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10 Best Chocolate Cichlid Tank Mates (With Pictures!)

The Chocolate Cichlid or Hypselecara Temporalis is a bit unique looking and its main body has a shiny, golden color that you won’t find in most fish.

The fins are a bit thin, but the fish itself can grow to very large sizes. According to Imperial Tropicals, this fish can grow as large as a for long.

The fish also has a very large tank requirement at a minimum of 55 gallons but is more so recommended to have 75 gallons of water in the tank during most times.

Not every fish gets along with each other, so here are 10 kinds of fish that will get along with your Chocolate Cichlid.

Electric Blue Acara

The Electric Blue Acara has a shining bright blue color that can pop out of nowhere, even during the night.

The fish has an attractive appearance, but would also make for a great tank mate with just about any fish.

This kind of fish isn’t very aggressive and typically won’t be very greedy when it comes time for feeding.

They like to keep to themselves and won’t create many conflicts with the fish around them.

This is great for the Chocolate Cichlid because they can be a bit needy when it comes to water and feeding.

The Electric Blue Acara is a bit smaller which is why that this kind of fish is going to demand less than other fish.

It’s easily one of the best chocolate cichlid tank mates.

African Catfish

The African Catfish is definitely going to be different from most of the fish that you’ll end up seeing.

It has the appearance of a slimy eel and has been recorded to going to lengths of 1.7 meters long.

Though that won’t be the case for the African Catfish you decide to get since those sizes are the exception.

Typically African Catfishes respect the territory of other fish and will do their best not to intrude on the Chocolate Cichlid’s space.

However, this system goes both ways.

If a fish is intruding on the African Catfish’s territory, they can also get aggressive in an effort to save the space that they want to protect.

They are bottom feeders which will give more space for the younger fish that are going to naturally stay at the top.

Green Terror Cichlid

The Green Terror Cichlid really only looks green during the night, but often looks silver during the day.

The way their scales reflect against light gives off the illusion of a blueish-green. T

heir size is quite similar to the Chocolate Cichlid, at a size of around 12 inches that they can grow to.

Typically, the Green Terror Cichlid can do quite well in a smaller amount of water.

Some marine biologists have recorded times when the fish has been able to survive with only 35 gallons of water in the tank.

However, it’s generally recommended to have around 55 gallons for them.

Being a Rivulatus means that they’re going to be a bit more aggressive, but the fish has to eat too.

Since they are of similar size, Chocolate Cichlid will likely respect the fish and not cause conflict with it.

However, if there were to be conflict, the Green Terror, Cichlid would likely be one to start it.

Tiger Oscar

The Tiger Oscar is dark gray but has a bright orange pattern that can go very bright once the nighttime starts.

These fish come from the Cichlidae family and can live up to 20 years in some cases.

The Fish can grow to be a bit larger compared to the Chocolate Cichlid that it’s going to be living with.

They’re two different kinds of fish, but being in the same family gives them some kind of familiarity when compared to other fish.

They also generally require the same amount of space to live which is recommended to be a tank of 75 gallons.

For this reason, the fish isn’t going to try to fight for territory or be a glutton when it comes to their food.

In general, they’re going to treat the Chocolate Cichlid as a sibling that looks a bit different.

Congo Tetra

Congo Tetra (Phenacogrammus interruptus) by Aka (CC BY-SA 2.5)

The Congo Tetra has a beautiful color to show off its scales and is one of the smaller fish out there.

At the top of its scales, it starts as bright orange and then slowly goes to a calm teal color as you look lower at its body.

By their own nature, Congo Tetra is not very aggressive at all. They are Alestidae which means they are of a smaller variety and usually like to swim in a group.

When they’re not in that group, they often get very anxious and don’t want to cause trouble with fish that they are smaller than.

They also require some of the least amount of water to be able to live with other species at around 30 gallons of water at a minimum.

The size maxes at 3 inches on average, so they won’t be greedy at all when getting food.

Sailfin Pleco Catfish

Sailfin pleco by Soulkeeper (CC BY-SA 3.0)

The Sailfin Pleco is a bit very unique with spots all around the body with the body itself being black.

There fins are all around the fish including one that’s at the top and a couple around the sides of the fish, including a big tail fin.

They are bigger and require a tank that’s going to be significantly larger than for a Chocolate Cichlid to live in.

But if you do that, you are rewarded with one of the most peaceful fish out there.

