Rope Fish Questions
I keep seeing this one rope fish in the LFS and I think it is awesome. I must have one.
But since I have become far more educated about the process of getting a fish I will ask the questions before I seriously look into getting one.
Are they aggressive?
What do they eat?
I can only assume a 125g tank is big enough?
Anything else? Do they need hiding spaces?
I have 4 barbs and an angle fish in the tank now, just getting it set up.
Any thoughts are greatly appreciated!!!
Moved here as ropefish are part of the Polypterus family and therefore are considered part of ancient fish. I have not kept a ropefish however I did keep polies though this still might not make quite a difference. I gather this ropefish can eat anything that will fit in its mouth. What barbs do you have? Angelfish will be fine. I don't think ropefish are aggressive. They can get along with several fish provided their tankmates are not very aggressive. Like polies, they will prefer a tank with plenty of hiding places.;)
Good article on ropefish in last month's TFH.
They do need hiding places. They prefer a soft bottom and a heavily planted tank. There must be at least an inch of air space between water and lid because they need to breathe atmospheric air. The lid must not have any gaps greater than 1/4 in in any direction or the fish Will escape, also, filter intakes and outlets need to be screened so that the fish doesn't swim into them.
I've seen conflicting reports on whether they're territorial or prefer company. It could easily be both.
They eat whatever meaty food will fit in their mouth - fish, prawn, beef heart, shrimp pellets.
Disclaimer: I have researched these, but have no personal experience.
Ok I once had a rope fish I loved this fish so much. It was the most peaceful fish I have ever owned it was like a big sheep dog! It had an incredible sense of smell. Although its very slow moving and anything else that is faster will steal its food which is about everything. Mine was directly imported from Africa as no known captive breeding have taken place thank I know of. This fish has brought me allot of joy. it loved to eat any type of live black worms, frozen bloodworms. And ate freeze dried tubafix by wardly that floated on top I fed him in the same place and he learned to come there. Also he ate out of my hand. Most defiantly needs places to hide a very shy fish. THE FISH WILL LEAVE YOUR TANK if you do not cover every exit. My beloved rope fish one day left my tank and I didn't see him for 3 days till I found him on the floor like a 3 foot hard rope covered in dog hair. Apparently he rolled around a bit. I even put him back in my tank because I was so sad to see if he would come back somehow, although I think I knew he was dead. And that's the tale of one of my favorite fish. I miss him and would love to have 4 more yes 125g is good. They are not a girthy fish so I don't think they need a huge tank because they kind of slither around.
my experience with ropefish is as fallows,
They love to hide, one i was looking after disapeared for 3 weeks before i found him in the tank again, they are not agressive though they are preditory, and may attempt to eat small slow moving fish, they are very strong and fit just about anywhere, so a tight lid is a must. bloodworms are the food of choice of the ropefish I kept, though they where small 5"-6" and they would eventually need more meaty foods, like feeder fish and beef heart.
they are cool to watch, though they are mostly nocternal hunters, also be careful because their mouth opens alot wider then it looks, so even fish you think may be safe may also be in danger
but if you can get a tank with a good lid, and dont mind keeping bigger fish with him I think rope fish are awsome and have lovely personality.
If per chance you get this unique fish, let me warn you of my trevails. My rope fish was killed while I was cleaning his tank. Yes, this sounds odd, but, the creature was very animate and very inquisitive. I was using a Diatome filter to polish my water and my rope fish went about investigating the new device in his tank. I left for a bit to visit my lfs shich is 5 minutes away and was gone from home for about 1 hour. I went into the room to remove the diatom filter only to see the tail of my rope fish hanging out of the intake tube. He, somehow, had gotten the strainer off the tube and decided to investigate, much to his demise.
I don't believe this is a very hard fish to care for, just people need to be very carefull in taking care for it.
Rope fish are great! I have a medium sized one. He likes to both hide and swim at diffrent levels of the tank. Mine eats rosy reds. You can even see the lump in its belly for a couple of days. He doesn't have a problem with any of the other fish in my 125gallon and never gives me any problems. This is a great fisah and I reccomend them for anybody.
Rope fish are very peaceful and can be bullied (this may also add to their urge to leave the tank). They will need somewhere to hide and are happiest in groups.
They can struggle competing for food...
By the time they have smelt it the other fish have eaten it...
I get up in the middle of the night and drop some nightcrawler chunks or bloodworm in whist all the lights are off and he is out and about...
I also place some in the bottom of a glass bottle and place it at the bottom of the tank. He can swim in and have a feast but most of the other fish are too big to fit through the opening...
If you do this make sure you use a clear bottle as it is very entertaining to watch...
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