Care Guide for Dwarf Neon Rainbowfish – Housing, Food, and Breeding
The neon dwarf rainbowfish, a beautiful fish of almond shape with a dazzling blue sheen that flashes in the light, is incredibly rare. This robust species is very active and pairs well with many peaceful, semi-aggressive and calm tank mates. Learn how to care this rainbowfish, which is beginner-friendly.
What are Neon Dwarf Rainbowfish and How Do They Work?
Melanotaenia praecox is a 3-inch (8 cm) rainbowfish found in streams and tributaries of the New Guinea rainforest. The males have a shiny blue body with red-orange fins, whereas the females have a silvery body with yellow fins. As one of the smallest Melanotaenia species, they are relatively inexpensive for a rainbowfish and can be purchased for roughly $5-$7.
How to Set Up an Aquarium for Neon Rainbowfish
Since they are a fast-swimming fish, we recommend keeping them in a longer aquarium, such as a 20-gallon long or 29-gallon tank at the minimum. Dwarf neon Rainbows are a tropical species that can tolerate temperatures between 74 and 80 degrees F (23 to 27 degrees C). Although they can handle a wide range in pH and GH, they prefer harder water. We like to add crushed coral to buffer the pH.
Neon rainbows look amazing in planted aquariums, and taller plants can help block line of sight when the males are tussling with each other. The foliage should not become too dense as rainbowfish prefer to swim in open spaces.
How many praecox Rainbows should you keep together? Rainbowfish are schooling fish that need at least six of the same species. For males to be able to communicate with each other, they need at least one female. Males are more expressive and have a shiny stripe on the top of their heads when they display their best colors in front females.
Can dwarf rainbowfish be kept with another fish? Because of their deep-bodied and quick speed they can get along with many other similar-sized tank mates. Their temperaments range from calm to aggressive. They have been kept with angelfish and pearl gouramis as well as tetras and corydoras catfish. While they will make a meal out of your cherry shrimp, they seem to leave larger amano shrimp and filter shrimp alone.
What are Praecox Rainbowfish’s Favorite Foods?
These fish are easy to care for and will eat anything that is put in their tank. We prefer to feed them small foods that can float or sink, such as brine shrimps, frozen cyclops and nano pellets. They also enjoy bloodworms, flakes, and live fish foods. The key is to provide a variety of foods to ensure they receive a well-rounded diet with all the necessary nutrients.
How to Breed Dwarf Neon Rainbowfish
Rainbowfish are egg-spreading fish that don’t require parental care. Rainbowfish can spawn daily if they are fed properly and have fish of both genders. But, the tiny 1mm eggs can produce difficult-to-reach fry. We like to place a floating spawning mop in the tank to allow the adults to lay their eggs in the yarn strands. Fill a catch cup with water from your breeding tank, and place it inside the tank. The spawning mop should be full of eggs. To maintain the water’s oxygen, add an air stone. Breeders may add a few drops or even a few cherryshrimp to the eggs to stop fungal growth.
The eggs should hatch within one week. The fry need to be fed very little food, like vinegar eels, microworms and infusoria. Regular water changes are necessary to maintain a high water quality. Two weeks after hatching, rainbowfish fry will be large enough for them to consume live baby brine shrimp. This is the best food available to promote healthy and quick growth.
The neon dwarf rainbow is a favorite because of its energetic behavior, iridescent scales and small size. If your local fish store doesn’t carry them, check out our list of preferred vendors to buy them online. Forktail blue-eye rainbowfish is a small species. However, you can read our care guide.