is a longer tank the answer??

Discussion in 'Freshwater Beginners' started by ivonko, Apr 3, 2012.

  1. ivonko

    ivonkoValued MemberMember

    hey guys im new and looking to get a red tailed shark into the aqarium that I hope to get.

    I have read in many places that the rts needs a minimum 55 gallon tank to thrive because it is known to grow up to 6 inches,
    unfortunantly i cant get that big of a tank at this time because 1. i live in a small apartment and 2. I'm kinda trying out this new hobby at this time and dont want to put that much money into it yet

    what i did find and was wondering if it will work is a 20 gallon tank that is long versus being tall
    it is 30x12x12 this would give the rts enough playing room back in forth to wander even at its full length
    the rts is also a bottom dweller so i think the depth of the tank isnt as much of a concern for it.

    so im wondering if you guys think this is possibly a solution to keeping a shark in a smaller tank?

    also curious, because i will be needing some other semi-aggressive fish to put up with the rts's shinanigans i was thinking some barbs (around 4) and some shrimp to keep the place tidy

    im not sure if this will be overfilling the tank or if there is a better possible tankmate i can put with the rts but please let me know

    all comments welcome

    (sorry i misposted this somewhere else not even sure where) lol
  2. bolivianbaby

    bolivianbabyFishlore LegendMember

    Welcome to Fishlore!

    RTS are very active so I would advise against keeping them in anything smaller than a 55g.

    There are some very active smaller fish that would do great in a 20g tank, though. Endlers livebearers, platys, white cloud mountain minnows are just a few.

    Hope you enjoy the forum!
  3. e_watson09

    e_watson09Well Known MemberMember

    I agree they are very active and can also be pretty agressive in smaller tanks. There are many options for smaller fish in 20 gallon tanks.

  4. OP

    ivonkoValued MemberMember

    hmm ok so im picking up a tank this weekend. its 30 gallons (not 20)
    and the dimentions are 36x12x16 so the length and height are nearly that of a 50 gallon aquarium with less width (36x18x19)

    i am going to get a rts (sory guys) because they arent expensive and with these dimensions i think it will have enough room to roam around and pick out its domain
    i will keep you guys updated on how it does though

    thank you for the advise on the smaller fish. i will make sure that the rest of the fish i get do not exceed 2" but are assertive enough to be with the rts

    another question i had was about amano shrimp, being the beefier species of shrimp i think they will be able to be in the same tank as the shark but if you dont think so please let me know. im also interested in owning a dwarf frog but really dont want it to be in that tank because of its slower speed it would take a lot of stress from the shark.

    thanks for any and all advise given!

  5. bassbonediva

    bassbonedivaFishlore VIPMember

    I had an albino RTS in my 29gal for a while. It did not end well. He became very aggressive toward all the other fish in the tank and ended up killing my adult tiger barbs (I had eight of them in there). He picked them off one by one. The only explanation I could figure out was that he was frustrated with not having enough space to swim in. There's a good reason why they aren't recommended for tanks less than 48" in length. Just saying.

    Don't be sorry to us for getting an RTS anyway. All we can do is tell you our opinions and experiences. You're the one who has to deal with the potential disaster.

    As for the amano shrimp, they'll make a nice $4 each snack for the RTS.

    ADFs (African dwarf frogs) are not recommended for community tanks--especially not tanks with aggressive tankmates. They don't see very well and can't compete for food, so they usually end up starving. Also, because they inhabit the bottom of the tank, which is the same area that the RTS inhabits, they are at risk of being seen as a threat by the RTS and killed.
  6. OP

    ivonkoValued MemberMember

    thanks for sharing your personal experience about the rts. i will ensure that he has a LOT of hiding places so he can have his territory on one end of the tank.

    i will also avoid putting in shrimp and frogs. what would you suggest for cleaning assistance? would snails work for me?

    if the rts doesnt work out i think my passion for them will die and i wont return to one till i get a bigger tank. till then ill have less expensive fish in the tank so if disaster occurs it isnt on a major scale.

    what are some good tank mates for the rts I have read that barbs do pretty good because they are pretty hardy fish. i was thinking white cloud mountain minnows as they are pretty adaptable and are more likely to just avoid the rts altogether. any suggestions?

