The Madagascar Rainbow (Bedotia madagascarensis) is a medium sized fish native to eastern Madagascar where it inhabits clear, flowing streams. This fish grows to an adult size of about 3 to 4 inches long. Females are more full in the body, while males are more colorful.
The Madagascar Rainbow should be maintained in an aquarium of 55 gallons or larger. A dark colored soft, sandy substrate (CS6631) is a good choice. Driftwood (ZM2000) and live or artificial plants may also be incorporated.
The Madagascar Rainbow prefers a temperature of 73°F to 89°F, a pH of 4.5 to 7.5, and a hardness of 0 to 20°H.
The Madagascar Rainbow is an active, high energy fish. It is generally very peaceful, but may disturb slower moving or shy species with it's high activity level. Good tank mates include other species of rainbows, larger tetras, barbs, danios, cory catfish, and many loricariid catfish. In a Madagascan community tank it, can be used as a dither fish for endemic cichlids such as Paratilapia polleni. The Madagascar Rainbow will do best when kept in a shoal of at least 6 to 10, preferably with more females than males.
In the wild, the Madagascar Rainbow is a carnivore feeding on small aquatic crustaceans, worms, insect larvae, and terrestrial insects. In the aquarium it will readily accept most prepared foods. Good choices include flakes (AL165) and frozen bloodworms (SF4792) or brine shrimp (SF6777). For maximum color, growth, and health these fish will look their best when given probiotics (AL169) in addition to a balanced diet.