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PhiNotPi's avatar

What fish go good with goldfish (besides more goldfish)?

Asked by PhiNotPi (12670points) October 31st, 2010

What species of fish go good with goldfish?

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8 Answers

GeorgeGee's avatar

Goldfish Compatible Fish

Putting other coldwater fish in with goldfish is not just a matter of going to the petshop, buying anything that can survive in coldwater and putting it in with goldfish. A whole world of problems is just around the corner for those who think it’s anything other than advanced goldfish keeping.

Before going on to different fish species, it is worth repeating the fact that narrow-bodied and fat-bodied goldfish varieties should not be kept together. The narrow-bodied goldfish such as common, comet and shubunkin will have eaten all the food before the fat-bodied ones (most fancy goldfish) realise it’s feeding time.

Also, before introducing any new tank mates, make sure to quarantine them properly beforehand. Non-goldfish tankmates for goldfish have the potential to cause enough problems already without disease being one of them.

Another thing to be aware of – if the other species of fish can fit into a goldfish’s mouth, it will end up in a goldfish’s mouth.

Hillstream Loach

The hillstream loach is perfectly adapted for latching onto a surface and facing into a strong current. Their natural habitat is fast-flowing streams, and they have a perfectly streamlined body. Their perfect tank environment has a strong pump creating a current. Because of this it is impossible to keep both goldfish and hillstream loaches in their ideal conditions. Goldfish are not built to deal with a constantly strong current.

Like all algae eaters, they need to be fed away from the goldfish. The best plan is to feed the goldfish at one end of the tank, then drop in some sinking food for the loach at the other end. A varied diet is best for them, but algae tablets and sinking pellets should form the basis of their diet.

One nice feature of the hillstream loach is its ability to change colour according to its surroundings.

Weather Loach aka Dojo

The weather loach is a slender, fast fish that can grow up to 6 inches long. They scavenge around the bottom of the tank, and thrive where there is fine gravel to root around in.

They can dart extremely quickly and have been known to leap out of goldfish tanks. Obviously this is fatal if not witnessed. It is a good idea to have some sort of cover over the water to prevent this, and only to uncover as much of the surface as is necessary when performing any aquarium maintenance.

When weather loaches are not sitting at the bottom of the tank, they do enjoy swimming in and around tank ornaments. These ornaments can cause injury to fancy goldfish that have protruding eyes.


Corys are a type of catfish, and there are over 10 common cory species. They usually sit close to the bottom of the tank, not doing very much. Occasionally they will go for a swim, but will usually sit about doing very little.

Most cory species sold for goldfish tanks are not the type of catfish that can grow bigger than a man. In fact they will not usually grow beyond 3 inches.

Like loaches they are bottom feeders, and need sinking food chopped up small. They generally get on well with goldfish, but if not fed properly will suck the protective slime coat off goldfish. This is a disaster if it happens. The slime coat protects against all manner of goldfish illnesses and diseases, and its loss can be catastrophic for goldfish.

White Cloud Minnows

White cloud minnows are small fish that grow to about 1 inch long. They are social fish and should be kept in shoals rather than as individual fish. This feature makes them an attractive addition to an aquarium.

They will eat the same food as goldfish, and do not need fed separately as they can swim fast and can compete.

One thing they do like is a hiding place somewhere in the tank.

The main problem with white cloud minnows is their size. When goldfish grow big enough, they will almost certainly eat them.


There is one other species of fish that is often said to compatible with goldfish – the chinese algae eater. However, it is a tropical fish and although it has been kept with goldfish with moderate success, it is not recommended.

The only other species that can be kept with goldfish are snails. The most attractive one (subjective of course) is probably the golden apple snail.

gailcalled's avatar

^^. Interesting. Source?

syz's avatar

To paraphrase: other fish don’t tend to do well with goldfish.

Cruiser's avatar

Turtles are a great combo if you keep him/her fed. Our turtle picked a feeder goldfish to keep as a companion and they lived happily together for years until a power failure this summer…now she is all alone for the time being.

El_Cadejo's avatar

I agree with whats said above, gold fish are best kept alone. Theyre extremely dirty and can turn to be rather assholeish as they get larger making other fish a bit of a pain. There are however a kajillion different kinds of goldfish to choose from so you dont need just the boring comets.

Im pretty fond of the pearl scale goldfish

GracieT's avatar

You do not have to just have comet goldfish. Goldfish come in several beautiful different forms. They are somewhat messy, and they are in a room temperature water tank. My favorite type of goldfish will always be Ryukin, but there are many others that I like.


Other cool water peaceful fish, like White Cloud Mountain Minnows and Koi. If your goldfish are fancy goldfish, it’s best to avoid Koi because Koi are fast and streamlined, and may eat all the food before your fancy goldfish get a chance to eat it. Goldfish are best kept alone, really. If you want koi, get the long-finned varieties which aren’t as fast.

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