Turquoise Rainbowfish (Melanotaenia lacustris)
The Turquoise Rainbowfish is a visually stunning and active freshwater fish native to Papua New Guinea. Known for their vibrant turquoise color, these fish are an attractive addition to any aquarium. Males have a more intense coloration and a deeper body shape, while females are generally duller and more slender.
Turquoise Rainbowfish can reach up to 4 inches in length and should be kept in schools of at least 6 to encourage natural behavior and reduce stress. Being peaceful fish, Turquoise Rainbowfish are compatible with other non-aggressive species of a similar size, making them an excellent choice for community aquariums.
As omnivores, their diet should consist of high-quality flake food, pellets, and live or frozen foods, such as brine shrimp, daphnia, and bloodworms. A varied diet will ensure their overall health and maintain their striking colors.
A well-planted aquarium with plenty of hiding spots and open swimming spaces is vital for the Turquoise Rainbowfish. Rainbowfish are active swimmers and require an aquarium with plenty of room to move about and abundant plant life to give them a sense of security. Their natural habitat features various leggy plants like Dwarf Sagittaria, Vallisneria, and Anubias, which are easy for the fish to navigate through. When arranging the plants, ensure to leave unobstructed open swimming areas. A substrate consisting of rocks or sand with driftwood can help recreate their native environment, but the tank floor is of lesser importance, as they usually swim in the middle levels. The addition of floating plants to diffuse the light entering the tank also seems to be appreciated and adds a more natural feel.
Maintaining a clean and well-oxygenated tank is crucial for Turquoise Rainbowfish, as their water should be free from nitrates and ammonia. They prefer moderate water currents and appreciate a substantial water flow, making a power filter an excellent choice for their aquarium.
A minimum tank size of 30 gallons is recommended, with 40 gallons or larger in community aquariums. The ideal water parameters for these fish include a pH of 7.0-8.0, a hardness of 8-15 dGH, and a temperature range of 75-82°F (24-28°C).
Do not add this fish to a biologically immature aquarium, as it can be susceptible to swings in water chemistry.
To learn more about this fish, be sure to check out the Additional Information tab.