Can Goldfish And Shrimp Live Together? (7 Best Choices)

Last Updated on 2024-07-02

If you want to know whether goldfish and shrimp can live together? then you’ve found the right article! In this article, not only will you have this question answered, you’ll also learn how you can increase the chances of success, as well as the best shrimp to keep with your goldfish!

So keep reading to find out everything you need to know!

Can Goldfish And Shrimp Live Together?

If you’re wondering “can Goldfish and Shrimp live together?” then there is no straightforward answer! We need to predict what may happen if we do put these species together.

Firstly, we need to understand that Goldfish are notorious eaters! If another fish is smaller than a Goldfish’s mouth, it’s going to get eaten! This could be detrimental to your Shrimp. The size of Shrimp in the average fish tank could be anywhere between 1cm to 8cm! So, if you want to incorporate such Shrimp as Cherry Shrimp, you may find they all get eaten!

However, to combat these issues, I would recommend having lots of plants within your tank that the Shrimp can hide in! This will not mean they definitely won’t get eaten, but you are putting obstacles in place to give them a better survival rate.

Another way would be to acquire the Shrimp before the Goldfish! Shrimp are able to grow to their full size, and adding the Goldfish second will mean that they probably won’t know the Shrimp are there!

And lastly, keep your shrimp in a tank with smaller goldfish. If the shrimp won’t fit in your goldfish’s mouth, then it’s unlikely that your goldfish will try to eat them!

So in short:

Goldfish and shrimp can live together if certain circumstances are met. First of all, you should provide your shrimp with plenty of hiding spaces and plant cover to reduce the chance your goldfish will eat them. Secondly, keep your shrimp with smaller goldfish.

While goldfish aren’t particularly aggressive, they will eat anything that can fit in their mouth. So by providing plenty of hiding places and keeping the tank small, you reduce the chances of your goldfish eating your shrimp!

What Kind Of Shrimp Can Live With Goldfish?

If you’re interested in keeping shrimp with your goldfish, then you need to think carefully about what shrimp you want.

It’s essential to choose a larger shrimp that can hold their own against goldfish. Larger shrimp species are less likely to be seen as prey by goldfish and are more likely to thrive in the tank.

Here are some larger shrimp species that can live with your goldfish:

  • Amano Shrimp: Amano shrimp are popular for aquariums due to their hardiness and peaceful temperament. They can grow up to 2 inches long and are known to be good scavengers.
  • Bamboo Shrimp: Bamboo shrimp are larger in size, growing up to 4 inches long. Their unique filtering mechanism allows them to filter feed on microscopic organisms in the water.
  • Vampire Shrimp: Vampire shrimp can grow up to 6 inches in length and have a distinctive appearance with their long, thin claws. They are peaceful in temperament and are known to be good algae eaters. (However, one thing to note is that the tank will need to be kept on the cooler side for vampire shrimp)
  • Ghost Shrimp: Ghost shrimp are a popular choice for aquariums due to their low cost and hardiness. They can grow up to 1.5 inches in length, so make sure you’re keeping them with smaller goldfish.
  • Cherry Shrimp: Cherry shrimp are a popular choice for aquariums due to their peaceful nature and bright coloration. Again, they only grow up to 1.5 inches in length so don’t keep them with goldfish that are too big.
  • Blue Velvet Shrimp: Blue Velvet shrimp are docile species that can grow up to 1.5 inches in length, so as long as you’re keeping them with small goldfish their size shouldn’t be too much of an issue.
  • Red Cherry Shrimp: Red Cherry shrimp are another peaceful and docile species that can grow up to 1.5 inches long. There is a whole system dedicated to grading cherry shrimp which means you can end up with fantastic colors in your tank!

Temperament Of Each

To ensure the greatest chance of success, it’s important to understand the different temperaments of goldfish and shrimp.

Goldfish Temperament

Generally speaking, Goldfish are tame fish. As with any pet, they do require a certain level of upkeep, so they are not as simply looked after as you may think. Goldfish are very social creatures! This means they will thrive if kept in pairs or even more, as they need companionship.

However, if you want to keep an tank mates, you need to ensure that they are bigger than your Goldfish’s mouth! Otherwise, you are continuously paying out for an expensive buffet!

(Ever wondered if Goldfish and glofish can live together?)

Shrimp Temperament

Not too different in temperament, but just about everything else, Shrimp are peaceful crustaceans. Considered ‘bottom feeders’ or ‘scavengers,’ which means they’re going to keep your tank nice and tidy!

