Best Bottom Dwellers to Compliment Rainbowfish - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
View Poll Results: Which is the best bottom dweller(s) to compliment Rainbowfish?
School of 5 loaches (Probably Polka Dot Loaches) 3 75.00%
Black Red Tailed Shark 0 0%
Bristlenose Pleco 1 25.00%
Dwarf Cichlids (Please specify below if there is a specific type you recommend) 0 0%
OTHER (Please specify below) 0 0%
Voters: 4. You may not vote on this poll

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post #1 of 2 Old 03-26-2012, 01:14 PM Thread Starter
Arrow Best Bottom Dwellers to Compliment Rainbowfish

I tried posting this poll previously but for some reason it didn't work. I'll try again.

Hi, my 55 gallon tank is currently home to 6 Red Irian and 4 Lake Kutubu Rainbowfish, as well as some Platies and Zebra Danios.

Eventually I plan to move the danios and some if not all of the platies into my 20 gallon tank, and then I plan to add some bottom feeders.

These are what I am considering:

Zebra, Polka Dot, or Yo Yo loaches. Leaning toward Polka Dot loaches at the moment, probably a group of 5.


Black Red Tailed Shark. Yes, they're territorial, but can anyone deny they look cool patrolling the bottom of a tank? Right now the bottom of my tank is practically empty. The Rainbows and Danios hardly ever go down there, and there are lots of hiding places (fake log, natural caves made from driftwood, fake plants) so maybe it could work? I realize it's hit or miss with RTS and some are just ornery regardless of these conditions.


Bristlenose Pleco. Kind of boring compared to a fun school of loaches or a cool Red Tailed Shark.


Someone recently suggested to me Dwarf Cichlids. I had no idea any Cichlids were compatible with Rainbowfish. A quick search turned up some cool looking specimens.

Basically, the mid to top of my tank is busy now, but the bottom of my tank needs some action (Preferably not just nocturnal action). Opinions? Thanks everyone!
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post #2 of 2 Old 03-26-2012, 03:27 PM
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I'll remove the first post momentarily, it is not working as you said.

This topic was partly included in the other thread
so I'm posting the link in case anyone wonders what was said there. Generally, having the same topic in two or more threads is not good, since not everyone sees everything and you may not gain the benefit. But we can continue this topic here and not there.

Depending upon species and water parameters, some of the small/medium cichlids could work. But they would not be "substrate" in the sense that loaches are, if that is what you're looking for. Some of the Corydoras could work too.

The Red Tailed Shark is a loner, and that means no other substrate fish so a lot of useful space is wasted. And they can take exception to upper fish as they mature.

The loach species are all possible, I detailed some of that in the other thread.

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 you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re 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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