oranda goldfish tank mates

9 Safe Tank Mates for Oranda Goldfish

Oranda goldfish are one of many types of fancy goldfish. These fancy varieties of goldfish have been bred for their unique body shape, finnage, color patterns and in some varieties, and unusually shaped eyes and head.


Orandas are unique, having been bred to have a fleshy head growth called a “wen” by Chinese breeders.

The fish’s four-lobed tail expands beautifully when the fish stops swimming.
Many aquarists want to have more than one fish in their tank but the truth is, you can’t mix and match any fish you like.
In fact, not even all “goldfish” are compatible!
Don’t confuse the fancies with the common, comet-tailed and sarasa goldfish.
These varieties are beautiful but are strong swimmers and aggressive feeders.
A pond or tankful of these goldfish can often become quite physical.
Courtship and breeding activities involve a lot of chasing, physical bumping and other behavior that could damage a delicate oranda that happened to get in the way.

Common, comet, shubunkin and sarasa gold fish are aggressive feeders.
Feeding time with floating pelleted food can turn the water surface into a boiling mass of fish snapping at food.
Slow-swimming orandas could never endure the “shoving match” at every feeding.
The same goes for sinking pellets. Fast-swimming varieties will dart about the aquarium, consuming all the food before a gentle oranda can take a single bite.
By now it should be clear that these more aggressive goldfish are not good tank mates with orandas.
So what other fish are compatible with your fish?
We’ve compiled a list of the best tank mates for your oranda.

A word about water temperature

Most references recommend a water temperature of 65-70°F for goldfish.
It is true fancy goldfish will thrive in cooler temperatures, they can certainly live a long happy life at 72°F.
Fancy goldfish are kept in warmer climates as pets and in breeding ponds.
The main consideration is to prevent extended overheating of their water and low-oxygen conditions.
This is good news because it expands the number of tankmates for your oranda.
Now on to the list!

9 Compatible tank mates for oranda goldfish

1. Orandas


By Lawrencekhoo - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, Link

Our first choice is to add one or more orandas!
They’re 100% compatible.
They won’t fight with each other.
If you’ve got a white and red redcap oranda and want more, go ahead and create a beautiful tankful!
Want variety? Add an orange speckled calico oranda.
How about a gold tigerhead oranda?
You can choose a chocolate, a black and white panda and even a tri-color red-black-white variety.

2. Pearlscale fancy goldfish

Pearlscale Fancy Goldfish

Pearlscale Fancy Goldfish
By Lerdsuwa - Own photo (400D + 50/1.4), CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

These goldfish have an egg-shaped body and straight back.
The fish typically has a split tail.
What makes this variety really stand out are their rows of raised scales.
Each scale has a pearlescent sheen that resembles a row of pearls.
Pearlscale goldfish come in a variety of colors including calico, red, blue, red-white, black and chocolate.
There’s even a pearlscale with an oranda-like wen called the crown pearlscale!

3. Ryukin fancy goldfish

Ryukin Fancy Goldfish

Ryukin Fancy Goldfish
By Lawrencekhoo - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, Link

Ryukin goldfish have a rounded body with a distinct “hump” shape on their back.
Ryukins are not strong swimmers but have a graceful split tail that fans out when they glide in the water.
The ribbon-tail variety has a longer tail.
They’re hardy and non-competitive although they are somewhat more aggressive at feeding time.
You can choose from calico, red, red and white, tri-color, chocolate, and chocolate.

4. Lionhead fancy goldfish

Lionhead Fancy Goldfish

Lionhead Fancy Goldfish
By Rodsan18 at English Wikipedia, CC BY 2.5, Link

Lionheads are sometimes confused with redcap orandas.
It has an egg-shaped body along with a “hood” meant to mimic a Chinese lion-dog.
The amount of hood growth varies from fish to fish. Unlike orandas, the lionhead has no dorsal fin.
These fish are weak swimmers and considered somewhat delicate.
Not the best choice for beginners.

5. Black moors

Black Moors Goldfish

Black Moors Goldfish
By en:User:Orandic - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Blackmoor.jpg, Public Domain, Link

These goldfish have a rounded body with long fins.
Young fish start out with a bronze color but turn velvety black as they mature.
Their unique telescoping eyes look interesting but can also inhibit their field of vision.
They are best kept with less-aggressive goldfish varieties so they can find food.

6. Bubble-eye goldfish

Bubble Eye Goldfish

Bubble Eye Goldfish
By Angie Torres from Toronto - extra flotation devices, CC BY-SA 2.0, Link

The bubble-eye is one of the most unusual of the fancy goldfish.
It has an egg-shaped body and lacks a dorsal fin.
But the most interesting feature are the water-filled sacs near the fish’s eyes.
The sacs start small but grow as the fish ages.
They can become so large they interfere with the fish’s eyesight.
They’re weak swimmers and can’t compete with more aggressive feeders.
They prefer slow water movement and slow-moving tankmates.

7. White cloud mountain minnows

White Cloud Mountain Minnows

White Cloud Mountain Minnows
CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

White clouds are members of the carp family and native to China.
These coolwater fish are colorful and like to live in a small school in the aquarium.
White clouds are very peaceful and not aggressive feeders.
Their movement adds interest and color to the goldfish aquarium.

8. Zebra danios

Zebra Danios

Zebra Danios
By Azul - Own work, Copyrighted free use, Link

These fish are native to the Himalayan region and not true tropical fish.
The fish has five blue horizontal stripes on their sides.
Zebra danios prefer to school in groups of five or more.
They’re active and fast swimmers.
The good news is they’re not aggressive toward fancy goldfish and like cooler water temperatures around 70-72°F.

9. Cherry barbs

Cherry Barbs

Cherry Barbs
CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

While other barbs can be quite aggressive, goldfish enthusiasts have kept these small, red barbs with goldfish without any compatibility issues.
Of all the barbs, cherry barbs seem to be the friendliest toward other fish.
Their bright color and active behavior add movement to the aquarium.
If you can keep the aquarium water at about 72°F, cherry barbs can be kept with fancies.

Final thoughts

Most goldfish enthusiasts prefer to keep a dedicated goldfish tank.
This is the best practice for ensuring compatibility with all tank-mates. An aquarium full of orandas and fancy goldfish is beautiful and appealing.
If you really want to mix in other fish your choices are limited but we’ve provided the species most compatible with fancy goldfish.
No matter how you mix your fish, be sure that slow-moving varieties are able to feed or you may have to feed the fast swimmers first and hand-feed the slower goldfish later.

9 Safe Tank Mates for Oranda Goldfish