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Old 03-12-2006, 11:00 AM   #1
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Redtail Catfish...

These are some amazing fish. I saw one at the National Zoo a while back at it was gorgeous. I plan on getting a 300 gallon aquaium in the not so distant future and would be delighted to own one, but seeing as they get so big and they are highly predatory compatiblity with other fish will be highly selective.

Anyone have the scoop on these fish?
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Old 03-12-2006, 11:30 AM   #2
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I'd never seen one before reading this post and you're right they are very attractive fish! I did a Google search and found these links that my be of some help to you.

http://www.aquahobby.com/gallery/gphractom.html
http://fish.mongabay.com/species/Phr...liopterus.html
http://animal-world.com/encyclo/fres...redtailcat.php
http://www.elmersaquarium.com/10cat_redtail.htm
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Old 03-12-2006, 03:20 PM   #3
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I am very interested in them also but how large they grow is a problem. I have heard they will grow to lengths of 4ft. What are the dimensions going to be of your 300g tank? My 200g is 84"x24"x24. I'd figure a typical 300g to probably be similar in dimensions just a couple feet longer. I think the tank should at least be 4 feet wide so that the mature fish would be able to turn itself around in the tank w/o too much hassle.

You need to find out how active these fish are. Catfish are pretty lethargic and just kinda lay around on the mud all day long but become active at night. If the RTC likes to just hide out in a cave most of the time it might be ok.

Another thing to think about is how long does it take for a RTC to get 4ft long? There have been a lot of HUGE catfish caught in the wild... but how long did it take them to get that big? How long do they live? It could have taken those giant catfish 60 years to get to that size. Like if you owned a galapagos tortoise for example. You could probably have kids, they could have kids, and your grand children would probably be adults before that thing reached maximum size.

Or it could be the other way around. For example the Mahi Mahi is thought to be maybe one of the fastest growing saltwater fish. With a 5 year life span it will grow to lengths of 5-6ft at a rate of approximately 5 inches per month.

I think tankmates would be a gamble. Maybe worth a shot. anything too big to fit in it's mouth would probably be too big to be kept in the same tank. Do lots of research, contact aquarium that keep large adults, the info is out there somewhere I'm sure.
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Old 03-12-2006, 04:52 PM   #4
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4 feet 7 inches and you will need a highly reinforced tank of at least 300 gallons to house this bad boy. they are very aggressive fish and grow rather quickly. 70- 76 degrees water temp, PH of 5.5- 6.8 and a KH of 9- 10. They are omnivourous. You'll want large rocks, plants and driftwood for hiding. The fish is highly active so a heavily weighted top is required. Will eat anything you can find from fish to worms. Hope that helps ya some
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Old 03-12-2006, 05:04 PM   #5
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my lfs has some of these. They are amazing. Even the babies are huge.
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Old 03-12-2006, 06:10 PM   #6
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I went to a pet land not to long ago and they had a 12 inch one in a 10 gallon tank!!!!! it was insane how he took over the tank
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Old 03-12-2006, 08:46 PM   #7
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they have a RTC display at the world aquarium here in STL and they are HUGE. biggest one i saw was probably about 3 ft.

they keep them with pacus, so maybe that might be a good one to try keeping it with
just a thought
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Old 03-12-2006, 10:55 PM   #8
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Well I've read some info on them regarding size. They grow an inch a month for two years then growth tapers off.

There are actually two kinds of Redtails, one from Africa and one of Asia. The Asian

I've noticed there are a lot of conflicting information out there. Some say that they are suitable for 200 gallon tanks but others say they are unsuitable for any aquarium due to their size.
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Old 03-13-2006, 04:04 PM   #9
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what are you gonna do if it does get too big?, from eating all of his tank mates
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Old 03-13-2006, 04:10 PM   #10
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hey outofstep,
im not sure where you are located, but aquarium adventures in cleveland has one of this in a custom tank. im not sure how many gallons it is, but it's huge. the red tail was the only occupant of the tank, even though it was seemingly docile. it was just swimming around very slowly, mostly just kind of floating. it was about the size of my arm (tip of fingers to elbow). it was an amazing looking fish though!
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