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Can Angelfish And Gourami Live Together? (7 Essential Tips)

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Angelfish and Gourami are favorites for home aquariums. But can they live together without any issues?

You’ve got to think about their tank size, water, and food to make it work.

When I first started with these fish, I didn’t know any of this. That’s why I’m writing – so you don’t have to learn the hard way.

Let’s get into it.

Can I Keep Angelfish and Gourami Together in the Same Tank?

Yes, Angelfish and Gourami can live together, but it’s a delicate balance that requires careful monitoring. Compatibility depends on individual temperaments and tank conditions.

  • Temperament Clashes: Angelfish can be territorial and may view Gourami as rivals, leading to stress and conflict, especially in tanks under 55 gallons.
  • Water Conditions: Both species thrive in similar water conditions with a pH of 6.5-7.5 and temperatures of 76-81°F, easing the management of a shared tank.
  • Size Matters: Mature Angelfish can grow up to 6 inches, which might intimidate smaller Gourami species, potentially leading to bullying or harassment.
  • Feeding Competition: Angelfish are aggressive eaters; they can outcompete Gourami for food, necessitating strategic feeding methods to ensure both get adequate nutrition.

Also Read: Angelfish Tank Mates

Angelfish vs. Gouramis: Behavior

The first factor worth considering is the Angelfish’s and Gourami’s natural behavior. Here is what you should know:

1. Angelfish: Natural Behavior

Angelfish naturally exhibit a mix of peacefulness and territoriality, which varies greatly among individuals. They can be both regal and aggressive, especially during feeding or breeding.

  • Territorial Nature: Angelfish are known to establish and defend their territory, often becoming more aggressive when they feel their space is being invaded.
  • Social Hierarchy: In a group, Angelfish will form a pecking order; the dominant fish can often be seen leading the group and first to feed.
  • Breeding Aggression: During breeding, Angelfish become particularly territorial, often guarding their eggs or fry fiercely against any perceived threats.

2. Gourami Fish: Natural Behavior

Gourami fish exhibit a wide range of behaviors but are generally known for being peaceful and shy. However, they can become territorial with their kind or similarly shaped fish.

  • Surface Dwelling: Gourami fish are often found at the top of the tank, taking advantage of their labyrinth organ to breathe air directly.
  • Shyness and Peacefulness: They are typically non-confrontational, often hiding among plants when frightened or to avoid conflict with other tank mates.
  • Intra-species Aggression: Male Gouramis can become aggressive towards each other, displaying flared fins and intense coloration as they vie for dominance.

Ideal Parameters for Angelfish and Gouramis

The ideal parameters for Angelfish and Gouramis differ slightly, reflecting their native habitats’ conditions.

Here is a concise comparison table to help you set up the ideal conditions for both in a shared tank:

ParameterAngelfishGourami FishBoth Types
Temperature76°F – 84°F72°F – 82°F74°F – 82°F
pH Level6.5 – 7.56.0 – 7.86.5 – 7.5
Water Hardness5-13 dGH4-18 dGH5-15 dGH

1. Angelfish: Ideal Parameters

Angelfish thrive in warm, slightly acidic to neutral water, and their comfort is paramount for their health and coloration. They originate from the Amazon Basin, where the water is soft and warm.

  • Temperature Range: Angelfish prefer temperatures between 76°F to 84°F, which aligns with the warmth of their native tropical waters.
  • pH Level: A slightly acidic to neutral pH, ranging from 6.5 to 7.5, is ideal for Angelfish, mimicking the conditions of their natural habitat.
  • Water Hardness: Angelfish favor soft to moderately hard water, with a general hardness (dGH) of 5-13 degrees, ensuring efficient gill function and growth.

2. Gourami Fish: Ideal Parameters

Gourami fish, being versatile, can adapt to various water conditions, but they have their preferences which promote vibrant colors and active behavior.

  • Temperature Range: Gourami fish are comfortable in a temperature range of 72°F to 82°F, providing a tropical climate similar to their Southeast Asian origins.
  • pH Level: They are adaptable but prefer a pH level from 6.0 to 7.8, allowing for some flexibility in tank water conditions.
  • Water Hardness: Gourami fish do well in water that is soft to hard, with a dGH of 4-18 degrees, accommodating a wide range of aquarist setups.

