Butterfly Tail Goldfish Care Guide: Simple Tips for a Happy Fish

Butterfly Tail goldfish are truly a sight to behold with their unique and breathtaking appearance. Their striking features, combined with their friendly and curious nature, make them a popular choice for aquarium enthusiasts. Caring for these beautiful fish may seem challenging at first, but with the right guidance, you’ll be able to provide them with a healthy and comfortable environment.

In this care guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know to ensure your Butterfly Tail goldfish thrive. From setting up their tank to choosing their tankmates, you’ll discover how to create a perfect habitat for them. So, let’s get started on this exciting journey towards nurturing these wonderful creatures and watching them flourish.

Species Overview

Butterfly Tail Goldfish are elegant and beautiful fish that can be a stunning addition to your aquarium. They are characterized by their unique tail, which resembles a butterfly in full flight when viewed from above. Caring for these lovely fish involves attention to the specific needs and requirements of this particular species.

Scientific Name Carassius auratus
Common Names Butterfly Tail Goldfish, Butterfly Telescope Goldfish, Jikin Goldfish
Distribution China, Japan
Size 6-8 inches
Lifespan 10-15 years
Diet Omnivore
Temperament Peaceful
Minimum Tank Size 20-30 gallons
Temperature 70-80°F
pH 7-8
Water Hardness 6-12° dGH
Care Level Intermediate
Filtration/Water Flow Low to Moderate
Water Type Freshwater
Breeding Egg Scatterer
Breeding Difficulty Intermediate
Compatibility Community Tank, Best with other Goldfish varieties

Ensure that your Butterfly Tail Goldfish’s tank is well-maintained, with regular cleaning and water testing. Optimal water conditions will make for happy and healthy fish. A well-balanced diet of high-quality pellets or flakes and occasional live or frozen foods will keep your goldfish swimming happily. Lastly, be mindful to select suitable tank mates for your Butterfly Tail Goldfish to maintain a peaceful and stress-free environment in your aquarium.

Origins and Natural Habitat

Butterfly Tail Goldfish, also known as Butterfly Telescope Goldfish, are thought to have originated from China. They are distantly related to a wild Prussian carp species that were kept in ponds and raised as a food fish during the early 1700s. Early fish keepers likely noticed a few bright orange specimens among the carp and began keeping them as ornamental pond fish.

In their natural habitat, these goldfish lived in slow-moving and stagnant bodies of water, such as ponds, lakes, and river basins. They would often feed on live plants, which is why you may need to replace plants regularly in your goldfish pond. It’s crucial to replicate this environment when setting up a suitable home for your Butterfly Tail Goldfish.

To provide the best care, ensure that their tank or pond has a slow-moving water flow and ample space for them to swim. Keep in mind that Butterfly Tail Goldfish typically grow between 6 to 8 inches, so plan accordingly. Also, avoid using artificial plants, as goldfish prefer natural ones.

Now that you know their origins and natural habitat, you can confidently create the perfect living space for your Butterfly Tail Goldfish. Happy fish keeping!

Physical Characteristics

Size and Shape

Your Butterfly Tail Goldfish typically has an egg-shaped, short, and stubby body. The head is wider than the body and features a set of lovely telescope eyes. These goldfish can grow between 6 to 8 inches when cared for properly and when housed in large bodies of water. The dorsal fins are usually pretty tall, and sometimes there’s a Ryukin-like hump behind the head, which contributes to their unique appearance.

Color and Markings

As for their colors and markings, Butterfly Tail Goldfish come in a variety of vibrant hues. They often display a combination of colors, such as orange, white, red, gold, or black, covering their bodies and fins. Their eye-catching colors and distinct butterfly-shaped tails make them attractive additions to any aquarium.

Remember to provide proper care for your Butterfly Tail Goldfish to ensure it maintains its vibrant colors and stays healthy. By following recommended guidelines, you can enjoy their unique beauty for years to come.

Lifespan and Growth Rate

Caring for your Butterfly Tail goldfish goes hand-in-hand with understanding their lifespan and growth rate. These beautiful and unique goldfish typically have a lifespan of 8-10 years but can live up to 12 years in captivity under ideal conditions. However, it’s important to note that they may have a shorter lifespan compared to common goldfish.

In terms of growth, Butterfly Tail goldfish usually reach a size of 6 to 8 inches when provided with proper care and housed in large bodies of water. Keep in mind that their growth can be affected by factors such as diet, water quality, and tank maintenance.

To ensure your goldfish thrives and reaches its full growth potential, follow these tips:

  • Maintain a well-balanced diet: Feed your goldfish high-quality food with a mix of dry and fresh items, such as goldfish flakes, frozen or live brine shrimp, and vegetables.
  • Keep the water clean: Conduct regular water changes and monitor the water parameters using a reliable test kit, ensuring ammonia, nitrite and nitrate levels remain safe.
  • Provide a spacious tank: Give your goldfish adequate space to swim and grow, as cramped environments can stunt their growth. A tank of at least 20-30 gallons per goldfish is recommended.

