Tropical Fish Tank Mates to Include in Your Perfect Discus Fish Aquarium

Return To; Discus Fish Tank Size

*When your Discus fish are thriving and you have room in your tank, you might consider adding some Discus fish tank mates. You will have to take into consideration the many specific needs of your Discus, such as warm water, and a very clean tank, when choosing tank mates. There are several types of fish that make good tank mates in your Discus tank.


Because Discus have a tendency to become agitated easily, they need calm tank mates. Characins make an excellent choice in your discus tank because they are dither fish. This means that they swim around at the top of the tank and in other open locations of the tank. This signals to other fish, like the timid Discus, that there are no predators around. Characins can have a calming effect on your Discus because of this; the Discus will feel more open to venturing out from the vegetation more frequently if there are characins swimming about. Common types of characins include tetras, such as the popular rosy and cardinal tetras.

Angel Fish

Angels add personality to your Discus fish tank. Angel fish are aggressive at feeding time which forces the Discus get into the chase for food and start a feeding frenzy. Angels are available in many colors, patterns and fin shapes. They are native to the slow-moving currents of the Amazon River which Discus are also native too. Angel fish and Discus requirement are so identical that this makes them ideal tank mates for each other in your aquarium.


Another good choice for the Discus fish tank are Corydoras, also called corys or cory catfish. There are many different varieties of Corydoras, some of which are beautifully colored. Corydoras are very peaceful, small, and cohabitate well with Discus fish. They also do well in the warm, soft, slightly acidic water that Discus fish thrive in. In addition, Corydoras are bottom feeders, so they will do a good job of keeping the tank clean.


Loaches of all varieties are great non-aggressive additions as bottom dwellers in your Discus fish tank. They are peaceful scavengers that spend most of their time rooting around the bottom of your tank keeping the gravel clean and free of uneaten food. They too enjoy the higher water temperatures and acidic pH which Discus prefer.

Dwarf Gouramis

Unlike the regular Gouramis species that grows quite large, dwarf Gouramis are small, translucent fish that make good Discus tank mates. An interesting feature of Gouramis is their lung-like organ that helps them breathe well in oxygen poor water. Because of the higher water temperatures favored by Discus fish, Gouramis are a type of fish that will do well in this same Discus environment.

Dwarf Cichlids

Dwarf Cichlids are also a good choice in your Discus fish tank mates. They grow between three and four inches at most and are well suited to Discus habitat. They can tolerate warm water soft, water, and adapt to a variety of pH levels, so the Discus tank pH of 6.5 to 7.0 is fine for them. They also like a well-planted tank, which makes them a good choice in a Discus tank. They can become territorial when breeding, but because the Discus fish will leave them alone, they will live together peacefully. 

Learn More; Wild Discus in your Aquaruim

28th Apr 2024 Steve MacDonald

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