6 List Of Fish That Can Live With Red Eared Slider Turtles

Keeping fish and turtles together does not always work. If you are planning to or want to keep fish and turtles in the same aquarium, it will need proper planning and attention to detail. 

Another thing is, results are not always the same for every aquarium, and it may not work for everyone as well. Therefore, you need to do detailed research before going shopping for the same. 

Also, an aquarium with a variety of fish looks much prettier than an aquarium with just any one of them. Therefore, we will introduce you to a list of fishes that can live with turtles. Apart from that, you will also learn about various tips and conditions that help coexist both fish and turtles in the same aquarium. 

6 List Of Fish That Can Live With Red Eared Slider Turtles

Fish like catfish, neon tetras, guppies and some goldfish varieties, which are fast-swimming fishes, can live with turtles. But make sure that you don’t keep any fish with snapping turtles that are very aggressive. 

Let’s check an extensive list of fishes that are comfortable living with turtles- 

  • Guppies are quick swimmers, which make them one of the best fish breeds to live with turtles. Their agility makes it difficult for turtles to catch them or get a bead on. 
  • Suckerfishes like Plecos grow large in size, and turtles are a bit smaller than them. Their large size is what keeps them safe from turtles. Plecos are also good for your aquarium as they eat all the algae and keep the tank clean. 
  • Pictus catfish, also known as angel cat, thrives in bigger tanks. You can keep them with turtles as they are quite fat and cannot be caught by turtles. 
  • Rosy barbs are another fish type that is known to live very well with turtles. 
  • Neon tetras can also live very well with turtles. They are very fast swimmers, due to which turtles can’t catch and eat them. 
  • Shubunkin and Comet are two of the best goldfish species which can coexist with turtles in the same aquarium. 

This is a list of some fish species that can live with turtles without any danger. But to ensure the proper safety of both fish and turtles, you should know which turtles can live comfortably with fish as well. Hence, let’s look into the list of turtles that are good to keep with aquarium fish. 

  • Pink belly turtles are great to keep in the same aquarium with fish. They are known to do very well when it comes to living with fish. 
  • Painted turtles, another turtle species, can be kept with fish. They feed on small fishes, so if you keep them with large aquarium fish, there is nothing to worry about. 
  • Musk and Mud are two varieties of turtles you can keep worried free with fish. They are least interested in hurting fish hence a safe choice. 
  • Red Eared Sliders are another turtle type that you can keep in the same tank as fish. But keep in mind that you’ve to keep them in the aquarium when they are old. Red Eared Slider turtles, when they get old, become less interested in protein and more in the greens, due to which they don’t harm the fish in the tank. 

Conditions That Will Ensure The Protection of The Fish in The Tank That Has Turtles

Here are a few conditions you should maintain with turtles to ensure the safety of the fish in the same tank. Let’s have a look at them-

  • Do not feed your turtles fish. If you feed your turtle fish, it will become an acquired taste for them, and they won’t be able to control their glutton for fish meat. Hence, to ensure the safety of your aquarium fish, make sure your turtle doesn’t taste fish flash. 
  • Always keep your turtles full. Turtles don’t have any specific eating period, just like humans, which is why they would eat whenever and whatever they feel like. One way to keep your turtles away from devouring the fish is to provide enough leafy vegetables, mealworms, crickets etc. so that their attention never goes to the fish in the tank. 
  • Give your fish hiding space inside the tank. You can keep PVC pipes with small holes inside the tank for the fish to quickly go inside and hide. Make sure that the holes are only big enough for fish to enter. Additionally, you can keep large stones, clay pots upside down, driftwood pieces with irregularly shaped edges. These will provide ample hiding spots for turtles to escape from turtles’ prying eyes. 
  • Doing a compatibility test first before randomly putting the fish and turtles inside really helps. What you can do is try putting one or two fishes of a couple of species and turtles in your aquarium. See for a few days how they are keeping along and then make the decision. This compatibility test will help you decide which fish and turtle species you should go for. 
  • Train a young turtle not to see fish as a food source. If you want your turtle not to feed on the aquarium fish, you should keep a young turtle alone in an aquarium for a few months before adding the fish.
    This will help them not to see fish as a food source and ensure the safety of the other. Also, older turtles are known to be less aggressive towards fish than young ones. Therefore, letting the young turtle mature before adding the fish will actually help. 


Hopefully, the above discussion on the topic of what fish can live with turtles has helped you have a detailed knowledge of the topic. There are lots of people who love keeping an aquarium with different turtle and fish species together. However, most people fail to ensure the safety of both. 

If you, too, are fond of fish and turtle tanks and want to keep one, make sure you do accurate research before getting one. In this regard, this post will really help you know different species of fish and turtles that can coexist together. Make sure to give this guide a read so that you refrain from getting your fish eaten!

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