Animal Stories - Red-tailed Catfish

Animal-World Information about: Red-tailed Catfish

Big and beautiful, the Red-tailed Catfish is an enormous attraction!
Latest Animal Stories
Badrajith Chanaka - 2014-12-23
I brought 2 red tail catfish ,, now there are 3 month , but there not eating foods ,, my tank siz is a 6 feet long hight 5feet , width 5 feet tank ,,,

chathu - 2014-11-21
I brought a new redtail catfish yesterday.. its about 3 inchs. And I have another redtail catfish in my tank its about 5 inchs.. this both fought yesterday few times.. and stoped it. .n started to bite eachother... last night they ate normally.but today both refused foods.. and still the big one trying to chase the little one... what should I do...make them separate or keep them together .. they will be friendly with the time or not... I'm very confused cz I want keep this two in a same tank.. my tank size is 7x2x2.. I think my tank size is ok for this both for few months... main thing I want to know is wat should I do to make them riendly...

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  • Clarice Brough - 2014-11-22
    Glad to hear you will be ready to move them to larger tanks as they get bigger. Your current tank is only about 210 gallons, and they each will need a 1000 gallon tank or more. As far as compatibility, you can read the 'social behaviors' on this species page to understand what is going on. Basically they are incompatible, being territorial with their own kind as well as other members of the Pimelodidae family.
  • chathu - 2014-11-23
    Thank u. Yes I hv read it... your site is very helpfull.. n I think they are not comfortable ..n separated my tank as two in one..
  • chathu - 2014-11-24
    Yes I read. It and I separated them.. as 105 gallons to a one... is that space enough for a one.. after few months. I plan to make a bigger tank like 20x10x5..
stian - 2014-11-04
What are the differences between male and female red tail catfish..

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  • Clarice Brough - 2014-11-04
    At this time distinguishing the differences between the male and female is an unknown. Please let us know if you discover a way to tell.
  • stian - 2014-11-07
    I hav seen some of details about the differences...but not quit sure..that's why I asked to know..few details the color of the tail.n pin..
  • Clarice Brough - 2014-11-07
    Would love to hear what you've found out, because I really haven't found any information on definitive differences.
stian - 2014-11-01
My rtc doesn't eat anything for a month now.once he ate a earth worm about a 2 weeks he has being small of his size.(skiny) what could be the reason for his this behavior.

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  • Clarice Brough - 2014-11-02
    The Redtail Catfish need a lot of room. You didn't say how big your aquarium is, but ultimately these guys will need about 1,000 gallons. They are known to stop eating when stressed. Assuming the water quality is good, stress usually happens if the tank becomes too small for them.
  • stian - 2014-11-04
    My aquarium is 6x4x4 of its size.. rtc is any tank mayes..few live plants in it..thatz all about it
  • Dave - 2014-11-04
    Try as many meaty foods as you can. Put them in front of his mouth with an airline tube or something. Foods include pieces of chopped fish, feeder fish, brine shrimp.
Leon - 2014-10-16
I got my new red tail about 4 days before. it doesn't eat any food.very sluggish. is this normal behavior or not...

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  • Clarice Brough - 2014-10-17
    It sounds like he's not too comfortable with the environment, and it may be that he is just acclimating as you've only had him for 4 days. But if his behavior doesn't change in time, you will want to look at his home. For example, is it big enough for him, and does it have enough places for him to hide, and make sure the water parameters are good and you are offering foods he will accept.
  • Leon - 2014-10-17
    May be he is acclimating slowly.. and this fish has only 1 eye.I didn't notice it wen I'm buy the fish..anyway I can't change the fish again.that fish seller wudnt accept it.. I think my tank size and, temprature is ok to it.. its 4 inch of size.. 1 day I seen its belly is flat next itz bit full that previous day..but I dnt know what was it ate..
  • Anonymous - 2014-10-17
    My tank is a small one. He is 5 inch of size.. I think its size ok for it... 2nd day I saw its belly was flat.then next day I saw its belly bit full.. but it hasn't ate any fish I offered t it .. n I hv kept tha tank in a place where it could get tha direct sunlight in the morning time for 2.or 3 hours.. I don't think my tank is too cold cz of that..
  • Clarice Brough - 2014-10-18
    These fish are good eaters and feeding them is usually not a problem. They will usually start eating within a short period of time, and with a swollen belly  it does sound like he's found some type of food.
  • Anonymous - 2014-10-18
    Thank u for the I got another RTc as a tank mate to my old one.I'm really love this catfish variety.. now my old one getting his food I brought a new one.unfortunatly my old one started to bite the new one.what is the reason for this.this both not much difference of their size.old one is 5inch n new one is 4inch..
  • kiggs - 2014-10-28
    redtail catfish are very territoriall to one another snd even other related catfish, another type of fish would be okay if they are the same size.....
Tan Hui Chun - 2009-11-26
Hi, I wish to ask some question. How come my red tail catfish easily die? For example, I just buy one today, it die after two or three days? Thanks.

