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    Firefish Goby (Nemateleotris magnifica)

    It's no mystery how this fish got it's name--just look at the tail! Doesn't it remind you of glowing embers? You can practically smell the smoke.

    • Temperament: Peaceful
    • Reef Safe: Yes
    • Native To: Maldives, Coral Sea, Ryukyu Islands, Japan, and Indonesia
    • Lifespan: 4-7 years (but have been known to live much longer)
    • Care: Easy
    • Size: 2 1/2 to 3 inches max
    • Hangs Out: Mid to lower levels of the tank
    • Carnivore

    • 1 comment
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    Scarlet Badis (Dario dario)

    What the Dario dario lacks in stature, he makes up for in personality! Often described as a dwarf cichlid (they're not), this diminutive fish will amuse you with his antics. Males are a vibrant red, with 7 dark vertical stripes and a blue iridescent sheen to their scales. Females, on the other hand, are a uniform gray. Their stripes are indistinct or missing altogether. As for size--the average male will be about 0.8 inches long and the females are even smaller (0.5 inches). Lifespan for these little guys is between 4 and 6 years.

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    Finnex Ray 2 24 inch

    If you're tired of looking at big, black, boxes hanging over your aquarium and would like something a bit more unobtrusive, then look no further. Finnex, has come out with a new line of high output LED fixtures that don't overwhelm the tank. But will they grow plants?

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    Fluval View

    The Hagen Fluval View, is not quite an "out of the box" setup, but almost....the only things lacking are plants, water, fish, and gravel.

    Kit Includes

    • 3.96 gallon, oval shaped, plastic tank, with removable cover
    • Integrated filtration system with day and night, LED lighting
    • 2 filter cartridges
    • Water conditioner
    • Biological supplement
    • 17 1/4 inches wide X 9 inches deep X 15 1/4 inches tall

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    Two Stripe Pygmy Goby (Eviota bifasciata)

    We have searched online for hours, but have been unable to find very much information regarding these tiny fish. With that being said, we'll post what we have found and the rest, we'll just have to learn together!

    • Temperament: Peaceful
    • Reef safe: Yes
    • Native to: Western Pacific (inhabits reefs and can usually be found hovering over corals and/or sponges)
    • Lifespan: ?
    • Care: ? (ours have been very easy to care for and appear to be quite hardy)
    • Size: 1"
    • Hangs Out: All over the tank, but with a tendency towards the mid to bottom regions
    • Diet: Carnivore



Information and care for various salt and freshwater fish.

32 articles in this category

  1. Teaser Paragraph:

    Scarlet Badis (Dario dario)

    What the Dario dario lacks in stature, he makes up for in personality! Often described as a dwarf cichlid (they're not), this diminutive fish will amuse you with his antics. Males are a vibrant red, with 7 dark vertical stripes and a blue iridescent sheen to their scales. Females, on the other hand, are a uniform gray. Their stripes are indistinct or missing altogether. As for size--the average male will be about 0.8 inches long and the females are even smaller (0.5 inches). Lifespan for these little guys is between 4 and 6 years.

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    Persian Killifish (Aphanius mento Zengen)

    A somewhat rare, but interesting killifish, you will need to plan ahead for this little guy. They do best in a species tank with brackish water.

    • Lifespan: 2-3 years (under ideal conditions)
    • Temperament: Males are extremely aggressive, females, not so much
    • Size: 1 1/2 -2 inches (females are larger than the males)
    • Native To: Coastal lagoons, small lakes and rivers, irrigation canals, and marshes of Turkey
    • Diet: Omnivore
    • Hangs Out: All areas of the tank with a tendency towards the bottom
    • Care Level: Intermediate

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    Spotted Mandarin Goby (Synchiropus picturatus)

    The Spotted Mandarin Goby is yet another member of the interesting and diverse dragonet family. They add a bright spot of color to the peaceful reef tank, as they go about their unending, daily quest for pods!

    • Lifespan: 6-7 years
    • Temperament: Peaceful
    • Size: 4 inches
    • Reef Compatible: Yes
    • Native To: Indo Pacific
    • Diet: Carnivore
    • Hangs Out: Bottom of the tank
    • Care level: Difficult

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    Daisy's Ricefish (Oryzias woworae)

    Oryzias woworae, were first discovered and collected by Dr. Daisy Wowor in 2007, then introduced to the aquatic world in 2010. This fairly recent addition to the hobby, is something out of the ordinary, and makes a beautiful addition to any peaceful, community tank.

