Cherry barbs vs Ember tetra? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-19-2020, 09:18 PM Thread Starter
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Cherry barbs vs Ember tetra?

I have an unstocked 20gal high and wanted advice. The fish I am most excited about is dwarf corydoras but intend to add them last as they're reported to be sensitive to changing water parameters. I intend to get a pair of dwarf or honey gourami as a centerpiece surface fish. I need help picking a schooling middle level fish.

I like the idea of adding a pop of color against my black sand substrate and green java ferns with ember tetras or cherry barbs. Has anyone kept both? How do they compare to each other? Color, personality, schooling, aggression, hardiness?

I'd rank myself as having progressed from novice to determined beginner. I'd like something colorful that will school and neither how nor bully anyone. Recommendations welcome. Water is fairly hard despite driftwood and temperature is 75*F.
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-20-2020, 10:27 PM
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Cherry barb are semi aggressive fish, you need to add them with caution, you know everyone have their noob moments i added 10 cherry barbs to my 180l tank they ended up killing each other more than fighting other fishes i ended up with 3 that fight each other aswell from time to time
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-22-2020, 09:12 PM Thread Starter
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Yikes! Thanks for the warning. Have you replaced them with something you like better? Live bearers weird me out for some reason and besides them, I am having a hard time finding a peaceful, colorful schooler that won't hide 90% of the time.
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-23-2020, 03:09 PM
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Originally Posted by fasoole View Post
Cherry barb are semi aggressive fish, you need to add them with caution, you know everyone have their noob moments i added 10 cherry barbs to my 180l tank they ended up killing each other more than fighting other fishes i ended up with 3 that fight each other aswell from time to time
Really? i've kept them multiple times and this is the first time I've ever heard anyone refer to them as aggressive at all. You sure you had cherry barbs? A lot of bards can be aggressive but cherries?
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-23-2020, 05:20 PM
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I have never had cherry barb, but once I had rosy barbs and they never schooled but fight one another all day long. Itís a surprise to me because rosy barbs closest relative goldfish are the most peaceful fish in the world.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-29-2020, 02:27 PM
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Originally Posted by fasoole View Post
Cherry barb are semi aggressive fish, you need to add them with caution, you know everyone have their noob moments i added 10 cherry barbs to my 180l tank they ended up killing each other more than fighting other fishes i ended up with 3 that fight each other aswell from time to time
I agree, I had five, left with zero. I must learn more about them, because they ate each other
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-29-2020, 04:20 PM
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All barbs are aggressive except goldfish. Tetra are no angel either. Most tetra are aggressive except cylindrical tetra such as cardinal, neon and rummynose. Not sure about amber as I’ve never owned, my deep body Diamond, Congo and bleeding heart tetra are aggressive. Rasboras is probably the most peaceful schooler. I have Harlequin and Brilliant Rasboras, peaceful and tight schooler, and there are more nano size Rasboras species to choose from.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-04-2020, 03:18 AM
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"Aggressive" a bit of a bold statement. Male cherry barbs can be very aggressive toward other male cherry barbs but in my experience they focus their energy on each other and not other species of fish. That said it can be non stop and stressful to watch so maybe not everyone's cup of tea. To call all tetras like diamond, Congo, and bleeding heart aggressive is also a bit of an overstatement. Their aggression is mostly limited to spawning or males sparring. Make sure you have a large enough tank for them to move around in and weaker fish to escape attention of dominant ones and you should be fine. But again some my not find this behavior relaxing if that is what they are going for.


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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-06-2020, 02:33 PM
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"Aggressive" a bit of a bold statement. Male cherry barbs can be very aggressive toward other male cherry barbs but in my experience they focus their energy on each other and not other species of fish. That said it can be non stop and stressful to watch so maybe not everyone's cup of tea. To call all tetras like diamond, Congo, and bleeding heart aggressive is also a bit of an overstatement. Their aggression is mostly limited to spawning or males sparring. Make sure you have a large enough tank for them to move around in and weaker fish to escape attention of dominant ones and you should be fine. But again some my not find this behavior relaxing if that is what they are going for.
I would characterize it as conspecific aggression if they don’t bother other fish. If 10 is most aggressive, I would rate the conspecific aggression of my Congo, Diamond and Bleeing Heart a 2, as they shoal 90% of the time, and males only separate out sparring each other from time to time. In my previous experience with Rosy barb and Silver tip tetra, their conspecific aggression is 8 to 9 as they spent 90% fighting one another. Surprisingly, my tiger barb shoal peacefully 70% of the time, scattered out 20%, and only occasionally fight one another no more than 10% time..
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-06-2020, 09:20 PM
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Yeah any aggression from tetras with obvious sexual dimorphism is usually males sparring or mating (Diamonds were the rowdiest of the bunch in that case). But I had one male cherry barb that was so nasty that I found myself thinking "This is not enjoyable to watch." and can see how it would freak some people out. No actual damage was ever done in that case though it was just annoying behavior. Now that was in a very densely planted 29 gallon tank so possibly if they were in a smaller tank it would be worse.


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