Showing posts with label Red-tailed Black Shark. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Red-tailed Black Shark. Show all posts



Red-tailed black shark (Epalzeorhynchos bicolor)
Red-tailed black shark (Epalzeorhynchos bicolor) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Red-tailed black sharks or Epalzeorhynchus bicolor belong to the family Cyprinidae. This family of fish is also known as Cyprinids. In layman's term, the red-tail is a member of the carp family. The red-tailed black shark was native to Thailand. But sadly, they are now extinct in the wild. All the red-tails available in fish stores today are commercially raised products of the aquarium trade industry.

Red-tails black sharks, of course, bear no relation to sharks. Their name is purely descriptive. They have a black, torpedo-shaped body with a profile reminiscent of that of sharks. This includes a sharp triangular shaped dorsal fin. Their bright red caudal fin (tail) completes their visual appearance and name.

As with any member of the carp family they are primarily bottom dwelling scavenger fish. Scavenger fish can be identified by their downward pointed mouths with varying sets of barbels on either side. Barbels are whisker-like sensory organs that contain taste buds much like your tongue. Their primary function is for locating food. They serve a secondary function of enabling the fish to find its way along riverbed basins at night or in murky water.

Red-tails are generally considered compatible in community tanks. Interspecies conflicts are rare. But a more robust fish such as barbs, larger tetras, and the less timid cichlids, are a good choice as tank-mates. As with most bottom dwellers, it is a good idea to provide rock work or hollow aquarium d├ęcor for resting and hiding.

When it comes to cohabitation with members of their own species they tend to become extremely territorial; especially the males. The dominant male will often chase the submissive male around. They have been known to harass their less dominant counterpart depriving them of any chance to rest or eat. This often results in the death of the submissive red-tail. Fellow bottom dwellers have also been known to bring out the red-tails territorial instincts. They may become combative with red-finned sharks and Siamese algae eaters. So if a red-tail is your scavenger of choice it is a good idea to allow him to be the king of his substrate domain.

Red-tails have a much wider tolerance range to pH levels than most other fish. Anywhere from 6.5-7.5 will suffice. Acceptable water temperatures are 72-79 °F. They can reach 5 inches. They don't tend to grow as long in smaller aquariums. Females are typically a little smaller than males. Their life expectancy is up to six years.

Red-tailed are omnivores. They can usually fend for themselves just fine with food scraps on the aquarium substrate. However, food such as sinking wafers will ensure their nutritional needs are meant.

The spacious environment of fish farms produces enough of these fish to keep their prices very reasonable at your local retailer or online fish-mart. This is a good thing since they are extinct in their natural habitats and rarely breed in aquariums. Their innate aggressive behavior and the aquarium owners' tendency to purchase a single scavenger fish undoubtedly contributes to this rarity.

    By Stephen J Broy
    The latest trend among Saltwater Tank enthusiasts is raising pet jellyfish. Jellyfish need specially designed Jellyfish Fish Tank Aquariums. Jellyfish tanks are easier to maintain than traditional saltwater setups. Moon Jellies are the most popular jellyfish among home aquarists both for their exotic beauty and their ease of care. They have become so popular that two US-based websites are now tank raising them to meet the growing demand. Pet Moon Jellyfish look absolutely incredible under a fading LED lighting system.
    Article Source: EzineArticles


Can You Have SHARKS in a Freshwater Aquarium?

Sharks are certainly one of the most captivating creatures in the water. They excite, frighten, and intrigue us like no other sea creature. Everybody knows that sharks are from the ocean, but are there such things as freshwater sharks? Is it possible for the adventurous aquarist to keep sharks in a freshwater aquarium?

iridescent shark catfish Pangasius hypophthalmus
Shark Catfish Pangasius hypophthalmus (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

There are a couple of shark species that venture into the fresh water, such as river sharks and occasionally bull sharks, but they generally need at least brackish (somewhat salty) water to survive. So since there are no true sharks that live in freshwater it is impossible to keep them in a home freshwater aquarium.

If you have done any browsing in a fish or pet store it is possible that you came across some fish that were labeled "sharks". If they were not in a saltwater tank, then they weren't sharks. There are a few tropical fish that, due to their appearance, have been given a common name containing "shark", but they are not true sharks. A few of these so-called sharks are very popular in freshwater fish tanks, though, and are worth a look if you are stocking a tank.

The most common of these is the red-tailed shark, scientific name Labeo Bicolor, which earned its name of "shark" because of its dorsal fin, but that is a stretch. Regardless, the red-tailed shark and the rainbow (or red-finned) shark are great additions to almost any community tank. They have distinct coloration and get to be decent size without growing too big. They are generally shy but they do get a bit territorial, although they rarely inflict any damage to other fish in the tank.

The Bala shark is another falsely named but very popular freshwater aquarium fish. The Bala shark is very peaceful and makes a good addition to a larger community aquarium. They definitely prefer a bigger tank because they are very active swimmers and by home aquarium standards, get fairly large (5" or so). They are excellent jumpers so a covered tank is a must.

One other common "shark" is the black fin shark catfish, sometimes called a black tipped shark. Of all of the freshwater fish mistakenly called sharks, this one has the closest actual resemblance. It has a gray, streamlined body with a dorsal fin very similar in shape to a shark, but alas, it is simply a catfish. This fish is not the best choice for general community tanks; it will grow fairly large, chase other fish, and eat small fish if they will fit in his mouth. It is best kept with other larger fish.

For those looking to stock "real" sharks in a freshwater aquarium, you are out of luck. On the plus side, some of the commonly available "sharks" at the fish store are wonderful fish to add to a community aquarium and are well worth considering.

    By Drew Bartlett
    Drew Bartlett has over 30 years experience with setting up and maintaining freshwater aquariums. He is the author of The Essential Beginners Guide to Freshwater Aquariums.

    Article Source: EzineArticles