maintenance, care, compatibility
Piranha’s small, toothy predator can become a beautiful and original exotic decoration of absolutely any aquarium. However, before you get such an aggressive, but at the same time extremely shy fish, it is necessary to ensure its normal living conditions. Not forgetting to take into account that aquarium piranhas are predatory fish that can inadvertently bite their master or very quickly deal with their neighbor in the aquarium.
That is why experts recommend to keep this fish only for professionals and experienced aquarists.
Many lovers want to decorate their aquarium with such exotic fish like piranhas. Piranha fishes (Serrasalminae) are predatory freshwater riverfish from the order of carps, which inhabit the Amazon River basin and freshwater bodies of South America.
Only in the early 80s began to appear in aquariums.
The most common aquarium species are: common piranha (Rooseveltiella nattereri), red pacu (Colossoma bidens), lunar metinnis (Metynnis luna), ordinary metinnis (Metynnis hypsauchen).
This type of aquarium fish has a more relaxed behavior than in natural habitat conditions, but do not forget that this is a pack predator. Therefore, it is desirable that in your tank live a flock of piranhas consisting of at least 8-10 individuals. Lonely individuals feel uncomfortable, shy, withdrawn and develop poorly.
Aquarium piranhas also react to loud sounds, new large objects in the aquarium, bright, harsh light, sometimes these factors cause the panic state of the fish that it may even bite.
The content of fish has its own nuances and nuances. To make the fish comfortable, it is necessary to observe the temperature regime. The temperature should be about 25 degrees, but temperature fluctuations in the limit of 24.5 – 28.5 degrees are allowed.
To maintain the temperature in the aquarium must be a water heater and a thermometer. Fish can tolerate short-term, sharply reduced temperatures when necessary, for example, during transport.
But for a long time the fish cannot be in too cold or warm water, it can lead to diseases, decreased immunity, damage to the nerve or heart.
Water for your pets must be clean and saturated with oxygen – this is one of the most important conditions of detention. In an aquarium for filtering water, you must install a filter, you can even several for better cleaning, and a compressor for saturating water with oxygen.
It is also necessary to periodically replace part of the water, preferably 1-2 times a week.
To create optimally comfortable conditions, the fish need: 8 liters of water per 2.5 cm of the body of an adult fish. Therefore, the minimum amount of water in the aquarium should be 95-100 liters. Lack of space can affect the behavior of fish, they can cripple each other.
The injured pet should be moved to another container until all wounds have healed, because a weak fish will not be able to stand up for itself when attacking healthy individuals. Piranhas love to hide, so it is desirable that the aquarium was a lot of vegetation, you can artificial, koryag, houses, caves or other shelters.
The following species are suitable for keeping piranhas in an aquarium: slender piranha, dwarf, flag and red-bellied piranha, red pacu, ordinary and lunar metinnis.
Aquarium piranhas are rather cowardly, which does not at all correspond to the legends about their wild relatives. They are afraid of sudden movements and blows on the glass, loud noises.
Therefore, it is advisable to plant dense vegetation in the aquarium, mainly near its rear wall – this will provide shelter for the fish.
Appearance and characteristics of aquarium piranhas
An important condition for fish breeding is the volume of the spawning aquarium – one pair of fish per 300 liters of water. Stimulation of reproduction is achieved by raising the temperature of the water, daily replacement of a quarter of the volume of water in the aquarium and enhanced feeding with live fish.
Having decided to become a piranha breeder, be sure to follow all precautions and restrict children’s free access to the aquarium.
Freshwater inhabitants of the rivers of South America, piranha as aquarium fish – a relatively new phenomenon. They began to deliver them only in the late 80s, and they are not particularly popular with aquarium fish lovers.
Although these are small, up to 30 cm long, the fish in their own charming and even graceful.
The appearance of their brightness is not different – painted fish discreetly. Although among the piranhas there are some well-dressed individuals – with blue-green, blue-black, green, even red coloring.
Their jaws are amazing. This is without doubt the most prominent part of the whole body of the piranha.
A proud and haughty piranha gives the lower jaw pushed forward. Some species of these fish grow two rows of teeth on the upper jaw.
Each tooth is sharply honed, the shape of the teeth is wedge-shaped. These jaws do not bite off the meat – they simply pull the flesh out of the victim’s body with shreds.
Piranhas do not chew food – they tear prey no worse than lions, and they do it surprisingly quickly.
Herbivorous species of piranhas usually get to aquariums, but there are quite a few lovers of predatory species of exotic fish. Keeping piranhas in an aquarium does not cause any difficulties – with proper care, piranhas get along well and multiply.
They need good fresh water, with excellent aeration, with a temperature not lower than 23 degrees.
It is best to change the water daily, replacing about a quarter of the total. Space moving fishes need a lot – at least 50 liters for each individual. The best option is to start at once a flock of at least 6-7 fish, the males should prevail.
By the way, piranhas have matriarchy, the largest female will be the head of the pack. She gets the right to first attack the prey, the last to the meal allowed males.
Piranhas in an aquarium prefer, as in the wild, to live in packs. These are social fishes, and it makes no sense to buy a pair of piranha – the lack of communication and healthy competition causes apathy in fish. Eating predatory fish is very fond of – they are able to swallow a quantity of food equal in weight to the fish itself.
But at the same time the fish will never overeat – they stop the meal, barely feeling satiety.
After feeding, the remnants of food must be removed – piranhas will not touch it anymore. They will not pick up pieces of food that have fallen to the bottom of the aquarium.
The task of the owner is to thrust fearlessly and slowly the hand into the aquarium and collect the remains. The well-fed piranhas are calm and non-aggressive.
But there is a considerable risk of a sharp movement to scare the fish. Paradoxically, piranhas are pretty cowardly.