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Main Index > Detailed Fish Profiles > The Tetras > Silver dollar
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This page will give a completely detailed profile of the selected fish, from A to Z. The profiled fish will be chosen randomly by Badman, and will come from the complete genre of tropical fish. New profiles are added on a regular basis. If you would like to submit a profile for the site please contact me. Don't forget to let us know you experiences with this fish by filling out the

South America


silver Dollar

Metynnis hypsauchen



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Please remember that the following comments are personal experiences and may or may not apply to your setup. Use them as guide to help better understand your fish, like us all individuals will behave differently under different circumstances.


From: Gigi
love them! they are so pretty and very easy to care. Haven't had a single casualty. They eat everything, flakes, zucchini slices, brine shrimp, frozen bloodworms, carnivore pellets, tank plants, and I'll try the romaine lettuce next........

From: Lisa Bow
I have a tank that has several large plants that grow too fast. I was always trimming and pruning them to keep the plants under control. I bought a couple of silver dollars with the understanding that they eat live plants. I thought "great, they can just nibble my plants and will save me some pruning." Within 4 days there wasn't a leaf left on any plant. I couldn't believe how fast they ate all the plants - I'm afraid to buy any type of plant now cause they will eat them for sure. Take a look at their body size and shape, they are stomach with fins! Beautiful to watch, but needs to eat a lot if they are growing.

From: Kirsten
I have a pair of silver dollars who recently moved from a 33 gal tank to a new 45gal. They were getting too big for the tank and were being somewhat harassed by a trio of yo-yo loaches who liked to rasp on their sides. They were also competing for space with a pair of large, territorial angels. They seem much happier in their new peaceful tank with much more swimming space. Unlike so many others, I have no trouble keeping them in a well planted tank. The only plants they really devour are cabomba (along with my opaline gouramis) and Java fern, which still grows, but is kept very low and bushy by their constant nibbling. I've kept them with thriving Amazon swords, crypts, valisneria, cardamine, and stricta. They are fed a wide variety of foods; the only thing they don't seem too fond of is frozen blood worms. They are outrageously skittish, and often smash into the glass if somebody moves too quickly around the aquarium, but are absolutely beautiful when swimming calmly, displaying their iridescence.

From: Mike
I keep 5 Silver dollars in 180 L aquarium with 2 jewel cichlids and 2 Convict Geophagus Surinmaensis cichilds. The fish seem to get along and leave each other alone. Many people keep silver dollars and other large Characins in the company of South American cichlids and they seem to coexist peacefully. Contrary to belief that silver dollars leave some of the tougher plants alone in an aquarium such as Java fern, they will eat any vegetation in the aquarium (at least mine will, so keeping them in a well-planted aquarium is foolish. It is however imperative that they regularly fed vegetation into their diet such as lettuce, peas, cucumber and spinach. They are however extremely voracious feeders that will eat just about anything including, pellet, frozen and dried foods. Because of this, it is important that they are not kept with slower feeders as they will fail to receive any food in the frenzy that silver dollars feed in. Silver Dollars are highly active shoalers and mature specimens can get to 30cm long over. The can live for ten years and enjoy the company of their own species, so it is important that they be kept in groups no fewer than 4 or they will become shy and reclusive. As they become larger - be prepared to move them on to larger housing as they need plenty of swimming space. They are not fussy about water quality although a strong external filter is a must for the amount of Debris they kick up from the sediment and to cope with the large amounts of waste they produce. Although they can be kept with most cichilds, avoid keeping them with the dwarves - who will most certainly be picked on. Likewise, try to avoid keeping them with extremely aggressive fish such as Oscars or Jaguar cichlids who will terrorize them and kill them. Species such as firmouthes, red devils, convicts and jade cichild make ideal companions. Bottom dwellers such as loaches and catfish also seems to coexist peacefully with them.

From: Brian W.
I have a group of large silver dollars (Metynnis of various types) and Myleus (Red Hooks and M. schomburgki). Anyone keeping these lovely fish may be interested to know that I have at last found plants they won't eat - the Onion plant, Crinum thaianum, and some of the other Crinums. They destroy every other plant I've tried, including ferns that are said to taste unpleasant. Another interesting point is that they love boiled rice and especially cooked noodles. Both of these are of vegetable origin, and they seem to thrive on them, with a mixture of other foods like redworms, lettuce, and crushed boiled peas. These are the most nervous fish I've ever kept, and are quite likely to stun themselves by dashing into the tank sides when I clean it out.

