ghost knife - ? about quality of life
Tropical Fish

Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources » Freshwater Fish and Aquariums » Freshwater and Tropical Fish » Ancient Fish » ghost knife - ? about quality of life

ghost knife - ? about quality of life

This is a discussion on ghost knife - ? about quality of life within the Ancient Fish forums, part of the Freshwater and Tropical Fish category; --> Hi everyone! We have a ghost knife fish named Shamu and I am hoping to get some opinions about him from other people who ...

Check out these freshwater fish profiles
Black Ghost Knifefish
Black Ghost Knifefish
Nunus Bumblebee Goby
Nunus Bumblebee Goby
Reply
LinkBack Thread Tools vBmenu Seperating Image Search this Thread vBmenu Seperating Image
ghost knife - ? about quality of life
Old 10-05-2009, 10:52 PM   #1
 
Question ghost knife - ? about quality of life

Hi everyone!
We have a ghost knife fish named Shamu and I am hoping to get some opinions about him from other people who are experienced with them. He is our first and the information we've found on the internet hasn't really been helpful in regards to the questions I have.

We've had Shamu for almost 2 years. He was probably four or five inches when we got him. He is about 9 inches long now. He's been in the same 40 gallon tank the entire time we've had him. He gets along fabulously with our other fish. We have two peacock eels, a chinese algea eater and some pineapple swordtail platys. We also have aquatic frogs and he's never bothered them. He is a voracious eater, he LOVES his brine shimp cubes! He will grab the whole dang thing and run off with it. He's the most gentle thing and although he doesn't really hide from us, he does have his corner that he mostly stays in. We used to have a tube for him but he stopped using it and preferred to hid in the thick tall plants in the back corner of the tank. He mostly stays vertical in the corner of the tank, behind those plants, with his mouth closer to the top of the tank. But sometimes he will lay on the bottom behind the plants.

The main conern my mom has is that she is worried he has outgrown his tank. He looks healthy, eats well, and doesn't seem to have any problem moving around. She's got it in her head that because he doesn't swim all over like he did when he was 4 inches, that he must be too big. From what I've read though, them hiding in one place seems like normal behavior. So basically, we're trying to figure out if he should be in a bigger tank or if he's alright the way he is. Also, I'm wondering how likely it is that he will grow anymore? Because obviously if he got bigger he definately would need a larger tank as I've read on the sites that they can be between 12" - 25" (none of them seem to agree!) I also read that they don't usually get bigger than 12" but don't know how accurate that is. I really haven't noticed him growing much so I'm assuming he's probably done but who knows.

I'm teasing my mom right now, saying that he must have heard us discussing him all night because he suddenly is just all over the tank :) Playing in the bubbles right now! Gosh they are beautiful and amazing fish!

Any thoughts or advice would be greatly apprecaited! We do love him so if he's home isn't adaquate we don't want to keep him in an enviroment that isn't suitable any longer.
Thanks!
Emily
inuchan74 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-07-2009, 04:52 PM   #2
 
I'm said to massively overstock and even I wouldn't think about keeping a 9-10 inch fish in a 40.

On the activity front; where's it supposed to go? I wouldn't be very active if I had the roam of a small bedroom.
willieturnip is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2009, 07:35 AM   #3
 
If he needs a new and bigger tank then that's what he needs but my question mainly is that is it normal for them to hide a lot. And yes he can move around, he swims to the top and bottom, floats in the bubbles along the back of the tank and around the bottom. The thing is that he spends more time hiding in his plants than he used to so we thought maybe he needed more room. I'm sure a lot of people would think well if I don't know that already then I shouldn't have the dang thing in the first place, but it is my mother's fish and I am trying to find out more information for her to make sure it's being taken care of properly. I haven't found any websites that can even agree on how big the thing gets so I don't feel like the small amount of information out there is very reliable. That's why I'm asking here.
inuchan74 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2009, 09:18 AM   #4
 
Ah I see. Well from what I remember, they can (and it isn't rare for them to do so) get to about half a meter. I think a nice long 400 litre is about the minimum.
willieturnip is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-31-2009, 08:52 PM   #5
 
Freddy's Avatar
 
In the wild, they get to be about 20 inches. Don't listen to anyone who says otherwise. (I know a few people will be mad at me for saying that) But in captivity, the max is a little over 10 inches, on average. I got two as babies (the pet store said they would grow to fit the tank) and kept them both in () a 10 gallon. I know, that's terrible. But now I love my BGKs and they have lived happily in their 10 gallon for a while. I'm cycling a 29 gallon now and will move them there when it's through. They're both about 5" now - I got them at about 2" a year ago. I'm making every effort to get a bigger tank, but I'm in middle school so I have to ask my parents for everything, and nobody else in my family has kept fish before, so my parents aren't happy at the idea of a 55+ gallon aquarium in the house. But I think they're warming up to it. One of mine will now take flake food, but I still feed both of mine with bloodworms. I have recently switched to freeze-dried bloodworms, from frozen, but I think they prefer frozen. So to make up for it, I have started a whiteworm culture (several weeks ago) that should be ready for harvesting within the next 5 days. Each BGK has a different "personality" - that is, some can get along with others, some can't even get along with fish known to be friendly with BGKs. I'm trying to start a forum, it only had 2 members who deserted me. It's all about BGKs. There's a place for other fish too. Check it out: My Forum
Freddy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-2010, 03:52 PM   #6
 
Kelso's Avatar
 
@Freddy: You should never even keep a fish that will reach that size in something as small as 29 gallon, let alone two of them...and NEVER in a 10 gallon. It causes stress to the fish and WILL lead to health problems.

