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Angelfish And Gouramis – Friend Or Foe?

Angelfish and gouramis are two of the most popular, well-loved, and beautiful fish species to keep in aquariums. They’re stunning in every way, and every fish lover who’s ever had them loves them to bits. Angelfish have a unique body shape- they’re unusually angular.

In contrast, gouramis are large and own their space. The two fish have their way of getting attention and marking their territory. But the critical question is, do the two go well together?

Today, we’ll discuss precisely this! But before we talk about Gourami and angelfish’s compatibility, we’ll start from the basics and talk about each species individually.

We’ll walk through how the two types of fish are similar or different and how well they’re capable of living together. Plus, as a bonus, we’ll talk about a few ways you can avoid one nibbling on the other!

While most of you probably already know much about these species, let’s do an overview for those who might be new.

Plus, it’ll help us lay the groundwork for the elaborate discussion we’re going to have ahead and discuss their differences. Let’s begin!

Introduction To Angelfish

Video: “Angelfish Care & Tank Set up Guide”

An Angelfish is a very exotic aquatic species, but this freshwater genus is relatively small, making it even more special. These fish come from various tropical rivers in South America, the Orinoco basin, and the Amazon basin.

As mentioned earlier, their bodies are compressed laterally, and their fins are extended. These fish typically have bright bodies with bold stripes.

An interesting fact about angelfish is it has spiritual meaning! This gorgeous fish species represents courage and bravery and signifies being resilient in every situation in life.

However, as beautiful as they are, angelfish tend to die quickly if the water pH changes a lot. A difference of more than 0.4 between tank water and the bag’s pH can quickly kill this exotic fish. However, if you take good care of them, they can live as long as ten years.

Can Angelfish Live Alone?

Angelfish are entirely independent! They’re not reliant on the company, and they can happily live alone, all on their own. However, is it ideal for keeping them alone?

Not quite. Indeed, angelfish can live independently, but they are far better off if you keep them in a community. Being around other fish keeps them happy, lowers their stress levels, and ensures that they stay energetic.

Plus, it increases the chances of mating and breeding. Thus, if you’re in favor of establishing a social hierarchy and creating a community of angelfish, it’s much better if you keep them in a group.

Can Angelfish Live With Other Fish?

If you have other fish in the tank, it might be of concern to you how this particular species will behave with the others. Overall, angelfish are very non-aggressive and peaceful species. If you put them with other angelfish, they will do just fine!

Here, the vital thing to remember is that they are omnivores, which means that they eat both plants and live foods. However, only fish that are smaller than an angelfish are in danger. Potential foods include tetras and fry species.

Introduction To Gouramis

Video: “Gourami Care – The Good | The Bad and The Beautiful!”

Gouramis are freshwater fishes, and they are mostly native to Pakistan, India, Southeast Asia, North East all the way to Korea. This adorable fish species has a large, round body.

Most fishes are around 2 inches in length, while others can grow as large as 28 inches long. Many types of gourami fishes also have elongated structures in front of the pelvic fins.

An interesting fact about gourami fishes is that they hunt fish for themselves. In the wild waters, they shoot water streams from their mouths and target other fish to kill them on the spot. The fish dies, and that’s how Gourami gets their dinner!

Now, that doesn’t mean that gourami fishes are always aggressive or dangerous. They’re usually relatively calm, and aggression is most likely in cases of the same sexes being together (especially when you keep two male fishes in the same tank!)

Can Gouramis Live Alone?

The great thing about gourami fishes is that they’re naturally solitary. It means that being alone is their innate nature, and they are not bothered by it. However, again, a fish has needs!

Keeping it isolated and alone for an extended period can be detrimental to its social life and mental health. Thus, even though they’re fine on their own, it would be much better if you kept them with other fishes.

Can Gouramis Live With Other Fish?

Now, this is a crucial aspect to keep in mind, so listen (or read!) carefully: Gouramis are generally very non-aggressive, and they’re a peaceful species. However, problems occur when you put two fishes of the same gender in a tank, especially males.

Two male gourami fishes will not tolerate each other for long. They’ll eventually become aggressive. In contrast, female fishes of the same species tend to live together quite well and don’t cause many problems.

The best option would be to put a male and female gourami in the tank together. Doing this would avoid aggression and also promote breeding if you’re looking to expand your gourami family!

Can Angelfish And Gouramis Live Together In A Tank?

Now that we’ve discussed both species’ basics, let’s come to the point of this article: can angelfish and gouramis live together after all? Yes, they can, and here’s how and why:

The two species have an excellent compatibility rank, which means that they can live with each other without a lot of fuss. But what decides the compatibility between two different species? The answer lies ahead:


The Similarities Between Angelfish and Gouramis

Angelfish and gouramis have several similarities, which make the two species compatible with each other. Let’s discuss them one by one.


Both angelfish and Gourami have peaceful natures. They’re non-aggressive and very friendly around other fish. Thus, neither is prone to murdering the other.

Food Habits

Both fishes are omnivorous. Angelfish eat both plants and other fish. However, their appetite stays confined to smaller dishes (and fishes!) Since Gourami is a significantly larger breed in terms of size, angelfish are no danger to them.

