If you’ve been keeping fish for some time now, you might already know everything there is to know about the molly fish. However, if you’re new to keeping mollies or just want to add some fish to your molly tank, then there are a few things you need to know first.
Whenever you’re looking to add new fish to your tank, you should consider the types of tank mates your molly fish will get along best with. In this guide, we’ll go into a few of the best tank mates for the molly fish and some other stuff you should know.
Table of contents
- 10 Best Tank Mates for Molly Fish in 2021
- What Makes a Good Tank Mate for Molly Fish?
- Where Do Molly Fish Prefer to Live in the Aquarium?
- Water Parameters
- Aggressive Behaviors
- 2 Benefits of Having Tank Mates for Molly Fish in Your Aquarium
- Final Thoughts
10 Best Tank Mates for Molly Fish in 2021
1. Guppy Fish (Poecilia reticulata)
|Minimum Tank Size:||10 gallons|
The guppy fish is one of the most peaceful fish species you can find and they get along great with molly fish. Both species are omnivores; they enjoy the same water parameters and also have the same peaceful temperament.
The guppy fish is easy to take care of, and both species are livebearer fish, making them even more compatible.
2. Endlers (Poecilia wingei)
|Minimum Tank Size:||5 gallons|
The Endler isn’t as well-known as some of the other tank mates on this list, but they are peaceful enough to get along well with the molly fish. They are typically cross-bred with guppies, which we already know get along well with the mollies. Since they share similar temperament, diet, and socialization levels, they make great tank mates for molly fish.
3. Platys (Xiphophorus)
|Minimum Tank Size:||13+ gallons|
Platys are another peaceful species of fish that get along well with molly fish. These fish are small, colorful, fast, active, and fun to watch. They eat the same food as molly fish, are easy to care for, and have a peaceful temperament, so they’ll get along with your molly fish just fine.
4. Danios (Cyprinidae)
|Minimum Tank Size:||5+ gallons (Better kept in groups)|
|Temperament:||Mostly peaceful (Have been known to nip fins)|
Danios are considered hardy schooling fish and are slim with forked tails. They do better when kept in groups, but they are omnivores and mostly peaceful, making them great to have around molly fish. However, they have been known to nip at other fish’s fins, so you will want to keep a watch out for that.
5. Tetris (Characiformes)
|Minimum Tank Size:||10+ gallons|
Tetras have a slim appearance and will add gorgeous colors to your tank. They are social and like to be kept in schools. However, it is important to note that these fish like to nip, so you don’t need to keep them with long-finned fish, even though some of these species are compatible with molly fish.
Tetris fish are not compatible with danios. While they are omnivores, they will eat bloodworms and the like if you give them to them. They make good tank mates for your molly fish because of their temperament and their diet.
6. Gouramis (Osphronemidae)
|Minimum Tank Size:||10+ gallons for dwarfs, 30+ gallons for larger species|
Most gouramis are omnivores, so they make good tank mates for the molly fish. However, it’s essential to research the type of gourami you’re considering adding to your tank, as they all have different aggression levels.
Size should also be taken into consideration, as some of these fish species can grow quite large. You’ll want to choose the most peaceful, smallest gourami to mix with your molly fish and its other companions.
7. Angelfish (Pterophyllum altum)
|Minimum Tank Size:||30+ gallons for each angelfish|
|Temperament:||Mostly peaceful, may become aggressive when eating|
Angelfish also make great tank mates for molly fish due to their care level and temperament. However, since angelfish do have long fins, it’s important to keep them away from some of the other fish that are suitable tankmates for the molly fish.
Make sure to do your research before adding angelfish to a tank that has more than molly fish in it for the best results.