@Inuchan: a 45 should be alright, but if I were you Id try to see if you couldn't get a 55-75 set up. I'm not an expert, but that's my two cents.

Last edited by Kelso; 01-01-2010 at 03:56 PM..
Kelso is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-2010, 10:01 PM   #7
 
Freddy's Avatar
 
I know... and I hate it. I hate that my tank isn't big enough, but mine seem to be pretty happy, and have never had more than a very small case of ich. Still, if a BGK will only get to be around 10" in captivity, why would more than 20 gallons be necessary, if you're following the 1 gallon of water per inch of fish rule? Mine are both only about 5 inches, so why would they not fit in a 29 gallon?
Freddy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-2010, 10:20 PM   #8
 
Kelso's Avatar
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Freddy View Post
I know... and I hate it. I hate that my tank isn't big enough, but mine seem to be pretty happy, and have never had more than a very small case of ich. Still, if a BGK will only get to be around 10" in captivity, why would more than 20 gallons be necessary, if you're following the 1 gallon of water per inch of fish rule? Mine are both only about 5 inches, so why would they not fit in a 29 gallon?
Because the 1 inch per gallon rule doesn't really work. If the fish is one inch when full grown, sure a gallon would be fine for it, but thats not the case. As soon as you get fish breaking 4 inches your entering a new realm of creating habitats for your fish. In the wild, your BGK would have pretty much unlimited space, but here it doesn't. You need to allow a fish that gets that big to have plenty of room to move, let alone even turn around. Imagine you, an average man living in a 6x6x6 room. DO I need to say more? Not allowing it time to grow will stunt it's growth and cause severe stress and internal pain. It won't live long. If you cant find a 125 gallon tank soon for your two BGK, they will die soon. I don't even wanna get started on bioload. Take my favorite fish for example-the puffer. The amount of waste they create and they're messy eating habits easily set them up for needing a large aquarium...a small space will cause toxins to build up fast, killing the animal.
Kelso is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-02-2010, 12:18 AM   #9
 
Freddy's Avatar
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelso View Post
Imagine you, an average man living in a 6x6x6 room.
Yeah... I guess you're right. How soon do you think the fish would die? I've had them for almost a year. Won't constantly upgrading their tank size until they're full grown keep them from dying? I've talked to other people about it. Since it's a rare accomplishment, I thought I would try to breed black ghost knife fish. The other people said I definitely needed a bigger tank, but that keeping them close together might be one in many factors that would encourage them to breed. What signs should I look for to see if they're having internal pain? If there are none, how does anyone know the fish is in any pain at all?
Freddy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-02-2010, 12:31 AM   #10
 
Kelso's Avatar
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Freddy View Post
How soon do you think the fish would die?
I think it's incredible that they lasted a year, but unless they are moved to a fully suitable sized aquarium, I'd give it a year at best.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Freddy View Post
Won't constantly upgrading their tank size until they're full grown keep them from dying?
It can work, but in the long run, moving them to a new tank once is less money on you and less stress on them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Freddy View Post
Since it's a rare accomplishment, I thought I would try to breed black ghost knife fish. The other people said I definitely needed a bigger tank, but that keeping them close together might be one in many factors that would encourage them to breed.
This alone should hint to you at what you need. You say you want them to breed, so shouldn't you naturally provide them with the best conditions? Keeping them together may even induce aggression in such close proximity. In the wild they are somewhat loner species, coming together to mate pretty much and that's it. They are a reclusive species, so room to hide and get away from any other animals is key to making them feel comfortable.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Freddy View Post
What signs should I look for to see if they're having internal pain? If there are none, how does anyone know the fish is in any pain at all?
You really can't. What happens is their insides continue to grow while their external body stays the same. Looking at the fish's eyes can be a good hint as to whether growth has been stunted. Do the eyes seem oddly large in proportion to the rest of the body? You'll know quickly that they are in pain when they become apathetic...at which point it is most likely too late.
Kelso is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
ghost knife compatability molliefan09 Ancient Fish 4 11-29-2009 12:00 AM
ghost knife ghosty Ancient Fish 14 04-25-2009 11:14 PM
black ghost knife fish nvmyluv420 Ancient Fish 6 07-27-2007 07:59 PM
ghost knife fish help.. travis300 Ancient Fish 4 06-13-2007 10:44 AM
ghost knife fish.... iamlinda69 Ancient Fish 10 12-19-2006 12:49 AM


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 10:59 PM.