, and streams. These waters tend to be soft and slightly acidic. Checkered barbs have similar water requirements and will do well with your goldfish.
They eat similar foods as goldfish. Goldfish eat commercial fish food, vegetables like blanched lettuce or zucchini, as well as pellets for bottom feeders. Checkered barbs eat similar foods and will not compete with your goldfish for food; they are also surface feeders while your goldfish will be feeding on the bottom of the tank.
What Fish Should You Not Put With Goldfish?
There are a few species of fish you should never put with your goldfish, regardless of their size and temperament. Some of the fish you should avoid keeping with your goldfish include:
- Tetras – Because goldfish like to eat small fish that can fit in their mouth, such as tetras.
- Blue Gourami – Blue gourami is tropical fish and requires higher water temperatures than goldfish. Also, goldfish produce more waste than tropical fish, so blue gourami will become stressed in a tank that isn’t kept clean enough for them.
- Cichlids – Cichlids are large territorial fish that don’t make good goldfish tank mates. Goldfish are slow-moving, making them easy targets for cichlids to bully.
- Bettas – Bettas are another tropical species of fish that require warmer water temperatures than goldfish do. Bettas also prefer still water while goldfish like to swim around a lot.
- Angelfish – Angelfish is also a specie that requires warmer water temperatures than goldfish and they are also slow swimmers which makes them an easy target for fast swimming goldfish.
- Tiger Barbs – Tiger barbs are another tropical species of fish that require warmer water temperatures than goldfish and they are also too small to hold their own against the larger goldfish. They will likely end up as a tasty snack for your larger more aggressive goldfish.
Can Betta Fish Live With Goldfish?
No, betta fish can not live with goldfish. Although it might seem like a nice idea, the two types of fish have different tank requirements and even a larger tank may not be enough.
Bettas and goldfish can’t live together in the same tank for several reasons. For one thing, bettas are tropical fish that need a heated aquarium between 76° and 82°F, while goldfish thrive in cooler waters around 65° to 75°F. This means that you need two separate tanks (or at least two heaters) to house both types of fish.
Both bettas and goldfish produce large amounts of waste (more than some other common aquarium fish), so you need to provide a very large tank to ensure that the water quality doesn’t decline quickly. Bettas prefer shallow tanks, while goldfish like deeper waters, so their ideal living conditions are incompatible.
In addition, it is possible for your pet betta to mistake your goldfish as competition and attack them, although this isn’t always the case.
Can Guppies Live With Goldfish?
The answer is yes, they can live together, but there are a few things that you will need to consider first before putting them in the same tank.
Guppies and goldfish come from two completely different environments. Guppies are native to the hot freshwater streams of South America, while goldfish come from the cool waters of East Asia. So how does this affect your tank? Well, because of their slight differences in temperature preference, it can make your tank management slightly more complicated.
However, as long as you do your research and know what you are doing, it’s not a deal-breaker!
Can Angelfish Live With Goldfish?
Simply, No. Angelfish and goldfish should not be kept together. They require different water parameters, have different dietary needs, and are incompatible in terms of their size and aggression level. That being said, let’s take a look at the rationale for why this is.
Angelfish will get stressed very quickly in a goldfish tank. The water quality in a goldfish tank is often less than that required by angelfish. Goldfish are messy fish, and they need more filtration than most tropical fish.
They also produce more waste, which means more ammonia and nitrates. While goldfish have an organ that helps them to cope with higher ammonia levels (called a “labyrinth organ”), angelfish do not have this organ. This means that they will become stressed by the ammonia levels in a goldfish tank much quicker than goldfish do.
Can Plecos Live With Goldfish?
Plecos are generally not good goldfish tank mates.
There are a few reasons for this. For one, goldfish are messy eaters and produce a lot of waste. This can easily pollute the water, leading to issues such as ammonia poisoning. And plecos are sensitive to water conditions.
Another issue is that plecos require substantially different foods than goldfish. Both species need meaty fare, but goldfish also need some plant material in their diets to be healthy (plecos don’t). Goldfish food also contains more carbohydrates and fats than most pleco foods do. So it’s unlikely that a single food will provide both species with what they need nutritionally.
There is one exception, Bristlenose Plecos. These fish have adapted to living in rivers, just like goldfish, and can tolerate similar conditions (e.g., cooler water temps). They’re generally less demanding about water quality and more omnivorous than other pleco species (e.g., Common Plecos), so they can hold their own with goldfish when it comes to feeding. Still, though, unless you are prepared to keep up with the messiness of a goldfish tank.
Can Glofish Live With Goldfish?
Yes, GloFish can live with Goldfish but just make sure that you don’t add too many other fish species to your aquarium. One of the best things about combining GloFish and Goldfish is that they are both cold-water fish.
There is not much difference between the water temperatures they prefer. Both species also tend to eat similar foods. However, it is important to note that the small size of GloFish makes them susceptible to being eaten by larger fish species like the Common Goldfish.
One more important thing, the two species should not be kept in the same tank if you are breeding them. The fry will be eaten by whatever fish is larger and most aggressive. If you do not want to breed your fish, then they can be kept together.
My Favorite Fish That Can Live With Goldfish
White Cloud Mountain Minnow is my favorite fish that I would recommend for a goldfish tank. It is one of the most common fish you see in pet stores. They are hardy, peaceful, and easy to care for.
I have had my White Cloud Mountain Minnows in my goldfish tank since they were little guys. They’ve been with me through thick and thin, and they’ve always been great companions.
And now they’re big, so there’s no need to worry about them anymore. Please let us know in the comment which one you like the most.