Skip to Content

Pearlscale Goldfish Care: Everything You Need To Know

Pearlscale Goldfish Care: Everything You Need To Know

If you’re thinking of keeping the Pearlscale Goldfish, or you already do and want them to thrive, there’s a lot to know. A specially bred form of Goldfish, the Pearlscale Goldfish don’t occur naturally in the wild, so it has precise tank requirements. Still, it’s easy to take care of as long as you learn what it needs to be comfortable. 

The Pearlscale Goldfish ‘Carassius auratus’ has many well-known names, including Fancy Goldfish and Ping Pong Goldfish. It has a unique, rounded body with pearly scales.  Its peaceful nature and looks make it a popular choice for aquariums. 

Before purchasing a Pearlscale Goldfish, it’s important to learn more about them to ensure you raise them in the proper environment. 

Below, we dive into the needs of Pearlscale Goldfish. We’ll also discuss the species in general and cover what to expect when keeping them and how to monitor them for illness.

Pearlscale Goldfish Overview & Natural Habitat

  • Common name: Pearlscale Goldfish
  • Scientific name: Carassius auratus
  • Care level: Easy
  • Size: up to 8 inches (20.32 cm)
  • Lifespan: Up to 10 years
  • Temperament: Peaceful
  • Diet: Omnivore
  • Minimum tank size: 20 gallons (75.71 liters)
  • Tank level: Bottom-middle dweller
  • Water temperature: 65-72°F (18.33-22.22 °C)
  • Water pH levels: 6.5-7.5
  • Water hardness: 5-19 dKH

The Pearlscale Goldfish was bred in captivity and was developed in China. 

These fish are unique and popular and can be kept in an aquarium or pond so long as the water has the right conditions. They’re also easy to find, as most aquarium stores have them stocked and ready to go to their new home! 

The Pearlscale Goldfish is a type of fancy goldfish in the Cyprinidae family. This family also includes minnows, bitterlings, and barbs. The Pearlscale goldfish were bred in captivity from other fish in this family. The fish belongs to the species Carassius auratus. 

Appearance & Size

The Pearlscale Goldfish can grow up to 8 inches (20.32 cm), but the final size will vary depending on environmental factors. Pearlscale in a smaller aquarium tank will be smaller as there is less room to grow. If you choose a Pearlscale Goldfish for your pond, it’s likely to grow much bigger. 

Pearlscale Goldfish are very popular for their looks. Their round, golf-ball-like bodies and beautiful pearlescent scales make them a unique and beautiful addition to your tank or pond. They come in various colors, including gold, orange, black, and white spots and blotches.

Personality & Behavior 

The Pearlscale Goldfish is peaceful, and they make a great tankmate to other friendly fish! They only show signs of aggression during breeding. Because they are slow swimmers, they can often become a victim of bullying by other fish in the tank. As such, keeping them with gentle and kind tank mates is advisable.


If well taken care of, your Pearlscale Goldfish can live to be 10 years old. The typical lifespan is 5-10 years and can vary depending on their environment and care. Paying close attention to their health at all times can help you determine if they need special care. 

Pearlscale Goldfish Care & Tank Set Up

Since Pearlscale Goldfish are bred in captivity, there’s no natural environment to mimic when setting up their tank. This also means they’ve been bred to a certain liking, so paying close attention to the recommended tank conditions is key to keeping your Pearlscale Goldfish happy and healthy. 

If you’re considering a bigger pond, it’s still important to follow the water conditions discussed below. 

Tank Size

If you purchase a Pearlscale Goldfish, you’ll need a tank of at least 20 gallons (75.71 liters). For each additional Pearlscale Goldfish, you’ll want to add another 10 gallons (37.85 liters). If you’re keeping this fish in a community tank, check the needs of all fish so there is enough space for everyone to feel comfortable! 

Water Parameters 

Consistently checking water to ensure it is within a healthy range will keep your Pearlscale Goldfish happy and healthy. Make sure to have a good filter on the tank to remove waste and toxins. You should also perform a partial water change of at least 25% every week. 

Water temperature

Though Pearlscale Goldfish are considered hardy fish, you should aim to make their water temperature optimal. They prefer water on the colder side, around 65 to 72 °Fahrenheit (18.33 to 22.22 °C).

