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Old 02-11-2007, 02:13 PM   #1
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Red Tailed Shark

Hey guys. I just got my hands on one of these guys, totally unexpected. Gotta love my neighbor, she bought one, and had it chanse everyone in her tank relentlessly, so she called me up and asked me if i would take him. I figured he would go in my 55g cichlid tank. I think he will behave with my 4.5" firemouth in the tank with him (all she has in her tank are guppies and neon tetras).

Now, she has been battling some sort of fungus/mystery killer in her tank, so the shark is in QT until I am sure he is disease free (not risking my entire tank over this little guy).

I did do some reading up on these guys before I agreed to take him to make sure that I could house him properly, and once I decided that I could, I went over there and picked him up.

Now, I just want to know what experiences you guys have had with these guys. If you have any input at all, let me have it, the good, bad, and ugly! Am I going to have problems with him in my cichlid tank, does he have any "special needs" that I will need to address? Is he prone to any sort of sickness other than ich (i would assume he is prone to that, he looks scaleless)? If you have any other tips on kepping this little guy happy, just let me know.

TIA guys!!

EDIT: Here is a pic. Notice the airstone in the pic to the right? He is right next to it, jsut to give you an idea of his size. Also , one more question, how fast will he grow?

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Old 02-11-2007, 02:22 PM   #2
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had one was aggrestive with small fish he wont be like that around somthing bigger then he is . easy to care for do get nice size i really liked the shark but when he bullyed my tetras he had to go .he became lunch to fish that had theeth and he couldnt bully them around.
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Old 02-11-2007, 02:46 PM   #3
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I have one on his own in a 20G. I tried housing him last year with my ps. saulosi cichlids and it didn't work out at all. He bullied them relentlessly, and they are not a walkover sort of fish either

See how he goes with a firemouth, but you may need to be prepared to give him a tank of his own (I recommend something like a 20G, which is what I use: these fish grow upwards of 5" a piece and love the space to swim about).

Mine has grown rapidly, but this could be to do with the space and conditions he's in. He grew about an inch within 2-3 months. He's now around 5 to 6" or so head to tail (which is not the correct way of measuring I know).

While they love food like bloodworm and so on, which I feed mine at least twice a week, you should also ensure they get a decent portion of vegetable content in their diet. I feed mine spirulina flake one or twice a week.

They are generally nocturnal, and are otherwise shy when not defending their territory or terrorizing tankmates, believe it or not. If you've some semi-circular tubing or whatnot then that would make great hideouts. I use ceramic terracotta plant pots turned on their side with the bottoms knocked out and he loves peeking out one end with his red tail sticking out the other.
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-------------------------------------------------------
36 Gal: Malawi Cichlids | 36 Gal: Brackish Puffer | 58 Gal: FW Community | 20 Gal: FW RTBS Shark | 10 Gal: FW Breeder
Spares: 20 Gal: Former River Conditions | 8 Gal: Former Fry Tank | 32G: Former Community Tank
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Old 02-11-2007, 03:01 PM   #4
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Yea, he really seems to like the cave in his qt tank. I hope he works out well, he is really cute

If he doesn't work out, my lfs will take him back if I can't get him his own tank.
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Old 02-11-2007, 03:06 PM   #5
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They are cute, but don't let it fool you like it did me! I ended up with 8 cichlids cowering in a corner...!
Cute.....but deadly, hehe

Here's some photos of my 'Mr Sharky' (very unoriginal, I know...):





