You may run into some feeding problems with rainbows, shiners/dace and
Others have been able to train rainbows to eat flake food, but I have not.
I feed my rainbows blackworms and frozen bloodworms. At this moment, I have
the rainbows in a tank with rosefin shiners and fundulus catenatus, as well
as a bunch of other darter species. I have kept sunfish in the tank before,
but they are *very* aggressive eaters. I have to feed quite a bit of
blackworms and blood worms to make sure enough food gets past the sunfish
and cyprinids to reach the darters. As you can imagine, this can get
Also, rainbow darters prefer (but don't require) fast moving water with
plenty of eddies and flat rocks for resting. I tend to catch pumpkinseeds
in slower pools of creeks and not so much in the faster water with darters.
You can probably work this out with a 125 gallon tank by putting powerheads
on 1 side of the tank and not the other, but you need to plan for it.
Depending on the madtom species, your rainbows may end up as food.
You might also think about a couple of species of darters. When I collect
in KY, I find usually find 3 or 4 darter species together. While I really
like rainbow darters, I kind of like the variety of having several species
There are a lot of dace and shiner species that are very attractive. I like
to keep a few central stonerollers as well. They are very effective at
eating algae. Depending on the biotope you are emulating, this may or may
not be desireable. Here in KY, I find rainbows in clean water creeks with
limestone gravel and rocks. Of course, in this part of KY, that pretty much
describes all the creeks.
Other fish to consider for a biotope tank would be suckers. I am partial to
hogsuckers, but I find they do best with fine gravel and live or frozen food
in addition to flake/pellet food. I have a white sucker and a redhorse that
are doing well in this set up as well.
As far as lights-
Depending on what biotope you are trying to emulate, you may or may not need
lights for plants. If you don't need lights for plants, then light the tank
for fish viewing. High intensity light will increase the risk of algae
Photoperiod also matters for temperate fish. Longer days mean summer.
Rosefin shiners will stay in breeding colors as long as the day length is 12
hours or more (at least they do for me). I'm not sure how important it is
for temperate fish to have a short day light time, but I vary the
photoperiod by season. It seems like a good idea but I have nio science to
If you are trying to grow plants, you willof course need more lights.
----- Original Message -----
From: "Paul Cezanne" <oblique_at_alum.mit.edu>
Sent: Thursday, July 25, 2002 12:18 PM
Subject: NANFA-- native community tank, biotope?
> For various reasons I've given up on my idea of stocking my 125 gallon
tank with pumpkinseeds. I'm thinking of putting only 2 or 3 in there.
> For the rest of the tank, I'm considering rainbow darters (I just love the
photos) and madtoms for the bottom. I would like a shoal of something else.
A friend recommends perch or shiners. I know that some of the Dace look very
> I'd like to restrict the fish to the North East corner of North America,
but I've got my heart set on the darters so if they don't fit there I'll
forget the biotope or forget them and get something as nice.
> Are these fish going to work together? I live is Massachusetts so I don't
have all the collecting opportunities that you folks down south have. I'd
love a all Massachusetts native tank but my field guide tells me I'd be
> The tank is dim, only 40 watts are on it. I'd like some native plants,
what do you reccomend. I can put 160w on it fairly cheaply. (4 shop
lights, GE Sunshine bulbs).
> pZ -- Paul Cezanne
> Please visit http://www.customline.com/peace/ and think about what is
-- > /"Unless stated otherwise, comments made on this list do not necessarily > / reflect the beliefs or goals of the North American Native Fishes > / Association" > / This is the discussion list of the North American Native Fishes Association > / nanfa_at_aquaria.net. To subscribe, unsubscribe, or get help, send the word > / subscribe, unsubscribe, or help in the body (not subject) of an email to > / nanfa-request_at_aquaria.net. For a digest version, send the command to > / nanfa-digest-request_at_aquaria.net instead. > / For more information about NANFA, visit our web page, http://www.nanfa.org /----------------------------------------------------------------------------- /"Unless stated otherwise, comments made on this list do not necessarily / reflect the beliefs or goals of the North American Native Fishes / Association" / This is the discussion list of the North American Native Fishes Association / nanfa_at_aquaria.net. To subscribe, unsubscribe, or get help, send the word / subscribe, unsubscribe, or help in the body (not subject) of an email to / nanfa-request_at_aquaria.net. For a digest version, send the command to / nanfa-digest-request_at_aquaria.net instead. / For more information about NANFA, visit our web page, http://www.nanfa.org