Can Goldfish Live With Guppies?

Unsurprisingly, you want to keep guppies and goldfish together in the same tank. They are both peaceful fish that are bright and beautiful. While that’s true, are they compatible together?

The answer isn’t simple. While they can coexist, there are some challenges to consider. Here we’ll take a closer look at the answer and what other species work well with these beautiful fish. Let’s get started!

Can Goldfish Live With Guppies

goldfish live with guppies

While goldfish and guppies may appear similar, they are quite different. Goldfish are coldwater fish, while guppies are tropical fish. As a result, they have different temperature requirements.

Goldfish prefer water around 70 degrees Fahrenheit, while guppies prefer water around 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Goldfish also require a larger tank than guppies. A single goldfish can easily grow 12 inches long, making them too large to live in a standard 10-gallon aquarium.

Guppies, on the other hand, only grow about 2-3 inches long and can easily live in a smaller tank. In addition, goldfish produce a lot of waste and require a filter to keep the water clean. Guppies are less messy and can live in a tank without a filter.

For these reasons, keeping goldfish and guppies together in the same tank is not advisable. While this is true, it can be done if you are careful about the environment. So here we look at the living conditions you need for these two fish to coexist together.

Size of the tank – Guppies and goldfish are both popular choices for pet fish, but it’s essential to be aware of the potential size difference between these two fish species before adding them to the same aquarium tank.

Guppies generally max out at around 2.5 inches, while adult goldfish can reach up to 12 inches in length. As a result, a goldfish is likely to outgrow a guppy fish relatively quickly. In addition, goldfish produce a lot of waste, and their large size means they require more food than guppies.

This can lead to water quality issues in a smaller tank, as the extra waste might overload the filtration system. 20 gallons is the minimum for goldfish, and to cope with their waste; you’ll need a highly effective filtration system.

Size difference – As we mentioned, one of the most critical considerations when keeping these two fish together is their size difference. But that isn’t just because of tank size.

Guppies are much smaller than goldfish, so they can easily be outcompeted for food. On occasions, if they are small enough, goldfish eat guppies. If the size difference becomes dramatic, you may need to move one of the species into a separate tank.

If you want to move guppies into a fish tank with goldfish, then make sure they are adult guppies that are too big for the goldfish’s mouth. Also, keep in mind that a goldfish will eat guppy fry if given the chance.

Constant temperature – Temperature is an important factor to consider when keeping guppies and goldfish together. Guppies are tropical fish and prefer a water temperature of 72-82 degrees Fahrenheit, while goldfish are cold-water fish and do best in water between 65-74 degrees Fahrenheit.

If the water temperature is too high for goldfish, they can become stressed and more susceptible to disease. If the water temperature is too low for guppies, they can become sluggish and may stop eating.

As you can see, there is a crossover. If you are keeping them in the same tank, try to keep the water around 72-74 Fahrenheit so that it’s not too cold for the guppies but not too hot for the goldfish.

Hiding places – Any fish keeper knows that not all fish are compatible. Guppies and goldfish, for example, are two very different species with different needs. In addition, guppies are highly social creatures that thrive in groups, while goldfish are relatively independent and prefer to live in pairs or small schools.

Guppies are known for their bright colors and long fins, which make them a target for fin-nipping goldfish. For these reasons, it’s important to provide hiding places for guppies when keeping them with goldfish.

Hiding places give the guppies a chance to escape from the goldfish and take refuge in a safe space. Without hiding places, guppies may become stressed or even injured by their tank mates.

Having somewhere to hide can be a good idea for goldfish too. Guppies, especially male guppies, can nip at the fins of goldfish if they have to coexist in an overcrowded tank.

Differences between Guppies and Goldfish

difference between guppies and goldfish

As mentioned, when fully grown, there will be a huge difference in the size of the two fish. While at the start of their life, they will be a similar size, goldfish can rapidly grow.

Guppies are also more brightly colored than goldfish, with a wide variety of patterns and colors available. In contrast, goldfish tend to be more drably colored, with brown, orange, or white being the most common hues.

