Any Goldfish Tank Mates?

I was wondering if there are any types of fish I could throw in with my goldfish. They are approximately 3-4 years old, no bigger than 4 inches, and the filter provides decent current and have never had water issues. I have been looking at possibly a few danios because they have overlapping water temp preferences about 70-72. But I just don't know how a minnow or catfish would react to the goldfishes presence. Any ideas? I just want a little color in my tank after a few of these years. I'm also open to fish such as white cloud, bala shark, or some sort of catfish.

Re: Any Goldfish Tank Mates?

What size tank do you have?
Esteemed Contributor

Re: Any Goldfish Tank Mates?

[ Edited ]

You’ve done well enough to keep your fish alive for several years—and that’s much better than most—but fish as old as yours should probably be larger than a few inches by now.  My guess would be that these fish need more space, more frequent and larger water changes and possibly an upgrade in filtration.

Average growth for plain GoldfishAverage growth for plain Goldfish

You’re correct, too,  that some barbs and danios can take cooler temperatures; the bottom of their range is compatible with the upper range for goldfish (about 68 degrees). Other fish that prefer cooler water are Paradise Fish, White Cloud Mountain Minnows, Hillstream Loaches, Dace, Golden Orfe and Chinese Algae Eaters, however I don't recommend  adding other fish.

Goldfish aren’t generally aggressive and they aren’t typically thought of as carnivorous, but in the close quarters of an aquarium they will become opportunistic predators and probably eat any small fish they can catch. Of course, the comets and other single tailed fish are much speedier (and therefore more dangerous to other fish) than the Ryukins, Moors, Bubble eyes and Pearl Scales.  As for larger fish, Goldfish are large fish themselves that need large tanks. When space is an issue from the beginning, there’s no point to making into more of a problem.  Being that they spend most of their time nosing around the substrate, they do a respectable job “scavenging” so Plecostomus or other catfish are unnecessary.

Because of diet, Goldfish put quite a burden on the filter system, and that’s another reason not to add other fish. People say they are messy, but they are just big fish that make a large amount of waste proportionate to their size. The best foods for them are somewhat messy, however:  They should be eating mostly green foods like zucchini, romaine, kale and spirulina pellets or discs.  This should be supplemented with goldfish pellets or flakes: note that dry commercial foods should make up a pretty small part of their diet.

A single comet goldfish can get nearly a foot long. Fancy Twin tailed strains ought to get to be the size of a large orange when they mature.  I don’t know how many fish you have or what type, but I’d recommend no smaller than a 55 gallon tank for 2-3 fancies and a 75-90 gallon tank (or larger) for a few comets.

If you'd like another type of fish, I'd invest in a different tank.  I know from personal experience that accumulating more aquariums is one of the risks of this hobby! 

Good luck with your fish.




“The oceans are the planet's last great living wilderness, man's only remaining frontier on Earth, and perhaps his last chance to prove himself a rational species.”
― John L. Culliney
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