    • Lifespan: unknown at this time
    • Temperament: peaceful
    • Size: 1 1/2--2 inches*
    • Native habitat: leaf littered streams, with overhanging trees, Sulawesi, Indonesia
    • Diet: omnivore
    • Hangs out: mid to top regions of the tank
    • Care level: easy, with some restrictions

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    Clown Killifish (Epiplatys annulatus/Pseudepiplatys annulatus)

    The colors of the clown killi may be what initially attracts you, but in no time at all, you'll be won over by their charming personalities! If you can meet their needs, they're just a great all around fish! Absolutely adore them!

    • Lifespan:3-5 years
    • Temperament: Peaceful
    • Size: 1.5 inches (males) females, will be significantly smaller
    • Native to: Swamps and slow moving streams, Liberia, Sierra Leon, Guinea, West Africa
    • Diet: Carnivore
    • Hangs Out: Top levels of the tank
    • Care level: Intermediate

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    Chili Rasbora (Boraras brigittae)

    Chili rasboras, are one of our favorite fish for the nano tank! While they might get lost in a larger setup, they're perfect for desktop and smaller aquariums.

    • Lifespan: 3-5 years
    • Temperament: Peaceful/shy
    • Size: 1-1.25 inches
    • Natural Habitat: Blackwater streams and ponds, Borneo
    • Hangs Out: Top 1/3 of the tank (but will swim lower on occasion)
    • Diet: Omnivore
    • Care level: Moderate

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    Kubotai Rasbora (Microdevario kubotai)

    Visually stunning...there's just no other way to describe these fish! When kept in a planted tank, they are beauty in motion and their color has to be seen to be believed!

    • Lifespan: 1-5 years? (unable to find anything definitive)
    • Temperament: peaceful/timid
    • Size: 1 inch
    • Native habitat: calm, heavily vegetated, minor river tributaries that feature well oxygenated water in Thailand and Myanmar.
    • Hangs out: Mid to upper regions of the tank
    • Diet: omnivore
    • Care level: intermediate

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    German Blue Ram (Mikrogeophagus ramirezi)

    It's no secret that GBRs are one of our favorite fish! This peaceful, dwarf cichlid has both personality and looks to spare--it's no wonder we love them!

    • Lifespan: 2-3 years (tank bred rams seem to have a shorter lifespan than wild caught--possibly due to over breeding, etc., so a 2 year figure, is probably more realistic)
    • Temperament: Peaceful
    • Size: Just under 2 3/4 inches (female will be significantly smaller)
    • Native Habitat: Slow moving, very soft, acidic, waters of the Orinoco River Basin, Colombia and Venezuela
    • Hangs Out: Will swim all over, but seems to prefer the lower regions of the tank.
    • Diet: Omnivore
    • Care level: Difficult

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    Orange Lyretail Killifish (Aphyosemion australe gold)

    The orange lyretail killifish, reminds us of a goldfish, only without the mess and bad habit of eating plants!

    • Lifespan: 3 years (not an annual killifish)
    • Temperament: Peaceful with a couple of caveats (see tankmates section of this article)
    • Size: 2 1/2 inches
    • Natural Habitat: Heavily vegetated swamps, ponds, and streams of coastal West Africa
    • Hangs Out: Lower regions of the tank
    • Diet: Omnivore

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    Siamese Algae Eater (Crossocheilus siamensis)

    Got algae? Get an SAE (Siamese algae eater). A total workhorse and cleaning machine--they're almost like two fish in one! Not only are they algae eaters, they're scavengers as well.

    • Lifespan: up to 10 years, 7, being the average
    • Temperament: Peaceful
    • Size: 6"
    • Natural Habitat: Shallow, flowing streams that contain submerged wood and large boulders (Indonesia, Thailand, and India)
    • Hangs out: All over the tank
    • Omnivore

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    Asian Stone Catfish (Hara jerdoni)

    If you're looking for something a bit different for the nano tank, then you may want to consider the Asian stone catfish. These bottom dwelling, peaceniks are a truly unique addition to the aquarium!