Despite their almost monstrous size at around 19 inches during adulthood, they like to keep to themselves.

This makes them one of the best chocolate cichlid tank mates out there.

Now there are some fishes that the Sailfin Pleco won’t get along with such as Angelfish, however, this shouldn’t be a concern for you.

As long as it’s well-fed, it will likely never cause a problem for the Chocolate Cichlids that you plan to get.

Severum Cichlid

Heros severus by lienyuan lee (CC BY 3.0)

The Severum Cichlid is a hardy and beautiful fish that you often won’t get the chance to come across.

They like to keep to themselves, as well as keeping sharp and pointy fins that are likely to distinguish them from the pack.

Sometimes, you’ll see them with unique patterns, but they tend to come in the color orange.

Fortunately for you, these fish are nice and don’t really get aggressive unless they absolutely have to.

A lot of fish have to be aggressive if it comes to life or death. That being said, this should’nt be a real issue for the Chocolate Cichlid that they’re going to live with.

The fish grows to as big as 7 and 3/4 of an inch which is a little bit over half of what the Chocolate Cichlid will get.

The Severum Cichlid will act neutrally in most cases. Not being aggressive, but also willing to protect just about anything that it has.


Male of Geophagus altifrons by Hectonichus (CC BY-SA 3.0)

The Geophagus comes from the Cichlidae family, which means that they will grow to be medium-sized and not have much of a motive to disturb the other fish.

Their colors can range quite wildly but typically come in the grey and rainbow color scheme.

These fish can be quite aggressive during their younger years. However, as they grow older they’re a bit more reserved and lack that intuition that would make them take a chance on a random fish.

They only grow up to 11 inches and the female is a few inches shorter than that.

This specifically makes the female Geophagus one of the best chocolate cichlid tank mates out there.


The Angelfish is one of the most unique species of fish out there. It has an iconic thin fin at the top while having two long and thin fins on the sides.

There are a ton of patterns that these kinds of fish can come in, which makes them visually interesting and ensures that you’ll probably never see one of the same kind.

Some come in a baseline white color, others come with white and black spots and some others even come with sky blue stripes.

These fish also aren’t very needy when it comes to the amount of water they need to live. Some Angelfish can live in water tanks with as little as 29 gallons of water.

They don’t get along with every kind of fish, but there aren’t many reports of them being aggressive towards Chocolate Cichlids.

Angelfish generally like to stay in pairs and mind their business which would give the tank you own more variety.

Silver Dollar

The Silver Dollar fish is a Characidae and has a shiny silver color that’s very hard to ignore.

The fish itself is quite non-threatening with a small body of around 6 inches. The fish doesn’t really need that much when it comes to food.

Of course most fish love fish flakes, but getting some vegetables such as tomatoes or lettuce is more than enough for them.

They do come from an aggressive family that has spawned Piranhas and other kinds of fish, but the Silver Dollar isn’t like that.

Those fish have an insatiable bloodlust for any kind of flesh, but the Silver Dollar is purely an herbivore.

If it comes down to it, the Silver Dollar can be aggressive, but those are generally situations where the fish is just trying to protect itself.

It also is of the smaller variety and can’t afford to constantly risk its body over petty bouts.

As long as they aren’t being kept with some of the bigger fish out there, they should be completely fine to live in the tank.

Chocolate Cichlid Community Tank Size And Tank Mates To Avoid

Unfortunately, not every kind of fish is going to get along with the Chocolate Cichlid which requires 75 gallons of water to live a comfortable life.

A lot of them require different tank sizes in order to live a comfortable life. This isn’t all of them, but just the biggest ones to avoid.

  • Piranhas: This is the most obvious choice, but Piranhas will try to kill other fish. Not only are they very greedy when it comes to hogging space, but they will try to eat other fish as soon as they reach adulthood.
  • Goldfish: Goldfish are very calm and quiet, but they just aren’t meant to live with Cichlids. The goldfish is reserved and likes cold environments, while the Cichlid wants to be in warm environments
  • Discus: The Discus is very hungry and often competes for food a lot of the time. They also like slow and cold environments which not go well with the Cichlid


Chocolate Cichlids are a beautiful variety of fish that not everyone will have the pleasure of seeing.

Unfortunately, even with the lack of care, it takes some steps so that these fish can sustain themselves.

There are a ton of fish that will never be able to live with the Cichlid.

However, fortunately, there are also many fish that can live with you Cichlid in a 75-gallon water tank in harmony.

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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