Rope Fish Changing Colors

Discussion in 'Freshwater Fish Disease' started by Coumwalk2015, Jun 13, 2018.

  1. Coumwalk2015New MemberMember

    I'm trying to figure out what's going on with my rope fish. I've noticed over the past few months that my rope fish are slowly turning into a darker greenish shade. It starts with the tail and slowly works it way up to the head (I searched a few diseases and nothing seems to match what's going on with them and all other fish are acting normal). They're still eating well and seem rather peaceful in the many hiding places I have for them. I was wondering if their diet could be the cause? I've been feeding them beef heart (due to the fact the other fish seem to eat the bloodworms before they can get to them but the beef heart is a wee bit too chunky for the others.)(Food is always soaked in Garlic Guard to help them find it easier) They've been happily eating this for months but at my LFS they recommend feeding them chopped fish and shrimp instead and that beef heart wasn't healthy for them. I've tried this and they won't even touch the stuff (People insist that they will eat other smaller fish but they have never touched a live fish). I even have 2 small danio's in the tank and they don't bother them at all. They (3) live in a 75 gallon tank with 2 danios, 7 buenos aires tetras, 6 giant danios, 2 raphael catfish, 2 small snakeskin gourami (which I know will have to be moved into a bigger tank. I was told that they would only get 6 inches at my LFS and they lied) and a pleco. The tank parameters are all WNL and the pH is at 7.5. They're acting normal but I'm just concerned about the darkening in color. Anyone have any advice about these guys? I'm just super concerned because there isn't a lot of information out there about these guys =(
  2. Seth15Valued MemberMember

    My Rope fish have changed in color dramatically since when I first got them. They began to turn a darker shade of green. I personally believe they changed in color due to the substrate color, similarly to a bichir. Bichir will change colors depending on the substrate color. Not sure if this is the same case, just a theory. My Rope fish have gotten darker, and here they are with me a year later. Post a pic, it can help us better determine what's going on.

    As far as diet, I personally don't really recommend feeding beefheart but this is a very controversial subject with each person to their own belief. Personally I recommend feeding market shrimp, swai fish fillet, tilapia(high quality), blackworms, brine shrimp, etc. There's way too much fat in beefheart, long term not good. Feeding a high fat diet like beefheart long term can lead to a fatty liver.

    I wouldn't worry too much about the darkening in color, as long as the water parameters are where they should be, behaving normally, and eating normally.

    Hope i helped.
  3. Coumwalk2015New MemberMember

    Thanks that actually makes me feel so much better. I've tried feeding them fresh tilapia and shrimp and tried giving it with & without garlic guard and they literally bite into it and release it. I even tried fasting them for several days and they refuse to touch the stuff. They will eat bloodworms but I have to give so much just to make sure they get some. I can try blackworms but my biggest fear it buying them and then they refuse to eat it (I'm not a big fan of touching live worms). They are literally the most docile rope fish I've ever own. People give me this look when I tell them I have 2 zebra danios in there with them and they have never had any issue. I guess I can lay off the beef heart of just feed more blood worms and mysis and just do more frequent water changes (I do about 30% at least every 7 to 10 days).
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 14, 2018
  4. Coumwalk2015New MemberMember

    Picture for reference

    Attached Files:

  5. Seth15Valued MemberMember

    Honestly your Rope fish looks fine to me. It took a little while to get my Rope fish to start eating fish and shrimp too. They would only eat bloodworms, just be patient, over time they will.
  6. Coumwalk2015New MemberMember

    Thanks for putting my mind at ease. I'll try to see if I can get them to eat fresh fish and shrimp. Hopefully they'll come around and start enjoying it. Right now their mindset is in 'fish are friends not food' lol. Maybe fresh worms will change their mind.
  7. Seth15Valued MemberMember

    Haha lol, yeah most people think that they are some vicious predator fish or something, in my experience they are actually quite gentle. I keep them with alestes and congo tetras, they never tried eating them, even when they were about an inch in length.

    Here's a few pics of my rope fish

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