Black Phantom Tetra Drama

SynisterOwl

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So I feel like I have like a tv drama happening in my tank with my black phantom tetras.

Originally I had 5, two males and three females. One male had two females whilst the other had one. This was okay for a long time, no fighting apart from a bit of chasing by the males but no fin nipping. I would observe them and check on them to make sure everything was okay.

My plan was to get another female to male the stocking one male to two females and have at least 6 but had a break out of columnaris in two of my fish.

After treatment and cleaning all the rocks and wood in the tank I rescaped it. I counted all the fish coming out of the tank and into a heated and aerated bucket and counted then when putting them back in after acclimating them.

Yet come night time the night tetra a was gone. I checked everywhere. In all the new caves I created for the corys and pleco behind the filter, everywhere. Even got my partner to do so just in case I missed it. Nothing, not even a body. A day later still nothing a no ammonia spike either. I did recall all my bottom feeders being all sluggish that afternoon, so it lead me to believe they may have found his body and consumed it.

To continue the drama with my tetras, well two days after the male disappeared one of the females suddenly had no tail fins in the morning. To makes things stranger the male that was still alive was courting her with displays.

At first I thought it was my grumpy male dwarf gourami who is known to nip, but then again it was only at female dwarf gouramis. He would only chase the tetras.

Since the tail less female tetra was having issues with swimming in the higher flow tank, I transferred her and the shoal into the smaller tank with my snails.

It really seems like it was the male tetras doing. Him killing of the other less dominate male because he was maybe weaker or stressed from the moving around. Then trying to take his female for his own but her not being interested and swimming away. So the male nips off her tail fins to prevent that and displays to her like crazy.

I'm not sure, does anyone have any experience with something like this? I'm more curious about it all then anything.

TL:RD

The whole thing is that after the large move around the less dominate male tetra may have been stressed or weak and the other tetra killed him? Then remaining male wanted the other female but she wasn't interested so he nipped at her tail so she couldn't run away from him?

That's what it seems like after thinking about it all in the large picture.
 

Redshark1

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It does sound like a soap opera, but I don't think your suspicions are far from the truth. Rather than trying to analyse further I'm inclined to broadly agree with you.
 
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SynisterOwl

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Just to add to all of this... I found the skin of the missing male Black Phantom Tetra whilst doing a water change this morning... so I wasnt going crazy that I did put them all in, at first I thought I thought I missed him and dumped him out somewhere or something, and that he was indeed eaten by my croys and bottom feeders.

I have only have fish for a while but it has been very interesting for sure, learning all of this new stuff. Not that I dont love it but as my partner said "who knew fish could be so involved"
 
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SynisterOwl

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For anyone wanting another update to this all.

The female tetra is slowly regrowing her tail back and is able to swim much better now. However, the lone male would harass all the females so I did a big no no added five more Black Phantom Tetra straight into my tank, 4 females and 1 male, without quarantining them. I do get my fish from a very good fish store (I live in New Zealand and we don't have Petco and such), the only issue they had was tattered fins which have already grown in nicely.

The harassment stopped and they are shoaling together nicely and very active, moving around the tank by themselves and exploring. They even ate within an hour of me putting them in. So I am very happy about it all. The original male is less showy and isn't displaying as much which I am glad about because it leaves the females in peace.

I shall keep a close eye on all my fish for any diseases of course.
 
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