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Melanotaenia boesemani
Boeseman's Rainbowfish

 Age of Aquariums > Freshwater Fish > Boeseman's Rainbowfish - Melanotaenia boesemani

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Melanotaenia_boesemani_1.jpg (14kb)
Photo Credit: Matthius Lettington

Name: Melanotaenia boesemani
Size TankpHTemp
Origin: New Guinea
9 cm 80 L 6.5 28C


We love our Boesemanis. They radiate color and their colors change according to their mood. Sometimes they're a dark blue, and when they get agitated, they turn vanilla white. We throw them peas and they chase them around like little dogs.

Contributed by Sam and Sar

They seem to be chameleon like. When I turn on the light ours is almost black. By the end of the day, it's just light blue.

Contributed by Eric Brown

A great fish that mingles well with other Rainbow species. Males display the best colors while spawning. They can tear fins and damage scales during the courting so it's best to have 2 males per female so not all the attention is heaped on the female (Males will chase each other as well as the poor female). They will rarely stress each other enough to cause any serious harm but care should be taken to check for Fungus and Childonella which can attack the spawning fish. Make sure you give them a suitable spawning mop or plant (Java ferns work well) and have a Fry raising tank ready after the egg are attached. Good water conditions, good tank current and the use of spotlights (Which also highlight some amazing colors) to simulate Dawn/Dusk will encourage spawning.

Contributed by Marty Cheale

Without a doubt this is my favorite freshwater tropical fish. They are active swimmers, and they are peaceful. They are also lightning fast eaters. When I drop flakes on the surface of the water, they will circle slightly, then dart to the surface, snatch a flake, and dive back to where they began as quickly as you can blink. I have six in my tank - four males and two females. Their colors are intense in the morning hours. At times the blue of the males is a very dark, royal blue. The rear half of my more mature males is a rich red color in the morning, fading to orange in the evening. In my younger males, it is orange in the morning, fading to yellow in the evening. My females have an overall color that appears to be silver to pale green. I keep these fish in a 200 liter aquarium, with over 30 live plants in it, filtered by a trickle filter and a canister filter. I keep the water temperature at 27C. My rainbows share their tank with 3 clown loaches, 2 Chinese algae eaters, and 2 very large black marble angelfish. I have had no compatibility problems whatsoever. It is said that rainbowfish are a schooling fish. But you won't see them swimming as a group like, say, neon tetras. Typically, mine will swim in pairs or in groups of three, but only for brief periods. The bottom line is that I definitely recommend this fish, due to its peaceful, active nature and its ease of keeping.

Contributed by Bradley Ellison

After having been out of the aquarium hobby for more than 25 years, I jumped right back in with all my might upon discovering that now there where so many more interesting fish along with the old standbys. And one of them was the boseman rainbow fish. I set up a 340 L thickly planted tank with amazon swords, java moss and crypts. There are 4 cory cats, 1 zebra pleco and a mated pair of angels, as well as 8 boseman rainbow fish. They are truly a sight to behold. Their colors are truly magnificent, maybe because of the regular feeding with live and frozen food, as well as flake food. These rainbows are almost fully grown, and if you see them swimming together it is stunning. When they are young in the petshop the colors have not yet developed to the fullest. If you do get them, be patient since they are slow growers, but the wait is worthwhile, there is nothing more beautiful than a group of fully matured boseman rainbow fish.

Contributed by a visitor

They are some of the most beautiful rainbows. My only complaint is their habit of nipping the Hygrophila polysperma. Occasionally, their displays to each other can be a bit violent and involve nipping each other's fins.

Contributed by a visitor

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