Can A Pleco Live With Goldfish

Can a pleco and goldfish live together?

It depends. Some may get along, while others may not. Plecos like freshwater aquariums and eat algae. Goldfish need different food and make more waste. The goldfish’s active swimming can also stress out plecos. One fish enthusiast tried it, but the goldfish became too dominant and aggressive, so the pleco had to be moved.

Understanding the compatibility of plecos and goldfish

Plecos and goldfish can live peacefully together, given certain conditions are met. Each species has different care needs, so it is important to provide a suitable habitat. Plecos need places to hide, such as driftwood or caves, and goldfish prefer open swimming areas. Also, goldfish create more waste than plecos, so water changes should be regular to prevent the build-up of ammonia.

Plus, plecos have a tendency to suck on the slime coat of goldfish, which could cause harm or stress. To avoid this, give them a nutritional diet, including algae wafers and vegetables.

For successful cohabitation between these two species, here is what to do:

  • Select an appropriately sized tank based on the requirements of both fish.
  • Add hiding spots for the plecos.
  • Check water parameters regularly and change the water regularly.
  • Provide a balanced diet.

By following the above advice, a harmonious living environment can be made, where plecos and goldfish can both thrive. Remember, understanding their compatibility requires that their specific needs for space, hiding spots, water, and nutrition are met.

Factors to consider before keeping plecos with goldfish

When housing plecos and goldfish together, it’s essential to take certain factors into account. Firstly, the tank should be adequate in size for both species. Secondly, their dietary needs must be considered; goldfish require plant matter while plecos prefer a varied diet. Lastly, compatibility is an issue due to differences in behavior and temperament. It’s also worth noting that goldfish may nibble on the delicate fins of plecos if they feel stressed or hungry. Therefore, it is important to monitor their interactions closely.

In conclusion, according to Fishkeeping World Magazine’s expert advice column by Robert Woods, plecostomus catfish should not be kept with goldfish.

Steps to successfully keeping plecos with goldfish

  1. Pick a suitable aquarium size: Make sure the tank is big enough to give both species plenty of room.
  2. Install a high-quality filter: Ensure the system can cope with the waste produced by both fish.
  3. Supply hiding spots: Place caves or structures in the aquarium for the plecos to establish territories.
  4. Feed a varied diet: Give plecos algae wafers, sinking pellets, and fresh vegetables like zucchini and spinach.
  5. Monitor interactions: Keep an eye on the goldfish and plecos to prevent any aggressive behavior.
  6. Do water changes regularly: Change the water regularly to maintain proper water parameters.

Remember, goldfish produce more waste than plecos due to their size and eating habits, so extra care regarding filtration and cleanliness is necessary.

In addition, providing adequate hiding spots for plecos can help reduce their stress levels (source: The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Freshwater Aquariums).

Troubleshooting and common issues

Having fish as pets can be tricky. Here are some frequent problems and their answers:

  1. Diet: Goldfish require flakes or pellets for their diet. Feeding them the wrong type of food can create health issues. Don’t overfeed them either or it can cause bloating and swim bladder problems.
  2. Water quality: Goldfish make lots of waste, so it’s important to keep the water quality in their tank good. Regular water changes and using a good filter are necessary. Test the water for ammonia and nitrite levels too.
  3. Tank size: Give your goldfish enough space. They grow large, so a small tank or bowl will stop their growth and cause stress and health issues. 20 gallons of water per goldfish is a good amount.

It’s also important to check your goldfish’s behavior. If you notice any signs of sickness or weird behavior, visit a knowledgeable aquatic vet quickly.

Pro Tip: Research the requirements of your goldfish species to avoid common issues when keeping them as pets.


A pleco and goldfish can live together. They are both freshwater species that like the same water. But, there are key points to keep in mind.

  • Goldfish generate a lot of waste. This can make the environment bad for the pleco. For this reason, it is vital to have a good filter and do regular water changes.
  • Furthermore, plecos eat a lot. They may steal the goldfish’s food. To prevent this, give each enough food or keep them apart when feeding.

With the right care, they can live in peace in the same tank.

Tip: Give the pleco places to hide when putting it in a goldfish tank.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Can a pleco live with goldfish?

A: Yes, plecos can live with goldfish in the same tank, as long as certain conditions are met.

Q: What are the conditions for keeping plecos with goldfish?

A: The tank size should be large enough to accommodate both species comfortably. A minimum tank size of 30 gallons is recommended. Additionally, ensure that the water parameters, such as temperature and pH, are suitable for both plecos and goldfish.

Q: Will plecos and goldfish get along together?

A: Plecos and goldfish typically get along well and can coexist peacefully. However, it is important to monitor their interactions closely to ensure that neither species is being aggressive towards the other.

Q: What should I feed plecos and goldfish when they are together?

A: Both plecos and goldfish have different dietary requirements. Provide a varied diet that includes sinking pellets or tablets for the plecos, while offering flakes or pellets specifically formulated for goldfish. Add fresh vegetables like zucchini or cucumbers as occasional treats for the plecos.

Q: Would plecos harm the goldfish or vice versa?

A: If there is ample space and hiding spots in the tank, plecos and goldfish are unlikely to harm each other. However, plecos have rough spines on their fins, so there is a slight risk of injury if the goldfish irritates them. Always keep an eye on their behavior and separate them if aggression becomes an issue.

Q: Can I keep baby plecos with goldfish?

A: It is generally not recommended to keep baby plecos with goldfish, as the goldfish may try to eat them. Plecos are better off in a separate tank until they grow larger and more resilient.