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FAQs on Tiger Barbs Stocking/Selection

Related Articles: Tiger Barbs, Barbs, Danios & RasborasA Barbed Response; Wrongly maligned for being fin-nippers, barbs are in fact some of the best fish for the home aquarium by Neale Monks

Related FAQs:  Tiger Barbs 1, Tiger Barbs 2, & FAQs on: Tiger Barbs Identification, Tiger Barbs Behavior, Tiger Barbs Compatibility, Tiger Barbs Systems, Tiger Barbs Feeding, Tiger Barbs Health, Tiger Barbs Reproduction, & Barbs, Danios, Rasboras 1, B,D,R Identification, B,D,R Behavior, B,D,R Compatibility, B,D,R Selection, B,D,R Systems, B,D,R Feeding, B,D,R Disease, B,D,R Reproduction,


Tiger barb; fdg., stkg.      11/3/16
I have searched your site and researched and haven't found quite the answer so I am writing you. I have a freshwater tropical tank 65 gallons which is home to 4 angel fish who are 6 years old, 3 tetras ( forget what kind) who are two months old, two catfish who are two months old, a algae eater (sorry forget his name Bristlenose...)
<Maybe an Ancistrus genus Loricariid... a type of "Plecostomus">
he is 3 months old, a black red tailed shark and a Bala shark and we did have two tiger barbs although one has since passed.
<Mmm; allow me to insert a statement here for posterity (others and you) re stocking small Barbs, Danios, Rasboras... most all Minnows (Cyprinids); they/these are schooling/shoaling fishes; NEED to be kept in numbers to be happy, healthy... a handful or more... to chase each other about... Be MUCH less nippy toward other fishes>
The one tiger barb continued to get bigger and bigger over 3 months and recently died it looked like dropsy from what I read.
<Ahh! What sorts of foods are you offering here? This species is a very eager eater; and will definitely over-eat given the opportunity. Flake foods, some live, frozen... formats will lead to them being "obese". Again, a need to stock a grouping of them, and take care in the kinds, amounts of foods offered>
The other tiger barb was much smaller than him but is displaying environmental distress breathing heavy and staying at bottom of tank with whole body on the ground, sometimes he swims up a bit but is breathing so heavy and almost shaking.
<Yikes; perhaps this one suffered trauma; had genetic issues....>
After the one barb died I did a 40 percent water change, I add a small amount of freshwater salt and condition the water with aqua safe and easy balance.
Nitrate 80
<Mmm; much too high. I'd keep under 20 ppm. There are a few approaches
here. Let's have you read:
and the linked files above>
Nitrite 0
Hardness 150 hard
Alkalinity 40
Ph 7.2
I feed them shrimp on the bottom, a dry flake,
<Less of this... try a good pellet (Hikari, Spectrum...) in its place
and some freeze dried worms sometimes. Looking at getting better live food options.
The fish all get along great, everyone else seems happy and active the Angels have been spending more time at the bottom but right now are up and watching us. The Sharks get along great and just control algae.
The temperature is maybe too warm at 29 degrees Celsius so I have lowered it slightly.
What do you think?
<All reads good; except the flake food, high NO3...>

This tank is new to me my friend used to have it for ten years but is moving and has handed it to me. I love animals and want to do what is best for these fish.
Thank you,
<Thank you for writing, sharing. Please do the reading mentioned, and write back if a course of action isn't clear.
Bob Fenner>

Question about tiger barbs. Sys., stkg... rdg.      6/1/13
Hi !
So I have actually a quite simple question but I don't seem to see anyone with as small tank as me.
<Indeed; 22 litres (just under 6 US gallons) isn't a good size for tropical fishkeeping. It's really only suited to keeping a Betta, or else things like Cherry Shrimps or African Dwarf Frogs that don't need a huge amount of space to do well. Only very experienced aquarists would use tanks this small for "nano" schooling fish like Dwarf Rasboras (Boraras maculatus) but I'd hardly recommend such delicate fish unless you have good experience of fishkeeping.>
Since I'm from North-East Europe I sadly don't know to convert gallons. so I have 22l aquarium (also has filter and air pump) with 2 mollies and 2 tiger barbs.
<Much too small for these species.>
Both of my barbs are male and they fight a lot and the smaller loses them so i don't want my little fish to have stress.
<Tiger Barbs need to be kept in groups of at least 6 specimens. Otherwise, yes, they fight. They are very social animals and are unhappy in smaller groups than 6. You really need a spacious tank for Tiger Barbs, around 90-100 litres at minimum.>
My tank is only few days old and since I've figured out by now that barbs are group fish then I'd like to get more of them (2-3 maybe).
<Not in this tank!>
So my question is if  the tank is big enough already at the moment for fish,
<It is not big enough.>
and if i wanted to get more of them after the cycle (or what it's called) is done (an article i read from you site earlier had a good link with info about it), would taking 2-3 more be enough?
<See above.>
Probably i would need to get a bigger tank for them if i wanted to get more of them.
Otherwise my fish are doing great and they are friendly to each other (besides barbs to each other).
<Male Mollies can become aggressive as they age, and they also get quite large, 6-15 cm depending on the variety. Again, a big aquarium is needed, 100+ litres.>
They swim around a lot, mollies love to nibble algae from the glass and barbs also love to play when you tap with finger on aquarium glass. Can't wait for the cycle to get over to get some new cute barbs! :D
<Time to read some more!
…and the links at top of those pages. Cheers, Neale.>

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