Are Goldfish Social? (Surprising Answer)

Are Goldfish social? This is the question most beginners have when they are just starting out in the hobby and want to keep Goldfish as their first pet fish.

Yes, Goldfish are social and you should keep them in at least a group of 2 to in your aquarium to promote social activity.

Are Goldfish Social? (Surprising Answer) image

Can we keep single Goldfish?

Yes, you can definitely keep a single Goldfish but it is not recommended.

As mentioned earlier, Goldfish are social and you should keep them in a group to promote social interactions.

If you keep a single Goldfish in a tank then it is likely that it will suffer from depression and lethargy.

Do Goldfish get bored?

It is a common myth that Goldfish have a short memory span to be specific 3-second memory span.

So it is very easy to think that Goldfish will never get bored as they will forget things after every 3 seconds.

So they will always find the same things new every 3 seconds.

But as I said it is a myth.

And Goldfish can I actually remember things for up to 3 months.

So in short, Goldfish do get bored.

How to entertain Goldfish?

Now that you know Goldfish get bored, how can you keep your shiny friend entertained?

Well, there are several things you can do to entertain Goldfish.

Goldfish are very smart and they can be trained to swim through rings and holes.

In fact, an experiment is done in which Goldfish actually pulls the liver that dispenses the food.

And it is smart enough to stop pulling the liver once it realizes (within an hour) that the food is not dispensing even after pulling the liver.

Now that you know Goldfish is smart, you can play chess with it to keep it entertained!

Just kidding…

You can do simple things like feeding your Goldfish with your hands to keep it active.

You can also introduce some small toys like a small ball in the tank of your Goldfish and the Goldfish will interact with it.

Besides, you can introduce a lot of stuff like various ornaments, plants, driftwood and rock that will create a playful environment for your Goldfish.

Another simple way to keep your Goldfish entertained all the time is to introduce other fish in the Goldfish tank.

11 Things you can do TODAY to Keep your Goldfish Happy for Forever in your Aquarium

Goldfish tank mates

Goldfish is a schooling fish and you should keep them in a group to keep them active and for their better health.

Also, Goldfish are very social and you can easily keep Goldfish with other fish.

Can I put multiple species of Goldfish in the same tank?

If you have a large tank of more than 50 gallons then you can keep multiple species of Goldfish in the same tank.

But if you have a smaller tank then you should avoid keeping multiple types of Goldfish in the same tank.

The reason behind not keeping them together in a small tank is that some types of fancy Goldfish like Oranda and Celestial are not fast at swimming when compared to common Goldfish.

So they will compete for food and there are chances that the fancy Goldfish will not get sufficient food because of their slow swimming abilities.

Can Goldfish live with other types of fish?

Goldfish are not aggressive generally. So you can easily keep Goldfish with other types of fish.

Though there are a couple of things you should keep in mind while selecting tank mates for Goldfish.

First of all, the tank mates for Goldfish should be larger in size than the mouth of Goldfish.

Examples of this kind of fish include White cloud mountain minnows, Danios, etc.

Secondly, if you are keeping other types of fish with fancy Goldfish that have long fins then you should avoid keeping fin nippers like tiger barbs with these fish.

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Some examples of Goldfish tank mates

Bristlenose plecos

bristlenose pleco

Image by Pia Helminen under CC BY-SA 3.0

PARAMETERSVALUES
FISHBristlenose Pleco
SCIENTIFIC NAMEAncistrus Cirrhosus
CARE LEVELEasy
MAXIMUM SIZE5 inches
AVERAGE LIFESPAN5+ years
DIETHerbivore
WATER TEMPERATURE73° - 81° F
WATER pH5.8 to 7.8
WATER HARDNESS2° to 30° dH
BREEDINGEgg layer

Bristlenose plecos are great tank mate for Goldfish tank because of several reasons.

The first reason is that Bristlenose plecos grow a maximum of 5 inches. 

So it is a kind of ideal size range for a Goldfish tank mates because it doesn’t grow very large. At the same time, it is not too small to fit into the mouth of your Goldfish.

Bristlenose plecos are also an algae eater so it will keep your Goldfish tank clean.

Besides, Bristlenose plecos usually roam around the bottom of your tank where Goldfish doesn’t spend most of its time so it will not bother your Goldfish.

Platy

platy fish

Image by Marrabbio2 under CC BY-SA 3.0

PARAMETERSVALUES
FISHPlaty
SCIENTIFIC NAMEXiphophorus maculatus
CARE LEVELEasy
MAXIMUM SIZE2 inches
AVERAGE LIFESPAN2 - 3 years
DIETOmnivores
WATER TEMPERATURE65°F - 77° F
WATER pH7 - 8
WATER HARDNESS10° to 25° dH
MINIMUM TANK CAPACITY10 gallon
BREEDINGLivebearer

Platy is another great tank mates for your Goldfish especially if you want some variety in your tank.

Platy fish come in different colors and patterns which adds contrast in your tank.

Besides, Platy fish are not very big at the same time they are not very small to fit into the mouth of your Goldfish.

Also, Platies are very easy to care for and they are very peaceful fish so they will not bother your Goldfish.

Tetras

black skirt tetra
PARAMETERSVALUES
FISHBlack skirt tetra
SCIENTIFIC NAMEGymnocorymbus ternetzi
CARE LEVELEasy
MAXIMUM SIZE2 inches
AVERAGE LIFESPAN5 years
DIETOmnivore
WATER TEMPERATURE68–79 F (20–26 C)
WATER pH5.8–8.5
WATER HARDNESSup to 15 dGH
BREEDINGEgg layer
MINIMUM TANK CAPACITY10 gallons

There are a couple of varieties of tetra fish like black skirt tetra and bloodfin tetra which make a very good thank made for Goldfish.

