How to Keep Redtail Catfish (Complete Guide) – Redtail catfish or known by the scientific name phractocephalus hemioliopterus , is a type of predatory catfish that is very popular with hobbyists. Like other predatory ornamental fish , Redtail Catfish (RTC) is very much in demand because of its aggressiveness towards prey.
Therefore, for predatory fish lovers , when feeding is the best time to see the ferocity of this freshwater fish . However, although many of these fish are kept in aquariums , they are actually more suitable to be raised in fish ponds . That’s because it’s so big. If it’s still a chick it may not be a problem, but you should consider it as the fish grow up. Let’s dig deeper into this fish, and how to raise redtail catfish so that the fish can grow well.
Redtail fish are commonly found in South American waters. They inhabit river basins in Ecuador, Guyana, Venezuela, Colombia, and more. Especially in the Amazon river, Orinoco and surrounding lakes.
Basically, the RedTail Catfish is almost like the consumption catfish we know. But what stands out is the tinge of a red stripe on its tail. That’s why it’s called the “redtail catfish“. The bottom or belly of the fish is white, while the body is dominated by grayish black. When viewed, the side of the body also has a white line that contrasts with the color of the body. In terms of size, this red-tailed catfish can grow to more than one meter, so you need to consider carefully from the start about the media for its maintenance.
While in the wild, this predatory fish can grow up to 1.5 meters. In fact, when the fish is still a chick, it only measures 5 cm. You can imagine how the growth potential is! In terms of weight, this catfish can reach a weight of 56 kg. That means the same as a measure of the weight of an adult male or female.
How to Keep Redtail Catfish
Before starting to raise, you should first read how to raise the following Redtail Catfish, so that you know how to best care for them.
Temperament and Behavior
Like other predatory fish, this phractocephalus hemioliopterus is also an aggressive fish, especially in its smaller prey. They are bottom swimmers, meaning they are more active at the bottom of an aquarium or pond. Well, if you want to maintain it, you should give more space on the basis of living media. However, when the fish are small, they are even more timid. Therefore, you can prepare a lot of hiding places for them. The life span of this redtail catfish can reach 15 years in captivity.
Redtail Catfish Food
Basically, the Redtail Catfish is an omnivorous fish , meaning it can eat just about anything. However, he prefers meat. In its natural habitat, it feeds on worms, other smaller fish, insects and vegetation along riverbeds. That means you can also feed these predatory fish just like in their natural habitat. If you don’t want to bother feeding him live food, you can also feed him sinking pellets. You can also give some frozen foods such as worms and frozen shrimp to this predatory catfish. The frequency of feeding for Redtail Catfish puppies can be done once to twice a day. Meanwhile, when you are an adult, you can give him enough once a week to only twice.
It’s a good idea to keep this fish in a pond, as it can grow big quickly. But if you want to keep it in an aquarium, actually you can, only you need to prepare at least an aquarium with a capacity of 1,500-2,000 gallons or about 5,000 liters more.
The redtail catfish is very tough and can survive and adapt to many conditions, but with the ideal water temperature, it will make the fish as happy as it is in their natural habitat. They are quite strong, even including fish that can live without an aerator . But for best maintenance, you still need to provide enough oxygen in the water. You can maintain the ideal water temperature for this predator around 20-26 degrees Celsius, with a pH level between 6 and 7. Although this predatory catfish is a strong fish, maintaining clear water can keep fish away from stress and disease.
Tank Mates RedTail Catfish
You can give Tankmates a RedTail Catfish fish that is the same size as or bigger than him. If it is much smaller, they are afraid that they will even be considered prey. It is okay to combine these freshwater predatory fish of the same breed, as long as they are of the same size. But you should only keep one. Because the more you keep, the greater the space requirement. Suitable fish such as freshwater rays, genghis khan, or other types of predatory catfish. Most importantly the size is appropriate.