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Best Tankmates for African Dwarf Frogs

African dwarf frogs are a type of aquatic amphibian found in river basins in Africa. Highly popular in the aquarist trade, they’re easy to care for and make a great addition to almost any freshwater community tank. That said, which underwater creatures can live peacefully with African dwarf frogs in captivity?

The ‘top 10’ tankmates for African dwarf frogs include barbs, danios, endlers, gouramis, guppies, minnows, platies, rasboras, tetras, and snails. Small, peaceful, non-carnivorous aquatic creatures are recommended. Just make sure they can survive in the same water conditions as African dwarf frogs.

Now that you know the best tankmates for African dwarf frogs, let’s explore this topic in more detail. Together we’ll learn why each species is recommended, which creatures shouldn’t be kept with these tiny aquatic amphibians, and if they need companionship in an aquarium.

So, if you’re ready to learn more about these freshwater amphibians including how to care for them and keep them safe in captivity, then let’s begin!

What Fish Go Well with African Dwarf Frogs?

Freshwater fish of similar size and disposition make good companions for African dwarf frogs in captivity. The ‘top 10’ tankmates for these aquatic amphibians include the following:


Cherry barbs are easy to maintain and ideal for a tank with African dwarf frogs. They stay small (reaching full-grown lengths of a mere 2 inches) and are perfect example of an active, schooling fish. Best kept in groups of 4 to 6, they do well in a planted tank with plenty of open space for swimming.


Zebra danios are iridescently colored and great for a tank with African dwarf frogs. They reach full-grown lengths of 2 inches and are non-aggressive. Active and a joy to observe in captivity, zebra danios need at least a 20-gallon tank due to their highly energetic nature.


Endlers look much like guppies and make great tankmates for African dwarf frogs. Peaceful and easy to care for, they stay small and only grow to lengths of about 1.5 inches. Brightly colored and active, they won’t bother bottom-dwelling frogs and prefer to swim in the top half of their aquarium.

Belly of an african dwarf frog


Honey gourami fish are easy to care for and perfect for a tank with African dwarf Frogs. They stay relatively small (up to 2 inches long) and are non-aggressive when kept in small groups of 1 male to 3 females. A heavily planted aquarium with plenty of hiding places is best as can be timid at times.


Guppies are a great choice for an aquarium with African dwarf frogs. They’re colorful, peaceful, easy to maintain, and stay small (only 1.5 inches long). Best of all, if you don’t want theme to reproduce, you can keep a group of males together without fear of them fighting one another.


White cloud minnows are metallic in appearance and make a wonderful addition to a tank with African dwarf frogs. They only reach length of about 2 inches and are easy to maintain. Hardy and active, these minnows are best kept in groups of at least 6 if you want their silver and gold coloring to really ‘pop.’


Platies are an active, schooling fish and can be kept with African dwarf frogs. Non-aggressive, sociable, and easy to care for, platies are voracious eaters and leave little in the way of leftovers. Therefore, it’s best to keep just 4 (1 male with 3 females) in a tank with aquatic amphibians.


Harlequin rasboras are coppery colored and perfect for a nano tank with African dwarf frogs. They’re active, peaceful, and won’t bother bottom-dwelling amphibians since they prefer to swim near the top of an aquarium. Best kept in groups of at least 6, these fish are easy to acquire and maintain.


Tetras, especially neons, make terrific tankmates for African dwarf frogs. Highly popular with freshwater aquarists, neon tetras are small (1.5 inches when full-grown), peaceful, colorful, active, and hardy. Best kept in small groups of 4 to 6, they’re cheap to purchase and easy to maintain.


Not a fish, but snails make the perfect addition to any freshwater tank with African dwarf frogs. They’re typically peaceful and help keep the aquarium clean by feasting on uneaten food and algae. Nerite snails are the best choice because they stay small (about an inch in length) and won’t reproduce in captivity.

What Fish Shouldn’t be Kept with African Dwarf Frogs?

Large, meat-eating, or highly aggressive aquatic creatures should never be kept with African dwarf frogs. These include (but aren’t limited to) the following:

African Clawed Frogs

Absolutely under no circumstances should you keep African dwarf frogs with African clawed frogs. Regardless they’re both amphibians and originate in the same place, African clawed frogs get to be quite big and will devour the much smaller dwarf frog without hesitation.


Goldfish like fantails, orandas, and ryukins are omnivorous and grow to average lengths of 6 to 8 inches in captivity. They have voracious appetites, big mouths, and will eat just about anything that easily fits into their mouths – this includes African dwarf frogs.


Shrimps shouldn’t be kept in the same tank as African dwarf frogs since they’re likely to become the amphibians’ next meal! Baby shrimps are slow-moving and make easy prey for the frogs. The only way to keep shrimp in an aquarium with African dwarf frogs is if they’re larger.

Can African Dwarf Frogs Live with a Betta Fish?

While African dwarf frogs are often kept in tanks with betta fish, it really depends on the temperament of your fish. Bettas are naturally territorial and can get aggressive with dwarf frogs if they feel they’re invading their space. Females are less hostile so they may do okay sharing their tank.

In my opinion, it’s not worth the risk unless you have a large, planted tank with lots of hiding places so the two don’t have to cross paths. Ensuring your betta fish are healthy and well fed will also help reduce their hostile tendencies.

african dwarf frog with betta fish

Do African Dwarf Frogs Need Companions?

African dwarf frogs are sociable by nature and do well in captivity when kept together in pairs or small groups. For a pair, you need at least a 10-gallon tank. If you intend to keep fish as well, then a 20-gallon aquarium or bigger is required.

Keep the tank in a quiet spot with minimal traffic and away from direct sunlight. Maintain a temperature of 73- to 78-degrees Fahrenheit with a pH level between 6.5 and 7.5. Place a lid with a LED light on top and install a filtration system. Add plants like java fern to provide cover and oxygenate the water.

What Traits Make for a Good African Dwarf Frog Tankmate?

Since African dwarf frogs are small (3 inches long), they do well with other minute underwater creatures. Larger, more aggressive, or carnivorous fish shouldn’t be kept with these tiny aquatic amphibians as they’re likely to be harassed and/or eaten.

Think small, peaceful, herbivorous schooling fish when looking to stock an aquarium with African dwarf frogs. Creatures of like size that aren’t territorial and prefer to keep to themselves make good tankmates. Fish that prefer to swim in the top half of the tank are recommended.

Final Thoughts

To conclude, the ‘top 10’ African dwarf frog tankmates include snails, barbs, danios, endlers, gouramis, guppies, minnows, platies, rasboras, tetras. Think small, peaceful, non-carnivorous, schooling fish ans well as other aquatic creatures of similar size and temperament.

African dwarf frogs are sociable creatures and do best in pairs or groups. In a spacious, dimly lit tank with the right water parameters, plenty of hiding places, and other peaceful aquatic creatures, they’ll not only survive, but thrive in captivity.

I hope you’ve found this article to be both interesting and informative. Thanks for reading and good luck with your aquarist hobby.

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