Ruby Red ER


New member
Hello all. I'm hoping for some insight as to treatment for a bullied Ruby Red. Stats are: 55 gallon, 4' tank with 4 Rainbow Sharks and (up until yesterday) 2-3" Red Cap males, and 2-3.5" Ruby Reds. One RR is definitely male, the other (my bullied buddy) I'm not sure about. Tank stats are: pH is 7.8, 79° F, nitrogen cycle is solid, and GH is 15 dgh. A large castle, 4 terra cotta half-pots, and lots of other nooks and crannies provide plenty of 'territories.' This is a 4 month old tank that was progressing nicely.

I've had aggression issues with Big Red (the male RR) before, but was always able to head them off by short time outs, rearranging the furniture, etc. A couple of days ago I noticed that Tigger (picture attached), the RR with questionable gender, was looking ragged and was hiding out for long periods of time. Appetite was good but I got an uneasy feeling from his/her appearance. Then yesterday afternoon I found Peanut, the smaller of the 2 Red Caps, floating at the surface. I realized at that point I hadn't seen him since the day before. He presented a lot of fin injuries. Now prior to this he was always a feisty chap who did not tolerate much crap from any of the other fish. I just moved Tigger to the Hospital tank. My question (along with looking for any other advise for this Newb) is this. What treatment(s) can I offer Tigger? The hospital tank water parameters are the same as the the 55, save for a temperature of 81°. I've added the appropriate dosage of Melafix to promote fin healing and Tigger looks a lot more stable since entering the ER. Thoughts?

In addition, the castle seems to be everybody's favorite hideout and I have a feeling the aggression's may stem from that, aside from the usual Cichlid tough guy shenanigans. I would love to hear thoughts on this also.

TIA, love this site.
Love, peace, and chicken grease,

PS: Believe it or not, I have few issues with the Rainbow Sharks. I plan on splitting them into sets of 2, according to size, in another 55 I'm prepping. The aggression between the sharks is manageable, and there has been no Shark/Cichlid/Shark problems.


OB Guy

It's hard to say what you can do about the aggression without knowing for sure which fish are causing the damage. Time outs rarely work for me. Rainbow sharks can be aggressive so I wouldn't rule them out on being who caused the fin damage. Welcome to the forum.