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  • Fishman - 2010-03-26
    All specimens of this fish are wild caught and they don't fair well being shipped if you absolutely have to buy one then buy them from a place with an arrive alive guarantee. Also how big is the tank they're in these are messy fish and a juvenile has a 50 gal minimum but they will grow and they will grow fast it probably got stunted and died or it had parasites when you got it.
  • Nick T. - 2010-07-23
    It could be many things, but it is probably the water temperature or the PH level. The temperature for a Red-Tailed Catfish should remain between 70 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit(21 to 26 degrees Celsius), although it may vary a few degrees either way. The PH level should also remain between 6.5 and 7.5. I hope this has helped some!
  • Josh - 2011-07-18
    No way dude most 55 gallons are 48 inches long, and that is 4 feet and a redtailed catfish can grow 5 feet but grows 3 feet at a minimum 3 feet= 36 inches, that would mean your catfish could not even turn around, not only that but he wouldnt even fit in the tank
  • Jerry j - 2013-03-24
    I have a large redtail catfish about 51/2 inch. I put him in a 125 gallon tank with my blue channel catfish which is about 6/7 inch. But noe my red tail has white spots all over him and he don't really move around much. Wat can I do to save him before its to late
  • Jeremy Roche - 2013-03-24
    Jerry, I would raise temp and treat with a little aquarium salt.  Or can treat with ich medication.
  • Clarice Brough - 2013-03-24
    Generally if the spots look like it is sprinkled with salt, then it could be ich, but if they are larger it could be fungus. Be very careful when treating catfish as they are scaleless. They can be treated with pimafix or melafix but should not be treated with potassium permanganate or copper based medications. (Many ich medications have copper, so be sure you check the ingredients before you treat.)  Malachite green or formalin can be used at one half to one fourth the recommended dosage. All medications should be used with caution.
  • Anonymous - 2014-09-05
    I had a redtailed shovel nose catfish in a 20 gal for 3 months and he was just fine he is now in a bigger tank and growing
carl cooper - 2009-01-02
I have 3 very large redtails in a 12ft by 3ft tank they are very active and they are eating very well. I have just noticed recently that on two of them their gill plates seem two be curling, back on them selves. I've tested the water and the water is spot on. I don't want to lose them, I've had them a long time. Has anybody had this problem or does anybody know what could be wrong with them, or know anybody for some advice? thanks to anybody who can help me. carl

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  • Joel Viets - 2014-05-26
    I've had the same issue with mine. Only one gill seems to be curling, or looks inverted just at the top. It's not affecting the whole gill. Did yours improve? I've been looking for answers and had no luck so far. My fish is not distressed from what I can tell and my water quality is great.
Khai - 2014-02-20
Hey I have 2 red tail catfish. One of them is doing great but another one didn't even move and eat. I just wanted to get any advice and what to do to make it active? Please help!

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  • Clarice Brough - 2014-02-20
    Sounds stressed, like its sick or its unhappy. Things that come to my mind... is the tank big enough for these two huge fish to be comfortable? it could be a housing issue, And how long have you had it, if its new, has it been this way since you got it? if so, it may have had problems, and you should talk to your fish store right away
alex - 2014-01-09
I have a RTC about 8' long in a 4 foot 22' wide tank and he hasn't been eating. I fed him anchovies and earth worms but he spits it back out what can I do to make him eat?

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  • Clarice Brough - 2014-01-09
    He may just be bored, perhaps you could try varying his diet. For example you could try some frozen bloodworm cubes, shrimps, or silversides to name a few. Maybe look for some pelleted food for carnivores too.
daniel strenke - 2014-01-01
I just bought two red tailed catfish. l put them in my 10 gallon tank for now will they be Ok in it or should I put them in my big tank right away? My big tank is 220 gallons with really big oscars .

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  • Clarice Brough - 2014-01-04
    I love these fish, but I see some serious problems ahead. The Red-tailed Catfish might be fine in the 10 gallon for a couple of weeks (I'm assuming they are just 3-4' right now), but they grow very quickly. They can eventually get to be as much as 53' in length, and a 2000 gallon tank is recommended. Most aquarists simply can't accommodate them because of their necessary tank size.  Putting them in the Oscar tank is another problem. Oscars are great fish, very personable and fun to keep, but they simply aren't community oriented. They will kill other tankmates so are best kept singly, or as a pair.