The Red Tail Tinfoil Barb or Tinfoil Barbels (Barbonymus Schwanenfeldii) is a tropical Southeast Asian freshwater fish of the family Cyprinidae. A middle-bottom swimmer, tinfoil barbs are an active schooling barb that likes to be kept in numbers of at least 4-5 of it's own kind. Tinfoil barbs will accepts new shoal members and will school with other similar looking non-aggressive fish. Tinfoil barbs are generally peaceful but sometimes nip at long-finned slow moving fish, especially if kept as a single solitary specimen.
Like most fish, the Red-Tail Tinfoil barb will eat any fish small enough to fit in it's mouth, especially as it grows, so keeping with small fish like neon or ember tetra is not advised. Tinfoil barbs may jump if they are startled. The red-tailed tinfoil barb is a relatively easy species to keep in a large community tank, and will often be spotted swimming along the front glass at high speeds when wanting a feed.
Tinfoil barbs are a river dwelling species, and will thrive in an aquarium comprised of rocks and pebbles. A large aquarium with plenty of filtration and water movement is highly recommended, to accommodate growth and the desire to swim actively. Low oxygen levels will affect this fish before any other fish have a problem, so ensuring a well-oxygenated environment is essential. Tinfoil barbs will tolerate a wide range of pH, but show better colouration in soft, slightly acidic to neutral water.
Are Red Tailed Tinfoil Barbs aggressive?
Tinfoil barbs are not generally aggressive, but they are fast swimmers, which means they can unsettle nervous fish and may outcompete others at feeding time. Red Tailed Tinfoil Barbs may fin-nip slower long-finned fish, and will potentially eat anything small enough to fit in its mouth, so choose tankmates wisely. They can be kept in community aquariums, but ensure the fish tank is large enough to accommodate long-term growth.
How big do Red Tail Tinfoil Barbs get?
The Red-tail Tinfoil Barb is a good-sized Cyprinid fish that reaches up to about 8 inches (20 cm) in length fully grown in captive aquaria.
Approx. supplied size: 2-3" / 5-7cm
Maximum size: 8" / 20cm
Origin: Southeast Asia
Temperament: Generally peaceful, fin-nipper
Lighting requirement: low
Ideal number kept together: 4+
Our conditions: pH 7.5, temp 25 °C
Ideal pH: 6.5–8.0
Water flow: fast
Temperature: 23–28 °C
Ease of Care
Easy. Can grow moderately large but at a fairly slow rate. Will tolerate both slow and fast flowing water. Avoid sharp décor, it is sometimes startled and may injure itself. It does not hide as it feels that fleeing is a better defence.
Omnivore. Feed a mixture of flake and granules. Tinfoil barbs will eat certain types of algae and can often pick at aquarium plants. As they grow, frozen shrimp and bloodworm to supplement.
The species does not breed easily in home aquaria, but will do better if breeding in soft water. Sexing is difficult, although females are usually larger-bellied than males.
Red Tailed Tinfoil Barbs, or red tail tinfoil barbels, have a lifespan of 8-10 years in perfect conditions.
Photos are for illustration only - one supplied.
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