8. Shrimp (Caridea)
|Minimum Tank Size:||5-10+ gallons|
Shrimp are some of the best tank mates for molly fish that you can find. They are tiny bottom feeders and won’t mess with any of the freshwater fish you keep in your aquarium. Make sure that you don’t put aggressive fish with your shrimp, and also check to see which species of shrimp will do best with your tank’s water and pH.
|Minimum Tank Size:||10 gallons|
While it is true that minnows make great tank mates for molly fish, it’s also important to note that other fish species might consider them food instead. These fish are incredibly peaceful, easy to care for, and omnivores; however, they are tiny, so you have to be careful what fish you put in your tank with them.
|Minimum Tank Size:||1-2 gallons|
Snails feed on the waste in your aquarium, are very peaceful and small, so there are really no negatives when it comes to keeping snails in your molly fish tank. In addition, there are many snail breeds to choose from, and they protect themselves from other fish just by pulling back into their own shells.
What Makes a Good Tank Mate for Molly Fish?
There are over 30 species of mollies to choose from out there and not near as many tank mates that are suitable to live with them, though there are a few. It’s best for the tank mates of a molly fish to be peaceful, omnivores if possible, and be able to live in different areas of the tank when the molly fish is in theirs.
Mollies are generally peaceful fish who can get along with about any tank mate. However, it’s best to avoid fish breeds that are larger and more aggressive than they are. For example, if you have cichlids in your tank, even with grottos to hide in, they’ll still try to take a bite out of your molly fish when they can.
Where Do Molly Fish Prefer to Live in the Aquarium?
Mollies like to hang out where they can explore the tank and then hide behind coral reefs, bubblers, and other accessories that they can dart in and out of. While they can live in any part of the aquarium, they do best when their tanks are cleaned out regularly.
Molly fish are from North and South America, preferring to hang out in the shallow waters there. As mentioned in the preferred living quarters section, they can live anywhere in the tank but prefer shady spots, a ton of plants, and sand.
Because molly fish are sensitive, their water parameters should be taken care of carefully. They eat algae off the side of the tank, so make sure that if you have snails and shrimp eating from the same source, that you put more in the tank so they can all get enough. The most important thing is to keep the hydrogen sulfide levels in the water high and maintained constantly. Keep the water between 70 and 82 degrees Fahrenheit and the pH between 7.5 and 8.5.
As previously mentioned, molly fish come in more than 30 different species, so the size your mollies reach is going to be determined by the breed you choose. According to the molly fish you choose, they can reach anywhere from 3 inches to 6 inches in length. These varieties also come in different colors and have different requirements for tank size and care according to the species you choose.
Molly fish are usually very peaceful and not aggressive at all, which is why they get along so well with many different types of tank mates. However, just like any other species, they can get aggressive in certain instances.
Instances such as overcrowded tanks, being bullied by other tank mates, some type of fish illness or disease, or unhealthy conditions in their tank will quickly stress a molly fish out, and it will become aggressive.
Some fish keepers have noted that certain species of molly fish will become aggressive when it comes to food or during the breeding season, so keep an eye on that with your own mollies and other tank mates.
2 Benefits of Having Tank Mates for Molly Fish in Your Aquarium
You may be wondering why you should be worried about tank mates for your molly fish. So here we’ll go into the benefits of having tank mates for your molly fish.
1. To Prevent Boredom
Mollies need to be around other fish to thrive. So whether it’s their own species or tank mates that you choose from the list above, you need to prevent your molly fish from being bored if at all possible.
2. To Prevent Loneliness
Molly fish are fast, energetic, happy, and fun to watch. However, if they have no other fish in their tanks, then they will get lonely, which could lead to your fish becoming sick and depressed.
This concludes our guide on the 10 best tank mates for molly fish and a little about what you need to know to care for your molly fish and the mates you choose.
Remember, make sure to keep your molly fish away from fish that are larger or more aggressive than they are for the best results. Molly fish come in a few different varieties, meaning they’re different sizes, colors, and even temperaments. You should be able to find any of the species above at your local pet store. Just make sure you do your research before determining which of these species will do well together, not just with your molly fish.
Featured Image Credit: Praveen Aravind, Shutterstock