Can Plecos Live with Goldfish? 9 Amazing Goldfish Companions

Many people believe that all fish can live harmoniously in one tank. However, this is only sometimes the case. Some fish are known to be very aggressive and territorial towards other fish species. So, can Plecos live with goldfish?

The answer to this query is more complex than yes or no. It depends on the individual personalities of both fish species, plecos, and the goldfish, as well as the size of the community tank.

Are you intrigued by the idea of having both Plecos and goldfish in your aquarium? It is a combination that many aquarists are considering as they look to add diversity and life to their tank.

But Before doing so, it is essential to ask whether this combination of fish species can succeed.

If you’re considering adding a Pleco to your goldfish tank, you must do your research first and ensure they will be compatible roommates.

goldfish with big head

In this blog post, we will explore if Plecos and goldfish can co-exist in harmony or if there might be something else to consider when attempting such an arrangement.

Read on for more information about the compatibility between these two fish species.

Can Plecos Live with Goldfish?

Can Pleco live with goldfish? Although it’s not a conventional combination, plecos and goldfish can co-exist harmoniously in bigger fish tanks (>80 gallons). With the right environment, these two species could make an exciting addition to any tank!

green phantom pleco

Plecos bring vibrancy to any aquarium; some species can even cohabit with goldfish. With careful adjustment of the tank water parameters, these delightful fish, such as bristlenose plecos and rubber lip plecos, make a fascinating addition to your aquatic landscape.

Can Goldfish Kill Plecos?

Will goldfish eat Plecos? Goldfish are herbivorous fish that don’t eat Pleco-catfish. Some Goldfin fish will eat small fish fry, but the Pleco is often large enough in its mouth.

Goldfish can also become aggressive toward a Pleco if the aquarium is too small and not appropriately decorated. Large rocks or driftwood can provide good hiding places for the Pleco to retreat when stressed.

9 Amazing Goldfish Companions

If you need to add variety to your aquarium or are concerned that goldfish need companionship, some excellent fish pairings can bring diversity and color. Here are our top 9 recommendations for perfect live Goldfish companions:

1) Tetras

2) Danios

3) Barbs

4) Guppies

5) Mollies

6) White Cloud Minnows

7) Hatchetfish

8) Corydoras Catfish

9) Plecos (as long as the tank is large enough!)

In conclusion, when it comes to plecos and goldfish, the combination has potential if you plan it correctly. Just make sure to research thoroughly and ensure there is enough space for all your fish to thrive.

Can Plecos Live in Cold Water?

Most plecos can survive and even thrive in temperatures from 65-85°F (18-30°C). However, some species can adapt more successfully than others regarding more excellent water conditions.

For instance, plecos from the Hypostomus genus can survive temperatures as low as 50°F (10°C). Still, it’s best to keep your tank warm and maintain an ideal temperature of 72-78°F (22-26°C) for all your fish.

If you plan correctly, plecos and goldfish can be great additions to your aquarium. Research each species carefully, keep the water quality parameters in check and provide plenty of space for everyone to swim around comfortably.

With the proper preparation and care, this combination can make for a lively showpiece that will bring joy to your home!

Can Plecos Hurt Goldfish?

Yes, Plecos can hurt goldfish. They have sharp, whisker-like appendages on their heads called odontodes that can damage a goldfish’s skin or suck on it.

Therefore, when keeping plecos and goldfish together in the same tank, you should choose Plecos smaller than the goldfish to prevent any possible injuries.

Pleco-attacking goldfish is rare, but it is possible if the tank is overcrowded or territorial behavior occurs.

It’s best to keep plecos and goldfish separate in smaller tanks – for example, one species per side of the aquarium. Ensure enough hiding places and plenty of swimming space for all your fish.

If you decide to keep both species together, do plenty of research to ensure you have the right tank size and environment for this combination. Monitor their behavior regularly and take action if any signs of aggression arise.

With careful consideration, plecos and goldfish can be a great addition to your aquarium!

The Advantages of Keeping Plecos In A Goldfish Tank

Plecos are largely unappealing marine creatures. They usually rest in the bottom of the tank only at night or when food such as zucchini or bloodworm is placed in tanks.

Using plecos in tanks is a good idea as they can quickly ingest algae. Goldfish want to take only a little of it to throw off algae scrubber.

The tank owner doesn’t need to clean the water. This is the only way I’ve ever considered keeping the plecos in the same water as the goldfish. The fish are nothing special; most people find them unappealing or ugly.