Angelfish vs. Gouramis: Tank Setup

When it comes to the tank setup for Angelfish and Gourami, it’s important to consider the specific needs of each fish, as well as how to accommodate both in the same environment:

Tank Setup AspectAngelfishGourami FishBoth Types
Ammonia/Nitrite/Nitrate0 ppm / <20 ppm0 ppm / Low0 ppm / <20 ppm
Tank Size20+ gallons20+ gallons55+ gallons recommended
FoliageDense, tall plantsDense with floating plantsDense, varied plants
DecorationsSmooth-edgedCaves, driftwoodMultiple hiding spots
FilterGentle flowAdjustable flowGentle to moderate flow
Heater76°F – 84°F72°F – 82°F74°F – 82°F
SubstrateFine sand or small gravelSoft, dark-coloredVaried substrate
PumpGentle flowGentle air pumpGentle, well-oxygenated
LightingModerateSoft to moderateModerate, natural light

1. Angelfish: Tank Setup

Angelfish require a carefully curated environment that mimics their natural Amazonian habitat, with pristine water conditions and ample space to accommodate their territorial behavior.

The setup must also cater to their vertical body shape and tendency to scout territories at different tank levels.

  • Ammonia/Nitrite/Nitrate: Angelfish need a tank with a robust filtration system to maintain ammonia and nitrite at 0 ppm, and nitrates below 20 ppm.
  • Tank Size: A minimum of 20 gallons is necessary for a pair of Angelfish, but a larger tank (55 gallons or more) is better for groups.
  • Foliage: Dense foliage, including tall plants like Amazon Sword, provides hiding spots and mimics their natural environment.
  • Decorations: Angelfish prefer a mix of open space and hiding places, with smooth-edged decorations to prevent injury.
  • Filter: A canister or hanging filter that provides gentle water flow suits Angelfish, as they dislike strong currents.
  • Heater: A reliable heater is needed to maintain the ideal temperature range for Angelfish, between 76°F and 84°F.
  • Substrate: Fine sand or small-sized gravel works well for Angelfish, allowing for natural foraging behavior without damaging their delicate fins.
  • Pump: Air or water pumps should be set to a gentle flow to provide oxygenation without creating stressful currents.
  • Lighting: Moderate lighting reflects the dimly lit waters of the Amazon and is preferable for Angelfish, highlighting their colors.

2. Gourami Fish: Tank Setup

Gourami Fish enjoy a tank setup that allows for both surface dwelling and exploration, with consideration for their labyrinth organ which enables them to breathe atmospheric air.

  • Ammonia/Nitrite/Nitrate: Gourami fish are sensitive to poor water quality; hence, levels of ammonia and nitrite should be at 0 ppm, and nitrates low.
  • Tank Size: A minimum tank size of 20 gallons is recommended for Gouramis, with larger sizes needed for more or larger species.
  • Foliage: Gourami fish appreciate a densely planted tank with floating plants to provide cover and a sense of security.
  • Decorations: Structures that allow for hiding and exploration, like driftwood and caves, cater to the Gourami’s curious nature.
  • Filter: A filter with adjustable flow is best for Gouramis, as they prefer calm waters but also need well-oxygenated water.
  • Heater: A stable heater that can maintain a consistent temperature between 72°F and 82°F is ideal for Gouramis.
  • Substrate: Soft, dark-colored substrate is preferred, as it provides a comfortable bottom for Gouramis and enhances their natural coloration.
  • Pump: A gentle air pump can aid in water oxygenation, important for Gouramis, especially in larger or densely stocked tanks.
  • Lighting: Soft to moderate lighting is optimal for Gourami fish, encouraging their natural behavior and reducing stress.

The Dietary Requirements of Angelfish and Gouramis

The dietary requirements of Angelfish and Gouramis also share similarities, with a focus on variety and moderation to keep both species healthy in a shared tank:

Dietary AspectAngelfishGourami FishBoth Types
Food TypesFlake, live foodsVegetable-based, proteinVaried diet: flakes, live, vegetation
Quantity30 sec feeding, twice a daySmall amounts, 1-2 times a dayEnough to eat in a few minutes
Feeding ScheduleConsistent daily timesRegular times, foraging behaviorRegular, scheduled feedings

1. Angelfish: Ideal Dietary Requirements

Angelfish are omnivorous and require a varied diet that includes both plant and animal matter to maintain optimal health and coloration. It’s crucial to balance their nutritional intake to prevent obesity and deficiencies that can lead to health issues.

  • Food Types: Angelfish diet should include flake foods, pellets, and live or frozen foods like bloodworms and brine shrimp for protein.
  • Quantity: Adult Angelfish should be fed an amount they can consume in about 30 seconds, twice daily, to avoid overfeeding and tank pollution.
  • Feeding Schedule: Consistency is key; feeding Angelfish at the same times each day helps regulate their metabolism and reduces stress.

2. Gourami Fish: Ideal Dietary Requirements

Gourami fish, while also omnivorous, tend to require more vegetation in their diet and benefit from a high-quality, varied food regimen to support their immune system and reduce aggression.

