Roseline Barbs/Sharks with Thread finned rainbow fish - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 4 Old 06-13-2011, 06:27 AM Thread Starter
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Roseline Barbs/Sharks with Thread finned rainbow fish

So I have a school of thread finned rainbow fish (9) and I have 2 Rose line sharks that seem to school with them. Does anyone know if that is normal or is it just cause they want to be part of a group.
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post #2 of 4 Old 06-13-2011, 07:11 AM
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i am not 100% sure but i think that being a part of the shoal is an important aspect of living for any fish and as they are out numbered it may be an attempt to "blend in" ..... i am sure more folks will chime in over the next few hours....

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post #3 of 4 Old 06-13-2011, 04:23 PM
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Both species are shoaling fish, meaning they naturally live in large groups and should therefore be kept in groups in the aquarium. The barbs may well attempt "schooling" with the rainbows out of frustration at not having sufficient of their own.

Shoaling fish are that way for specific reasons. The obvious are protection--safer in numbers--and finding food--more chance of prey in numbers. But within the group the fish may have a social structure or interrelationships that can involve many aspects such as aggression, display, spawning preparation, dominance, etc. Denied this necessity to the fish, leads to stress and health problems and/or increased aggression. Which brings me to the next point.

These two species are not compatible. The threadfin rainbow, Iriatherina werneri, is a small fish, attaining 1.5 to 2 inches max, and very quiet and peaceful. The Roseline or Denison's Barb, Puntius denisonii, attains 6 inches and will eat any fish that fits into its mouth. Things may be peaceful now if the Barbs are small, but they will not stay that way.

Both species are included in our profiles section. You can click on the shaded names (common or scientific) above to see that profile. The grouping issue is referenced in both, along with minimum numbers (8 for the barb) and minimum tank sizes. The barbs need space, they are active swimmers.


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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post #4 of 4 Old 06-13-2011, 04:31 PM Thread Starter
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I know most of this stuff. I have read a lot about these barbs just not much on social behavior besides they like at least 3 to school. I plan to buy more when I can. That's all the pet store had at the moment.
As for the thread fins, I'm moving them to a new tank in the near future. I'm just waiting for a bit more money so that I can get some plants in there and aquascape it first.
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