Gouramis are no longer an unfamiliar name to enthusiastic aquarists. These fish are best known for their large size and lively temperament. However, experts believe that gouramis are by no means peaceful and friendly all the time.

This leads to the question of whether gouramis can live in harmony with smaller tank mates, especially shrimp. So, will gouramis eat shrimp? And if this is a possibility, what can you do to prevent this situation? Let’s have a look at the article below!

Will Gouramis Eat Shrimp?

Generally speaking, it is difficult to determine whether shrimp will be swallowed by gouramis or not, since we are not clear regarding which species are mentioned here.

Still, as long as the shrimp is small enough to fit inside a gourami’s mouth, you bet that gouramis will not hesitate to gulp this miserable invertebrate.

gourami fish

How To Keep Gouramis And Shrimp Together

As mentioned above, gouramis are not known for their docile behaviors. If provoked, these animals can turn out to be rather aggressive.

That is not to mention how their appetite never seems to be satisfied, as they proceed to consume whatever is edible inside the tank.

At the same time, this does not mean that you cannot keep gouramis and shrimp together. Below are some suggestions on how to harmonize these two species.

More plants

Plants are necessary when it comes to supplying oxygen. But little do people know that plants can also act as hiding places. If your shrimp wish to live and breed peacefully, hiding behind plant leaves and seeking refuge there will be the best course of action.

Larger shrimp species

Some species of shrimp – such as cherry shrimp – can easily fall prey to gouramis due to their tiny size. This is when larger shrimp come in handy. The most recommended species here would be Amano shrimp since their size is relatively the same as that of dwarf gouramis.

Another type of shrimp favorable to live with gouramis is the ghost shrimp. As the name already indicates, ghost shrimp earn their reputation through their transparent shell. If clever enough, these animals could easily hide from gouramis and keep themselves at a safe distance.

Or, if you can afford other equally big shrimp, do not hesitate to put them inside the tank as well. Remember, the key is to make sure that your shrimp will not be easily eaten by larger gouramis.

More personal space

gourami swimming

One of the reasons why gouramis end up eating shrimp is that they do not have their own space. Lacking territory prompts these aquatic animals to act aggressively, leading to direct collisions and conflicts.

Hence, it is best if you can arrange a larger tank for both gouramis and shrimp to feel comfortable. As long as these two enjoy their own space, they will be less likely to invade that of the other.

More decorative objects

Decorative objects serve more purposes than merely being aesthetically pleasing. Decor pieces such as trinkets or driftwood may provide plenty of hiding places for both your shrimp and your gouramis.

Furthermore, using decorative objects means you get to divide the tank into different sections. For those who could not afford a large tank, separating aquatic animals using these natural dividers is highly recommended.

Mix up the diet

Gouramis are voracious eaters. If not satisfied with their calorie intake, they will proceed to feed on anything within their vicinity. Thus, you may want to diversify their diet and keep them fed whenever they feel hungry.

The most common food for gouramis include bloodworms, brine shrimp, brine shrimp egg, tubifex, and frozen pellets. Scatter the food in smaller portions and keep the feeding intermittent. This helps to reduce their insatiable cravings and discourages them from seeking other sources of food.


Does gourami eat snails?

Yes. Gouramis are not picky regarding their eating and feeding habits. Hence, they will not hesitate to feed on snails if the opportunity presents itself.

But still, it is not easy for gouramis to track down snails, especially when snails usually cling to the substrate only.

Should you want to use snails as an alternative when feeding gouramis, consider buying commercially prepared snails instead.

Do gouramis eat live plants?

No. Gouramis are not keen on eating plants. However, you will still see signs of gouramis ripping off plant leaves and dragging them around. This is because gouramis need plants to construct their nests.

Since gouramis use their teeth to nip on plant leaves, many are under the impression that these fish enjoy eating plants.

Which gourami is the best?

There is no single best gouramis, only the ones that best fit your aquarium. Depending on your budget, how big your tank is, and what kind of tank mates you are ready to prepare, feel free to pick gouramis that go with your preferences.

Are gouramis aggressive?

Yes. Gouramis are rather aggressive and they do not shy away from picking fights, even with individuals from their species. Thus, it is advised that gouramis are kept far away from one another.

However, should you want several gouramis to stay in the same place, consider buying female gouramis instead. It would help even more if these gouramis are of different varieties and come in different colors!


Will gouramis eat shrimp? If you are not careful enough, then yes! That said, there are plenty of ways to minimize the chances of this incident. Thus, make sure you apply the tips and tricks above to see how gouramis and shrimp could live in harmony.

Alex is a pet freelance writer and editor with more than 10 years of experience. He attended Colorado State University, where he earned a Bachelor’s degree in Biology, which was where he first got some experience in animal nutrition. After graduating from University, Alex began sharing his knowledge as a freelance writer specializing in pets.

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