Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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okiemavis 01-25-2008 12:24 PM

Ropefish-centric tank planning
Ok, first off, wahoo!! Finally moving to a bigger place- a two bedroom for just me and my boyfriend. That means a whole spare room for fish!! *phew* had to get that out. :D

So I'm pretty seriously considering getting a ropefish (and a tank for it :P). I've read a bunch of different reports of this fish, and I'm not sure which one to trust. I've read a huge variety of minimum tank sizes, from 45 to 100 gallons. Would a 75 gallon long be large enough? I figured the long would be good, since they breath atmospheric air, but let me know if I'm totally misguided.

It'll be a sand substrate with a very well fitting top, and very carefully barred off filter. Any recommendations on a filter for a fish that likes to beat up on it and get stuck in it? I planned on making it a pretty well planted tank, with mostly hardy plants like java fern and the like.

Most of what I read said that they weren't aggressive towards fish that were too large for them to eat. Any ideas for a cool fish to keep with them? I know they come from the swamps/marshes of Nigeria, so I thought it would be cool to keep other fish from the same area, if possible.

Anyway, mostly just really excited, even though it will be a couple of months before I get this up and running. I would love to hear any ideas, and any advice from experienced keepers of this fish. Thanks!

The-Wolf 01-25-2008 12:50 PM

the min tank size I'd recommend is 48x18x?
(height can be as little as 12 inch and as much as 30 inch.)
they are gregarious and therfore should be kept in a group of at least 3,
filtration should be of at least 5 times the tanks volume per hour. (min have 20 times)

I keep mine on a sand substrate as there are reports of them ingesting gravel and causing damage to themselves.

Diet for mine consists of prawn (shrimp), muscle, whelks and Hikari sinking carnivorous pellets. they do also like JMC catfish pellets but they are more for the clown loaches that share the bottom of the tank.

if it fits in its mouth (and they can catch it) it is food, so any tank mate needs to be at least the size of a zebra danio. Avoid aggressive fish and you should be fine.

once you have decided on tank mates, just ask here and we can say yes or no for certain.

oh and one last thing, these fish love carpet walking, so a good tight fitting lid (preferably glass sliding covers) is a must. If you go for a juwel tank then consider keeping the flaps weighted down with something or gluing catches of some kind on them.

okiemavis 01-25-2008 05:21 PM

Thanks a bunch! Here are a few of the other breeds I was thinking of adding:

many-banded leporinus
silver prochilodus
snakeskin gourami (too small?)
african or black ghost knifefish (too aggressive?)

I've got a chinese algae eater from my first tank when a very stupid LFS said he was good in a community! I'm very attached to him now though, he's a lot of fun, do you reckon he'd do ok in this tank or would he be fish food?

Also, it seems like the standard 1 gallon for every 2 inches doesn't apply so well to the ropefish, as it's so long and skinny. I really doubt I need 32 gallons for each one of these guys. Any idea for how to calculate the bioload?

As for filter, I'll probably just go with a canister one. I was trying to figure out if an in tank filter or a sponge filter would work, so that they couldn't climb up the intake, but I don't think that there are any decent ones for a tank this size. I was also thinking an under gravel filter, but would it be a huge hassle with sand?

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