Here is a short video of some rainbow fish spawning, which they do every morning within a few hours of the light coming on. I am not trying to save any eggs, so I have not put a mop in the tank, and the bows are laying eggs in the roots of the Anubias nana growing under the driftwood. The German blue rams sneak in and steal the eggs, but new eggs are very sticky and the rams do not like them. After a few hours the eggs lose their sticky coating and the rams will eat them all.
My friend Marcel is a gifted aquarist with a true talent for planted aquariums, aquascaping and breeding rainbow fish. He maintains two large planted tanks (180 gallon and 72 gallon) as displays, and a small nano aquarium that is his ‘experiment’… natural light, no filtration, no heat and only snails and shrimp for fauna. You will get a good look at all of them in the video. Marcel also applies the basic principles from his planted displays to his rainbow fish breeding and rearing tanks in the basement. One of the keys to his success with planted aquariums is layered substrates, which he also makes us of in his breeding tanks by planting on pots. Thank you Marcel for letting us in for a glimpse of your fish room!
Most of my aquariums are not perfect examples of biotope communities. Too many species and not enough tanks. This aquarium was set up to be the home of a colony of Xystichromis sp. ‘Dayglow’, one of the Lake Victoria basin species I want to maintain. I have one male and four females that I have grown up from 1/2″ fry. I started them in a 15-gallon tank until they were showing adult colors, then moved them to this 40-breeder. They have turned out to be very shy fish, and when they were in this tank alone I almost never saw them.
I like to use rainbow fish as dithers in peaceful to moderately aggressive cichlid tanks, especially when the water is harder and higher in pH. Since these Victorians are not too large or mean I chose to move my colony of Melanotaenia sexlineata ‘Tabibul’ in with them. This is a beautiful medium-size rainbow that is becoming more common. The work perfectly as dithers adn now the cichlids stay out front all the time. Hopefully they will spawn soon so I can grow this colony (five fish is too few!).