Tropical Fish That Don't Belong With Goldfish

by That_FishLady

Tropical fish do not make good tankmates for goldfish, their care requirements and diet are much too different, and will eventually create frustrating fish problems.


When it comes to keeping goldfish there are just some tank mates that should never be introduced to your aquarium -- Doing so will create a whole list of Fish Problems that will cause you headache after fish keeping headache!

Here is a quick guide to some of the most common No-No's to avoid so that you can keep your goldfish happy and healthy in the long run.

Keep Goldfish Community and Tropical Community Fish Separate

While both types of fish are relatively easy-going and often times either schooling or shoaling, they are way too different to be placed in the same tank with each other.

For one, goldfish get very large and increasingly messy as they grow. On the other hand, most tropical community fish stay small in comparison, and they are sensitive to large amounts of ammonia in their water. This alone should be a dead give-away that goldies and trops are probably going to give you a headache!

Next, each type requires a different temperature of water to thrive in the aquaria. If you aren't keeping your fish within their optimal temperature range they won't grow as well, show their best colors or breed for you. Quite simply, they won't be as healthy as the could be. Sure, they may survive for quite some time in a mixed tank. However, neither fish will thrive together.

Your goldfish is constantly looking for food! This becomes a problem once your goldie outgrows your tropical fish, like mollies and guppies. Small, tropical fish start looking like very appetizing snacks around this time! (Yes, your goldfish CAN and WILL eat other fish if given the opportunity. This DOES NOT mean that it is healthy for them, so don't start getting all excited to watch your goldfish eat live feeders.)

Speaking of food, their respective diets are WAY different. If you want to avoid a lot of the common fish problems associated with goldfish you should first start by offering them the proper diet. 

So, this means:

1. NO mollies
2. NO platies
3. NO guppies
4. NO gouramis
5. NO tropical cat fish, like cory cats


You're getting the picture now, right?

small common plecos
small common plecos

Common Plecos Don't Belong with Goldfish

There are plenty of other algae-eating alternatives!

Many people purchase young common plecos to place in with their goldfish to control the algae growth (Goldies are very messy = Excess nutrients in water = You guessed it, algae!). However, this really isn't the best idea. The common pleco has been observed sucking on the sides of slower moving goldfish (They're ALL slower moving compared to a pleco!), which in turn creates ulcer-like, circular marks that leave the goldie at risk for developing serious infections.

Not to mention that the common pleco grows REALLY BIG, requires a tropical environment and pollutes the water even more than your goldfish do -- You think goldfish poop a lot?? You've never watched an adult pleco! They're practically pooping machines, leaving long spaghetti-trails curling across the fish tank while they constantly graze.

Here are a few algae-combating alternatives suitable for your goldfish tank:

1. Various species of snails

2. Albino and regular Bristle-nose plecos

3. You, with a scrub brush in hand!

Goldfish Make Great Companions for Other Types of Goldfish

While this may sound boring to the inexperienced, there are SO MANY different compatible goldfish breeds to choose from once you start looking -- the sheer diversity among the species should be enough to keep you occupied!

Aside from other compatible Goldies, there really aren't very many other suitable companions for your goldfish tank -- there are a few, however, with many seemingly compatible cold water fish you are still going to have to sacrifice some aspect of care for them to live in a fish tank full of messy goldfish.

And of course you start running into Goldfish Diseases once you start sacrificing good husbandry practices.

Updated: 06/02/2011, That_FishLady
Thank you! Would you like to post a comment now?


Only logged-in users are allowed to comment. Login

You might also like

Choosing a Betta Fish for Your Apartment

Bettas make perfect pets for small spaces, such as dorm rooms, classrooms, an...

Pest Snails in the Aquarium

For some people, pest snails are one of the most frustrating fish problems. P...

Disclosure: This page generates income for authors based on affiliate relationships with our partners, including Amazon, Google and others.
Loading ...