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116 Fish Names All Owners Should Know

Review the list below for cute, clever, and creative ideas on what to name your fish.

We give a lot of attention to the Fidos and the Garfields out there, but what about all the pet fish floating around? These little guys may not cuddle up with us in bed, but they're still worthy of a name, no? In honor of all our aquatic friends tanked around the world, we've decided to put together a list of our absolute favorite fish names. Below, you'll find popular picks for boys, girls, and bettas, as well as famous, funny options.

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Do Pet Fish Need Names?

Unlike other domesticated animals, fish can't recognize their names; so giving them a name isn't exactly necessary—but it is fun! And, because you can't interact with these little guys in ways you would a dog or a cat, a cute name for your fish can help make up for the physical boundaries between you.

That said, they can hear your voice and they can create associations between certain sounds and actions. So, if you say their name during feeding time, they'll eventually equate their name with food. It's not exactly "catch," but it's not bad, either.

Although, if games are what you're after, then we should clue you into a little something awesome: Betta fish can recognize their owner's voices to such an extent that they can actually learn to perform tricks in response to specific auditory commands.

Keep in mind that this ability is specific to the species. These fish are known for their high intelligence and powerful instincts. While other fish species might be prettier to look at, you probably won't have much luck training them. So if you want tricks, stick with the bettas.

How Do Folks Decide on Cool Fish Names?

two blue fish in a fish bowl. deciding on fish names for new pets.
Shutterstock / Eric Isselee

Naming your fishy friends doesn't have to be hard. Because you don't have to worry about them running off, you don't need to keep it short, simple, or easy to recognize. These names can be as complex and multisyllabic as you want.

They can also be highly personalized. Many people get ideas from movies they've seen or books they've read. You can also look to their appearance for some inspiration.

Think about your fish's color, patterns, and size when choosing a name. For example, you could name a brightly colored fish "Rainbow" or a small fish "Tiny." Or, you can check out the list below for even more options.

Famous Fish Names

  1. Moby Dick: Let's make Herman Melville proud.
  2. Ariel: As in the Disney classic The Little Mermaid. Need we say more?
  3. Flounder: Same as above, but more of a supporting character.
  4. Nemo: Surely, this is already a household name.
  5. Dory: This one too, right?
  6. Wanda: Get it? From the 1988 comedy A Fish Called Wanda.
  7. Flipper: We might be aging ourselves with this one, but who could forget about this television classic?
  8. Bubba Gump: "Shrimp is the fruit of the sea."
  9. Don Lino: Do we have any Shark Tale fans here?
  10. Sebastian: We promise, it's our last one from under the sea. For now.

Cute Fish Names

Goldfish With Shocked Look on His Face.
Shutterstock / Katrina Brown
  1. Fish n' Chips: Just don't get any ideas.
  2. Bubbles: An oldie, but a goodie.
  3. Small Fry: Just a little too on-the-nose.
  4. Stinky: It's endearing, we promise.
  5. Billy Bass: Everyone loves a little alliteration.
  6. Squirt: A classic nickname.
  7. Taco: Not literally, of course.
  8. Guppy: It just sounds right.
  9. Plankton: What we can say, some terms just make for great names.
  10. Scuttle: OK, so maybe we weren't done with The Little Mermaid just yet.
  11. Speedy: Seriously, these guys are fast.

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Clever Fish Names

  1. Captain Jack: This guy knows how to have fun.
  2. Swim Shady: Just don't ask him to stand up.
  3. Long John Silver: A man of the sea.
  4. Fin: An established name fit for a fish.
  5. Katie Current: We love getting punny.
  6. Bill Nye the Science Fry: Seriously, we love it.
  7. James Pond: A little fish in a big…
  8. Gil Clinton: Come on, this one is too good.
  9. Merlin: A nod to all the Marlins out there.
  10. Bait: A little cheeky? Sure.

Funny Fish Names

funny picture of a sardine taking a bath
Shutterstock / Alexiuz
  1. Sea Monster: She may be small, but she is fierce.
  2. Ollie Otter: We weren't joking about alliteration.
  3. Sushi: A little dark humor, anyone?
  4. Mahi Mahi: A delicious fish with a great name.
  5. Guppi Goldberg: She's sure to make you laugh.
  6. Kraken: Everything under the sea is fair game.
  7. Pescatarian: Get it?
  8. Houdini: Now you see me, now you don't.
  9. Mr. Fish: Formal titles only.
  10. Spot: Wait until the guests find out there's no dog.
  11. Puckerface: Descriptive names work well.