From: Mike
A quarter of my silver dollar died. I have three silver dollars the biggest is about 6 inches .One day when I got home from work my darling son had thrown all the fish food ,coke,milk,and a blanket in the tank .I scooped the fish out the milky mess and threw them in a bucket with the heater. Well the biggest one ,about 4 inches back then decided to warm himself by the heater .I looked in the bucket after I had cleaned the tank and there was all this white fluffy stuff (cooked fish no batter).Once back in the tank he didn't even know he had half of one side missing and swam as if nothing had happened. Today you can barely see anything wrong with him apart from a slight mark on his side. Thats not a load of bull either.It makes you wonder if fish can even feel.

From: Sarah
I have a silver dollar in a 5 gallon tank with a blueberry tetra. My silver dollar is about 2 inches and does great With my blueberry tetra. They sleep side by side every night. The dollar will eat anything but not any worms. They don't need a big 55 gallon or anything. I keep mine in a 5 gallon and they do fine.

From: Lu-Ann
I have four silver dollars in a 29 gallon tank. I started off with only two of them, but one was breathing very heavy, even though all my levels were perfect. I read that they like to be in schools of at least 5 to 8, so I bought two more, and the one that was breathing heavy instantly started breathing normal again. I am contemplating getting a bigger tank because they are starting to get too big, and I'd like to purchase more of them. They are very peaceful fish. I even have two angelfish in there with them, and they don't bother them. They are really good eaters. They eat almost anything I put in the tank, often stealing my Pleco's food. I find them to be quite shy and easily frightened, but they are getting much better. They are a pretty fish to watch.

From: Andy
I purchased my silver dollar at a local pet shop about 3 months ago. It was about the size of a quarter when I bought it, and now it is almost 4 1/2 inches long. I keep it in a 55 gallon tank with a weathering loach and a plecostumus, although I plan on getting a pictus catfish, 2 more silver dollars, bala sharks, black finned sharks, golden sharks, a few guppies, and an African frog. If you own a silver dollar you should know that they really like plants but I feed mine many things. If you don't have one I suggest you get one because they are fun to watch and can live with just about anything.

From: K. Case
Silver Dollars are a great choice of fish. They are easy to keep in any type of tank . I have had 2 for about a year now. They started in a community tank and never bothered anything , now I have them with convicts jack dempsies and firemouths and they do just fine. The only thing that will occasionally cause a problem with the silver dollar is a scat but nottin major. SILVER DOLLARS ARE AMAZING.

From: Jeremy
I had two of these fish,one at 1.5 inches, the other at 1 inch. Even though they were small they were great fun to watch at feeding time. It may have taken them a while to realize there was food there but when they did it was a feeding frenzy. They are the fastest fish I have ever seen! Somehow they were able to go from 1 end of my 2 foot tank to the other in 0 flat! Unfortunately a disease hit my tank killing both of them but I hope to purchase more in the not distant future.

From: Megan
I had 2 Silver Dollars because I had a pretty small tank, only 10 gallons and recently my very big one died, and now I only have 1, I am going to get her a couple friends but she does act fine, and yes they are an extremely shy fish and if I come up to the tank she will swim away. I have live plants and when they are all eaten I just buy some more, anyway this is an amazing fish!!

From: Colin
I have 4 Silver Dollars in a large 45 gallon community tank. They are great to watch shooting about the weed and rocks, one thing about them though is that they eat nearly all the food before my other fish get a look in. They even steal off my red tailed black shark and cichlids! love em though.

From: Dan
I have kept "silver dollars" for over 8 years. They are kept mostly in species only aquaria which is sparsely decorated with bog wood to leave them as much swimming space as possible. My largest tank is 8`x2`x2` and houses 14 types of dollar. The largest is an 8" female `Luna`. The fish are happiest when kept in subdued lighting and this is best provided by plant cover. The best plant I have found for this is water wysteria which can survive the constant nibbling and grows quiet well if left free floating. So far I have had little breeding success. There is plenty of activity and showy display by the males, especially the `shomburki and hypshausen`, though few eggs have ever been produced and none have hatched. I intend to set up a dedicated breeding tank in the next few months and hope this will prove more successful. I recommend keeping dollars. They are peaceful, midsized fish that look well in large shoals.

From: Heath

Mix well with severums, blue acaras, leporinus, pacus, tinfoil barbs, bala sharks, oscars, large gouramis, and various other species.

From: William_H

I've bought 7 silver dollars during the past ten years and they're the best fish I've come across. One of the silver dollars has lived for 9 and half years in my tank and it's as strong/fast as it has been 9 and half years ago. A friendly but quite sensitive fish. Blends in well with other fish. They live for a very long time if kept and treated well. (They're very easy to feed and kept so this is a recommended fish)





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