  7. bassbonediva

    bassbonedivaFishlore VIPMember

    White cloud mountain minnows might work because they prefer to stay in the upper regions of the tank, while the RTS will stay toward the bottom. Gold barbs might work, as well. They inhabit all levels of the tank, but are big enough that they can hold their own.

    A snail might work for you. I've only ever had one nerite snail and he wasn't in the tank with my RTS, so I don't know how they do together. My RTS was like a vacuum, though, and kept the tank pretty clean all by himself.

    To give you an idea of what I was talking about with my albino RTS taking after my tiger barbs, here's a pic of the RTS invading the tiger barb school. The RTS is about 3" long in this pic and the tiger barbs are about 2".
    Right after I nabbed this shot, the RTS chased all the tiger barbs into the corner and kept them there for a good five minutes.
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 23, 2018
  8. OP

    ivonkoValued MemberMember

    haha the thing is though. while the rts is so feisty thats what makes it so entertaining. thats why i always liked them as a kid growing up.

    thank you for the info. ill look into gold barbs as well. my only concern with the minnow is there streamline body is similar to the sharks so i wouldnt want them getting excessively abused due to this i will talk to my lfs about this as well and see what tank mates they have for their rts.
  9. bassbonediva

    bassbonedivaFishlore VIPMember

    I doubt the RTS would mistake them for another RTS. The barbs are similarly shaped to the RTS, though, which I didn't think about, so that might be a problem, but I'm not sure.
  10. OP

    ivonkoValued MemberMember

    i will also try the most humble looking rts i find at the lfs lol. had a question about vegetation as well, i believe i have read that i want to put in vegetation during the pre fish cycling, is this correct? or should i wait till and plant live vegetation at the same time as putting in fish?
  11. bassbonediva

    bassbonedivaFishlore VIPMember

    It doesn't really matter, to be honest. I usually plant the tank when I set it up. Just makes it easier.
  12. OP

    ivonkoValued MemberMember

    thats what i will do as well then, hopefully they will help get the nitrogen cycle going faster than without plants.
  13. bassbonediva

    bassbonedivaFishlore VIPMember

    The thing I love about plants is that they help keep your ammonia, nitrite and nitrate levels low. I no longer have tanks that aren't planted for this reason. Helps sooooo much with tank maintenance.
  14. OP

    ivonkoValued MemberMember

    i am extremely interested in growing a microsword, dwarf hairgrass, or dwarf baby tears shag carpet for my tank haha. but wondering if it will even work without a co2 supplement system. i would love to view different tanks and stuff but my work computer has a firewall that blocks nearly all images.

    do you grow your plants with or without co2?
  15. bassbonediva

    bassbonedivaFishlore VIPMember

    Dwarf baby tears are pretty much impossible to grow without CO2. I tried them in my high-light 20gL with CO2 and ferts and they died within a week. Dwarf hairgrass and microsword aren't nearly as demanding and are actually pretty easy.

    My tanks don't have CO2. I'm going to set it up on my 20gL, but that's only because it's such high light (48W of T5HO light on it). My 55gal has higher light on it (108W of T5HO), but the plants I have aren't demanding and I don't have algae problems, so I don't worry about it.

    What kind of lighting are you looking at?
  16. OP

    ivonkoValued MemberMember

    honestly as you know i am a noob at this time so please make suggestions to me. i will just have the light that comes with the tank at first. if there is a better bulb that i should get (flourecent) for promoting plant growth please let me know. im trying to do research on filters, lights, heaters, and everything else all at the same time so i know some but only the bare minimum. any infomation you provide me will be awesome.

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice