The Rainbow Shark is also known as a red fin or ruby shark and is very popular in the aquarium hobby. They are generally a hardy species and are suited for intermediate aquarists due to their temperament. These fish are not sharks, yet they have a triangular-shaped dorsal fin and a torpedo-shaped body, giving it a distinctly shark-like appearance. Their fins are red to orange with long grey to black bodies with large eyes, and a deeply forked tail.
They originate from South East Asia and can be kept in a community aquarium although may be semi-aggressive towards tank mates. Rainbow Sharks grow up to 15cm.
Rainbow Sharks are not known to be aggressive towards other fish in their natural habitat however are considered semi-aggressive in the aquarium as they show territorial behaviours. Tanks mates should be selected that dwell near the middle or top of the aquarium, and have the ability to defend themselves if needed. Place other fish in your aquarium first and introduce your rainbow shark last. This makes it less likely that your shark will see the aquarium as his territory. If keeping multiple Rainbow Sharks, it is advisable to keep 5 or more.
Here’s a list of some of the best tank mates for your Rainbow Shark.
Rainbow Sharks are omnivores and their diet is largely plant based. Feed algae and spirulina based flake and wafers as well fresh vegetables such as lettuce, kale, zucchini and cucumber can also be provided. Protein rich foods such as flake foods, pellets, frozen foods, freeze dried, brine shrimp, and any type of worms will readily be accepted. Avoid keeping snails and crustaceans as these may become a snack.
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Rainbow Sharks are best suited to larger and longer aquariums. They will forage on the bottom level of the aquarium. An aquarium 4ft or larger is recommended.
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Rainbow Sharks originate in warmer waters of South East Asia and prefer stable water temperatures between 24 ⁰C - 27 ⁰C.
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Rainbow Sharks are low maintenance when it comes to lighting and have no particular requirements, however will enjoy consuming algae found in the aquarium with good lighting. Provide 8-10 hours of lighting per day to replicate daylight hours.
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Rainbow Sharks are naturally found in moderate to fast flowing streams enjoy good water quality and flow. Ensure adequate filtration and flow in your aquarium with good water turn over. They are sensitive to water parameter fluctuations, so ensure keeping a stable and clean aquarium.
Rainbow Sharks will forage for food in the substrate. Sand and small grade gravels are best suited for the Rainbow Shark and encourages natural behaviours.
View our range of aquarium substrates here.
Rainbow Sharks enjoy lots of spaces to hide in including dense planting for cover. This can help reduce aggressive and territorial behaviour. Plant live plants that will anchor roots into the substrate, and plants rooted on urns, driftwood and rock prevent plants being uprooted and provide hiding locations.
Interested in live plants for your aquarium? View our range of live aquarium plants here.
Rainbow Sharks prefer lots of hiding places, and this can reduce aggression towards tank mates. Provide hiding locations to retreat to with driftwood and ornaments with space to hide.
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Fish Keeping Snapshot
Preferred Water Parameters