Plecos Can Suck Goldfish Slime

Why should I keep my plecos and goldfish separate? There is a problem with goldfish slime that covers them. Goldfish have slime coatings that help keep them safe from infections or nasty maladies.

During slime removal, bacteria can develop on the skin and cause serious injuries. Plecos also have no nocturnal habit of eating goldfish slime during the night.

The Disadvantages of Keeping Plecos in A Goldfish Tank

Ammonia And Nitrite Spikes

Goldfish are the messiest, making huge waste in goldfish aquariums. Plecos also have a good deal less messiness.

When you house them both together, the likelihood is that tanks will become contaminated. Regular water changes and tank maintenance are essential and often tedious and arduous tasks.

Different Water Temperature Needs

The heat of the water is a primary consideration when considering various species of fish. Plocos is a tropical fish whose diet is influenced by hot water. Goldfish are coldwater fish and prefer water temperatures lower than average.

There is no suggestion of altering water temperatures in the freshwater aquariums for polos and goldfish. The balance in the modified surroundings does not allow optimal living between the species.

The ideal habitat/tank decor

Every pleco fish tank must have certain things to ensure safety and well-being. However, goldfish are challenging to catch.

Goldfish are carp. They eat vegetables and animal feed primarily. Goldfish are dangerous in plants and can easily be found. There are some issues here. All plecos need plants for good health and safety in their natural environment.

Fortunately, the species pleco loves some plants that the goldfish won’t consume. Below is an example of plants: Anubias, Java fern, Anacharis, java moss, and others.

In addition to the plants, it is vital to ensure areas in the tank for hiding that are safe from goldfish. You can also add driftwood or rocks to provide shelter to the plecos. This will help them feel secure and safe in the aquarium.

Finally, make sure you use a powerful filter to keep the water clean and balanced for both species of fish.

What Pleco Is Best with Goldfish?

The Ideal Plecos Species For Goldfish Tanks: The rubber-lipped and long-fin bristlednose plecos can withstand cold temperatures. These two pleco species make excellent aquarist partners.

The maximum permitted temperature is a key factor in determining whether species can live as close to goldfinch habitat.

Change in aquarium temperatures to fit Goldfish partners is not recommended. Due to these imbalanced environmental conditions, both can achieve their full potential.

To maintain the ideal diet for this species, supplement their plant-based nutrition with fresh vegetables like zucchini and algae-based commercial foods available at any pet store.

Different pleco species and their compatibility

Do we still see different pleco species listed here? Almost everyone has their own needs and temperaments. This page shows four popular plants and how these birds can cope with plecos.

Zebra plecos

Zebra pleco is not good with gold flies because it requires high temperatures for growth. Goldfish prefer cooler temperatures.

Longfin Bristlenose plecos

The Bristlenose Pleco is an excellent companion for goldfish and can cope with the temperature range of goldfish tanks. They are docile and tend to remain in the bottom of the tank.

Bristlenose Pleco is an increasingly sought-after species in the aquarium hobby, with their striking features and hardy nature making them a top choice for tank enthusiasts.

Bushy nose plecos

The Bushynose Pleco (Ancistrus sp) is a hardy species that can handle the cold temperatures goldfish prefer. They are also relatively peaceful and will help keep the fish tank clean.

Clown Plecos

Clown plecos are more sensitive and require specific ph levels in the water. Goldfish are not suited to this kind of environment.

Common plecos

Common Pleco is a large fish and requires more space to live correctly. It prefers warm water unsuitable for goldfish, so it is not considered a suitable companion species.

What Bottom Feeders Can Live with Goldfish?

Bottom feeders such as Cory Catfish, Otocinclus Catfish, and Ghost shrimp are suitable tank mates for goldfish. They are all peaceful and non-aggressive fish.

Cory Catfish are especially good for goldfish tanks as they help clean up the residue on the bottom of the tank and consume leftover food that goldfish might miss.

Otocinclus Catfish are also suitable for goldfish tanks as they are tiny, peaceful, and eat algae.

Finally, Ghost shrimp are also suitable for goldfish tanks as they are scavengers that thrive in cold water. They can help clean up the tank by eating leftover food and cleaning algae from rocks and plants.

Can Algae Eating Fish Live with Goldfish?

Can I put an algae eater with goldfish? If a fish keeper has goldfish and plecos/algae-eating fish in the same tank, it’s likely to spell trouble.

Goldfish produce an attractive slime coat that is irresistible to algae scrubbers, who may snack away at their scales without restraint – increasing the risk of disease for these little swimmers.

