Will my fish choices get along?

Practical Fishkeeping (UK) - - Advice -

Can you sug­gest some good ad­di­tions to a com­mu­nity tank that would in­clude an­gelfish, a male Si­amese fighter and a Ruby shark, as th­ese are the three types of fish I re­ally like – if they are com­pat­i­ble, that is. Any ad­vice would be greatly re­ceived. PETER STACK, EMAIL

BOB SAYS: I'm afraid that the three species you mention aren't likely to be happy tank­mates.

An­gelfish will, in all prob­a­bil­ity, bully and in­tim­i­date the Si­amese fighter and, sim­i­larly, Ruby sharks have an oft-de­served rep­u­ta­tion for ag­gres­sive be­hav­iour and may find the fighter’s trail­ing fins too much temp­ta­tion, es­pe­cially if you choose a red fish. You might suc­ceed with An­gelfish and the shark, but it very much de­pends on the in­di­vid­ual tem­per­a­ment of both fish.

If you de­cide to try th­ese two species, I would rec­om­mend adding them as the last fish to the tank, and as small, ju­ve­nile spec­i­mens. Good tank­mates to sit along­side th­ese two would in­clude de­cent-sized groups (10 or more) of deeper-bod­ied tetras such as Lemon te­tra, Hyphes­so­brycon pul­chrip­in­nis, or per­haps Em­peror, Ne­ma­to­brycon palmeri, or Har­le­quin ras­b­o­ras, Trigonos­tigma het­ero­mor­pha.

While it would be nice to add other bot­tom-dwelling fish such as Co­ry­do­ras, there is al­ways a risk that they will draw the at­ten­tion of the shark who may see them as com­pe­ti­tion. It very much de­pends on the in­di­vid­ual fish's dis­po­si­tion, but adding plenty of hid­ing places and grow­ing lush, nat­u­ral plants often helps.

An­gels

Male Si­amese fighter

Ruby shark

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