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Chesh 04-01-2013 07:49 AM

Lots of questions on Red Lizard Whiptails
Contemplating stocking on a 125g tank, and have a couple of questions about these beauties that I'm hoping those of you who keep them can help clarify for me. . . :-)

I know several members keep them in well planted tanks, wondering if anyone has noticed any damage caused by these fish to plants such as suction tears or nibbles, and to what extent the damage is, if any.

Second, I've seen mixed information regarding their preferred amount of water flow? I generally see them kept in tanks with little water movement, but have read in a couple of places that they prefer more?

These fish are always noted as peaceful, but territorial when mating - looking for observations as to how aggressive they can be, and if it would be mostly directed toward their own kind, or if other small bottom-dwelling fish in the community could be put at risk (rams,loaches, otos). Along these lines, would I be able to keep a group of them in a 125g tank, (thinking 6, maybe?)

Substrate. . . I currently have Tahitian Moon sand, which I may use in the larger tank, also. I've read that these fish sometimes like to burrow, and TMS is a bit more abrasive than many common aquarium sands. I've have two species of Pangio (Kuhli) Loach over this substrate, some for over a year, and they have had no problems with damage to their underbellies or barbels from this sand, though I have never seen them burrow into the sandbed. My assumption is that the whips would be comfortable on this substrate as well, but wanting to double-check. . .

I think that's it for now, though I still have much more research to do (and quite a way to go before the tank gets set up). Thanks in advance for any information you can share on your own experience with these gorgeous fish! :-)

Byron 04-01-2013 11:31 AM

3 Attachment(s)
I have three of these "red" whiptails, along with a common whiptail Rineloricaria parva, together in my 115g tank which has play sand and is heavily planted. I've had the common whiptail for over 4 years, and the 3 reds for 2 years. Photo of 2 of them shortly after I got them, with the common, attached. They have become less "red" and more "brown" as they have matured, though this has varied for reasons I cannot explain. I've no idea if they are male or female, and they have never spawned or displayed any pre-spawning behaviours that I have seen.

They are one of the most peaceful of fish. Most of the time, they (the reds) remain among the plants. At feeding time, after I sound the dinner gong, all three will appear out front and readily eat from sinking pellets and tabs along with the corys. Even when they are next to each other, or to the larger common whiptail, there is no sign of any jostling. It's as if they do not even recognize one another. There is a Bolivian Ram in this tank too, and he owns the tank, that is clear. But while he will nudge at pestering corys, he has never bothered with the whiptails, nor they with him. One of the photos shows him too.

They have never eaten any plants, and I have the substrate planted with chain sword whose leaves they regularly graze for algae. I have never seen them burrow into the sand; aside from feeding when they are down on the sand, they are usually up on other surfaces like plant leaves, wood (this is essential) and the aquarium glass now and then. They can remain motionless for some time.

Water flow doesn't seem much of an issue. In this tank, I have the canister return aimed into the end wall to provide a current, since there is a standing piece of wood at that end which houses my three spotted woodcat and these must have some flow. The whiptails tend to remain in the left half of this 5-foot tank, but not in the water flow.

Hope this helps.


Chesh 04-01-2013 11:48 AM

Yes, Byron, it does - and thank you. I always appreciate hearing things from your experience.
These seem like a creature that would be very happy in one of my tanks . . . you've just further convinced me of it!

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