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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been wanting to get a piranha for quite a while, but the opportunity didn't present itself when I bought my tank. Stocked it with some silvertip tetras, a schwartz's Cory catfish and a Bichir. Anyway, long story short, the bichir died and that was the only fish I had I found interesting, so I gave my Cory to my friend to put in his community tank and went back to the fish store. Lo and behold, tiny red bellies, 3 for $30. So I got them (Of course). Anyway, I still have a bunch of frozen blood worm cubes and frozen brine shrimp cubes. I put them in the tank still frozen and they eventually thaw and drift to the bottom. The bichir and cory never left anything behind, which is good, because that crap spreads out everywhere. Here's my question. Will the rbs eat the blood worm and brine shrimp cubes without me having to try to clean up? Cleaning up would require a gravel vac every feeding time. I'm going to be feeding them mainly raw shrimp with whatever other white fleshed fish I can find at the supermarket, but I would like to use the fish food I have now.

Also, this isn't the right forum, but one of my red bellies is missing his left eye (I assume it came from the store this way because I noticed it as soon as I put him in the tank - don't know how I missed it before). Should I take it back? I'm thinking I should. Anyway, thanks.
 

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well.. regarding the food. What was your local fish store feeding them? If they were never introduced to bloodwords or brine shrimp they might not hit it right away. The only suggestion I can offer is what I do when I want my piranhas to eat something. I basically go 24 hours without feeding them. (however if extreme agression shows towards eachother-- discontinue and feed) This way they are hungray. I have never just dropped a frozen cube into the tank? I always thall mine out. drop the blood worms in and hopefully they will be hungray enough to hit..

Others I am sure can shred a brighter light on the feeding practices.

On the issue of the little guy with one eye!!
Well, he needs love too! Do you think the fish store will just dump him in the tank after you exchange him? Probably not because they figure if one customer doent want him, nobody else will. Thus, making him food for something else or discarding him in an unthinkable way. Many piranhas have lived a full life with only one eye. In my personal experiences they usually turn out to be more agressive because of their handicap! I would keep him.. he is now unique!!


Good Luck in whatever you decide..
 

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Well, I think you're right on the one with one eye being more aggressive. Whether its because of his missing eye or not, I dunno, but he's slightly larger than the other two (And there is one that is slightly smaller, so there are basically three sizes of piranha in there). Anyway, the big one and little one seem to be picking on the middle one. Interesting. He's now missing most of his tail and he got very shy very fast. (For clarity, its the middle size one missing most of his tail, the big one is missing the eye).

As far as food goes, I'll try the blood worms, but I picked up some frozen raw prawns today. I'm thinking I'll cut them in half (They're HUGE) to feed my little guys. One question. I read on this forum about success with feeding by tying food to fishing line so that it hangs in the aquarium about midway and doesn't sink to the bottom. Is this recommended or only preference?

- Edit: Update: I just dropped a part of a prawn in my tank. Oh man, the piranhas just flipped out! They chased each other and the tetras around a bit, then, as soon as they found the chunk of prawn on the bottom, I was treated to one hell of a show. That was very cool. I think I'll give my remaining frozen cubes to my buddy for his community tank because watching the piranhas feed on the prawns was very cool.
 

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Nova_C said:
Well, I think you're right on the one with one eye being more aggressive. Whether its because of his missing eye or not, I dunno, but he's slightly larger than the other two (And there is one that is slightly smaller, so there are basically three sizes of piranha in there). Anyway, the big one and little one seem to be picking on the middle one. Interesting. He's now missing most of his tail and he got very shy very fast. (For clarity, its the middle size one missing most of his tail, the big one is missing the eye).

As far as food goes, I'll try the blood worms, but I picked up some frozen raw prawns today. I'm thinking I'll cut them in half (They're HUGE) to feed my little guys. One question. I read on this forum about success with feeding by tying food to fishing line so that it hangs in the aquarium about midway and doesn't sink to the bottom. Is this recommended or only preference?

- Edit: Update: I just dropped a part of a prawn in my tank. Oh man, the piranhas just flipped out! They chased each other and the tetras around a bit, then, as soon as they found the chunk of prawn on the bottom, I was treated to one hell of a show. That was very cool. I think I'll give my remaining frozen cubes to my buddy for his community tank because watching the piranhas feed on the prawns was very cool.
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Ya, like I said.. I would keep the guy with no eye.. you say the middle sized guy is missing part of his tail
Are the piranhas hungray.. well if the problem presist you might have yourself a territorial war!! Just keep an eye out for him.. if he is getting picked on by the two... no telling what might happen later (especially if they are hungry)

I am glad they are eating prawn.. I believe it is better for them than the bloodworms anyway!! Good Luck and have fun!!
 

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Yeah, the middle one was already missing about the bottom 1/4 of his anal fin when I put him in the tank. Next morning, the top half was gone and I watched as the big one and little one chased him every time he came out the darkened corner I have set up. Definitely gonna keep an eye on them, but from what I read, its common for groups of piranhas to gang up on less aggressive ones. I'm hoping they shoal together because having three piranhas swimming in a group would be a good photo op.


Edit: The main reason I was wanting to trade the one missing an eye was because of potential life span. I've never seen a fish that was missing an eye live long. Of course, I have no practical experience with piranha, so if he'll be fine, I have no problem keeping him.
 

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I have had a rbp live to be 10" and 9 years without an eye. His live came short when he committed suicide and jumped to his death. (didnt have a cover on that aquarium!)


He should be fine. Is the eye healed up? If not and it just happened, you might want to treat him with Metafix or aquarium salt.. and isolate him until he is better..
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
The injury doesn't look recent. I think its healed up as the socket looks like its been covered in scar tissue, but I can't be sure as I have no real experience in that sort of thing. I'll post a picture as soon as I get my hands on my buddy's camera.
 

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ya, post a photo. They only thing that I worry about it that you did not notice it at first.. If indeed it has been recent.. make sure you water parameters are excellent and water changes frenquently.. to decrease the risk of infection!

I will check back often for the photo or just PM it to me..
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I FINALLY got a hold of a digital camera. Here's a picture of the one missing an eye. I'm not worried about him as he's the only one with his whole tail fin. The medium sized one has had most of his tail nipped and he hides out inside the larger decoration on the right hand side of my tank. The smallest swims as if he owns the tank and doesn't fear me at all, but part of his fin was nipped as well. You can see the smallest one just behind the one missing an eye in the picture. I tried, but couldn't get a picture of the other one. He wouldn't leave his hiding spot.



 
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