I have 2 Tinfoils and they are growing very fast. They eat anything in their path and are extremely fast swimmers. I disagree that they are messy eaters; in fact, they are a lot like scavengers, picking up traces of food left behind by other messy eaters (Oscars). I really enjoy having these guys around...
I have two tinfoils that I got at 5 cm. They are now at 11 and 13 cm (in less than a year) and comsume anything that fits in their mouths. The larger one has grown large enough to compete (and win) against the arowana for toughies. They also love the seaweed I feed to my yellow tang in my saltwater tank (silver dollars love it too). But seriously, they eat anything they can cram in their mouths. They are like fast moving oscars!
I have a Tinfoil Barb and I must admit they are a pain because they keep pulling up the live plants and eating them so I have put plastic plants in instead of live plants. I love my Tinfoil Barb, I have named him Jim. In the aquarium with him are Blood Red Parrots, Gourami, Catfish, Sharks (Albino, Bala) and a Pangasius. I recommend that these fish should have green foods like Frozen spinach, lettuce and peas. Do not put live plants with them or they will pull them up.
These fish are awesome, they have great color if you care for them well. In the night, with all of the lights off, their scales shine like silver. They can live with even gold fish. They are so nice. I bought mine when he was about 5 cm and now he is 28 cm. I have him in a 200 liter.
Great fish these tinfoil barbs. They do get rather large over time though. They are very experienced jumpers! I had them in a 200 L tank with a glass top that had a small slot in the back for air circulation. When they jumped, they would somehow get through the crack and hit the ceiling! They seem to jump mostly at night.
Tinfoil barbs are great fish. They can be housed with more aggressive fish like Oscars, and can be kept with goldfish as long as the tinfoil barbs are not used to eating feeder fish. I keep mine in my community tank with labyrinth fish, one gold fish, loaches, sharks and a red belly pacu. The only fish that bothers him is the pacu but, when it's feeding time the tinfoil will sometimes courageously go and pick food out of the pacu's mouth.
I purchased two Tinfoils about a year ago when they were only about 8 cm. I kept them in a 75 L with a school of Tiger barbs and they did very well until the Tinfoils grew to 20 cm. Initially there were 5 albino Tiger barbs. Before I moved them there was only two Tiger barbs left. The Tinfoils are very active feeders and I think the much smaller Tiger barbs had a tough time getting enough to eat and mysteriously disappeared. When I could afford it I moved them into a 200 L and they are much happier. When I first got them my aquarium was planted with live plants and I would always find the plants floating at the top of the tank. Tinfoils are notorious for eating live plants so I would not recommend live plants with these fish. From being in a tank that was too small these fish started to grow vertically in addition to growing in length. My recommendation is to have at least a 200 L tank before you decide to buy these fish, as they will grow very quickly. This size tank would hold 3-4 full-grown Tinfoils comfortably if these were the only fish in the tank. Also I've learned from researching these fish that they will live up to ten years so be prepared to make the commitment.
I have four rather large Tinfoils in a 380 L tank. These guys are, quite simply, the life of the party. They were purchased to complement a school of six Buenos Aires Tetras which, in turn, had been purchased to liven up a party of graceful, slow-moving Moonlight Gouramis, Opaline Gouramis, and Snakeskin gouramis. I've noticed recently that the Tinfoils and Buenos Aires have begun schooling together. This has become the rule in my tank, not the exception. Although the Tinfoils are considerably larger, perhaps the similar markings of the Buenos Aires and Tinfoils (flashy, silver bodies and ruby tails) have tricked both groups into accepting one another as brethren. The Tinfoils are delightful to watch at feeding time, but they be can very messy with their voracious eating habits. I've been splashed more times than I can count as they thrash the water much like a Great White does when devouring a seal. Tinfoils are a load of fun, but they will keep their owner polishing the glass almost daily!
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