Fish That Can Live In A Bowl Without Oxygen Pump

9 Fascinating Fish That Can Live In A Bowl Without Oxygen Pump

Have you ever wondered if fish in tanks really need those noisy oxygen pumps? Well, the truth might surprise you.

Not all fish require an air pump to survive. In fact, there are nine fish that can live in a bowl without oxygen pump.

In this captivating article, we’ll dive deep into the world of fishkeeping and explore the types of fish that can comfortably inhabit your tank without an oxygen pump. We’ll provide valuable insights on how to create a suitable habitat for these unique aquatic creatures, all without the need for extra equipment.

But don’t worry, we won’t neglect the importance of maintaining a healthy environment for your fishy friends.

Key Takeaways

  • Guppies, paradise fish, bettas, zebra danios, and goldfish are among the nine kinds of fish that may survive without an oxygen pump in a bowl, with the exception of female gouramis and goldfish, which require more room due to their size.
  • Bettas are able to absorb ambient oxygen, but maintaining fish health in a tank without an air pump requires frequent water changes, living aquatic plants, and moderation in feeding.
  • Some species, such as tetras, suckermouth catfish, and paradise fish, need to be oxygenated in some way, either through filtration or aeration.
  • Aquarium filters are crucial for oxygenation and filtration, limiting the buildup of hazardous ammonia, and converting ammonia to less damaging compounds.

Do Fish In Tanks Need Oxygen Pumps?

Oxygen pumps are needed in fish tanks to keep the occupants alive and healthy; they are not merely for beauty. Some immune fish, such as some tropical fish species like the Japanese rice fish and labyrinth fish, or even the Siamese fighting fish, can survive in a bowl without oxygen. These settings, however, are by far the best for a captive environment.

A clean environment with low oxygen levels, temperatures that fall within an appropriate range (for most tropical species, this is between 24-28°C, although other species may prefer colder water temperatures, with cooler temperatures being preferable), and enough space are all considered to be sufficient living circumstances.

Fishbowls are limited in size; therefore, larger goldfish appreciate it when they have adequate room to swim around in, while female gouramis also need more space than what a conventional guppy-planted bowl can supply.

Guppies also need extra attention when housed in bowls, as they tend to be extremely sensitive to changes in their surroundings.

9 Fish That Can Live In A Bowl Without Oxygen Pump

If you’re looking for fish that can survive without an oxygen pump, look no further than guppies, paradise fish, bettas, zebra danios, and goldfish. Because all of these species are hardy enough to make it in a bowl with no aeration.

Guppies and paradise fish are colorful additions to any tank, while bettas and zebra danios are more active swimmers. Goldfish may need a slightly bigger space, but they don’t require oxygen pumps either.


Guppies are vibrant animals that might fill your fish bowl with life. They are one of the few fish species that can survive without oxygen pumps, so keeping a bowl of them doesn’t require any additional equipment. Due to their hardiness and adaptability, guppies can live in a range of environments. Considering how quickly they multiply, you won’t need to bother changing them frequently.

Paradise Fish

Paradise fish are a fantastic option for bringing an exotic touch to your home aquarium. With their dazzling colors and majestic fins, they truly stand out. While these captivating fish can manage in bowls without oxygen pumps, it’s important to ensure they have a consistent oxygen supply. They have a clever way of taking in oxygen from the water’s surface and increasing its circulation throughout their bodies. However, to guarantee that paradise fish always have enough oxygen, it may be wise to consider using artificial oxygen machines to provide that extra boost when necessary.

Betta Fish

Bettas are a popular freshwater fish with vibrant colors and stunning fins, which makes them an ideal choice for any aquarium. They can survive in an environment with low oxygen levels as they have the ability to absorb atmospheric oxygen.

However, it’s important to provide your Betta with a healthy environment that includes suitable tank mates such as other gourami species and appropriate decorations like live plants.

Additionally, sometimes its a good idea to give your Betta some extra oxygen to keep them healthy. Moreover there are a long list of fish that don’t require oxygen pumps to survive. All in all, Bettas are quite capable of living in bowls without an oxygen pump if given the right conditions.

Zebra Danios

Now let’s talk about another cool fish called Zebra Danios. These fishes have stripes and are an attractive fish that can add a splash of color to any tank. They are perfect for beginner aquarists as they don’t require oxygen pumps to survive in smaller tanks or bowls. These aquarium fish can tolerate cooler temperatures than some other species and will eat almost all types of food. These are highly adaptable and tolerant of different water conditions and most importantly they have a long lifespan even in a bowl environment.