This is because they enjoy feeding on any uneaten food and algae build-up. Shrimp are also content being by themselves. That being said, you can incorporate a group, too, if you wish.

 Most of the time you’ll notice your shrimp foraging around the bottom of the tank. They will spend a lot of time swimming around or cleaning/eating whatever they may come across. Again, it is important to remember due to their small size; bigger fish may eat them!

goldfish and shrimp

Habitat And Tank Requirements

In order to keep fish as pets, it’s mandatory to remember that these are living animals that require certain things to survive. It is important that a fish’s tank replicates its natural habitat as closely as possible in order to decrease any stress but also ensure they live as long as they should.

Goldfish Tank Requirements

Tank Size

Please do not use a fishbowl! The majority of Goldfish require around 20 gallons with each additional goldfish requiring an extra 10 gallons. However, depending on what type of Goldfish you are wanting, some may need even more, so it is imperative that you research the particular breed.

pH Level

Maintaining a certain pH level in your fish tank is important for your fish’s well-being. Goldfish are known to flourish in waters that have a pH level of between 6.5 – 7.5. While they can handle pH that is slightly outside of this range, the most important thing to remember is to not let the pH fluctuate too much.

Not only will this stress your goldfish out, but if the fluctuations are too drastic and can even end up burning and harming your goldfish as well.


The ideal temperature range for your Goldfish should be between 68-74°F. This is the best temperature for your Goldfish to thrive in and will also maximum growth. Again, while your goldfish can survive just outside of this range, it’s much more important to ensure the temperature doesn’t fluctuate wildly.

Fluctuating temperatures can lead to temperature shock which is fatal. As well as this when the temperature is too high or low, it may cause lethargy or over activeness in your goldfish.


To decorate your tank, you may want to include plants and ornaments too!

The best live plants to complement your Goldfish tank would be Java Ferns, Anubias, Cabomba, or Pennywort/Hornwort. We want plants that will maintain the purity of the water and that don’t need constant light.

(Find out if Goldfish and guppies can live together!)

Shrimp Tank Requirements

Although Shrimp are small, they are still living creatures that deserve a good amount of room to thrive in. So make sure you’re paying attention to their requirements as well, to ensure the survival of all your tank mates.

Tank Size

Generally you can keep shrimp in tanks 3 gallons or bigger. But of course, if you plan on keeping them in a tank with goldfish then the minimum tank size will need to be 20 gallons.

Temperature & pH

Generally, Shrimp require a pH level to be anywhere between 6.6 – 8 (however, this does depend on the individual species of shrimp), which means they will be happy in the same environment as Goldfish! The temperature needs of Shrimp are also similar to that of Goldfish, which make them good tankmates!

Generally most shrimp do well in temperatures between 65-80°F.


Again, the adaptable Shrimp will also thrive with the same plants listed for the Goldfish, which makes them ideal tankmates! They will eat any algae build-up, and the plants listed, such as the Anubias, make a great hiding spot for your Shrimp!

goldfish and shrimp


Did you know that fish can smell and taste their food? Just like humans, fish thrive off a varied and balanced diet! Fish can also get bored of the same thing, just like we can in excess! The loss of appetite can cause obvious risks, so it is important to know what to feed your pets!

Goldfish Diet

As previously stated, Goldfish will pretty much eat anything that can fit in their mouths. However, we want to focus on a varied and healthy diet!

The best things to feed these omnivores include flakes and pellets that are specially designed for them. They also love vegetables (with skins removed) like peas, as well as brine Shrimp, bloodworms, and duckweed!

Yes, Goldfish love to eat Shrimp, so we go back to the point of ensuring your Shrimp can hide! Make sure you feed your Goldfish 1-2 times a day and try not to overfeed to avoid contamination. Although, if you have Shrimp in the tank, they will clean any excess up!

(Did you know Goldfish and minnows make great tank mates?)

Shrimp Diet

Shrimp are also omnivores! The best foods to feed your Shrimp include algae wafers designed especially for shrimp, fish flakes, pellets (specifically for Shrimp), vegetables such as cucumbers, and fruit such as pears! Just make sure they are cut up into very small pieces, and boiled first! And of course they also love algae!

Shrimp will eat any food residue left in the tank, which makes them great for tank cleaning! The range of food listed will mean they grow to their full potential and stay happy.

(Want to know about more great tank mates you can keep with your goldfish?)

How To Introduce Shrimp To Your Goldfish Tank?

Let’s take a closer look at each of these steps.

