Featherfin Catfish problem
Had this fish approx 1 month now in my 55 Gallon Aquarium.
Tankmates -6 silver sharks, 5 clown loaches, 1 common plec
The featherfin Cat seems to hide CONSTANTLY and comes out for like seconds then hides again. I know its pretty nocturnal but I still see my plec during the day, this thing is just hiding all the time!
Wondering what to do? The aquarium is lit with x2 30 watt tubes but there are hiding places and dark parts too. Water is normal nitrate is 20. Plec doesnt bother him or any other fish, everyone seems fine. Common plec is only about 5 inches right now.
I put in an algae wafer about 15mins before the lights switch off before bed. The featherfin comes out for like about 10 seconds max, takes a tiny tiny bite and runs back for cover. I don't get it! Clowns and silver sharks are timid, and don't bother it, it should be rulling the place with my plec!
Any ideas anyone?
Somebody is going to tell you this, so it might as well be me. Regardless of the featherfin, you are going to have problems with that tank:
1) Clown loaches get a foot long. You're looking at a 125+ gallon tank in your future if you want to keep them healthy (they also live a very long time - decades if you treat them well)
2) Silver sharks, if you are talking about the catfish, are only freshwater as fry. As they grow they migrate downriver towards higher salitity, eventually ending up fully marine. They also get a foot long, so you're looking at a 180+ gallon marine tank for them.
Why is your featherfin hiding? You have a dozen active and semi-aggressive bottom dwellers in the tank with him, scaring the snot out of him.
I don't mean to be harsh, but any way of putting this is going to boil down to just what I said. Look at it as an opportunity for learning.
Were I doing this, I'd take the sharks back and start saving for a 240 gallon tank for the loaches. Once I had a really big tank going for the loaches, I'd stick them in there (with another half dozen friends and a scool of a dozen giant danos) and start thinking about what to put in with the feather fin in the 55.
If you haven't got the space of the funding for a really big tank, take back the loaches and the sharks and consider what kind of tank you want to build around the featherfin. You may or may not be able to get full credit on the sharks, but you ought to be able to make your money back on the loaches.
A thought for the featherfin tank - get a shoal of upside-down or debauwi cats to go in with him. They're both more midwater species, and fairly peaceful. Throw in an ABF and some lilies and you have yourself a nice little African biotope.
I'm well aware of the possible growth. When they approach this size, the tank will be upgraded, not a problem to me, hardly crying over it. Plus you very rarely see a clown loach that's a foot long, more like 7-8 inch tops in captivity. The tank will get upgraded when I move in a year or so, by which time they will be about 3-4 inch so nothing at all wrong with that. I don't see how I have several AGGRESSIVE bottom dewelers? It's just one plec, and it does nothing to it or any of the other fish. Besides a syno can be more aggresive as it ages!
I'm afraid I dont agree with your comment on silver sharks and marine setups when they are large. They ain't catfish for a start. They are ballas sharks and not marine!
I was referring to the catfish sold as silver or Columbian sharks.
Semi-Aggressive is not the same thing as aggressive. Balas aren't either, but loaches are semi-aggressive; they mean no harm, but they are playful and very active.
However, in a 55, with only 5 other bottom dwellers, even rambunctious ones like clown loaches, this shouldn't be a problem.
How are you fixed for hiding spots for the Featherfin and Loaches? Maybe he doesn't have enough overhead hard cover to feel comfortable in coming out much.
Wow- that's going to be one monster setup someday, I'm very jealous!
It is rather strange that your syno isn't more friendly. How heavily planted/decorated is your tank? Also, how long has he been in the tank?
Adding more caves out of sloping slate would probably help. I've found with just about all of my shy fish that the more they are aware that there's a place reeeally close to hide, the more they will be willing to come out.
Good luck :D
Thanx for your help, as I say I will be upgrading, in time.
Bit of an update. Decided to spy on the tank with lights out after one hour I came back. Used a small pen torch and seen the syno catfish swimming about the bottom, fine, no problems and not hiding half as much. Isn't this a bit of a pointless aquarium fish if you only ever see it at night, constantly hiding during the day? Anyone?
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