Panda Parrot Fish: Good Or Bad For You Aquarium?

The body of a Panda Parrot Fish is mottled or patchy black with a white belly. This makes them more eye-catching in your aquarium.

However, this is not an easy fish to keep; many people even think it will harm their aquarium. So what is the truth? What do you need to pay attention to when raising them? Scrolling down to know more!

About Panda Parrot Fish 


The parrot is thought to be a cross between two cichlids that was created under laboratory conditions. Almost every cichlid has been proposed as a possible parent to the parrot at some point, and we’ve even heard that it is a hybrid between a goldfish and a cichlid!


Panda Parrots have mottled or patchy black patches on their white body. The patterns and colors of these vary greatly between each type. The color and practices of anyone can change over time.

The fish has a large and round shape. They have large nuchal humps on their backs and smaller, rounded heads. Large and brightly colored eyes make it more outstanding.

Its mouth is also quite interesting. They have small, vertically opening mouths, which are often compared to those of a bird’s beak by aquarists.

However, this trait also has drawbacks, as many of them are unable to close their mouths, but fortunately, they have teeth deep down to protect the food they eat.

In general, their body shape is compact rather than broad and has a glitter-like appearance, beautiful and soothing to the eyes.

About Panda Parrot Fish 


A healthy Panda Parrot has a life expectancy of 10 to 15 years. However, the breeder’s practices can also significantly impact their lifespan. Some are altered before being sold, and any modification drastically and negatively reduces their lifespan.

Average Size

Adult males average 8 inches in length, while females reach 6 to 7 inches on average. Females have rounder/plumper bodies in addition to being shorter.


These parrot cichlids exhibit calm behavior. They keep a friendly relationship with other tank mates and avoid aggressive fights. That said, if their neighbors begin to attack them, they respond with self-defense.

When these fish are breeding, they lash out at their mates and become aggressive. As a result, the best way is to keep them separate from their tankmates when reproducing. It will calm them down and stay happy during their gestation.


When it came to the pricing of these, they were far too expensive when they were first discovered.

Still, as their production increased, people recognized breeding them was not difficult, so they decided to keep them at a low cost. As a result, breeders have kept the prices between $15 and $25 for a pair.

If you can’t find these fish in a store, you can always search the internet. You can even get them for a lower price without sacrificing quality.

Is Panda Parrot Fish Good Or Bad For Your Aquarium? 

Although many people wonder about their effects, this fish will not bring negative effects to your aquarium.

This is a fairly peaceful one, as they will not spontaneously create conflicts, thereby ensuring the safety of other species in the aquarium.

You can keep them with other fish without having to separate the tank. This is convenient and relatively cost-effective.

In general, they do not have many requirements for staying in the aquarium. You will not need to prepare too much when you keep them with other ones.

group of panda parrot fish

Tank Setup For Panda Parrot Fish 

Tank Size

These fish require a minimum tank size of 30 gallons since they are very active and need a lot of space to swim. Increase the tank volume by about 10 gallons for each additional one you add.

Larger tanks are highly recommended. Many aquarists prefer to keep them in small groups. In that case, a tank of 60 gallons or larger is better.


You can go with both artificial items and natural decor schemes. These ones are fine in either case! What you should notice in the tank are hiding places. Make several hiding places out of plant pots, driftwood, and rocks, or artificial plants and caves can also be used.

A fine sand substrate is recommended because panda parrots, like other species, love digging, so the hard gravel can cause cuts and other physical injuries.

Keep the lighting to a minimum; soft standard lighting also works well.


Water Quality

It is critical to clean or change water frequently to maintain proper sanitation and hygiene levels in the aquarium. Furthermore, they may feel cold if the water temperature is not appropriate, so installing a water heater within the aquarium would be ideal. 

This will provide them with a more comfortable living environment and increase their lifespan.

  • Water PH Level: 6.4 to 7.5
  • Water hardness: between 2 and 25 dGH
  • Water maintenance: replace at least 30% of water per week


Panda parrot fish are omnivores who will eat almost any commercial food, but your best bet is to feed them dry food. Stick to sinking pellets because these ones have difficulty swallowing from the water’s surface.

You can occasionally serve bloodworms and brine shrimp as a high-protein snack (2-3 times a week max).

Feedings should be limited to a few minutes twice a day. After each feeding, remove any excess food to keep the water quality high.


What Is The Maximum Size Of Parrot Fish?

Normally, an average Panda Parrot can grow up to about 8 inches. But in some special cases, they can be up to 10 inches long.

What Fish Can I Keep With Panda Parrot Fish At An Aquarium?

Panda Parrot is not too aggressive, so it is suitable for many different types of fish. However, what you need to keep in mind is not to keep them with species that are so small that they can swallow. Some best tank mates are:

  • Kribensis
  • Emperor Tetra
  • Swordtail
  • Firemouth cichlid
  • Angelfish
  • Gouramis
  • Corydoras
  • Clown Loach
  • Rosy Barb

Kribensis fish

How Often Should I Feed My Parrot Fish?

Feeding can be done two or three times per day at set times, but don’t overfeed.

Do Parrot Fish Bite?

Parrot cichlids cannot bite you. If you’ve ever seen photos of them, you’ve probably noticed that their mouths are always open.

They inherited several genetic flaws due to the selective breeding process, which is the extremely small mouth that never closes.


To sum up, panda parrot fish doesn’t negatively impact your aquarium. That means you can freely keep in the tank with other species.

However, pay attention to choosing suitable species and have a proper tank decoration to provide them with the best environment to live and grow.