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The Redtail Black Shark is suited for intermediate aquarists due to their temperament. These fish are not sharks, but have a triangular-shaped dorsal fin and a elongated body, giving it a distinctly shark-like appearance. It's body and fins are black with barbels at the mouth, and a bright red tail. It is best kept as a single specimen due to aggression. 

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Features of Redtail Black Sharks:

  • Unique shark-like appearance with a black body and fins, and a red tail
  • Males have a more slender body with deeper colours
  • Solitary species best kept as a single specimen
  • Grows up to 15cm


Tank Mate Compatibility:

Redtail Black Sharks are best suited as a single specimen due to their aggressive nature but can be kept in aquariums with larger community fish species if care is taken when selecting tank mates. Species selected should have a similar temperament and size, be fast swimmers, and use the mid to upper water column.



Redtail Black Sharks are omnivores eating a varied diet of protein rich foods and plant based foods. They will typically eat whatever fits in their mouth, this includes smaller tank mates. They will consume spirulina and algae based wafers and flakes, as well as high-quality live foods, frozen and freeze dried foods will enhance the sharks colour. 

Check out our extensive range of aquarium fish foods.


The Best Aquarium Size for Redtail Black Sharks:


Redtail Black Sharks are active swimmers and require lots of open space to swim. They use the mid to bottom level of the aquarium and are best suited to a longer tank. An aquarium 4ft or larger is recommended. 

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Aquarium Heaters for Redtail Black Sharks:

Redtail Black Sharks prefer water temperatures between 22  ⁰C - 26  ⁰C. 

Looking for an aquarium heater? View available aquarium heaters here.

Aquarium Lighting for Redtail Black Sharks:

Redtail Black Sharks are low maintenance when it comes to lighting and have no particular requirements. Provide 8 hours of lighting per day to replicate daylight hours. 

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Aquarium Filtration for Redtail Black Sharks:

Aquarium waste and bio-load must be managed with good filtration via mechanical and biological filtration in the form of external canisters. They are naturally found in rivers and streams with fast water flow and quality. Ensure your filtration system generates a strong current. Red tail sharks will often be seen swimming against the current.

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Aquarium Substrate for Redtail Black Sharks:

Redtail Black Sharks will forage for food amongst the substrate. Smooth gravels, pebbles or sands are recommended.

View our range of aquarium substrates here.

Decorations for Redtail Black Sharks:

The aquarium should have space for swimming but include lots of hiding places in the form of wood, rock or ornaments. In nature they are found hiding in rocky crevices and between driftwood. 

View our large range of aquarium decorations here.

Additional Information

Fish Keeping Snapshot

Preferred Water Parameters

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Peter B.
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Good stuff

Well pleased and impressed with Hel, Delivery and communication. Much appreciated and many thanks. Regards Peter