By following these guidelines, you’ll be supporting your Butterfly Tail goldfish in reaching a healthy and fulfilling life.

Diet and Feeding

Feeding your Butterfly Tail goldfish a balanced and nutritious diet is essential for their overall health and longevity. Offer them a variety of foods, including high-quality flakes or pellets specifically designed for goldfish. These foods are specially formulated to meet their dietary needs and help maintain their vibrant colors.

It’s a good idea to supplement their diet with live or frozen foods, such as brine shrimp, daphnia, or bloodworms. These provide essential nutrients and promote stronger immunity, making your goldfish less prone to diseases.

Remember to feed your Butterfly Tail goldfish in small, regular portions, about 2-3 times a day. Overfeeding can lead to poor water quality, as uneaten food creates excess waste in the tank. With a healthy feeding routine, your goldfish will grow to their optimal size, and their unique butterfly-shaped tail will develop beautifully.

Lastly, be mindful not to leave food in the tank for too long, as it can break down and harm water quality. Monitor your goldfish to ensure they consume the food you provide and adjust your feeding routine as necessary to meet their needs.

Behavior and Temperament

Butterfly Tail Goldfish are known for their peaceful and mild temperaments, making them great additions to your aquarium. They enjoy being kept in groups with other fancy goldfish and can even bond with you, their owner. Keep in mind that these goldfish are slow-moving, so provide a large, comfortable environment for them to thrive in.

When it comes to companionship, be cautious when selecting tank mates. Faster or more aggressive fish can outcompete your Butterfly Tail Goldfish for food or cause them stress. Stick to other fancy goldfish varieties or similarly calm and slow-moving species for the best results.

In order to maintain their stunning butterfly-shaped tails, it’s crucial to keep your aquarium well-maintained. This means proper water filtration, regular cleaning, and avoiding sharp objects that could damage their delicate tails. By providing them with a safe and healthy environment, you’ll be rewarded with the captivating beauty and serene personality of these unique goldfish.

Care and Tank Requirements

Tank Size

To ensure your Butterfly Tail goldfish is healthy and comfortable, provide a tank with a minimum of 20 gallons per fish. If you plan to keep more, add an extra 10 gallons of water per additional goldfish to avoid overcrowding.

Water Parameters (Temperature and pH)

Butterfly Tail goldfish thrive in water temperatures between 68° to 74° F. They can adapt to various pH levels, but it’s best to maintain a stable pH between 7.0 and 8.4. Regularly monitor the water parameters to prevent fluctuations in temperature or pH that can stress your fish.

Tank Setup and Decorations

Create a suitable environment for your Butterfly Tail goldfish by choosing a fine gravel substrate. Avoid using sharp or coarse decorations that could injure their delicate fins. Incorporate live plants, like Anubias or Java Fern, to improve water quality and provide hiding spaces. However, keep in mind goldfish might nibble on these plants. A spacious swimming area is necessary for your goldfish’s well-being.

Filtration and Aeration

Use a high-quality filter with both mechanical and biological filtration capabilities to maintain a clean and healthy tank environment. Goldfish produce more waste and require a higher turnover rate than other fish; aim for a filter that can process 5-10 times the tank volume per hour. Additionally, include an air pump to enhance oxygen exchange and keep the water well-oxygenated for your Butterfly Tail goldfish.

Suitable Tank Mates

When considering suitable tank mates for your Butterfly Tail Goldfish, it’s essential to choose non-aggressive fish that can coexist peacefully. Adding compatible tank mates enhances the beauty and liveliness of your aquarium. Here are a few options to consider:

  • Hillstream Loaches
  • Brochis Multiradiatus
  • Dojo Loaches
  • Bristle Nose Plecos
  • Ricefish

Remember, your Butterfly Tail Goldfish requires a tank of at least 20 to 30 gallons, and you’ll need to add an additional 10 gallons for each extra goldfish you keep. This helps ensure a harmonious living environment for your fishy friends.


Butterfly Tail goldfish are truly unique and captivating pets that would be a stunning addition to your aquarium. With their magnificent tails and vivid colors, they’re sure to become the centerpiece of your aquatic environment. Remember to provide them with a well-maintained, spacious tank, and a nutritious diet to help them thrive and display their full charm.

By closely monitoring your goldfish’s health and promptly addressing any signs of illness or injury, you’ll be able to enjoy the beauty and personality of your Butterfly Tail goldfish for years to come. Just remember, caring for these delicate creatures may be challenging at times, but your efforts will be rewarded with a lively, enchanting aquatic companion.