Neon rainbowfish acting shy recently...

StinkyLoaf

Member
My 15 gallon tank contains seven neon rainbowfish, four apple platies and three emerald cats. They’ve all been acting very shy around me for the past few days and the rainbows in particular hide behind the decor when they see me. They sometimes dart around like crazy and quickly retreat to their hiding spot. Frantic glass surfing is also happening.

I think it’s me that they’re frightened of. My sister is usually with them and they don’t mind her. She tells me that when I walk into the room they hide. It’s quite late right now and the tank light is off. The tank is currently being lit using sunlight as the sun sets.

Maybe they’ve figured out that I’m the water change guy or it’s because I have to put my hand in when feeding them funtips. Perhaps it’s because I recently turned down the filter output during the day? What possible causes are there for this sudden shy behaviour in the fish? I appreciate any help.

Edit: I can only count six of the neon rainbows so I think one has died. I can’t see the body as visibility is poor right now and it was likely eaten by the catfish.
 

fallfever

Member
First of all...you believe your sister? Second, my son has a school of dwarf rainbows, and I've never considered them that smart. I'd imagine any rapid movement in front of the tank would make them skittish, though they do come to the front of the tank at feeding time after the initial attempt to flee. My larger cichlids are always excited to see me (or the food). My smaller fish? Not so much. If they are hiding when you feed them, I'd consider that odd. Considering the area of tank they like, floating plants, even a background on the tank might provide some relief.
BTW, that is the absolute smallest...if not less...area of water for a dwarf rainbow. That may explain their behavior. They are an active fish. The ones in my home are in a 75g and they use every bit of it. Not playing the stocking guru just a thought
 
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StinkyLoaf

Member
fallfever said:
First of all...you believe your sister?
Yeah, but maybe I shouldn’t lol. She never pays attention to the 15 gallon (it’s her tank and is in her bedroom). :rolleyes:
fallfever said:
Second, my son has a school of dwarf rainbows, and I've never considered them that smart. I'd imagine any rapid movement in front of the tank would make them skittish, though they do come to the front of the tank at feeding time after the initial attempt to flee. My larger cichlids are always excited to see me (or the food). My smaller fish? Not so much. If they are hiding when you feed them, I'd consider that odd. Considering the area of tank they like, floating plants, even a background on the tank might provide some relief.
I get that. I did just add some food to see if they’d come out and they definitely gained some courage. It’s still strange how they went from my bravest fish to being so shy in such a short time...
fallfever said:
BTW, that is the absolute smallest...if not less...area of water for a dwarf rainbow. That may explain their behavior. They are an active fish. The ones in my home are in a 75g and they use every bit of it. Not playing the stocking guru just a thought
The tank might be on the smaller side, but they never used to care; they used to be so lively! I doubt that tank size is the culprit. I’m not sure what’s caused them to lose courage.

Thanks for the prompt reply. I’ll check on them in the morning to see if they come out of their shells.
 
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StinkyLoaf

Member
Been forgetting to update on this but I can now count all seven neons and everyone is acting as usual again. Not sure what happened... o_O
 
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