freshwater community4


Banded Rainbowfish

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Scientific Name:   Melanotaenia trifasciata      
Min. Tank Size:   50 gallons      
Personality:   Peaceful      
Temperature:   75-85°F      
pH:   6.5-8.0/10-20°dGH      
Size:   5"      
Diet:   Omnivore      
Breeding:   Egglayer      


Other Rainbowfish, Danios, Barbs, Characins, and Catfish. For a more exciting display consider a species tank appropriately sized to house 15 - 18 fish.

Banded Rainbowfish

Banded Rainbowfish are most frequently found in the northern region of Australia where they tend to inhabit small creeks and streams as well as rivers and tributaries. Though adult specimens of this species are rarely sold, adults of the species are available in many different color variations. Many specimens exhibit blue, red, green or yellow coloration on the body while the fins are typically red or yellow. Regardless of other coloration, most Banded Rainbowfish have a thick, mid-lateral stripe that ranges from deep blue to blackish in color. This stripe or band is the characteristic for which this species was named.

Tank Set-up

In their natural environment, these fish tend to take cover in areas of dense vegetation and thus prefer to be kept in heavily planted tanks. Banded Rainbowfish also enjoy tanks decorated with gravel substrate and driftwood roots or branches. Dark gravel and plenty of plants will help to show off the beautiful collors of this fish. Banded Rainbowfish are also highly adapatable when it comes to water parameters which makes them a good choice for the beginning aquarist. These fish are quite peaceful in nature but, due to their size and rapid movements, they may intimidate smaller or timid species of fish. Therefore, when keeping with other species, choose tankmates of similar size and activity level. Like many Rainbowfish, the Banded Rainbowfish is most likely to thrive when kept in groups of at least six to eight of its own species.


Banded Rainbowfish are not fussy eaters and will eagerly accept most foods offered. Feed a proper diet by offering a high-quality flake or pellet as a staple and supplement several times a week with live and/or frozen foods. Brine shrimp, Daphnia, and bloodworms are all good choices. To promote the best health and coloration feed a diet consisting of a variety of foods on a regular basis.


Because they are egg scatterers, Banded Rainbowfish prefer a breeding tank decorated with plenty of fine-leaved plants. Several clumps of java moss provides the prefect medium for the female to deposit the eggs on. During conditioning, females of this species will become plumper and males will display their colors to other fish in the tank. Spawning itself may be extended for a period of several weeks with the female fish depositing up to 50 - 60 eggs each day. Remove the eggs and raise them in a separate hatching tank. After the eggs hatch, in about a week, feed them infusoria or powdered foods. Baby brine shrimp can be fed after a couple of weeks.

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