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Rainbows in a 180

2153 Views 13 Replies 10 Participants Last post by  Draginduster
Hey guys, I'm putting together my first planted tank and designing it around a Rainbow species. All of them actually. But I still need the ones who will take care of the tank. Shrimp are out as Rainbows will eat them with in a few minutes ( I know this the hard way). I think snails will do ok, but I need fish. Golden Algae eaters and Otos are a likely candidate. But I am here for your info. So what do I need to keep a moderatly to fairly heavy 180 gallon tank with low/medium T-5 lighting clean? And as for that, how do I figure out my fert amounts and schedules?
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The rainbows probably won't be able to eat adult Amano shrimp if you could grow them out in a smaller tank.

Otos are always a good choice. Hillstream loaches are pretty cool little creatures too.
if you opt for hill stream loaches, they need good flow and oxygen
Ok, I'll set the tank up and see what kind of flow I can get out of the FX5 and a possible added pump. They are a very interesting fish, that's for sure.
What species of rainbows are you looking at doing? some get nice and big and would make a great addition to a big tank. just wondering what you had in mind. :)
I am in a debate with myself on which species. I have a large tank I'm setting up and had an idea of rainbows, then I went to the Denver aquarium and they have a large display of rainbows. It sealed the deal. Melanotaenia trifasciata, Melanotaenia herbertaxelrodi, Melanotaenia lacustris, Glossolepis multisquamatus are planned. I am still researching fish and have seen all these in the same tank, but they all ask for a slightly different water setup. I'm honestly having a hard time with the a fleeting thought of Angels. We will just have to see.
G'day Draginduster,

Good to see the use of some Aussie and PNG fish. The Lacustris is a species I've kept before along with the native ones I've caught here in the creeks in Central Queensland, Australia. I've tried keeping mine with Otto's before without much success. They were quickly eaten and I mean quick! As long as you introduce the ottos when the rainbows are young it should be OK. But remember some of the species you have mentioned are some of the bigger Rainbows and can get to 12cm.
As stated, oto's or some sort of small plec (bristlenose, etc.) would work well for you.

I'd definitely stay away from the golden algae eater (if it's what I'm thinking of) since they are just a different colored CAE, which are huge troublemakers in a tank, and they stop eating algae as they grow up.
I haven't had any problem keeping ottos with bosemon's, the largest around 4 inches.
I think it's hard to tell how an individual fish will react in a particular set-up. Good to read about them for guidelines, but it may not go as expected. I have four young unidentified Rainbows (about half sized) and a large 'Turquoise' male. They've been with Red Cherry Shrimp for several months. My tank is heavily planted but the Rainbows don't seem to be hunting for them, either. I had switched them out of their dedicated tank to dose Excel for algae, and they had a population boom. I didn't even think it would work out, but it did. So I left the shrimp in the tank with the Rainbows. I had an Otocinclus cat in here too, but had to move Oto out when he decided to taste the rainbows. But my Turq never seemed to notice the Oto, either.
Ok, I'll set the tank up and see what kind of flow I can get out of the FX5 and a possible added pump. They are a very interesting fish, that's for sure.
I have an FX5 on a 125 and the actual flow is minimal.
FarCanal, are you saying that the Otos are the Rainbows or the Rainbows ate the Otos? I've actually think that I have decided on setting it up with a single spices. I'm leaning toward Melanotaenia lacustris, or for the NORMAL people who like real names that one can understand (like me), the Lake Kutubu Rainbowfish. I have one now and love the color. I can only imagine a tank full of these!! I have wondered how these would do with shrimp and snails. I was told by to use snails. Have any of you had issues with shrimp and rainbows?
i am a HUGE fan of rainbows. my first tank had australian rainbows and trifasciata rainbows, all grown from less than an inch to 3+ inches. with proper food they just glow. be warned though, my dominant australian would once in a while pick at my water wisteria. other than that they didnt bug anyone or my plants. they will chase small creatures for a while, but once they realise they cant eat them, they will leave them alone.
Well, after some more browsing and hours in the net, I found this sweet sweet page. It's the species of just about every Rainbow in existence. Of course, it is Australia. And we all know that nature has an amazing imaginations there.
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