What Fish Don’t Need a Filter to Live in Fish Tank?

Last Updated on January 7, 2023 by David

Aquaculture is quite a worthy hobby, and fish are interesting pets in their own right. At least at one point in our life, we wished to have an aquarium and to keep various types of fish. Of course, since childhood,  aquariums without a filter and accompanying equipment are a usual sight to see, the majority being round jars with goldfish. Such aquariums appear quite often in cartoons. Have you ever wondered what fish don’t need a filter and if it is okay to raise them that way?

What Fish Don't Need a Filter


What types of fish do not require a filter system to live?

From the very beginning, you should keep in mind that goldfish are not the best choice for aquariums without a filter, for several reasons. They can grow up to three kilograms in the wild, and life in such conditions is torture for poor fish. Of course, there is also a vast selection of fish that live in this way. First on the list is the Siamese fighting fish. Like all the fish on this list, it is a small freshwater fish. It is extremely durable, and most lovers of this hobby recommend it for beginners. The guppy also known as millionfish is also known for its hardiness and ability to be kept in small spaces. The difference between this and the previous fish is only the price. Guppy fish are significantly cheaper,  therefore a more common choice for beginners.

Most fish in the tetra family are also great for keeping in small spaces without accompanying equipment, as well as zebrafish. Again, both types of fish are very undemanding, and their prices are affordable. Another good choice is cardinal fish. They are suitable for a space without a heater and a pump. Even in these conditions, cardinals can show their beauty. Of all the choices mentioned here, Cardinal is the cheapest and most affordable in terms of price. Now that we know what fish don’t need a filter, we need to look at the advantages and disadvantages of aquariums with a pump and pumpless ones. Of course, it is much easier to have an aquarium with a filter in terms of maintaining water and oxygen in the water. Still, water means a lack of oxygen bubbles which are needed by fish, and there is a risk of stagnant water.

However, the pump is not for small aquariums as we discussed previously, most filters (internal and external) are too big for them. Also, the pumps are loud and need more space to place all the components. An aquarium without a filter needs a couple of plants that would bring in enough oxygen and more frequent water changes. Aquariums without a pump are more suitable for people who do not have enormous living space and are interested in aquaristics. Although frequent water changes can be looked at as a negative, it is better for the environment and consumes less electricity that way.

With good care and a little attention, the previously mentioned fish will live a full life, and of course reproduce, so you can get a whole flock from a few small fish. Of course, professional fish keeping and breeding still require all the equipment, and thus the selection of fish that can be kept has increased. But everyone starts from somewhere. These pumpless aquarium fish are a good gift for people who would love pets but are unable to take care of them often or simply don’t have the space.