Additionally, as part of its regular diet regimen, Algae provides essential laxative benefits required by your goldfish, all while helping control constipation issues!

What Algae Eaters Can Live with Goldfish?

The two types of algae eaters that can live with goldfish are the rubber-lipped Pleco (Chaetostoma Formosa) and longfin bristlenose Pleco (Ancistrus dolichopterus).

Both of these fish, though small in size, make a great addition to any goldfish aquarium. They help control food debris and excessive algae growth while providing extra nutrition for the tank.

What Are Rubber-Lipped Plecos?

The rubber-lipped Pleco are unusual fish in the U.S. and Europe fish tanks. They can reach up to 5 inches in length and are known for their unique brown coloration with orange dots.

These fish prefer temperatures between 70-78 degrees Fahrenheit and enjoy hiding places like caves, usually made of driftwood.

Rubber-lipped plecos are peaceful algae eaters that can live with goldfish in the same tank. They will help keep the aquarium clean while providing extra nutrition to the tank.

What Fish Can Plecos Not Live With?

Plecos should not be kept with aggressive or territorial fish, as they may be attacked and harmed.

They also cannot live in tanks with extreme pH levels, as they need stable and moderate pH levels to survive.

Plecos cannot live with Discus, Gouramis, and Goldfish as they are all too aggressive for a Pleco to co-exist peacefully. Additionally, the Pleco’s diet is much different from these species, and keeping them in an environment that will provide the food they can eat is essential.

Can Bristlenose Plecos Live with Goldfish?

Yes, Bristlenose Plecos are a great tank mate for goldfish! They are peaceful algae eaters that do not actively compete with goldfish for food. They help to keep the tank clean by eating algae and leftover food that goldfish may have missed.

Bristlenose Plecos also prefer different water temperatures than goldfish, so they can often be found in the cooler regions of the tank.

Can Albino Plecos Live with Goldfish?

Yes, Albino Plecos can live with goldfish, but it is essential to consider the conditions for a successful aquarium. Firstly, the tank should be large enough; for every 1 inch of adult goldfish or Pleco, there should be 5 gallons of water.

Secondly, the pH level in the tank should remain consistently between 6 and 8, and 2-3 times weekly partial water changes are recommended. Lastly, provide a suitable diet for each species in the aquarium.

Albino pleco and goldfish can live together, provided the water parameters remain stable and there is plenty of food for both species.

Can Pleco Live with Koi?

Yes! Plecos are excellent bottom feeders compatible with Koi fish, as they can help keep the tank clean by eating debris and algae.

Furthermore, they have a peaceful temperament and pose no threat to Koi in the same environment. Therefore, it’s perfectly safe to house Plecos alongside Koi in an aquarium setup.

However, it is essential to ensure the Pleco gets enough food, as Koi can be highly competitive in eating. There should also be plenty of hiding places in the tank for Plecos, as they can become stressed out if they feel exposed.

Can Plecos Live with Bettas?

Yes! Plecos and Bettas can co-exist in the same tank. Just make sure to keep them separated due to their territorial nature. A 20-gallon tank should be large enough for both fish – though a long aquarium of 30 gallons would provide more space.

Additionally, be sure that there are plenty of hiding places for your Bettas to escape from the larger Pleco when needed.

Can Plecos Live with Guppies?

Yes, plecos can live with guppies. Some other plecos (also known as suckermouth catfish) will get along quite well with them when provided proper care and a suitable tank environment.

The key is ensuring the tank has plenty of hiding places for both species, and the water parameters are closely monitored to ensure optimal survival for both fish.

Additionally, choosing your Pleco wisely is essential, as certain species may not get along with their faster-swimming tank mates like guppies.


So, can Pleco fish live with goldfish? All in all, it is possible for plecos and goldfish to live together as long as their environment is well-suited and each species has enough space. Additionally, the tank must include plenty of vegetation and hiding spots to ensure both fish feel comfortable with their surroundings.

Remember that nine other species make great companions for goldfish if one isn’t looking specifically for a pleco – these include dojo loaches, upside-down catfish, danios, and more. Careful consideration should be taken when monitoring the water chemistry levels and temperature changes, as goldfish are especially sensitive to this. With due diligence and the proper environmental conditions, not only can Pleco live successfully alongside goldfish in an aquarium setting, but many other vibrant species can too.

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About Me

I am the founder of, a devoted wife and mother, and an avid fish enthusiast. My aim is to assist fellow fish lovers worldwide in understanding how to properly care for and breed their pet fish.

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