Multiple black ghost knife fish? - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
 
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post #1 of 8 Old 12-01-2010, 09:41 PM Thread Starter
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Multiple black ghost knife fish?

I know many internet sites warn against keeping more than one black ghost knife fish in a tank together, but there's a lot more than one in the wild, and they mate at some point, so they must be together some of the time. I was wondering if anyone had good or bad experiences with keeping more than one of them. I kept two together in a small tank in the past, and they never fought but there was some competition for food. Does anyone have experience in this? Please only post if you have had experience with this and not if you have just read some internet site or heard from your friend that their other friend had an experience with them. Thanks for any input!

RIP fire eel
why did you think it was a good idea to keep going over the top of the tank
when you realized you couldn't breathe outside water?
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post #2 of 8 Old 12-03-2010, 03:36 AM
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I've seen a few larger ones in the 8-10 inch range at the LFS and there was a lot of aggression in the tank. Considdering how big they get, I would think you'd need a very large tank to accomodate them.

I've only kept a BGK as a single.

125 - BGK, chanchito cichlid, pictus cats, silver dollars, palmas bichir
125 - cichlids (severums, bolivian rams, chocolate), rainbows ( turquoise, red), loaches (angelicus, zebra, kuhli and horseface), plecos (BN, RL and clown), denison barbs, tiretrack eel, pearl gouramis, betta
90 - Congo tetras, african knife, upside down cats, spotted ctenopoma, kribensis, delhezzi bichir
2.5 - betta
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post #3 of 8 Old 12-03-2010, 07:08 PM
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I had 2 about 4''. I had them in a smaller tank while I was preparing the larger tank. They seemed to get along great. they would occasionally "play ring around the rosey" lol but they never bit at each other or anything like that. my Bala sharks and an ammonia spike is what did them in. I definitely recommend a very large tank for these beauties.
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post #4 of 8 Old 12-03-2010, 09:00 PM
It is not recommended since BGK use a very faint electrical field to detect their pray. Two together in a tank causes problems and as they get older they become aggressive due to this. Also for BGK your looking at like 100+ gallons ideally, so keeping them in a small tank is a no-no anyway. And while you are correct they come together to mate in the wild, there is a BIG difference between your tank and the amazon river. Please be aware as well that pretty much all BGK are wild caught, when you take a fish from the wild it deserves the absolute best care you can give it in captivity. It just bothers me that you see alot of them, but they haven't really been successfully bred. Depending on wild stocks things could end quite badly for the BGK, it defiantly wouldn't be the first time.

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post #5 of 8 Old 12-04-2010, 02:15 AM
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Another thing about BGKs - where they are harvested, the natives believe them to be the reincarnated souls of their ancestors.

125 - BGK, chanchito cichlid, pictus cats, silver dollars, palmas bichir
125 - cichlids (severums, bolivian rams, chocolate), rainbows ( turquoise, red), loaches (angelicus, zebra, kuhli and horseface), plecos (BN, RL and clown), denison barbs, tiretrack eel, pearl gouramis, betta
90 - Congo tetras, african knife, upside down cats, spotted ctenopoma, kribensis, delhezzi bichir
2.5 - betta
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post #6 of 8 Old 12-05-2010, 01:23 PM
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Mikaila31's comments earlier are absolutely correct. I am copying over a video from another thread in this section because it so perfectly illustrates what I write time and time again: fish absolutely must be in a suitable environment or they should never be acquired.

You will note the three knifefish are darting around, up and down behind that filter. That is an extremely stressful reaction to having no place to hide from the light and each other. A fish that is by nature used to darkness and hiding places will always be highly stressed in a bare or brightly lit tank. The fish does not know it is "safe" from predators; it only knows what nature has programmed into it, that in such an environment it is highly vulnerable and likely to be attacked and killed. It will spend its hours fighting to get out of those conditions. Unfortunately, it has no escape. The health damage done to these fish from their time in such a tank cannot be measured, and will almost certainly cause trouble down the road and probably early demise, or it may bring out excessive aggression once the fish is in a more suitable surroundings.

And as auntkymmie pointed out in the other thread, the poor Clown Loach is similarly highly stressed out, darting around due again to lack of cover and lack of companions; social fish like the loach must be in groups, 5+, there is no excuse. And understand, my comments are intended to bring this to light with the obvious video proof, as showing what will occur when these fish are subjected to inadequate housing. I am less concerned with temporary store conditions than I am over aquarists who think this is how they can "care" for these fish at home.

We as aquarists all have the responsibility to know our fish thoroughly, and be able to provide what they require before any consideration is given to acquiring them.



Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If youíre going to take it under your wing then youíre responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #7 of 8 Old 12-05-2010, 03:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikaila31 View Post
Please be aware as well that pretty much all BGK are wild caught, when you take a fish from the wild it deserves the absolute best care you can give it in captivity.

I read recently that BGK are being comercially raised in Asia. I realize that they are south americian fish but many fish from all around the world are sucessfully being raised in asia. Any one else heard the rumor?
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post #8 of 8 Old 12-05-2010, 04:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cpt NAPA View Post
I read recently that BGK are being comercially raised in Asia. I realize that they are south americian fish but many fish from all around the world are sucessfully being raised in asia. Any one else heard the rumor?
Yes, Jeff Howe writes that it has recently started to be bred in Indonesia, though I suspect depending upon where you live the fish in stores may be wild-caught. I'm fairly certain they are here in Vancouver, since the two main stores/suppliers that have had these import direct from SA.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If youíre going to take it under your wing then youíre responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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