Water pH levels

The ideal pH balance for Pearlscale Goldfish is 6.5 to 7.5. It’s a good idea to keep pH strips handy and check your tank often to ensure you maintain a safe pH. Keeping conditions as stable as possible will help keep your fish relaxed and healthy. 

Water hardness

Pearlscale Goldfish prefer harder water at around 5 to 19 dKH.

What to Put in the Tank 

Pearlscale Goldfish need a lot of oxygen and space to swim, so setting up your tank with plants, decorations, and the proper substrate will ensure they stay healthy and get the enrichment they need. They also produce a lot of waste, so ensuring the elements don’t get in the way of proper cleaning is key. 


A soft, sandy substrate or smooth gravel will be best for your Pearlscale Goldfish. If the gravel is too small, it can become dangerous for your goldfish because they often search through gravel for food. Larger pieces should help protect them from ingesting any gravel.  


When decorating your tank or pond, avoid any sharp decorations, as this can cause the beautiful pearlescent scales to come off. Have fun with your chosen decorations, as Pearlscale Goldfish are not picky. Driftwood is always a great choice!  

Ideal Plants

Having a lot of live plants in your tank benefits your Pearlscale Goldfish, as they require a lot of oxygen. The type of plant you select matters, as Pearlscale Goldfish are scavengers and will uproot any weaker plants in the tank. Some of the best plants for your Pearlscale Goldfish include: 

Plants in the tank not only provide many benefits for Pearlscale Goldfish but also make your tank look beautiful!  


You’ll want to choose a filter with a low current. Pearlscale Goldfish already have a hard time swimming. A filter with a high current can make swimming harder for them.  

Pearlscale Goldfish Tankmates

Since Pearlscale Goldfish are peaceful, they do great with many kinds of fish. However, they’re slower swimmers than most other fish. You risk starving them if you keep them in a tank with faster fish. 

The best tankmates for Pearlscale Goldfish include: 

Tank Mates to Avoid

Avoid aggressive breeds of fish that can bully your Pearlscale Goldfish. Your Pearlscale Goldfish will spend more time in the middle and bottom of the tank, so keep that in mind. Below are some species you should avoid putting in with your Pearlscales:

  • Comet goldfish
  • Wakin goldfish
  • Shubunkin goldfish
  • Koi Fish

Pearlscale Goldfish Food & Diet

Pearlscale Goldfish enjoy a variety of foods. You’ll want to feed them twice a day, but don’t overfeed them, as this can lead to bloating and make your tank dirty faster. Important items to include in a Pearlscale Goldfish diet include: 

  • Vegetables (Cucumbers, Peas, Leafy Greens)
  • Fish flakes and Pellets
  • Brine Shrimp

Pearlscale Goldfish can bloat easily, and dry food increases the likelihood of bloating. When feeding your goldfish, ensure all foods are thawed and soak them, so they are not dry. Vegetables are mandatory, as fish that don’t eat them can develop swim bladder and constipation.

Breeding Pearlscale Goldfish

Since Pearlscale Goldfish are bred in captivity, they’re relatively easy to breed at home as long as you have the right conditions. You’ll need a 20-gallon (75.71 liters) breeding tank, keeping it around 60 °Fahrenheit (15.56 °C). Slowly increase the temperature in the tank by 3 degrees until they begin to spawn. 

Once the eggs are laid, remove the goldfish from the tank to keep them from eating the eggs. Within 4 to 7 days, the eggs will hatch! Once they start swimming, you can feed them a normal powdered or brine shrimp diet. 

If you’re interested in a more in-depth guide on breeding, watch this video: 

Make sure to prepare for extra fish and get more food if you do decide to breed.

Pearlscale Goldfish Health

The health of your Pearlscale Goldfish should be your number one priority if you want them to live a long and happy life. But even with the best care, they’re not immune to stress or disease. Acclimating your Pearlscale Goldfish to their tank and monitoring them for diseases is the best way to set them up for success. 

Acclimating Pearlscale Goldfish to Tank 

Pearlscale Goldfish can easily get sick from shock if they’re not properly introduced to their tank. Acclimating fish properly to the tank is a long but rewarding process. You’ll have peace of mind knowing your fish was comfortably and safely introduced to their new home. 