    • Lifespan: 5+ years
    • Temperament: Peaceful
    • Size: 1.5 inches
    • Native To: Slow moving streams and rivers, India and Bangladesh
    • Hangs out: Bottom of the tank
    • Omnivore

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    White Cloud Mountain Minnow (Tanichthys albonubes)

    Does the word minnow, conjure up images of the tiny, drab, fish found in local ponds and/or bait shops? If so, we think the white cloud minnow might change your mind!

    • Lifespan: 5 years
    • Temperament: Peaceful
    • Size: 1.5 inches
    • Native Habitat: Clear, spring fed, heavily vegetated, mountain streams of the Baiyun (White Cloud) mountains, China. Once thought to be extinct, several populations have been rediscovered outside of their original habitat (they are no longer found in the White Cloud Mountains). They are considered an endangered species and efforts are being made to reintroduce tank bred fish back into the wild. Farm bred white clouds are plentiful and what you will find in stores.
    • Hangs out: Mid level of the tank
    • Omnivore

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    Norman's Lampeye Killifish (Poropanchax normani, Aplocheilichthys normani)

    It's weird that you don't see this fish offered for sale far more often since they possess all the traits one looks for in a fish--good looks, robust health and a great personality. You'll hear it said over and over again, that pictures don't do them justice and it's true! Pictures are incapable of capturing their wonderfully glowing eyes which can be seen literally, from across the room.

    • Lifespan: up to 3 years (these are not an annual* killifish)
    • Temperament: Peaceful
    • Size: 1 1/2 inches (max)
    • Native Habitat: Small rivers, streams and swamps throughout much of Africa
    • Hangs out: Top levels of the tank
    • Omnivore

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    Espei Rasbora (Trigonostigma espei)

    Bright colors (they look almost like underwater, glowing embers), a peaceful nature, and a hardy constitution, the Espei rasbora almost sounds like the perfect fish, doesn't he?

    • Lifespan: 4-5 years
    • Size: 1 3/4 inches
    • Native Habitat: heavily vegetative streams (Cambodia, Thailand)
    • Hangs out: mid level
    • Omnivore

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    Peacock Goby Peacock Gudgeon (Tateurndina ocellicauda)

    One look is all it takes to figure out how this fish got its name! Beautifully colored, they're not really a goby at all, but a member of the Eleotridae family--more commonly known as sleepers or gudgeons.

    • Lifespan: 3-4 years
    • Size: 2 1/2 inches, females will be smaller than the males
    • Native Habitat: lowland freshwater streams, rivers and ponds (Papua, New Guinea)
    • Hangs out: mostly on the bottom and lower levels of the tank
    • Omnivore

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    Forktail Blue-Eye Rainbowfish (Pseudomugil furcatus)

    Hyper, does not begin to describe this fish--it's like they're on a perpetual caffeine high! Full of energy and fun to watch, they definitely liven up the tank.

    • Lifespan: 2-3 years (under ideal conditions)
    • Size: 2 inches
    • Native Habitat: clear, heavily vegetated, streams Papua, New Guinea
    • Hangs out: mostly top to mid level in the tank, but they are active swimmers and are all over the place
    • Omnivores

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    Dwarf Puffer Fish (Carinotetraodon travancoricus)

    Carinotetraodon travancoricus; a big name for one tiny, little, fish! And what a fish he is! Who could resist that face?! We dare you not to fall in love with them!

    • Lifespan: The general consensus seems to be 3-7 years, but there's some discussion that it could be much longer.
    • Size: 3/4 inch
    • Native Habitat: Pamba River, Kerala State, India
    • Hangs out: all over the tank, with a preference for the bottom
    • Carnivore

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    Sparkling Gourami (Trichopsis pumila)

    Aptly named, the sparkling gourami is a sadly underrated and often overlooked fish. Pictures don't do them justice, nor does the undecorated tank at your local fish store. We hope after reading this, you'll want to give them a closer look.

