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Old 10-25-2013, 10:46 PM   #1
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Red tail sharks breeding?

They wiggle like this. I have no idea what they're doing, they're very small so I thought they were too young for breeding.
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Old 10-25-2013, 11:16 PM   #2
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The thing with Red Tail sharks is that they can be very aggressive towards members of their family. If you have small fish, this is probably what you are seeing. It is recommended to only keep one of these fish in a tank unless it is a very large/long tank with a lot of hiding places for the fish to use. It is also not uncommon for these sharks to harass any other bottom dwelling fish as well so you may want to keep that in mind if you see it/them going after any fish like catfish or other sharks in your tank.
If I recall right (TFH magazine had an article on breeding these many years ago), breeding doesn't start until the fish is at least 4" long. If yours aren't close to this size, it's fighting, not flirting

Hope this helps
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Old 10-26-2013, 01:41 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Andy Sager View Post
The thing with Red Tail sharks is that they can be very aggressive towards members of their family. If you have small fish, this is probably what you are seeing. It is recommended to only keep one of these fish in a tank unless it is a very large/long tank with a lot of hiding places for the fish to use. It is also not uncommon for these sharks to harass any other bottom dwelling fish as well so you may want to keep that in mind if you see it/them going after any fish like catfish or other sharks in your tank.
If I recall right (TFH magazine had an article on breeding these many years ago), breeding doesn't start until the fish is at least 4" long. If yours aren't close to this size, it's fighting, not flirting

Hope this helps
Thank you. They really don't seem to bother or chase anybody but each other, and it honestly looks like nobody is getting hurt.
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Old 10-26-2013, 10:41 AM   #4
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Thank you. They really don't seem to bother or chase anybody but each other, and it honestly looks like nobody is getting hurt.
That's good. Sounds like they have each other to bother for now lol. When I was wholesaling, it was not uncommon to get bags full of these fish where only 2 or 4 fish were in perfect shape and the rest had torn up fins. It was from the fish fighting with each other in the bag. I confronted one of my suppliers once about sending me such ripped up fish so he sent me a photo of the fish he was going to send me when they were packed. Needless to say they didn't look as good once they arrived to me. He explained that the used a lot of plastic tubes and kept the tanks really dark to keep the fish from fighting. Once they were back into the light, there wasn't much he could do about it. (That was before there was any kind of anesthetics for shipping.) Thankfully, in just a few days of arriving to me, most of the fish had healed up and were salable. That's just the nature of the beast
I'd just keep my eyes on them for now. Make sure you have some extra hiding places so they can get away from each other if they want. They are a really nice looking fish when they get larger so I hope you get to see that
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Old 10-26-2013, 11:28 AM   #5
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That behaviour that you're seeing is simply them trying to establish a pecking order. If they remain relatively the same size as one another, IME they may never actually find a "dominant" fish, and that behaviour where they rub each other by their tails will continue...

Does this tend to happen more often around feeding time?

You may want to consider returning one ... They'll probly scratch scales off one another, it could lead to scarring and they look kind of ragged... Plus they'd be more susceptible to infections with a damaged slime coat
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