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Bala Shark Swimming on it's Side

This is a discussion on Bala Shark Swimming on it's Side within the FreshWater Beginner Information/Questions forums, part of the FreshWater Topics category;
I have a 75G tank, when I got back from my classes today I noticed my Bala Shark swimming on ...

  1. #1
    Little Fish xarumitzu's Avatar
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    Default Bala Shark Swimming on it's Side

    I have a 75G tank, when I got back from my classes today I noticed my Bala Shark swimming on it's side. I don't think it's dying because it does swim, but it seems to drift around the tank with the current. I was doing a bit of research and I think there is a problem with it's swim bladder. Could this be the case? Or do you think my Shark is dying? I did a 30% water change and water tested as follows:

    Water readings: pH - 7
    NO3 - 7
    NH3 - 0
    NO2 - 0

  2. #2
    Super Fish misterking's Avatar
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    Is the fish floating at the surface on its side or just generally swimming on its side? Does it seem to struggle to swim downwards, and almost immediately "pop" back to the surface when it does? If so then you're right, swim bladder.

    The thing that confuses me though, is that your readings are fine, and usually this is a sign of bad water quality. If it's caused by a blockage in the intestines, I've heard that feeding the fish peas can work as they're a natural laxative. However, if it's a bacterial infection or illness causing the swim bladder you need to determine the source of this before you treat.
    Rob King
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    Little Fish xarumitzu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by misterking View Post
    Is the fish floating at the surface on its side or just generally swimming on its side? Does it seem to struggle to swim downwards, and almost immediately "pop" back to the surface when it does? If so then you're right, swim bladder.

    The thing that confuses me though, is that your readings are fine, and usually this is a sign of bad water quality. If it's caused by a blockage in the intestines, I've heard that feeding the fish peas can work as they're a natural laxative. However, if it's a bacterial infection or illness causing the swim bladder you need to determine the source of this before you treat.
    The fish does seem to float to the surface and then struggle to swim downwards. After that it'll drift around the tank while floating right back to the top again. I'll try feeding the fish peas and take a sample of water to my LFS to be tested. Maybe they can see something that I missed. I appreciate your reply.

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    Little Fish xarumitzu's Avatar
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    Well just a little update. Unfortunately the Bala didn't make it. Thanks for your help though. I appreciate it.

  5. #5
    Super Fish misterking's Avatar
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    Ah, sad to hear. Perhaps it was a bacterial infection then, and we just didn't catch it in time.
    Rob King
    Graduate, singer, and all round good egg.

    "An opera begins long before the curtain goes up and ends long after it has come down. It starts in my imagination, it becomes my life, and it stays part of my life long after I've left the opera house." - Maria Callas.


    Rob's tanks
    9 gallon bow-front, "nano-world":
    Currently collecting equipment.. slowly..

  6. #6
    Little Fish JRB__'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by xarumitzu View Post
    Well just a little update. Unfortunately the Bala didn't make it. Thanks for your help though. I appreciate it.
    Sorry to hear he didn't make it.
    Bala's aren't really suited to home aquariums, despite what the staff at LFS says. They grow extremely large (2 foot plus) and require lots of water and a very large tank once they grow, like 300g+. Also these fish really require a school of no less than 5 to thrive and be happy.
    If you want a shark maybe pick a different kind. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news.
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