    • Lifespan--3 years
    • Size--1 1/2 inches
    • Natural Habitat--Ponds, slow moving rivers and streams, rice paddies, etc., of SE Asia (Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Malaysia, and Thailand)
    • Hangs out--mostly mid level to bottom of the tank, but will occasionally go to the top
    • Omnivore

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    Celestial Pearl Danio (Celestichthys margaritatus)

    Not discovered until 2006, there is still much to learn about the Celestial Pearl Danio. One thing we do know, is that it's gorgeous and lives up to its celestial name. When courting, their body color will intensify and the white "stars" on the danio will almost glow. It's hard to describe in words, but beautiful to see!

    • Lifespan--uncertain, due to the newness of this fish
    • Size--1 inch max
    • Natural Habitat--Heavily vegetated ponds (Myanmar)
    • Hangs out--mid-lower regions of the tank
    • Omnivore

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    Emperor Black Tetra (Nematobrycon amphiloxus)

    Simple, yet elegant! No, we're not talking about "the little black dress," but rather the Emperor Black Tetra. Upon first glance, you may pass them over thinking, hmmm, a black fish, but then you'll catch a glimpse of their amazing eyes, and say, Wow! The males eyes are almost an electric blue, while the females, are an equally vibrant shade of green (they practically glow) .

    • Lifespan: 5 years
    • Size: 1 3/4 to just a tad over 2 inches
    • Habitat: Slow moving rivers and streams (Columbia, South America)
    • Hangs out: mid level of the tank
    • Omnivore

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    Twig Catfish (Farlowella)

    Looking like something that just climbed up out of the primordial ooze, the twig catfish's fearsome appearance, belies its gentle nature. There are over 30 known species of Farlowella, but three are most often found in the trade F. acus, F. gracilus and F. vitta. We're going to lump them all together in this article, as their basic needs and care are almost the same.

    • Size-6-8 inches
    • Lifespan 5-8 years
    • Natural habitat--flowing rivers and streams with submerged roots and vegetation (Columbia, Venezuela South America)
    • Hangs out--bottom of the tank
    • Herbivore

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    Phoenix Rasbora (Boraras merah)

    Don't let their diminutive size fool you--Phoenix Rasbora are hardier than you might think. This tiny jewel, with its bright spots of color, makes an enchanting addition to any species or nano tank.

    • Size: 3/4 inch
    • Lifespan: 1-2 years
    • Natural Habitat: Blackwater streams, rivers and swamps of Borneo
    • Hangs out: no specific level
    • Omnivore

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    Pygmy Corycat (Corydoras pygmaeus)

    Cool, is what best describes this cat! Their tiny size and outgoing personality make the pygmy cory, a wonderful addition to any microfish tank. Besides Corydoras pygmaeus, there are 2 other dwarf cories commonly sold in the trade; Corydoras hastatus and Corydoras habrosas. There are small differences in their coloring, but their needs, size and personalities are basically the same.

    • Size--1.2 inches, max--with females being larger and plumper than the males
    • Life Span--up to 5 years
    • Native Habitat--small tributaries and creeks of the Rio Madeira basin in Brazil
    • Hangs out--all over the tank
    • Omnivore

    • 1 comment
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    Threadfin Rainbowfish (Iriatherina werneri)

    There's something very Zen about threadfins; just watching them, makes one feel calmer and more at peace with the world. Maybe their laid back attitude has to do with their native habitat--the slow flowing streams, ditches, billabongs, and lagoons of South Central, New Guinea and the Cape York Peninsula of Australia. If well cared for, they live 3-5 years and grow up to two inches. Mature males and females are quite easy to tell apart--males are more brightly colored and have not only a sail (dorsal fin) they have the fins that look like threads (and where they get their names). Assigning a color to these fish can be difficult as it (color) can vary quite a bit. Health, diet, lighting, where the fish was caught, how they rank in the school, can all influence color. Their basic color is silver/gray. Some will have gold overtones, while others, will not. Their dorsal fins are orange, while the threads are black.

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    Cherry Barb (Puntius titteya)

    The calm, shallow, waters of Sri Lanka are where you'll find the wild cherry barb. This hardy fish enjoys a lifespan of up to seven years and is a good choice for the beginner. Males are much brighter and redder than the females and will turn an even deeper shade of red, when spawning. Females are lighter in color--sort of a dull orangey/brown with yellowish fins. Their body shapes differ as well, with the male being more slender, and less stocky than the female. Both will grow to around 2 inches.