  1. Choose the Right Shrimp Species

Before introducing shrimp to your goldfish tank, choosing the suitable shrimp species is essential. As mentioned earlier, some shrimp species are not compatible with goldfish and may be at risk of being eaten or attacked. So. choose shrimp species that are known to be compatible with goldfish.

  1. Quarantine the Shrimp

Before adding shrimp to your goldfish tank, it’s important to quarantine them for a few weeks in a separate tank. This will help prevent the spread of any diseases or parasites that the shrimp may carry.

  1. Acclimate the Shrimp

When introducing shrimp to your goldfish tank, it’s crucial to acclimate them slowly to the new environment. This can be done by floating the bag containing the shrimp in the tank for about 20 minutes to allow the temperature to equalize. Then, add a small amount of tank water to the bag every 10 minutes for about an hour to help the shrimp adjust to the new water parameters.

  1. Monitor the Shrimp

After introducing the shrimp to your goldfish tank, monitor them closely for the first few days to ensure that they are not being harassed or attacked by the goldfish. If you notice any signs of stress or aggression, it may be necessary to remove the shrimp from the tank.

  1. Provide Hiding Places

Shrimp are known to be shy creatures and need hiding places to feel safe in the aquarium. Providing them with hiding places such as plants, rocks, or driftwood will help them to feel more secure and reduce stress.

  1. Ensure Proper Water Conditions

Shrimp are sensitive to changes in water conditions, so ensure that the water parameters in the tank are suitable for both the shrimp and the goldfish. Regular water changes and monitoring of water parameters such as temperature, pH, ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate levels are essential for maintaining a healthy environment for both the shrimp and the goldfish.

goldfish and shrimp

How To Keep Shrimp And Goldfish Together

With the information provided, we can understand that there may be some issues for Goldfish and Shrimp living together, which mostly comes down to Shrimp being an expensive snack for your Goldfish!

So if you plan on keeping them together, the best thing you can do is ensure the following:

  • The Tank Is Big Enough: The more space there is in the tank, the more likely it is that your shrimp can just avoid the goldfish altogether and stay alive.
  • Lots Of Plants: You should also make sure that you’re adding lots of plants to your tank. Not only will this make both tank mates feel more comfortable, it will also provide hiding places for your shrimp
  • Don’t Stop At Plants: As well as keeping plants in your tank, you should also make sure that you’re providing other hiding places as well. Driftwood, Indian Almond Leaves, and caves are all going to make great hiding places.
  • Keep Your Goldfish Well-Fed: And of course, make sure you’re keeping your goldfish well fed. Doing so will slightly reduce the chance they’re going to want to eat your shrimp!
Can Goldfish And Shrimp Live Together_ (7 Best Choices)


Here are some frequently asked questions that people have about keeping their goldfish and cherry shrimp together in the same tank.

Do Goldfish Eat Shrimp?

Goldfish are known to eat shrimp. They are opportunistic omnivores and eat almost anything that fits in their mouth, including shrimp.

However, whether or not goldfish will eat shrimp depends on several factors, such as the size of the shrimp and the size and temperament of the goldfish.

Can Goldfish Eat Baby Shrimp?

Goldfish will eat baby shrimp. Goldfish are omnivores, and they eat various foods, including insects, crustaceans, and other small aquatic animals. And baby shrimp will be seen as a tasty snack to goldfish!

Can Shrimp Harm Goldfish?

Shrimp are peaceful and non-aggressive, and they don’t have the ability to harm larger fish like goldfish. However, in rare cases, stressed or threatened shrimp may use their claws to defend themselves, causing minor scratches or injuries to the goldfish. 

Will Shrimp Reproduce In A Goldfish Tank?

Yes, it’s possible for shrimp to reproduce in a goldfish tank. Still, it depends on several factors, such as water conditions, hiding places, and adequate food sources, as well as the breed of shrimp.

Also, it’s important to remember that goldfish can be a threat to shrimp eggs and young, so provide hiding places to protect them.

Do Goldfish Need Tank Mates To Stay Happy?

Goldfish do not necessarily need tank mates to stay happy, as long as there’s more than one goldfish in the tank. Goldfish are social animals and can become stressed or bored if kept in isolation for long periods.


Overall it is possible for Goldfish and Shrimp to coincide; however, as stated, there are a few risks! Goldfish have particular needs and will eat Shrimp if they encounter them.

From using the guidelines presented, we can advise on how best to avoid problems, but they will not solve them; it would be up to your own initiatives to decide what is best for your pets!

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