Silly Fish Names for Pet Duos

  1. Bonnie and Clyde: A perfect pair.
  2. Romeo and Juliet: Star-crossed lovers.
  3. One Fish and Two Fish: We love you, Dr. Seuss.
  4. Jane and Doe: For all the true crime fans out there.
  5. Mario and Luigi: "Let's-a go!"
  6. Gilligan and Skipper: A tale of a fateful trip.
  7. Thelma and Louise: Ladies tank.
  8. Hall and Oates: Music matters.
  9. Salmon and Gillfunkel: A hilarious new take.
  10. Nic Cage and John Travolta: Face/Off, anyone?
  11. Zig and Zag: Seems easy enough.
  12. Han Solo and Chewie: For nerdy fish fans.
  13. Salt and Pepper: Does anything go better together?
  14. Minnie and Mickey: For all the Disney fanatics.

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Male Fish Names

rainbow fish with black background
Shutterstock / chaythawin
  1. Lenny: It's catchy, at least.
  2. Poseidon: There are a lot of boy fish names out there, but there's only one God of the Sea.
  3. Aquaman: This one just seems right.
  4. Atlas: A worldly kind of fish.
  5. Captain: A man of the sea.
  6. Willie: Don't overthink it.
  7. Louie: Simple, and straight to the point.
  8. Jacques: A Mediterranean kind of guy.
  9. Gizmo: This one is a popular pick for dogs, so why not fish?
  10. Orion: Of the sky and of the sea.

Girl Fish Names

  1. Electra: A great name for a flashy fish.
  2. Selkie: It's nautical, at least.
  3. Joy: She's really full of it.
  4. Coral: Keeping it aquatic.
  5. Pearl: Again with the ocean theme.
  6. Lola: If it's good enough for a dog, it's good enough for a fish.
  7. Ursula: Of all the female fish names out there, this one is sure to leave an impression.
  8. Nova: Bright stars, bright scales.
  9. Angel: She sure is.
  10. Sparkle: Great for a fish with shiny scales.

Good Names for Goldfish

goldfish in a bowl
Shutterstock / Mirek Kijewski
  1. Goldie: It's almost too easy.
  2. Tropicana: Everyone's favorite way to wake up.
  3. Sunny: It's warm, it's catchy; what more could you ask for?
  4. Firefly: Full of light.
  5. Blaze: A fiery pick.
  6. Butterscotch: Sweet and delicious.
  7. Clementine: This one works for any species.
  8. Foxy: A sassy pick.
  9. Cheeto: Flamin' hot, perhaps?
  10. Ginger: We couldn't resist.

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Betta Fish Names

  1. Rocky: A fighter through and through.
  2. Ninja: He's got a few moves under his belt.
  3. Jaws: Swim at your own risk.
  4. Tsunami: Just wait for what this guy has in store.
  5. Bruce: A little understated.
  6. Hulk: Just incredible.
  7. Luther: Turns out, he didn't die a hero.
  8. Brutus: Don't turn your back on him.
  9. Neptune: Master of the sea.
  10. Splash: He'll cause one, for sure.
  11. Hammerhead: Fierce and feared.

Names for White Fish

white betta fish with black background
Shutterstock / chaythawin
  1. Chowder: New England style, of course.
  2. Whitey: Too easy.
  3. Vanilla Bean: A little something sweet to remember him by.
  4. Snowflake: Is there anything whiter than snow?
  5. Marshmallow: These only come in one color, right?
  6. Powder: A great name for a chalky aquatic friend.
  7. Great White: It's not what you think.
  8. Betta White: Again with the puns.
  9. Beluga: The white whale.
  10. Kendall: No, not that Kendall.

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Blue Fish Names

  1. Sky: Blue above, blue below. Makes sense, right?
  2. Sapphire: Everyone's favorite blue stone.
  3. Bluebell: Does it get sweeter than this?
  4. Huckleberry: Come to think of it, his last name isn't a back pick either.
  5. Navy: It's nautical, at least.
  6. Indigo: Also known as "ultramarine."
  7. Azure: Like the sky above.
  8. Cookie Monster: Our favorite blue creature.
  9. Papa Smurf/Smurfette: For both the boys and the girls.

Wrapping Up

That's it for our list of fish names. Be sure to check back with us soon for more ideas to share with the ones you love. You can also sign up for our newsletter so you don't miss out!

Carrie Weisman
Carrie Weisman oversees all SEO efforts at Best Life. She specializes in content optimization and editorial marketing. Read more
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