Rainbow Shark Care Guide – Size, Breeding & More

Rainbow Shark 2

The Rainbow sharks background has got nothing to do with the shark species or family, neither do they have anything to do with the seven rainbow colors, but do feature some different coloring on their fins and tails.

Rainbow shark reigns from the family Cyprinidae and was first discovered in the Southeast Asian freshwater. 

At times it is known as the whitefin shark, the ruby shark or the rainbow sharkiminnow, among others. They don’t fancy captivity and will be aggressive towards fish of their own kind in the aquarium. Though compatible with some types of fish, the rainbow fish will tail or head butt and even bite the small types of fish. If you decide to keep this type of fish as a pet then you should provide plenty of hiding spaces for the small ones. 

This is so because a giant rainbow fish will terrorize the small fish by chasing after it continuously until it dies, the above is most likely to happen in an enclosed environment like in the aquarium. 

Rainbow Shark Care Guide

1. Tank Requirements 

Rainbow sharks require a big tank of up to 125 gallons, this is because of their aggressive temperament. And the reason why you should include tank accessories and plants in your aquarium so that the fish will be distracted and not attack other tank dwellers. Accessories such as the caves, plants, driftwood, and stones should suffice as a hiding spot. 

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The most preferred tank size is 50 gallons but remember the Rainbow shark doesn’t like being kept in captivity so you can also go larger. Breeding the Rainbowfish is even harder and you might need to invest in an even bigger fish tank. For example, if you need a mating fish tank, 75 gallons should suffice for a pair of the rainbow shark. 

The above is so that the fish can have enough space for hiding and the incorporation of gravel is so that the female fish can deposit her eggs. However, for a normal Rainbow shark fish tank, the temperatures should be kept at 75 to 81 degrees Fahrenheit, with PH values of between, 6.5 and 7.5. 

Rainbow Shark

2. Compatibility 

Thorough research needs to be done to establish the species of fish that can be kept in the aquarium with the Rainbow shark. We have, however, lessened the burden for you and provided you with some of the most compatible pairs, which are the Barbs, Danios, the Rasboras, the Rainbowfish, the gouramis, and the plecos. 

Being wary of the incompatible tank mates is helpful because you become aware of which fish’s to avoid. The fish’s that you should, therefore, stay clear of are such as the cichlids, the Red Tail Sharks, and the Bala sharks. Also, be sure to incorporate species that can defend themselves in case they are attacked. 

3. Rainbow Shark Feeding 

The rainbow shark does not have a specific feeding point and can be found both at the top and the bottom, which is one of the reasons why you should provide large space for the shark and other tank mates to feed without interfering with each other’s territories. While in their natural environment the rainbow fish will feed on bits of meat, algae, and larvae. 

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Commercial Algae flakes, wafers and tablets can thus be fed to the rainbow shark; the above shouldn’t be the only food that you feed your shark pet, as they rarely contain all the necessary nutritional value. So for additional nutrients, you can feed your fish some tubifex worms, the aquatic insects, fish granules, and brine fish. 

The fish can also be fed vegetables such as the cucumber, which you will chop into pieces, incorporate small pieces of spinach and raw peas. The food can be given either two or three times in one day, vegetables are especially important to prevent stunted growth and enhance the color of the fish. Only feed the shark that it can finish to reduce the accumulation of toxins that may lead to an increase in the levels of ammonia and nitrites in the fish tank. 

albino Rainbow Shark

4. Rainbow Shark Breeding 

Ideally, this subtitle should not even exist and if you choose to take this route then thoroughly brace yourself for disappointments, because it is next to impossible. Given their aggressiveness and their character in general, breeding the Rainbow shark can be tough. To this end, you will rarely find any rainbow shark breeding guide, not that they have a rocket science breeding technique. 

Their breeding process is no different from the other fishes; the female rainbow shark will lay its eggs after mating and only allow a male shark of its choice to fertilize the eggs using a milt spray. During hatching, the fry are normally very small but don’t be deceived by this because their speed of growth will surprise you. However, they will take longer to reach their full size 

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For those who wish to breed the fish and don’t know how to identify a sexually mature rainbow shark, they just need to look at its fins and if they are red and the shark is about 4 inches then you know that they are ready for mating. This is however not their full size because though they are sexually ready, they don’t stop growing. 

Rainbow Shark Size 

When you purchase the rainbow shark, you should expect that it will grow up to 7 inches or even 8, and this goes for both the albino and the normal rainbow sharks, including the male and females. Now to tell the difference between the male and the female rainbow shark given they are of the same sizes; the male tends to be a bit leaner. 

Rainbow shark Lifespan

When compared to the arowana fish, the rainbow shark doesn’t live long as it only has 6 years while the Arowana exceeds even the household pets like the cats and dogs with an astonishing 20 years. And just like human beings, the rainbow shark needs to be provided for with the right water environment for it reach its full shelf life.