Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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Amerikaneca 06-17-2011 11:07 AM

Bala Sharks in danger
hello guys,

i need some help with my fish. since i am a new aquarist i am not sure if what's happening is normal.

i have a 30 gallon tank. been set up for 3 weeks now. and what i mean bby set up is that i had it for a week before i added any fish. stress coat and stress zyme were added at the begining.

my stock consists of:
3 Bala Sharks
3 Blue Guaramis
2 Bolivian Rams
2 Red Tail Botia Loaches

what i've noticed is that the Bala Sharks seem to be getting some sort of white residue on their bodies. i think it slows them down because they are not as active as they were at first. also their tails are turning red(they are black). do i have a nitrate or amonia problems that causes that?

please, can anyone give me a suggestion as to how to teat them?

mjbn 06-17-2011 03:06 PM

Ohhh.. that's not good. You've stocked waaaaaaaaaay too many fish than your tank/bacterial colony(if any) can handle. I'd return the majority of those fish and correctly cycle your tank. Cycling is when you let your aquarium create a bacterial colony that eliminates ammonia and nitrites, leaving nitrates which are harmless to fish at low levels. This process takes anywhere from 2 weeks to a couple months depending on how you do it. What you did was let the tank run for a week, without any ammonia source which means no bacterial growth. You then introduced a ton of fish (ammonia sources through waste,food, etc) and it's causing an ammonia spike which in turn is fatal to a fishes health. Your shark probably has ich, or ick which is contracted when water conditions aren't good and the fishes immune system is lowered, leaving them vulnerable to such infections, diseases, etc. I've never personally dealt with ich yet, so i cannot give input to that, but i heard raising temp to 80-83 degrees F helps. But first thing i'd do is re-home the majority of the fish.. They, nor the tank, can handle it amount in the tank.

Inga 06-17-2011 06:08 PM

You have a few problems there for sure. For one, you don't have a cycled tank and you have way too many fish for that tank AND some fish that will not get along with each other.

I am doubting the store with take any of the fish back but if they will, it would be a good idea to make some returns. Also, you need to research species before making a decision about stocking this tank. One example you have is that you have 3 Blue Gourami. Unless you have 1 male and 2 females you will likely have fighting fish and end in death of at least one or more.

Bala sharks can grow to a foot long each. They need to be in a group preferably a half dozen or more. Obviously, 30 gallons won't work for fish that size.

For immediately, 50% water change with a good water conditioner like PRIME. Do you have live plants in there to help eat up some of the ammonia?

I am glad you found the forum. There are a lot of people here that are more then willing to help you out. Welcome!!! :) :) You just started out with a common beginner mistake. I wish fish stores would worry more about what is good for the fish and the customer, long term then simply making a quick sale. I guess to be fair, most store employees don't know much about fish either. Please keep us updated.

kalae 06-20-2011 05:59 AM

bala sharks can grow up to a foot long... 3 is way too many for a 30g tank!! i, too, suggest starting over

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