Goldfish and platyfish are friendly to keep, even for new hobbyists, because their requirements are easy to fulfill. You may think keeping these fish together in the same aquarium is a good idea, but it would not be the right decision.
Typically, platyfish and goldfish aren’t a good match. While you can ideally place them in a similar water tank, they won’t live together well or adjust to identical water requirements. Platies are large enough to avoid being eaten and won’t nip at the goldfish’s fins.
In my experience, and from other fish keepers, it’s possible to keep platies and goldfish together. However, it’s not ideal for either fish due to the differences in habitat requirements. However, you can make it work, as demonstrated below.
Can Platies and Goldfish Live Together?
Goldfish and platyfish will not thrive well together. This is due to differences in habitat requirements that are challenging to modify so that the two fish can live comfortably.
The tank size and water temperature requirements are the most essential among their incompatibilities.
Here are the various reasons why goldfish and platyfish can’t live together:
|15-20 gallons tank size
|50 gallons tank size
|Can be aggressive.
|Can eat young platies.
|Less aggressive feeders.
1. Tank Size
Platies and goldfish grow to different sizes. At maximum, platies attain a length of 2.5 inches, while goldfish enlarge up to 12 inches.
This means platyfish can thrive in spacious 50-gallon water tanks or more designed for goldfish. On the other hand, goldfish won’t be comfortable living in 15 to 20-gallon water tanks designed for platyfish.
It is an illusion that you can keep goldfish in small-sized aquariums or bowls. Goldfish can grow long, increasing their length after attaining adulthood.
Also, they will produce more waste, which can easily affect the water chemistry in small-sized aquariums and pose health problems or death if there are unusual water changes.
2. Water Temperature
Platyfish and goldfish live in freshwater. However, they have different water requirements. Goldfish are tempered water fish. On the other hand, platies are tropical fish with low temperatures between 72°F to 78°F.
Goldfish can thrive within temperatures of 60°F to 74°F, performing best in cooler waters. Also, platyfish may require a heater in their fish tank where the water becomes too cold, whereas goldfish can’t do well in fish tanks with heaters since they thrive well in aquariums without water heaters.
Forcing fish to adapt to water conditions that aren’t favorable to them will later lead to health complications that are too hard to manage.
As per the water parameters, platyfish prefer water with a pH of about 7.0-8.3 and a hardness level between 4-12 dGH.
On the other hand, goldfish have minor sensitivity to the pH level as they have a preferred rate ranging between 7.0-8.4 and a water hardness level of up to 12 dGH. Therefore, according to these parameters, their requirements are pretty aligned.
3. Behavioral Issues
Some aquarists confirm that platyfish chase goldfish around the aquarium. Although calm and less aggressive, platies can become harsh to other fish. However, it’s unlikely that they’ll attack other fish.
Similarly, goldfish may unwillingly eat young platyfish due to differences in size. Also, juvenile platyfish can be eaten by their type when kept together with adults.
By analyzing these behaviors, it is evident that platies and goldfish are incompatible. Most aquarists have reported clipped fins due to aggressive behavior such as pushing and shoving. Therefore, this makes them lousy aquarium mates.
Goldfish should not be kept with boisterous and aggressive fish. Although platies can be considered less aggressive fish, they may not be suitable for goldfish. This is because they may consume food faster than goldfish risking starvation in the latter.
Goldfish are pretty hard to maintain compared to platies. They also produce lots of waste in their aquarium, quickly triggering ammonia spikes in smaller aquariums. This will require aquarium water test kits and strips to maintain steady water conditions.
Consider installing an effective filter and conducting frequent water changes when keeping goldfish. Changing the water in your aquarium regularly will prevent the build-up of harmful gases such as nitrates and ammonia, which can be deadly to your fish.
Although the filter is recommended for platyfish, you may keep platies without a filter when keeping a lower population in your aquarium. This is because fewer fish produce less waste.
How Can You Keep Platies and Goldfish Together?
While lousy tank mates, platies and goldfish can still be kept together under certain circumstances, such as the following:
1. Use a large aquarium
Goldfish require sufficient space to thrive alone (without tank mates). Thus, if you have a large-sized aquarium where they can easily swim around without disturbing platies, chances of nipping and fighting will be minimal.
2. Regulate the aquarium temperature
Moderate the water temperatures in the aquarium to be favorable for both species. You can make it cold enough for goldfish but not too cold for platies. Ensure the temperature is balanced, as this will ensure platies also survive.
Keep the water between 72 and 74°F since both fish species will be comfortable within this range.
3. Pay attention to the feeding process
As stated earlier, platies can swim around faster than goldfish, consuming more of the food in the aquarium. Thus, you need to control the diet of the two fish species to ensure each one gets its share of the meal.
4. If platies aren’t for breeding
Lastly, if you’re not planning to breed platies, keeping them with goldfish in the aquarium is practical. Platies are small-sized and easy prey for goldfish such that they will be quickly eaten after becoming visible. Therefore, you can keep them together if you are okay with that.
As seen above, multiple convenient ways exist to raise platies and goldfish in the same aquarium.
Which Types of Pet Fish Can Live with Platies?
Platies blend well with other tropical freshwater fish, such as the following:
- Neon tetras
- Zebra danios
- Rosy tetras
Platies are calm and active fish that can be kept with fish with similar water requirements and temperaments.
Which Types of Pet Fish Can Live with Goldfish?
Suppose you are looking for the perfect fish species to match with goldfish. We recommend choosing from multiple fish species, including rosy barbs, bristlenose plecos, zebra danios, rubbernose plecos, tetras, and white cloud mountain minnows.
Besides these fish, goldfish can also live with Apple snails (Mystery snails), bamboo shrimps, and ghost shrimps. Mystery snails eat brown algae, which helps keep the aquarium clean.
Choosing a perfect aquarium mate for your goldfish will provide a stress-free and healthy environment where all the fish tank inhabitants can co-exist peacefully. However, if you see tiny snails in a fish tank you didn’t place there, they’re not welcome and should be eliminated.
Keep Different Fish Species in Your Aquarium!
Platies and goldfish can’t live together. This is due to differences in water requirements and behavioral characteristics. However, you can reliably choose the right approach to keep the two species together with the right steps. Various circumstances may allow you to breed the two fish types together.
Ultimate Aquarium Services. Different Fish Types.
University of Florida. Lymphocystis Disease in Fish.
University of Florida. Pretty Fish in Cold Places.