If you’re looking for any mellow freshwater aquarium fish for your home aquarium then silver dollar fish is your best choice. Shape of this fish looks similar to piranha and pacu fish as it is from same family as that of piranha. Silver dollar fish has it’s origin from south America and these days found in almost every aquarium shops worldwide.
Size & Color: Silver dollar can grow to size of about 14cm in length. It has silver color round shape and look similar to piranha fish. Body is quite flat and rounded giving it appearance of silver dollar. Some adults can grow to size of about half foot.
Types of silver dollar:
- Metynnis argenteus
- Metynnis hypsauchen
- Metynnis lippincottianus
- Myleus rubripinnis
- Mylossoma aureum
These types are available in almost every aquarium shops worldwide. Most commonly seen Silver dollar type is Metynnis argenteus. Metynnis argenteus has small dots on body.
Metynnis hypsauchen has life span of about 5-10 years. It gets quite scared easily if not kept in group. Male and female are easy to distinguish as male’s anal fin will have a small amount of red on it.
Metynnis lippincottianus has metallic silver color with flanks having darker spots and hints of red coloration. Requires feeding up to 3 times a day.
Myleus rubripinnis rarely breeds in captivity or in aquarium so they’re rarely available in aquarium shops. Most of the Myleus rubripinnis are either imported or could be found in tropical region.
Mylossoma aureum requires tank with driftwood, stones and plants for natural environment else it gets bored with plain tank. They accept dry food and are vegetarian. Like other silver dollar types there is a less observation about breeding them in aquarium.
ph & temperature: Silver dollar requires ph of about 5-7. In case of temperature you can maintain it at about 24-28 C. Tank water hardness should be up to 15 dGH. Tank water of about 20 gallon is expected when keeping silver dollar fish.
Behavior: Silver dollar moves in school of about 5-6 and they’re known for leaping out of tank if startled. They’re semi aggressive and expect some conflict with another aggressive or non-aggressive fishes in the tank. They often appear mellow but can chase down some fishes if get offended. Keeping them with neon tetra and guppies is not suggested as they could possibly harm them. You can place silver dollar in the tank of pikes, oscars and catfish if you’re going to put any adult. You’ll often find them as middle dweller and sometimes at the surface as they often jump out as well so make sure you keep the tank opening covered. If you’re planning to purchase them then i suggest getting at least 5-6 silver dollar instead of getting 1-2 as they live comfortably with their group.
Food: Though silver dollar are from piranha family, are almost vegetarian. They do however eat worms and live food if given. Most of the time they prefer eating plants, freshwater grass, spinach etc. You can keep them on diet of vegetable flakes like spinach, cooked romaine,spirulina, lettuce and watercress. They’ll also prefer vegetables like peas and squash and love algae wafers and lettuce. If you want to keep their silver coloration then you can feed them cereal that enhances silver coloration.
Breeding: If you’re going to take their breeding care then you can purchase separate breed trap. Though parents don’t consume baby fry you still need to protect them from other fishes. Female is know for giving more eggs than tank could handle, 1500-2000 eggs is that known number. Eggs take3 days to hatch and fry will be ready to eat on it’s own in week or two. So if you want to take care of spawning then it’s better to keep them in a separate tank while they hatch.
Silver dollar is a hardy fish and as it prefers living in school of 5-6 that forces you to place them in a large tank with bigger or equal size fish. If you’re planning to buy them then it’s better to keep them in a tank with proper pH & temperature and always keep changing then water on weekly basis.