Steps to introduce your Pearlscale Goldfish to the tank include: 

  1. Turn the lights down low in the room, as well as in the tank. Too bright lights can stress out your fish when introducing them to the tank, which is already a stressful process. 
  2. Wipe down the plastic bag holding your Pearlscale Goldfish. Any outside contaminants on the bag can get into the tank water, possibly causing illness and infection. 
  3. Remove excess water from the bag holding your Pearlscale Goldfish. You’ll add more water later, but leaving just enough water to cover the dorsal fins should do the trick.
  4. Float the plastic bag holding your Pearlscale Goldfish on the tank’s surface. This can take up to 15 minutes, allowing the temperature in the bag to match the temperature in the tank. If you find this difficult, fold the bag edges down a bit. You can always use a thermometer to be sure. 
  5. Add tank water into the plastic bag holding your fish. Do this until the bag is full. You can do this every 5-10 minutes if the temperatures are the same. 
  6. Gently place your Pearlscale Goldfish into the tank. Use a net and ensure you do this quickly, as waiting outside the tank for too long can cause stress. 

These steps provide a safe introduction for your Pearlscale Goldfish into the tank, so taking the time to properly introduce your fish is worth it. If you skip these steps, your fish can fall ill or even die from shock. After introducing them to the tank, you can monitor your fish to ensure they feel okay in their new environment. 

Signs of Illness or Stress in Pearlscale Goldfish

As you monitor your Pearlscale Goldfish, look for any changes in behavior, swimming, appetite, or overall well-being. The Pearlscale Goldfish is susceptible to many freshwater fish diseases commonly found in overcrowded tanks or poor water conditions. 

Even if well taken care of, diseases can affect all freshwater fish, so it’s important to be aware of the signs. Some common signs of illness in Pearlscale Goldfish include: 

  • Lethargy
  • Floating belly up 
  • Fin Erosion
  • Loss of Appetite 
  • Swimming Erratically 
  • Brushing or losing scales 
  • White spots (commonly seen with ich disease)

Common Health Issues

Like any fish, Pearlscale Goldfish are susceptible to a variety of health issues. Here are some common health problems that can affect Pearlscale Goldfish:

  1. Swim bladder disease: Pearlscale Goldfish are prone to swim bladder disease. It’s a condition that occurs when their swim bladder malfunctions, which can be due to a variety of possible factors. The swim bladder is an internal organ filled with gas, which assists bony fish in maintaining their buoyancy. Symptoms may include floating or sinking to one side, difficulty swimming, or loss of balance.
  2. Fin rot: Poor water conditions or bacterial infections can cause fin rot in Pearlscale Goldfish. Symptoms may include frayed or ragged fins, discoloration or blackening of the fin edges, and chunks of tissue falling off.
  3. Ich: Ich or white spot disease is a common parasitic infection that can affect Pearlscale Goldfish. Symptoms may include white spots on the fins and body, flashing or rubbing against objects, and lethargy.
  4. Dropsy: Dropsy is a serious condition that can affect Pearlscale Goldfish, often caused by bacterial infections or poor water conditions. Symptoms may include swollen belly, protruding scales, lethargy, and loss of appetite.
  5. Mouth fungus: Also known as cotton mouth, this fungal infection can affect the mouth and lips of Pearlscale Goldfish. Symptoms may include white or gray patches on the lips, inflammation, and difficulty eating.

If you notice any of these symptoms in your Pearlscale Goldfish, it’s essential to take action immediately. Consult with a veterinarian or an experienced aquatic specialist to determine the best course of treatment.

Wrapping Up

The Pearlscale Goldfish is bred in captivity and is a beautiful and unique fish to add to your tank. They’re very peaceful fish that do well in a community and are easy to take care of if you provide them with the right water conditions. 

When you decide to purchase a Pearlscale Goldfish, make sure to acclimate them to the tank properly and monitor for any illnesses. If you take good care of your Pearlscale Goldfish, they will live a very long and happy life!

I’m Elle, the founder of FishHQ. I created this website to share knowledge, tips, and inspiration for beginner hobbyists to help them create a healthy, happy, and vibrant environment for their fish to thrive. Read more...