River minnows in aquarium?
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Old 01-20-2013, 10:10 PM   #1
Betta132
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River minnows in aquarium?


Has anyone tried keeping wild-caught minnows in an aquarium? I've been watching the ones at a river near us, and here's what I know about them;
They seem to prefer groups, although I occasionally see loners.
They stay mostly on the top inch of water, unless scared.
Their diet consists of bugs, bits of algae, assorted dead aquatics, and the stuff they pick off rocks, so a fairly standard omnivorous fish diet.
They seem to mostly stay under 2", although I've seen a couple huge ones that were just about 3".
I've seen them with various other fish, so they appear peaceful.
They might be mosquitofish.
I think minnows are cute, and 3 or so would make a nice addition to my tank. From their habits, I think they would probably school with either my danios or my pencilfish, and they would probably be happy with frozen food. Any imput?
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Old 01-20-2013, 10:20 PM   #2
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They could be several different types of "minnows", they could be mosquito fish, or something like smelt, is a picture possible? Or a clear Id of the fish because that could help answer the question. I have kept minnows and am currently keeping some, but these are baitfish for fishing minnows.
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Old 01-20-2013, 11:32 PM   #3
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I can't really get a picture, because it's winter here and there aren't very many so they're hard to catch, but I can describe them. They're tiny silver fish, no markings other than very faint lengthwise stripes on some and one black spot on others, and they're shaped a lot like danios. I'm fairly certain they're mosquitofish....
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Old 01-20-2013, 11:35 PM   #4
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Could be mosquitofish, or any one the many types of shiners (the fish, not the beer) or minnows in our creeks around here. My only worry might be disease - be sure to quarantine them. The ones I see in Walnut Creek even eat hair algae, which has made it very tempting to introduce them to my tank...
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Old 01-21-2013, 02:17 AM   #5
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I was thinkin shiners too, line and a dot like this?
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Old 01-21-2013, 02:17 AM   #6
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Go for it, just make sure that it is legal to keep native fishes in your area. I keep native sunfish and it is both challenging and rewarding.
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Old 01-21-2013, 02:18 AM   #7
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In texas they are probably top minnows or some kind of killifih if they are 2-3" in size
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Old 01-21-2013, 02:28 AM   #8
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I've kept creek chubs in my tank before....way back when I was a kid. Those things are pretty damn hardy I must say.
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Old 01-21-2013, 02:37 AM   #9
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creek chubs are great, and will eat anything.
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Old 01-21-2013, 03:08 AM   #10
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It looks like they might be a mix of shiners, some kind of topminnow, and possibly a few mosquitofish... Providing they were quarantined, do you think just putting four or so random ones in would work? They're awefully hard to tell apart when they won't stay still...
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Old 01-21-2013, 04:23 AM   #11
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what river are you looking in? i will speak from experience on this,most likely they are western mosquito fish. i pulled 7 seven out of the guadalupe river, and all 7 happened to be mosquito fish. In Texas they are considered a invasive species. it is legal to catch and remove them, honestly you are doing native fish a favor by removing the mosquito fish, they out compete all native fish food, and breed like crazy.

of the seven i have had one survive, mostly because i think my crayfish ate them.
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Old 01-21-2013, 04:44 AM   #12
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I'm in Central Texas, at a nice stretch of the San Gabriel river, and I just realized how to tell the mosquitofish from the others... Breeding won't be a problem, since my other fish can eat the babies and there isn't all that much plant cover in the tank yet.
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Old 01-21-2013, 03:14 PM   #13
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mosquito fish are kinda cool looking. i say go for it
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Old 02-03-2013, 05:42 AM   #14
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I've been keeping mosquitofish for years. Love 'em. Not terribly colorful fish but very active. I use them to cycle tanks, as dither fish and feeder fish. They adapt to aquarium life quickly and will eat virtually anything you feed them. I've seen a moth, attracted to the aquarium lights, fall into the tank and the mosquitofish rip it apart like so many piranha. They love to hang out under floaters but put them in a tank with duckweed and it will vanish in no time.
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