Of course, his pot is now far dirtier than the others, lord knows how, and this gives a good idea of his size:
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-------------------------------------------------------
36 Gal: Malawi Cichlids | 36 Gal: Brackish Puffer | 58 Gal: FW Community | 20 Gal: FW RTBS Shark | 10 Gal: FW Breeder
Spares: 20 Gal: Former River Conditions | 8 Gal: Former Fry Tank | 32G: Former Community Tank
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Old 02-11-2007, 03:30 PM   #6
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i love that red tail. Can't wait til mine colors up. He has been playing in the bubbles from the air stone. He seems to really enjoy swimming against the current.
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Old 02-11-2007, 05:16 PM   #7
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My one jumped out of a small open space near HOB filter and was found dried the next day.
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Old 02-11-2007, 05:18 PM   #8
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Congrats, hopefully he'll work out in the tank for you. I have an albino red tailed shark. So far he is too little to be a bully....yet.
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Old 02-11-2007, 05:24 PM   #9
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yea, i heard they are jumpers. I have also heard that they are more likely to jump out of smaller tanks than larger. He is going to be in a 55, with lots of caves and rockwork, so hopefully, he won't go exploring.
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Old 02-11-2007, 05:59 PM   #10
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My red tail is about 3-4" long, he's pretty mellow. He has his special cranny he likes to relax in, which he can get a little territorial over when my angel comes to snuggle. He just chases the angel off though. He is a bit skittish when I walk by, but is slowly getting gutsier. He likes my pleco, but the pleco just ignores him for the most part. The shark will actually leave his special spot to let the pleco in! and the pleco is maybe 2"! I have had no bad experience with the shark, he took care of a small snail infestation that popped up, the snails were there one night, in the morning they were gone! He only seems to eat stuff off the bottom, never goes up and takes the bloodworms that my Angel can't resist, he jsut waits patiently for them to fall.
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Old 02-11-2007, 06:15 PM   #11
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i got a red tail shark. after a coupon from petco he was 53 cents. that was 3 months ago when he was 1/2 inch long. now hes about 2" and is kinda aggressive. he enjoys terrorizing my full grown congo tetra. my girlfriend summed up his beahvior when she was named augustus caesar. pretty fitting for his temperament.
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Old 02-11-2007, 10:57 PM   #12
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I get red fin, not red taiul sharks, which are a bit more passive. Both are beautiful fish, if you have enogh places to hid ein the bottom of the tnak, he will liekly stay down there. My red-fin is aggresive with smaller fish, and lives the larger ones..even though without teeth, like the pleco, alone. I would actually be more worried abotu if the other fish will see him as food. I am sure that my bichirs will one day realize that the fattened shark would make a tasty treat.
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Old 02-14-2007, 02:53 AM   #13
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Ok, so now that I had stated my RTBS was fairly docile, he's gone nuts. Tonight my pleco was munching away heartily on a wafer, out of the blue comes the RTBS and chases him away then stands guard next to the pleco's hide out. He's become exceedingly aggressive lately with the other fish. What can I do to mellow him out a bit? Do I need to introduce a tougher fish to put him in his place and work 'security'?
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Old 02-14-2007, 04:04 AM   #14
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I have 5 rainbow sharks, one of them is a giant and one is tiny. I bought them all at the same time and were the same size but they created their own "heirarchy" and thus one gets bigger while one stays smaller. that is what your red tailed is doing, flexing his mucles (lol) but I digress, getting a larger fish will not solve your problem. I also have a black shark who is close to a foot long and is definatly the boss of my tank but the larger rainbow will still push other fish out of the way. My advice is find a "Friendlier" fish or simply make sure you feed enough for everyone to eat. What I do is feed slowly, once the bosses are done eating I will feed a typical amount for the rest of the fish who can now eat in peace (for the most part). hope this helps
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Old 02-14-2007, 04:25 AM   #15
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Beserkr, I don't think housing RTBS with more aggressive fish works: you'll just end up with an awful lot of fighting on your hands until one of them comes out the 'winner' which will mean fish stressed to death.
As I say, I ended up housing mine in a 20G on his own. He seems very happy in there and my other fish are relieved too

@ Angel.zero: it's unfortunately not feeding levels which dictate aggression, but territory.
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-------------------------------------------------------
36 Gal: Malawi Cichlids | 36 Gal: Brackish Puffer | 58 Gal: FW Community | 20 Gal: FW RTBS Shark | 10 Gal: FW Breeder
Spares: 20 Gal: Former River Conditions | 8 Gal: Former Fry Tank | 32G: Former Community Tank
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Old 02-14-2007, 12:38 PM   #16
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Give the pleco time Once he gets big enough, he will put that shark in his place. Nothing in my tank, even the very predatory fish can get my pleco to budge.
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Old 02-14-2007, 05:01 PM   #17
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I noticed at the latest algae wafer feeding, the pleco seems to have hired the Angel as a personal bodyguard. The angel has managed to keep the shark away so the pleco can eat. That was weird, and funny, since the angel usually gets picked on a little too. The RTBS didn't do any damage, just chased them.
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Old 02-14-2007, 09:02 PM   #18
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coldmachineUK I wasn't actually trying to suggest it was a solution to aggresion. just a solution to getting all the fish fed, seeing as how it's a semi-aggresive fish in a community tank there isn't too much in the aggresion solving area. sorry I didn't make it a little clearer
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Old 02-15-2007, 08:29 PM   #19
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Bers, it looks like your fish are finalyl settling in the the new red tail, they saw someone who wanted to pick on them, and realized that they can actually boss him around a bit if they stick together. I hope it continues to work that way That shold help keep things peaceful in the tank once the RTS settles down
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