Goldfish are also a popular fish species for any aquarium. They have shiny scales with vibrant color. They come in a variety of colors and sizes, from the small comet goldfish to the large fantail. With their wide variety of fin shapes, they can make any bowl look beautiful.

Goldfish can survive without oxygen pumps as long as their water is regularly changed or filtered. However, it’s important to provide them with plenty of space for swimming and adequate filtration since they produce more fish waste than most other fish species. Additionally, goldfish require a low-flow environment, so make sure that if you’re using an air pump there are no strong currents that could harm your fish.


Tetras are a colorful and active addition to any aquarium, making them perfect for those who want vibrant movement in their tank. These small fish have bright and varied hues that can add a splash of color to any setup.

While they’re fairly hardy creatures, Tetras do require more oxygen than some other species of fish. Without an oxygen pump, it’s unlikely that these fishes will survive for very long in an enclosed bowl or tank without sufficient aeration.


Gourami are a great option for people looking to add a dash of class and sophistication to their aquarium because they have eye-catching colours and patterns. These tough fish, ranging from the familiar dazzling goldfish to pearl gouramis with vivid blue and yellow hues, can flourish in a clean bowl without the aid of an oxygen pump.

Harlequin Rasbora

If you’re looking to add a splash of color to your aquarium, then Harlequin Rasbora are the perfect pick for you! These small fish have an eye-catching combination of raspberry, black and white stripes, making them stand out among other varieties in any tank.

They typically reach up to 3 centimeters in length and can live for up to 5 years if they’re provided with the right care level. Because Harlequin Rasboras don’t require a lot of oxygen, they can survive quite well in bowls without the need for an oxygen pump.

Suckermouth Catfish

Suckermouth Catfish are a great addition to any aquarium. They boast vibrant colors and an interesting suction-cup like mouth that allows them to cling to surfaces. They thrive in tanks with plenty of hiding places such as rocks or caves and enjoy searching for food on the bottom of the tank.

They’re hardy fish, but they do need some oxygenation. So, if you’re planning on keeping them in a bowl, make sure it’s well-ventilated or has an oxygen pump installed. With proper care and maintenance, these fish can live happily in your home for many years!

How To Keep Fish In A Tank Without Air Pump?

Keeping your fish healthy in a tank without an air pump requires some extra care and attention on your part. To ensure that the water stays oxygenated, you should:

  • Change the water regularly, at least once every two weeks.
  • Place live plants in the tank to help with oxygenation and waste removal.
  • Make sure not to overfeed your fish, as too much food can create high levels of ammonia which can be harmful to their health.

4 Reasons Aquarium Filters Are Essential

Are you considering skipping the filter for your aquarium? Think again!

While some species of fish and invertebrates can survive longer without a filter than others, it doesn’t mean they’ll be happy or healthy without one. Here’s why:

● Oxygenate the water

All pet fish need oxygen, and while some can breathe from the air, they’ll be happier with dissolved oxygen in the water too. Filters create a current that improves gas exchange at the water’s surface, allowing more oxygen to dissolve into the water. They also remove rotting debris which can consume a lot of oxygen through decomposition.

● Remove toxic ammonia

Ammonia is excreted in fish feces and can be deadly in high levels. Biological filtration uses good bacteria to convert toxic ammonia into less harmful nitrates. Every aquarium needs to go through a ‘cycling’ process to build up the beneficial bacteria populations before introducing fish.

● Save your time and energy

While you only need to clean your filter’s sponges every two weeks or so, an aquarium without a filter almost requires daily cleaning and partial water changes. Neglecting this could harm your fish.

● Affordable

A simple sponge filter with an air pump can be acquired for less than INR 500, and they’re quite economical to run, sometimes consuming as little as 5 watts of electricity. Considering all the work they do for you, it’s a small price to pay for your aquatic pets’ health and happiness.


As long as you get the right kind of fish, you can keep them in your tank without an oxygen pump. These are nine different fish species that can live without an air pump without any problems.

Aquarium filters are necessary for water filtration and circulation in order to keep your fish healthy and happy. By doing this, you’ll be able to give the animals living in your tank a healthy habitat with lots of oxygen.

No oxygen pump is necessary if you choose your fish carefully; you may build a lovely habitat for your aquatic pals.



Meet me, your dedicated author and fish aficionado. With a deep-rooted passion for all things aquatic, I bring a wealth of knowledge, experience, and enthusiasm to this fish and aquarium website. As an avid fishkeeper myself, I understand the joys and challenges that come with creating a thriving underwater world. Through my articles, guides, and recommendations, I strive to provide you with accurate, reliable, and engaging content that will enhance your fishkeeping journey. Join me as we dive into the fascinating realm of fish and aquariums, and together, let's make your aquatic dreams a reality.

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