  • Food Types: Gouramis enjoy a mixture of vegetable-based foods and protein, including algae wafers, flake foods, and the occasional live treat.
  • Quantity: They should be fed small quantities that they can finish within a couple of minutes, once or twice a day.
  • Feeding Schedule: Regular, scheduled feedings not only prevent overeating but also allow Gouramis to engage in natural foraging behavior throughout the day.

How to Introduce Your Angelfish to a Tank with Gourami

Introducing Angelfish to a tank with Gourami requires patience and careful observation to ensure a smooth transition and reduce stress for both fish types.

The introduction process should be gradual to allow both species to adjust to each other’s presence without immediate confrontation.

  • Quarantine Period: Start with a quarantine for your Angelfish, keeping them in a separate tank for at least 2 weeks to monitor health and prevent disease spread.
  • Tank Adjustment: Before introducing Angelfish, rearrange the tank decorations to disrupt established territories of the Gourami and reduce aggression.
  • Visual Introduction: Allow the Angelfish to be seen in a clear container inside the tank for a few hours, letting both fish get accustomed visually without physical interaction.
  • Controlled Release: Introduce the Angelfish into the tank during a time when the Gourami are most peaceful, typically after feeding when aggression levels are low.
  • Monitor Behavior: After release, observe the Angelfish and Gourami closely for several days, ready to intervene or separate them if persistent aggression occurs.

Tips for Keeping Angelfish with Gourami Fish

Maintaining a harmonious aquarium with Angelfish and Gourami fish requires careful planning and consistent management to cater to the needs of both species.

It’s essential to create an environment that minimizes stress and aggression, ensuring both fish can coexist peacefully.

  • Spacious Tank: Provide a large aquarium, ideally 55 gallons or more, to give Angelfish and Gourami enough space to establish their own territories.
  • Diverse Diet: Ensure a varied diet for both Angelfish and Gourami, including flakes, live food, and vegetation, to meet their omnivorous needs.
  • Structured Environment: Use plants and decorations to create barriers and sight breaks, allowing fish to avoid or escape from stressful encounters.
  • Stable Water Parameters: Consistently maintain optimal water conditions, with a pH of 6.5-7.5 and temperature between 76-81°F, for both species’ well-being.
  • Regular Monitoring: Watch for signs of stress or aggression, especially when introducing new fish or changing the tank setup, and be prepared to make adjustments.
  • Separate Feeding Zones: Designate separate feeding areas to prevent competition and ensure both Angelfish and Gourami receive adequate nutrition.
  • Considerate Pairing: Introduce Gourami and Angelfish of similar size to avoid bullying, and avoid overly aggressive species that could harm the other.

Also Read: Can Plecos And Angelfish Live Together?

Best Tank Mates for Angelfish and Gourami Fish

When selecting tank mates for Angelfish and Gourami, it’s critical to choose species that are neither too aggressive nor too timid to ensure a peaceful community tank.

Opt for fish that occupy different levels of the tank to avoid territorial disputes and competition for space.

  • Corydoras Catfish: These peaceful bottom dwellers are excellent companions for Angelfish and Gourami, as they keep to themselves and clean up leftover food.
  • Dwarf Cichlids: Smaller cichlids like the Apistogramma can coexist with Angelfish and Gourami if the tank is spacious enough to provide hiding spots.
  • Tetras: Schooling fish like tetras are ideal; they’re fast swimmers and stay in the mid-water level, away from the Angelfish’s and Gourami’s territories.
  • Loaches: Loaches, particularly Kuhli Loaches, are good tank mates because they are peaceful and occupy the lower regions of the aquarium.
  • Mollies and Platies: These livebearers are peaceful and can share the tank with Angelfish and Gourami, but ensure the tank is large enough to prevent overcrowding.
  • Rasboras: Small, peaceful, and active, rasboras are great for adding movement to the tank without stressing the Angelfish and Gourami.

Also Read: Can Angelfish And Loaches Live Together?

Kuhli Loach


For quick readers, here’s a short summary:

  • Angelfish and Gourami can cohabit, but require a tank of at least 55 gallons to prevent territorial stress and conflict.
  • Both fish thrive in similar water conditions, but Angelfish may bully smaller Gouramis, necessitating a strategic tank setup and feeding schedule.
  • Angelfish need a stable temperature between 76°F and 84°F, while Gouramis prefer 72°F to 82°F; both require slightly acidic to neutral pH levels.
  • A harmonious tank is achievable with structured environments, stable water parameters, and separate feeding zones to cater to each species’ needs.
  • When introducing Angelfish to Gourami, a gradual process with close monitoring is crucial to minimize stress and potential aggression.