They don’t grow very big, at the same time, they are not small enough to fit into the mouth of your Goldfish.

They are very hardy as well so they are very easy to care for.

White cloud mountain minnow

White cloud mountain minnow

Image source under CC BY-SA 3.0

PARAMETERSVALUES
FISHWhite cloud mountain minnow
SCIENTIFIC NAMETanichthys micagemmae
CARE LEVELEasy
MAXIMUM SIZE1 1/2 inches
AVERAGE LIFESPAN3 to 5 years
DIETOmnivore
WATER TEMPERATURE60 F (15 1/2 C)
WATER pH6.0–8.0
WATER HARDNESS5–19 dGH
BREEDINGEgg scatterers
MINIMUM TANK CAPACITY10 gallons

If you are a beginner then this fish is a very good thank mate for your good fish tank.

It is very hardy and easy to care for so you will not struggle to keep it in your aquarium.

Besides, they don’t require a large tank to keep.

Danios

Zebra danios

Image by Bernat Arlandis under CC BY-SA 2.0

PARAMETERSVALUES
FISHZebra Danios
SCIENTIFIC NAMEDanio rerio
CARE LEVELEasy
MAXIMUM SIZE2 inches
AVERAGE LIFESPAN5 years
DIETOmnivore
WATER TEMPERATURE64° - 74° F
WATER pH6.5 to 7.0
WATER HARDNESS5° to 12° dH
MINIMUM TANK CAPACITY10 gallon
BREEDINGEgg layer

There are a couple of varieties of Danios like Zebra danio and Giant danio that are very good tank mates for Goldfish.

They are not very small to fit into the mouth of your Goldfish.

Also, they come in different colors and patterns which will make your aquarium more interesting.

Goldfish tank size guide

So now that you know Goldfish should be kept with other fish.

You may be wondering what size of tank should I use to keep them together.

There is a lot of debate on this topic going on the internet.

Some people say that tank size doesn’t matter for Goldfish.

And you can easily keep them in a small fishbowl as well.

While others think that it is a very cruel thing to do.

The general rule of thumb that I follow is 20 gallons per Goldfish.

The thing is Goldfish is a pretty messy fish.

They produce a lot of poop.

So the ammonia gets very concentrated in a Goldfish tank if you keep them in a smaller tank.

That can stress the fish and reduce its life expectancy and overall health.

Besides, Goldfish can get very large.

In fact, the longest Goldfish in the world is about 47 cm long.

So 20 gallons for Goldfish is a good rule of thumb to follow.

9 Must-haves in a Goldfish Tank for a Happy and Healthy Goldfish

FAQ

Can I put two Goldfish in a 10-gallon tank?

Yes, you can put two Goldfish in a 10-gallon tank if you have small Goldfish.

But Goldfish can grow pretty fast so most likely you will have to upgrade to a larger tank very soon.

So I will recommend you to get at least a 20-gallon tank for two Goldfish.

Do Goldfish have personalities?

Yes, Goldfish have personalities and it varies from fish two fish.

If you won multiple Goldfish then you will notice that some fish are more active than the others.

How can you tell if your Goldfish is happy?

Well, there are several signs that can tell you your Goldfish is happy or not.

The first is if your Goldfish is very active and constantly moving around and swimming around.

It is a sign that your Goldfish is very happy in the tank and it’s getting the ideal environment.

The appearance of your Goldfish will also tell you if your Goldfish is doing well or not.

Generally, the appearance of Goldfish should be shiny.

If you notice dull areas on the body of your Goldfish then it is a sign that it’s not getting the ideal environment.

It can cause due to several reasons like

So, in this case, you should try to reduce ammonia in your aquarium by using several ways.

Besides, if you are keeping your Goldfish with other fish then you should constantly observe their behavior with other fish.

And you should avoid keeping other aggressive fish and fin nipper fish like Tiger barbs with the Goldfish.

If you found any bite marks on the fins of your Goldfish then you should identify the fin nipper fish in the tank.

And remove it from the Goldfish tank and keep it in the separate aquarium.

Better yet, you should keep Goldfish in a Goldfish only tank.

11 Things you can do TODAY to Keep your Goldfish Happy for Forever in your Aquarium

Do Goldfish need to be in pair?

Yes, Goldfish are social so you should at least keep them in a pair in your aquarium.

Generally, Goldfish are not very aggressive so you can easily keep them with other types of fish as well.

But you should be conscious while selecting the tank mates for Goldfish and keep in mind a few things, like the size of the other fish should not be less than the size of the mouth of your Goldfish.

If you have fancy Goldfish like fantail Goldfish then you should avoid keeping fin nippers like Tiger barbs with your Goldfish.

Also, you should keep the fish that have similar swimming abilities as your Goldfish so that they will not compete for food.

Conclusion

So Goldfish are social creatures. And you should keep Goldfish in a group of at least two in your tank to promote social interaction.

Besides, you can also keep Goldfish with other types of fish but you have to keep a few things in mind.

Like the size of the fish and the behavior of the fish while choosing the tank mate for Goldfish.

Besides, it is ideal to keep Goldfish in a Goldfish only tank.

I hope you found this article helpful.

If you do please share it.

As always happy fish keeping!

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