Heads up regarding filaments with plants

esoxlucius

Redtail Catfish
MFK Member
Dec 30, 2015
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Before I got my filament barbs one of the first things I researched was their compatibility with plants. Most of the stuff I looked at said there shouldn't be a problem, which was great. However, one notable difference of opinion was from a guy on you tube who stated categorically that there would be carnage. They will destroy plants, end of, he said.

I decided to go with the general concensus that they'd be fine, and I bought half a dozen, they were a little over an inch apiece, this was back in February. At first there were no problems at all, they were a fantastic addition to my 180 com tank......until they started getting bigger.

When they hit 3" I noticed they started "pecking" at my val. I kept my eye on them but they just got worse. Now they are 4" and they love ripping out the brand new shoots that the val runners send out. These guys should reach 6-7" when full grown and I suspect that by the time they reach full size they will be very destructive.

I cannot risk any more damage to my val as I want it to completely take over about 50% of my tank. So, yesterday I netted them out during a water change and put them in my 360g with the big boys, no predators. They love it.

What experience have you guys had with filaments with plants?
 

esoxlucius

Redtail Catfish
MFK Member
Dec 30, 2015
1,915
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UK
my filament barb colony (+-40mature specimen) ate my anubias. giving them now spinach and this slowed down the plant devastation. they look nice though.
Wow, 40. What size have yours maxed out at? Are your males as colourful as people say they get when mature? I've seen some pics on line of males and they are like shimmering rainbows, but you don't know if some of these pics are photo shopped or not. What age/size do the characteristic filaments develop on the males?
 
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litigator666

Piranha
MFK Member
Sep 15, 2008
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clayfield, qld australia
the mature males do have a metallic blue/green shade and filaments develop less than a year. they are about 4-5inches they are colourful but theres a mascara version of this which i still have not seen personally. it seems the mascara are more colourful.

they also bred for me and i was able to grow 3 to mature size. majority of the babies were eaten by the community fish. i started of around 60 pcs but the bichirs hunt them down. survivors know now how to avoid the bichirs.

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Stephen St.Clair

Dovii
MFK Member
Jul 2, 2017
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I just bought seven Filiments two weeks ago & ordered more. I guess no plants.
Filiments are extremely difficult to come by in my area & aren't too common from on line vendors.
My LFS custom orders for me from Segrest Farms.
I saw Mascara Barbs for sale on line for over $50 a piece. Probably pass on those.
 

flyingb

Gambusia
MFK Member
Jul 24, 2020
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I had 12 Filiment barbs that totally destroyed a 125 planted tank. I ended up giving them away and tossed a flowerhorn in the destroyed tank.
Filiment barbs are on my NEVER AGAIN list.
 
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duanes

MFK Moderators
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Jun 7, 2007
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Isla Taboga Panama via Milwaukee
Most fish profiles are written by someone who is regurgitating second hand knowledge by someone who "maybe" has kept that fish, or its cousin for a limited amount of time, so taking it as face value is usually a mistake.
Whenever I have read a profile of a fish I have kept for any length of time, I can usually tell if the profiler has really kept that fish or not, and in a good percentage of profiles, its obvious they have not.
With cichlids (my general area) most profiles I see minimize the amount of tank size needed, minimize or over blow aggression, are often confused about proper diet, and clueless about proper water parameters
To me, a fish profile should only be written by someone who has actually kept that fish for its entire life cycle, and even then it could be frought with possible misinformation, because captive keeping (especially in too small a tank), often produces abhorrent behaviour.
That said in my experience , I believe one should always consider all barbs omnivores, they may not start out that way, but usually end up that way, if they are the type that put on any size, plants should almost always be considered part of their menu.
 
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phreeflow

Aimara
MFK Member
Nov 19, 2007
493
554
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ca
Wow, 40. What size have yours maxed out at? Are your males as colourful as people say they get when mature? I've seen some pics on line of males and they are like shimmering rainbows, but you don't know if some of these pics are photo shopped or not. What age/size do the characteristic filaments develop on the males?
They are gorgeous under the right lighting...under sunlight or a single source, full spectrum LED light , like my Kessil Tuna Sun, they looked incredible. Under T5’s, they looked washed out.

Here’s a group I just pulled out of the tank for a photo...they are scared so you don’t see much red on the fins but they are still nice.

The other two photos are of a male in full breeding color and a female. Loved the emerald green color.

If they didn’t eat hundreds dollars of my expensive plants, they would have been the perfect dithers and I would’ve kept them

6B82CEC4-D48E-47A7-A26D-DC865C08D40B.jpeg

7124D82A-9668-46FD-9052-715BFAA3B68A.jpeg

ACF09AD5-85F9-44F4-9974-FA7C23070047.jpeg
 
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