Similarly, Gourami is an omnivorous fish species and thrives on smaller fish and shrimps. You can feed them Color Flakes, Equine Tropical Flakes, Shrimp Pellets, and Tropical Granules.

Since Angelfish are not on their menu, they’re typically safe. Hence, both fish species are safe from being fed on, and you will not find one of them nibbling on the other.

Environmental Needs

Both Gourami and angelfish require specific water environments in terms of PH, hardness, and temperature. Keep the water temperature around a minimum of 78 to a maximum of 80 degrees Fahrenheit. It is safe to stay within this range since it is the intersection of the two fishes’ requirements.

As for the pH, it is especially important to maintain the right pH for angelfish since they don’t take the change of pH as well as gourami does. Both fishes require a slightly acidic, neutral, or slightly alkaline pH, ideally from 6.8 to 7.8.

Lastly, keep the hardness of the water from 30 to somewhere around 80dKH. These environmental needs are essential to maintain for both species so that they can live together in harmony.

If you favor one’s requirements over the other, whether intentionally or unintentionally, the discriminatory behavior might cause the other to die off quicker than it should.

Care Level

Fortunately, both angelfish and gourami species have a care level of easy to moderate. It means that neither of the two is high-maintenance or requires a lot of time, money, and effort to take care of them.

They’re not easy to kill if you know their exact needs and take care of the requirements. Thus, if they’re together in a tank, taking care of them is very effortless.


The Differences Between Angelfish and Gouramis

Despite the significant similarities between the two species, there are also specific differences between angelfish and gouramis.

Knowing both the similarities and differences helps you calculate how compatible two species are with each other.


Gouramis live for about a minimum of 3 to a maximum of 5 years. Even if you take the best care of this species, they are expected to die after this time duration.

Indeed there have been rare occasions when Gourami lives for 25 years, but it’s best to keep the average age in mind. In contrast, angelfish are more “long-lasting” and can survive for as long as a decade if the living conditions are ideal.


As mentioned earlier, Gourami fishes are generally more extensive, and their average length can be around 12 inches. In contrast, an angelfish can grow to be as long as 6 inches.

This difference in size isn’t too broad and significant most of the time, but it can be of significance when you buy an aquarium for them.

Angelfish, as they age, grow taller instead of longer. This growth pattern means that you need to buy a tank that’s longer, not wider. As for a Gourami, these fish require a larger, wider aquarium because of their size and structure.

On average, Gourami needs about 75 gallons of space, while an angelfish requires a minimum of 20 gallons. While keeping this difference in mind, buy a tank that fits the needs of both species.


The Compatibility Rank Between Angelfish and Gouramis

As mentioned earlier, gouramis and angelfish have an excellent compatibility score. On average, this rank is 8/10, considering that there are more similarities than differences.

Plus, since the two species are not dangerous for each other, the compatibility score favors keeping them together in a tank.

Some Tips to Keep Angelfish and Gouramis Together

Even though taking care of angelfish and gouramis is relatively easy and the compatibility score is quite high, some helpful tips and tricks can help you ensure that the two stay happy and live together in harmony.


Opt For A Larger Tank

Be generous with the capacity and space you are buying in an aquarium. You must know that both the species like to have their freedom and are fond of marking their individual territory.

Small space can frustrate the fish and trigger violence and aggressiveness, especially in angelfish. Thus, it’s a safe bet to buy them a container with enough space for each species to grow and move around on its own. Starting with a 55-gallon tank would be a good idea.


Use Different Decorations And Plants

Since both species are omnivores, they’ll appreciate the presence of plants in the aquarium. Also, plants will give your tank a more natural vibe making both fishes feel at home!

Plus, they like to play, hide, and swim around obstacles. Adding different decorations in the tank is, thus, a good idea.


Opt For Younger Fishes

If you are scared that your fish might turn violent and aggressive, the chance is higher with adult fish. Thus, if you want to play safe, introduce young gouramis and angelfish.

It’ll be much easier for them to adapt to the tank and each other!


Take Proper Care Of The Feeding Schedules

Small space is indeed a cause of frustration, but you must also understand that both fishes become aggressive if they are excessively hungry. But, to be fair, aren’t we all?

Thus, make sure that both of your fishes are fed adequately on time. Doing this will ensure they don’t resort to violence or try to eat each other!

The Final Verdict

In conclusion, angelfish and gouramis are exceptionally compatible and can live with each other in harmony.

Many people have advocated keeping them in the same tank, and this particular aquarium lifestyle isn’t rare! They’re not high-maintenance or intimidating, and they’re very easy to take care of.

Hopefully, the information and guidelines above will help you keep essential things in mind when trying to put these species together. Just remember the care requirements of the two fishes and give them good food and lots of space.

As long as they’re not hungry or frustrated, they’ll be just fine!

Aaron Boyd
Aaron Boyd

Hello, I’m Aaron Boyd, the proud owner and author behind Aqua Movement. I hope my article was able to answer your questions. If you want to learn more about me, click the home icon above.

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