Can You Mix Different Types Of Cory Catfish? {How Many In A Tank?}

Do you wish to keep multiples species of cory catfish together? Can you mix different types of Cory catfish?

Will they get along, fight or drift apart?

In this article, we’ll look into the plan of mixing different types of cory catfish together without overcrowding your tank.

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Can You Mix Different Types Of Cory Catfish?

Yes. Corydoras or Cory Catfish of different species and types will shoal and mix together peacefully.

Make sure to add one cory catfish per gallon and be aware they have a large bioload.

Overcrowding them will produce too much waste leaving them stressed.

How Many Cory Catfish Can Be Kept Together?

Corydoras are a peaceful group of freshwater catfish that get along with each other and tankmates. If you don’t stock predators or aggressive fish that want to bully or eat them, you will see that they enjoy shoaling together.

  • One cory fish = One gallon of water

An average tank holding about 10 gallons of water can house 10 cory catfish, but we recommend allowing for a little extra room. 8 cory catfish dwelling at the bottom of your tank will do their best at becoming your cleanup crew, but they also leave their own waste behind.

Adding too many cory catfish increases ammonia and your tank’s overall bioload to a level that your filter may not be able to handle. You should start with 4 to 6 cory catfish and increase their numbers slowly.

Can I Mix Different Species Of Corydoras?

Yes. If you have introduced cory catfish as juveniles into your tank, they should be of the same species. Once they are mature, they will live peacefully with tankmates that are of different types or breeds. Cory catfish species are not aggressive towards each other.

They prefer safety in numbers and shoal together. They do not need to be in a school as you will notice how freely they swim at the bottom of your tank. They would prefer to be in safe spaces where many of them, regardless if you mix their types, can live harmoniously together.

Which Cory Catfish Should I Mix Together?

It is reported by more than a few cory catfish keepers that emerald corydoras do not socialize as well with the rest of their counterparts. We suggest stocking your tank with at least a pair of each type of cory catfish and keep no less than 4 or 6 total.

  • 2-6 Pandas
  • 2-6 Julii,
  • 2-6 Sterbai
  • 2-6 Venezuelan
  • 2-6 Peppered
  • 2-6 Albino

Avoid mixing in emerald cory catfish for now. It’s better to take anecdotal evidence to heart rather than trying to defy the popular reasoning that emerald cory catfish prefer to be together.

See how your mixed tank of cory catfish are getting along and decide to add further species if the tank is peaceful and social.

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What Happens If I Add Too Many Cory Catfish?

Adding more than one cory catfish per gallon will increase the tank’s bioload to unsafe levels. We look at these bottom feeders and see them cleaning the substrate, but we don’t notice how much waste they are also creating.

  • Vacuum the substrate more often.
  • Perform 25% water changes weekly.
  • Look for fin rot.
  • Remove eggs if you don’t wish to breed them. 

If water conditions are not ideal, you will leave your cory catfish open to developing irritations, gill flukes, parasites like Ich and other complications that these peaceful fish will not bring on themselves.

If we get too eager to overstock the tank because we see how peaceful they are, we have to engage in proactive routines to make sure the environment stays healthy and ideal for them to thrive.

My Cory Catfish Are Not Socializing With Each Other. What Should I Do?

Although we have clearly stated and continue to notice how different species of cory catfish live, group together and swim peacefully, the opposite holds true in some cases.

It’s reported that some tanks contain cory catfish who stick to their own kind. They find their match through appearance or slight variations in behavioral patterns such as their swimming preferences or favorite locations to dwell.

  • Change up the decorations.
  • Rearrange hiding places.
  • Add more variety to their diet.
  • Feed them all at the same time.
  • Add more plants.
  • Reduce tank size or add more cory catfish.

1. Redecorate

An uncomfortable or nervous cory catfish will seek company and look to shoal. Changing the environment around slightly may cause them to stick together a little tighter while they figure out the new changes.

2. Eat Together

Group feedings at the same time with a change in the type of food every 1-2 days will keep them actively engaged during these sessions. They will do so as a group and feed peacefully together. Plants also provide more material to nibble on and the increase of oxygen keeps cory catfish comfortable while encouraging them to be more social.

3. Add More Or Reduce Tank Size

If your tank is large and your cory catfish aren’t grouping together, then consider reducing the size of the tank or add more of them to increase the likelihood of different species of cory catfish shoaling together.


Cory Catfish are great for beginners and intermediate fish keepers. They will encourage a peaceful tank and shoal together when they wish to provide each other comfort. It’s much better to have groups of cory catfish than only keeping one. They are social and will accept each other as different breeds.

A ten gallon tank can hold up to 10 cory catfish, but we suggest keeping 6-8 in the tank to provide enough room to manage their excess bioload. Corydoras are a great addition to your tank. We hope they provide you with the peace and comfort that they exuberate in your aquarium.

Brian Arial

Brian Arial has kept fish for leisure and worked with fish stores for most of his life. He enjoys writing and caring for aquariums and ponds.