They breed differently, too. Guppies are livebearers, meaning they give birth to live young. Goldfish, on the other hand, lay eggs that hatch into fry. Guppies are expected to live up to around two years, whereas goldfish can survive for 15 years or even more.

As you can see, there are very few similarities between the two fish, and they share very little common ground.

Best Tank Mates for Goldfish

tankmates for goldfish

When it comes to choosing tank mates for goldfish, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, goldfish are cold-water fish, so they will do best with other cold-water species or tropical fish that cope well in lower temperatures.

Also, goldfish are relatively large fish, so they should be paired with fish that can’t easily be eaten. Considering these factors, some good choices for goldfish tank mates include barbs, platies, and catfish. As mentioned, you need to ensure you’re not pairing a small fish with a larger goldfish.

Plecos, loaches, shrimps, corydoras, snails, danios, and minnows are also good tank makes for goldfish as long as you take the same precautions as you would with guppies.

All of these fish are relatively small, peaceful fish that thrive in cooler water.

Best Tank Mates for Guppies

tankmates for guppies

Many different fish can be kept as tank mates with guppies, but some are better than others. One of the best choices is neon tetras. These little fish are very peaceful and have similar water requirements to guppies.

They also add a splash of color to the tank with their bright blue and red stripes. Another good choice is corydoras catfish. These bottom-dwelling fish are very peaceful and help keep the tank clean. Corydoras catfish do best in groups, so adding at least three to the tank is a good idea.

Mollies also make good tank mates for guppies. They are relatively peaceful, and they come in a variety of colors. However, mollies tend to be bigger than guppies, so choosing a size that will fit comfortably in the tank is important.

Other good options are platies, swordtails, plecos and rasboras.

Tank Conditions needed for Guppies and Goldfish

goldfish and guppies

When keeping these two fish, you must ensure you have the right environment. Here’s what you need to consider.


Guppies and goldfish are both popular choices for beginner aquarium enthusiasts. This is because they are relatively low-maintenance. However, it is important to consider the difference in size when choosing a tank.

As a result, a 20-gallon tank is the minimum size you should consider when keeping these two fish together. The extra space will give the goldfish room to swim and will help to reduce the risk of aggression.


A good range for both guppies and goldfish is between 70 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit, ideally 72-74. Keeping the water within this range will create a comfortable environment for both types of fish. As long as the temperature is consistent, guppies and goldfish can live peacefully together.


Goldfish require a higher level of filtration than guppies. Without adequate filtration, the water in the tank will quickly become polluted, putting the health of both fish at risk.

Therefore, invest in a high-quality filter if you’re planning on keeping guppies and goldfish together. With the right filter in place, you’ll be able to create a healthy and sustainable environment for both types of fish.

Plants and Ornaments

Guppies are active and playful, while goldfish are more sedate and reserved. As a result, goldfish can quickly become overwhelmed by their hyperactive tank mates. In addition, goldfish are much larger than guppies and require more space to swim.

As a result, be sure to provide plenty of plants and hiding places for the goldfish to retreat when they need a break from the action or for the guppies to hide from the goldfish if they are stressed out.


When keeping them together, it is vital to be aware of their different food needs. For example, guppies are omnivores, so they require a diet high in protein. Goldfish, on the other hand, are primarily herbivorous, so they need foods rich in plant matter.

Luckily, there are many commercial fish foods available that are designed to meet the needs of both species. As long as you provide a well-rounded diet, your guppies and goldfish should be able to live happily together.

Final Thoughts

Can goldfish live with guppies? Yes. Should goldfish live with guppies? Probably not. While both a generally peaceful fish, a goldfish may see the guppies as food if they are small enough. The temperature, filtration, and tank size needs are also quite different.

Ultimately, whether or not goldfish and guppies can live together depends on the individual fish and the keeper’s ability to provide them with the care they need to thrive.

They can coexist, but if you’re setting up a new tank, we’d advise you to look for a better set of companions.

Kelly Stanley