first semi aggressive aquarium

shannon66

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I will be getting another 55gal tank tomorrow ;D and I am thinking of stocking it with semi aggressive fish. I know I definitely want tiger barbs and a red tail shark. After that I'm not really sure. I've always had community fish only. I really like the variations to the tiger barbs also. Ideas anyone? Thanks
 

e_watson09

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Honestly more often than not tiger barbs kill everything in their tank. They're really best kept in a species tank.
 

NMfishman

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I have never heard of tbs killing other fish unless they are not kept in a school of 6-9 and are kept with short fin fish that can stand up for themselves. Mine are not aggressive with my fish at all and would highly recommend them if you have the right tankmates. if anything I would be more worried about the RTBS. I would suggest pictus catfish, Giant danios, and gold barb. Most large active fish should do well. be sure to give your RTBS a cave to hide in.
 

Nutter

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I have never heard of tbs killing other fish unless they are not kept in a school of 6-9 and are kept with short fin fish that can stand up for themselves. Mine are not aggressive with my fish at all and would highly recommend them if you have the right tankmates. if anything I would be more worried about the RTBS. I would suggest pictus catfish, Giant danios, and gold barb. Most large active fish should do well. be sure to give your RTBS a cave to hide in.
TB's are proven killers but it seems to depend on some unknown variable (not just numbers). I've tried them with other fish on several occasions & had them kill everything they were ever put with. They have killed everything from other barbs right through to a 6" Blue Acara. That was a school of 12 TB's. It's just one of those fish that either seems to work or they don't. Best to have them in a species tank IMO. They might be ok with the shark but it's a try & see sort of thing. If they do work out with other fish then other barb species like Gold Barbs or Checker Barbs are good. Stuff like Firemouths, Keyholes & Blue Acaras can work, even though it didn't work for me. Pictus, Doradid & Pleco species usually work ok with TB's. I've seen Black Widow Tetras in a spectacular display tank with Tiger Barbs before to.
 

NMfishman

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TB's are proven killers but it seems to depend on some unknown variable (not just numbers). I've tried them with other fish on several occasions & had them kill everything they were ever put with. They have killed everything from other barbs right through to a 6" Blue Acara. That was a school of 12 TB's. It's just one of those fish that either seems to work or they don't. Best to have them in a species tank IMO. They might be ok with the shark but it's a try & see sort of thing. If they do work out with other fish then other barb species like Gold Barbs or Checker Barbs are good. Stuff like Firemouths, Keyholes & Blue Acaras can work, even though it didn't work for me. Pictus, Doradid & Pleco species usually work ok with TB's. I've seen Black Widow Tetras in a spectacular display tank with Tiger Barbs before to.
I do agree that fish do not always conform to the general info. I have heard that when tiger barbs are in numbers greater than nine they start to get really aggressive, but don't know if thats how many you had on all occasions but might have been the reason they did not work out when you had 12. were they some of the first fish in the tank, maybe they established the entire tank as their territory and did not like the new fish coming in; just a thought.
My advise for you would be to try them but be ready to remove them to another tank or take them back to the store if they start being real aggressive with your other fish.
 

Nutter

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I tried all sorts of variable with them. I changed numbers, tank mates, tank size, tank decor, introducing them everything from first to last. They just didn't work out for me. I havn't heard of them not working because a shoal was too large though, only too small. That one is new to me. For some they work others they don't. I ended up settling for them in a species tank when I did have them. I havn't worried about them for a few years now. I've moved past the Tiger Barb stage onto more challenging aspects of the hobby.

Good general advice for people trying to keep them there: Try them but be ready to rehome them or return them if need be.
 

NMfishman

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Good general advice for people trying to keep them there: Try them but be ready to rehome them or return them if need be.
Thanks!
Well I am sorry you could not keep them, cuz I really like mine. But there are plenty of other fish out there
 
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shannon66

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thanks. Now I'm rethinking the tiger barb choice. I was hoping more for just some chasing and nipping going on in the tank not out right killing. I understand this is not a definite but I don't really want to take the chance. I get attached to my fish and so do my kids. Wouldn't want them to watch something like that anyways. Guess I'll maybe try the other barbs and leave out the tigers. Do the others seem to be a little less aggressive?

Also, there seems to be a few variations to the regular colored tiger barb at my lfs. If I did go with the tb and put in the albino, green etc.. I forgot what the rest of them are called. Would there be a better balance in the tank or would it be just as bad as if they were another kind of fish? Sorry for all the questions. I know in the end there are no guarantees but the more info I can get the better prepared I feel
 

Nutter

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The other Tiger Barbs have much the same temperament as ordinary TB's. Perhaps a good alternative to Tiger Barbs would be the Five-Banded Barb (Barbus Pentazona). They are very similar in appearance to Tiger Barbs but are far more peacefull & should be kept with more peacefull tank mates.

Rosy Barbs are great for a bit of agro but no real damage. They would work well with Clipper Barbs (Barbus Callipterus), Arulius Barbs (Barbus Arulius) or Ticto Barbs (Barbus Ticto). I find that many species of Barb also mix well with some of the med-larger sized Rainbowfish (shoaling fish), which also have a high level of activity & will nip at each other abit.
 

NMfishman

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The other barbs would be fine, just becareful which you choose, cuz most others won't get along with the RTBS if you still want him.
I think the barbs and rainbows would look great together!
 
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shannon66

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thanks everyone. I appreciate all the help. I'll have to look up some of the fish suggested. I have no idea what they are.
 

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I really like my gold barbs, and they're supposed to be much less agro than tigers. they chase eachother, but it seems more a game. And they totally ignore my pleco. Picked em cause they're really bright and active, quite fast and as a bonus hardy.
 

LyndaB

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I had a horrible experience with tiger barbs but a very pleasant one with cherry barbs (all males), after they were put into a 30 gallon tank. Something about smaller than 30 gallons didn't work for them. That would be stunning with cherries and a RTS.
 

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Black ruby barbs would also be a nice colorful alternative to tigers. They are active and nippy enough to be kept in a semi aggressive tank (with fish like pictus, RTS, etc.), but not overly aggressive. They never look that great in the shops but when you bring them home and give them the right environment they become quite colorful.
 
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