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Can I Have A Red Tailed Shark In My Tank?

Discussion in 'Tropical Discussion' started by hawkdaddy, Sep 16, 2011.

  1. hawkdaddy

    hawkdaddy Member

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    I have a 165L Aqua one tank, fully planted wtih plenty of hiding places.
    I currently have 5 angelfish, 5 emperor tetras, 2 bala (Silver) sharks, and a bristlenose catfish.
    I was wondering if i could also put in a Red tailed shark, providing that he will get along with all the other fish. I know they are quite agressive, and i was thinking of getting a small juvenile, only about 2 inches long. Any responses appreciated

    Regards
    Hawkdaddy
     
  2. N0body Of The Goat

    N0body Of The Goat Oddball and African riverine fish keeper

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    RTBS need a 4-foot tank long term, as they should reach ~15cm and are infamous for being very territorial with other bottom dwellers, especially those of similar shape or colour.


    Bala Sharks grow to be pretty huge fish (~40cm), which should be kept in 6+ groups, I can safely say you should be rehoming them as they need an 8'x3' tank footprint at the very least.
     
  3. Mybbygotsauz

    Mybbygotsauz Member

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    I think a red tailed shark would usually be alright, although nobody of the goat is right, they need much more room than what you are giving them so far, however, for your fish i believe they will be okay, usually they will. But there isnt any guarantee at all. Sharks can always be aggressive, they didnt just get the name for their slimline body, even the bala sharks can become extremely aggressive in cramped situations which is what youve set yourself up for, so i believe i wouldnt add any more fish at all until you get a bigger tank,
    although there is a chance it will work with what you already have, its completely up to you to take the chance or not.
    Hope this helps
     
  4. Hermithall

    Hermithall Member

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    It might be an anomaly, but my mature redtail black shark actually despises all other fish except bottom dwelling catfish. I know he would harrass 99% of community fish to death given the chance, yet appears entirely neutral to catfish. He currently shares his tank peacefully with a cory school, and 2 bristlenose catfish. As far as shape/colour goes, my rtbs became particularly vile towards yellow fish and also silver fish and shape didn't seem to come into it. I've tried briefly keeping him in with cichlids, which resulted in a tornado of a fight between the shark and jewel cichlid which would have been to the death for sure. So, back he went to the cory tank where the belligerent #19### will spend the rest of his days!

    Hawkdaddy - The story was different when he was a juvenile, he was fine with all other fish - the problems come later as the fish matured, so if you do get one as a juvenile be prepared to give him his own space a year (or less) down the line. Definitely a difficult fish which a lot of people discourage keeping, but it's the aquarium trade that's actually keeping this fish in existence (they are reportedly extinct in the wild) and if you're willing to keep him in his own tank later on (with restricted tankmates) the rtbs is still a magnificent fish.
     
  5. CrazyAirborne

    CrazyAirborne Fish Herder

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    Its kind of sad but the answer to the original question is almost always no.
     
  6. hawkdaddy

    hawkdaddy Member

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    thanks for your opinions, i think i might stick to the set up i have now. I am thinking of moving my Bala sharks to a larger tank with more individuals, as they would be much happier.
     
  7. micko

    micko drive it like you stole it.

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    I have to say no, they're not a fish for a community tank IMO. I only know this from my own experience and issues with it. God knows what it should ideally be kept with. I had 3 (at various different times) and one of them used to be very friendly with a number of pakistani loaches. Never bothered with any other bottom dwellers either
     
  8. raptorrex

    raptorrex Inactive

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    this size tank in no good for either shark. rehome or return them.
     
  9. Tizer

    Tizer Team TetraTEC

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    ^^ what rap said. The sharks need a much longer tank.
     
  10. hawkdaddy

    hawkdaddy Member

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    ok i rehomed my bala sharks, as you said, the tanks looks quite empty without them! The other fish seem to be happier though. Thanks for all your advice!
     

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