The Top 10 Most Popular Colorful Fishes

The Top 10 Most Popular Colorful Fishes

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After getting your aquarium ready, your next goal is to find out the perfect fish for you. And while there are a lot of different varieties to pick from, not all fish are created equal. This list compiled by experts will help you decide which specific species will make the perfect addition to your tank. The fish have been selected according to the prestige they bring to the aquarium. If you are a beginner or a serious hobbyist, this top 10 list will help you decide on your perfect colorful fishes. So let’s dive in!

1. Discus

discus fish

Undoubtedly, this is one of the most colorful fishes available on the market. Discus fish belong to the genus Symphysodon, a group of very colorful fishes, which are native to the Amazon River basin. Although they are tropical fish, their popularity has made them a favorite buy for hobbyists worldwide. Their vibrant colors have made them very sought after by both beginners and expert aquarists.

The fish comes in blue, red, orange, white, gold, and yellow. In addition to the numerous colors, this species features different scale patterns including speckles, spots, stripes, and bands. Discus are very sensitive and require proper care where you can treat them like the king of the tank. It is a very active species that is easy to breed,  Their docile nature, and easy-going temperament make it easier for them to be kept with other fish. Discus are very versatile in the aquarium and can be trained to eat a wide range of fish food. They should be kept by experienced hobbyists

– Care level: Advanced

– Size: 8-10 inches

– Temperament: Peaceful

2. Paradise Fish

Paradise Fish

The Paradise Gourami is a beautiful, peaceful, and personable species of fish. The fin is shaped as a tail with a snake-like appearance. Its colors also include brilliant red, gold, blue and green. Their lyretail caudal fin and the trailing dorsal fin with iridescent color make it a real attention-grabber. You can also find an albino one with pale red stripes. It is a freshwater species that can be found in the backwaters of South America.

The only issue with this species is that it wants to be dominant and will pick fights with other fish. It should be kept with large fish that can overpower it, or alone in a single species tank

Care level: Intermediate

Colors: Gold, red, green, and blue

Temperament: Aggressive

Size: 3 inches

3. Killifish


The killifish has a broad distribution in the U.S. mainly in the southern part of the country. The species is very colorful fishes and its colors range from blue to green, brown, red, and black, often with different variations within each species. Its colors are usually more vivid and intense than other species in the same genus. Its fins are also distinctly marked. However, its colors tend to fade or get washed out as the fish matures.

A notable species is the Clown Killifish which has a bluish-green body that features vertical white stripes and a colorful and vibrant tail with reddish horizontal stripes. These fish prefer to swim in schools making them a unique and fun species to watch

Care level: Beginner

Temperament: Peaceful

Size: 2 inches

Color: Yellow, Blue, Red, and more

4. Rainbowfish


Rainbowfish are another colorful fishes and beautiful species commonly found in Australia, Papua New Guinea, and parts of Asia. These fish are small in size but have brilliant colors, making them an attention-grabber in the aquarium.

The good thing about the Rainbow fish is that they travel in schools of more than six making their colors even more attractive. The rainbow fish is also called the fire fish because of the intense orange color it harbors.

Care level: Beginner and experienced

Temperament: Peaceful and calm

Size: 1-3 inches

Colors: Blue, green, and gold

5. Peacock Cichlid

Peacock Cichlid

Peacock Cichlids are another fish species that is very popular among aquarists. It is a very colorful fishes that features black rays and blue eyes. Its body color is also orange and red with black bars on the sides.

The peacock cichlid is very interesting because it has a cichlid-like body, which makes it look like another type of fish. This species easily gets along with other cichlids as a school and can be kept in aquariums of any size.

One of the best things about this fish is that there are numerous of its kind. This ensures the flexibility of choosing from the different colors. The species originate from lake Malawi and their colors vary depending on the side of the lake they live in.

Care Level: Intermediate

Temperament: Semi-aggressive

Size: 6 inches

Color: Orange, Yellow Red, Blue

6. Dwarf Gourami

Dwarf Gourami

The Dwarf Gourami is a popular species of fish that is mostly found in Asia, particularly in India and Bangladesh. They have a long lifespan compared to other species making it easy for you to watch them grow for years.

The species is a peaceful fish and can be kept alone or with other fish species. They are highly active, which makes them a perfect candidate for beginners who are just starting to enjoy their first fish tank. They come in different colors including red, blue, orange, and yellow. The common color is blue and powder blue with tan or red stripes.

Care level: Beginner

Temperament: Peaceful

Size: 2 inches

Color: Green, Orange, and Blue

7. Jack Dempsey

jack Dempsey fish

The Jack Dempsey Fish is a beautiful and colorful fishes that can be found in South America and Asia. These fish are so fascinating in the aquarium because of their very colorful scales, which is why it is called Jack Dempsey. The color of the scales ranges from blue and violet to deep green and red.

The color variation has different stripes and glowing turquoise spots on the sides which creates a unique pattern on the body. The electric blue variant is difficult to find, but the most common is green with red spots. However, these species are quite aggressive and will fight any fish that crosses their path. The male fish has a more distinct pattern than the female, especially the blue and red color variations.

Care Level: Intermediate

Temperament: Aggressive

Size: 10-15 inches

8. Betta Fish

half moon betta
Red Siamese fighting fish Betta. Betta Fancy Koi Halfmoon

The Betta fish is a popular fish among aquarium hobbyists due to its bright colors and animated behavior. Unlike other tropical fish species in the same genus, the betta fish is not territorial and will swim with other peaceful species. It is often used as a one-species tank or in large aquariums made of 2 to 4 species of fish.

These fish have the most colorful scales compared to other species in the same family. The colors range from olive and blue, to green, yellow, and red. Their tail fin is also colorful, with black or blue color. They are an intelligent species that is easy to train and enjoy long-time companionship in your fish tank.

Care Level: Easy

Size: 2-3 inches

Color: Red, Purple, Blue

Temperament: Semi-aggressive

9. Cherry Barb

Cherry Barb

The cherry barb fish is a species that belongs to the Cyprinidae family. It is commonly found in South Eastern Asia and is the most popular freshwater fish among aquarium hobbyists. However, this fish is underrated when it comes to beauty and its color. While everyone focuses on the popular species, this is one of the cutest, prettiest, and most attractive creatures that are easy to care for.

The cherry barb fish is a plant and algae eater, which is why it is commonly kept in planted aquaria. This fish enjoys swimming in schools in small pond tanks or large aquariums as well. It acquires its name from the rich red color that covers its entire body. The scales on the fish also have fleshy patches that are green in color.

Care Level: Beginner

Temperament: Peaceful and calm

Size: 2-3 inches

Color: Red with blue spots, or orange areas on the body, purple fins, and tails.

10. Zebra Danio

Zebra Danio

The zebra danio fish is a rare species that belongs to the Cyprinidae family. They originate in Asia and are commonly found in India, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka. The fish features a striped pattern that covers its body which gives it the most attractive visual cue.

The zebra danio fish has a silver color with blue stripes and red stripes on the side. The stripes on the fish body are so eye-catching that everyone will focus on them first while they are in the aquarium. This fish is highly active and can easily thicken a small tank.

Care level: Beginner

Temperament: Peaceful

Size: 2 inches


There are numerous species of fish commonly kept in aquariums. When it comes to their colors, fishes are bizarre and colorful fishes. While some are extremely colorful, some species have very few colors making them easier to spot. This article has featured 10 of the most popular and colorful species that come in many different color variants

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