Pictus Catfish and Guppies – Can They Live Together?

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Pictus catfish and guppies do not make good tank mates. Why? Because the catfish are simply too aggressive for the guppies, and might start to actively hunt them down. That’s due to the predatory behavior that the catfish have towards smaller fish species.

And guppies certainly fall into that category. Sadly, I would not recommend you to keep catfish and guppies together, because of the predatory behavior of the catfish. In fact, guppies are sometimes used as the feeder fish for the pictus catfish. The difference in size is simply too big to consider these two together.

In this article, I’ll tell you exactly why I would not recommend you to keep these two fish species together.

Can Pictus Catfish Eat Guppies?

Pictus catfish tend to eat just about anything they will fit in their mouths, which also includes the guppies. These small fish will fit in the catfish mouth if they come in the way, and the catfish might start to actively pursue them and prey on them.

Guppies might become food for the catfish. For this reason, I strongly advise you to look for alternatives when it comes to tank mates for the catfish. If you have guppies, then you should refrain from getting the pictus catfish as the tank mates for the guppies.

In essence, both fish are relatively peaceful fish. The catfish will get along with many fish species of its own size or similar. But, when it comes to guppies, they prefer to live with smaller, peaceful fish that will not pursue them for food. As for the catfish, you should look for larger, lively freshwater fish that will get along with them well.

I strongly advise you against keeping the catfish with the guppies for this reason. Also, the catfish will eat the guppy babies.

Should You Feed Guppies to Pictus Catfish?

Many people use the guppies as feeder fish for the catfish. If you’re looking at guppies as the feeder fish for the catfish, then you can certainly consider that. But, if you want to keep them together in the same tank, be prepared to see your catfish hunt down the guppies and even consume them.

Yes, you can easily use the guppies as the feeder fish for the catfish. Just make sure you are buying from a reputable source that screens these guppies and also makes sure that these guppies you buy are only the healthy guppies.

If you choose from a good supplier, then the guppies will be screened and vetted so that they have no potential diseases. Also, parasites are also a very serious proposition, and these parasites can easily spread onto the catfish. Make sure you only buy the healthy guppies to the catfish.

What Fish Can Live with Pictus Catfish?

When you consider the tank mates for the pictus catfish, you’ll want to make sure they are of a similar size, that they have a similar behavior, they prefer the similar tank conditions, and that they are relatively peaceful.

Always refrain from keeping aggressive fish with the catfish. Here are some of the best species that you can keep with the pictus catfish:

  • Angelfish
  • Bristlenose pleco
  • Rummy nose tetra
  • Zebrafish
  • Clown loach

All of these species will make great tank mates for the pictus catfish. As you can see, they are all relatively larger fish species, so they will not be hunted down by the catfish. Also, these fish tend to be lively, which is of course, compatible with the pictus catfish. Consider these fish species for your catfish tank.

What Fish Can You Mix with Guppies?

On the other hand, for the guppy tank, you will want to have non-aggressive, small fish species that are friendly and peaceful. These fish should be compatible with the guppies, and should also not be predatory fish. Some of the best tank mates for the guppies include:

  • Mollies
  • Platies
  • Corydoras
  • Neon tetras
  • Swordtails

If you manage to keep the guppies with these fish, then the guppies will remain healthy and won’t have to worry about possible predators. If you keep guppies with larger fish, they can easily become prey to the large fish.

With the fish on this list, that just won’t happen. All of these fish make for great fish for smaller, home aquariums.

Wrapping Up

Keeping guppies and pictus catfish together in the same tank is not recommended. I strongly encourage you to look for other options, as guppies can easily become prey to the catfish.

If you are looking to feed the catfish with the guppies, then you can keep them in the same tank, but make sure that the guppies are vetted and screened before you do that. Consider other options when it comes to tank mates, though.

avatar I’m Fabian, aquarium fish breeder and founder of this website. I’ve been keeping fish, since I was a kid. On this blog, I share a lot of information about the aquarium hobby and various fish species that I like. Please leave a comment if you have any question.

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