Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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-   -   Congo tetras in the community aquarium (http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/characins/congo-tetras-community-aquarium-92963/)

beetlebz 02-09-2012 06:30 PM

Congo tetras in the community aquarium
 
I have a 55g that is in the midst of a major overhaul. As fish have dwindled, we have resisted adding more fish to make some room. The finished tank will be natural, larger, smooth gravel, and heavily planted at the sides and back, with the whole of the middle of the tank open, with floating water sprite (C. Thalictoides). My water is right around medium hardness (will be retested soon, but never changed much) and houses only 4 or 5 swordtails (we breed the fry to sell in another tank) and cories, and one small pleco.

My LFS almost always has in captive bred congo tetras, and have a reputation for being hardy. Though the water hardness (Gh) is at the bottom end of passable for the swords, and the top end of hardness for the congos, the parameters do not fluctuate much at all, and ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate spikes have never been an issue. Would the congo tetras be able to adapt to the conditions in the 55g long term?

We would like to add 6 or 8 as the centerpiece to our 55g.

opinions appreciated :)

SeaHorse 02-09-2012 08:17 PM

Hi Beetlebz. I also have Congo Tetras. They are in a 75 gallon with many Rainbowfish, Mollies and Swordtails. My PH here is 8 - 8.2 and VERY hard water... leave drips on anything and you will see white spots. My Mollies and Swordtails are breeding like crazy too. I also sell them to the LFS.
I have 5 Turq, 4 Boesmani, 3 Neon Dwarf RBF who all school in with the 5 Congo Tetras. 2 M/3F.
I see no reason not to do this. Wondering if anyone else will have concerns with it. And would love to hear if it is a problem. It's working great for me but sometimes we miss something important. Enjoy

beetlebz 02-09-2012 08:20 PM

I understand that most of the tank bred and raised are very tolerant of water conditions, provided they are a constant. how long have your congos been doing well?

SeaHorse 02-09-2012 08:29 PM

I think I have had them 6 months now. I did loose one female the first week I brought them home. It happens. But as soon as I could I went out and got the 2nd M and 2 more F. they were 3 for $25 so each time I got a Male and 2 F. (but the one died from the first batch). The girls really don't have much to do with the boys. The boys school and play tag with the Male Rainbows. lol

Byron 02-10-2012 05:40 PM

The Congo Tetra is one of the most beautiful of the medium tetra for a 4-foot (or more) tank. I had five in my 55g back in the 1980's, and now I have a group of 10 in my 90g river habitat. As Jakiebaby said, they are active, very active, so tankmates have to be chosen with this in mind (no angels, discus, gourami). And no nippy fish, as the long fin filaments are an easy target. I have 5m and 5f, and the males spend hours doing races full length of the tank, usually 2 and sometimes a third joins, or they take turns. Like J mentioned, the females tend to stay out of all this. But mine have spawned several times.

beetlebz 02-10-2012 05:49 PM

thats some good news right there. I was thinking 6 (3m/3f) in the 55. A male sword died today (inexplicably, i might add) but the water still tests fine. That leaves 3 female swords, cories, and the pleco. Plenty of room!

the top might be a little busy but as long as theyre having fun.. ;-)

Byron 02-10-2012 06:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by beetlebz (Post 979213)
thats some good news right there. I was thinking 6 (3m/3f) in the 55. A male sword died today (inexplicably, i might add) but the water still tests fine. That leaves 3 female swords, cories, and the pleco. Plenty of room!

the top might be a little busy but as long as theyre having fun.. ;-)

They swim mid-tank almost exclusively. I would probably do 7 in a 55g, 4 male and 3 females. But I just like odd numbers--and before anyone asks, no, it makes no difference to most fish whether it is an even or odd number in the group. Some species need specific male/female ratios, but that's something else.:lol:

SeaHorse 02-10-2012 07:41 PM

And they are absolutely a beautiful fish. Gorgeous when I let a little sunshine on the tank.
Byron why more males than females...? That's an unusual ratio. They are just non-aggressive?
And do yours spawn as a group or do you see them pair off?
My males swim mostly at 6 inches from the bottom of the tank, and the females swim at about 5 inches from the surface. I think it's 18" deep.
( I do have one scrawny Pearl Gourami who minds it's own business, been in the tank for well over a year, they don't bother it)

Byron 02-10-2012 08:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jakiebabie (Post 979278)
And they are absolutely a beautiful fish. Gorgeous when I let a little sunshine on the tank.
Byron why more males than females...? That's an unusual ratio. They are just non-aggressive?
And do yours spawn as a group or do you see them pair off?
My males swim mostly at 6 inches from the bottom of the tank, and the females swim at about 5 inches from the surface. I think it's 18" deep.
( I do have one scrawny Pearl Gourami who minds it's own business, been in the tank for well over a year, they don't bother it)

The males are more colourful; the females are frankly very drab and plain, lacking not only those impressive fin extensions but the sparkling metallic colours. I now have 5/5, previously I had 3/2, and I've never seen any issues with males "pushing" the females as you can find with some characins and thus need more females.

The spawning activity I've seen has been a male and a female in the plants, usually if I'm remembering correctly plants near the substrate, like the Java Moss on the wood. But when spawning occurs, all the fish in the species tend to be at it, which is not surprising. Something sets them off, like a water change, or the weather (low pressure systems are naturally a sign of rain, so tropical fish will often spawn then).

I wish I could afford (or otherwise justify) a video camera so I could film some of these antics to show others. Their races really are astounding, they go for a couple hours just charging side by side, fins flared, then turning sharply at the end, and doing a little dance together...fascinating.:-D This never seems to be directed at the females, who are off in their group paying no attention whatsoever...at least, not that I can ascertain.

beetlebz 02-10-2012 08:21 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Byron (Post 979309)
This never seems to be directed at the females, who are off in their group paying no attention whatsoever...at least, not that I can ascertain.

someday we will have to share a beer (or soda) and I can tell you of the antics I did to be a tough guy, because the chicks dig it :lol: that statement really reminds me of the post-high school bar years of my life lol

have either of you had successful fry come from the batch? My LFS would snatch congo fry up if I could get them to a sellable size.


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