Melanotaenia gracilis

Common Names: Slender Rainbowfish
Family: Melanotaeniidae
Category: Rainbowfish
Distribution: Australia; Endemic to the King Edward and Drysdale River systems in the northern parts of Western Australia
Main Ecosystem: River; River
Temperament: Peaceful; and schooling
Diet: Carnivore; but will accept all omnivorous type foods
Care: Not too demanding, if given the proper requirements. They do require very clean and highly oxygenated water. Should be kept in schools of at least two males to several females to show their best colors and activity. This fish can get to 10 cm in length, but usually less than 8 cm in the aquarium. They need some room to swim, but can be kept in as small of an aquarium as 29-30 gal. These fish will do great in a live planted tank. Use some fine leafed plants, as this is what they will use
7 - 8
24°C - 28°C
75°F - 82°F
10 dH - 15 dH
Potential Size: Male: 10cm (3.9")
Female: 10cm (3.9")
Water Region: Middle, Surface; but will frequent all areas of the aquarium
Activity: Diurnal; Diurnal
Gender: As with most Rainbows, the males have a longer first dorsal fin that will over lap the second, where as the female’s will not. The male, with age, also has the sloped and notched forehead, with an increased deeper body. Females are also smaller than the males.
Breeding: There is no difficulty in breeding these fish. As if you have a male and female, they are most likely going to breed. They are very prolific, and will breed readily in most water parameters. The problem lies in the raising of the fry. The fry are very small, and grow slowly. They require large amounts of very small foods, and very clean water. Start the fry off with infusoria or vinegar eels. The parents will eat the eggs, and subsequent fry, so a separate fry tank will be needed .
Comments: An attractive rainbow that sports some lavender color, with fins that are usually transparent, with a bright orange to red boarder. Though this fish comes from an area that is difficult to access, they have been established into the hobby, though they can be hard to come by. Discovered in 1975, it was not until around 1986 that they started to become established into the hobby. A nice addition to any community or planted tank.
Main Colours: Purple, Red, Silver
Markings: Striped Horizontal
Mouth: Normal
Tail: Forked
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Submitted By: ACIDRAIN
Contributors: ACIDRAIN, Doedogg
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