What Can I Mix With Shubunkin Goldfish?

Shubunkin goldfish are compatible with other varieties of goldfish.
i goldfish image by Jorge Casais from Fotolia.com

You may be attracted to the shubunkin goldfish for its bright, spotted color patterns that give it the nickname calico goldfish. However, this hearty fish is also makes a great aquatic pet because of its social nature. The shubunkin is a community fish that cohabitates nicely with various tank mates.


One of the best selections for tank mates for your shubunkin is other varieties of goldfish. Because members of the goldfish family are passive by nature and thrive in community settings, having an aquarium with several types works well and makes a beautiful tank. Because shubunkins are large goldfish, typically reaching 6 to 12 inches in length, choosing other goldfish of similar size makes a balanced tank. The comet and common goldfish are excellent choices for tank mates for your shubunkin. However, because these beautiful fish are fast swimmers with hardy appetites, its best to avoid adding slow-moving goldfish such as the lion head and telescope eye to your shubunkin tank.


Did you know that both koi and goldfish are from the carp family? Because they share similar lineage, koi and large goldfish like the shubunkin get along well together in a shared environment. Both types of fish are community dwellers, eat similar foods and socialize well. In addition, koi and shubunkin goldfish look similar in appearance and are attractive together in a large aquarium.

Passive Fish

Many varieties of passive fish will do well in a tank with shubunkin goldfish. Danios, tetras, barbs and red-tail sharks are all active swimmers with peaceful dispositions. If you prefer a larger fish, catfish also get along well with shubunkins. Plecos will share the tank with your shubunkin peacefully, and will even help clean the environment of excess food and debris. However, keep in mind that slow swimmers may be in constant competition for food with this active goldfish. Additionally, avoiding all aggressive fish such as members of the cichlid family will keep your shubunkins from being picked on or turned into dinner.

Crustaceans and Mollusks

Shrimps, crabs and snails are good choices for aquarium hobbyists who want more than just fish in their tanks.These aquatic creatures are not aggressive, clean excessive food and debris from the water and typically spend time in areas not frequented by the fast-swimming shubunkin. If you choose to add crustaceans and mollusks to your tank, however, choose those that coincide with the size of your goldfish. A large shubunkin may mistake a tiny snail or fragile crab or shrimp for a snack.

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