View Full Version : Oops I deleted my last post about my sick bala so here it goes again:)

02-25-2008, 08:36 PM
O.K. So I am new to the boards and posted a questions regarding a bala shark I have that is swimming very erratically. He looks perfectly normal and doesn't have any sign of disease and is eating and everything. All the other fish look o.k. except that an albino cory is hanging near the top of the tank and doesn't want to go back down to the bottom. Also, my loaches are mercilessly picking on the poor bala shark and won't leave him alone. I think becuase of his erratic swimming, they think he is dying and maybe he is. Anyway, I posted about this and mentioned that it is a 37 gallon tank with a ph of 7.5 and a temp of 78. I tested the water and the only thing wrong was that the nitrate was high. Skiboy posted that I should do a water change and so my husband and I worked on that for the past hour. This tank is in the wall in our living room and behind it is a closet that we have to climb up into in order to do anything with the tank. It is a pain in the behind but we are going to build something to make it easier to climb up there and then I think we will be able to do more water changes. Unfortunately, I posted something in this thread that I wanted to post in the newbie thread so when I deleted it, the whole post got deleted! Hey, did I tell you I was new? Anyway, I tested all my other tanks-I have 4 total and the nitrate is high in all of them. How do I bring this down? Just water changes? Also, do you think I should euthanize the bala and how should I do it? The cory has recovered it looks like but the bala has not and I don' t want him to suffer. Thanks for reading this long post.


02-25-2008, 08:38 PM
If it's swimming erratically, then it should go away in a couple hours. Don't hange the water, don't feed the tank, and keep the lights off.

Bala sharks like to play dead when stressed. (So do neon tetras)

02-25-2008, 08:44 PM
Sorry, I forgot to mention that he has been doing this for the past 2 days. It is so strange because he looks great and eats normally and is a really nice fish that I don't want to lose. Unfortunately, he is swimming sideways, upside down, and he can't swim right side up. The loaches will not leave them alone-I have 3 Angelicus Botias I think they are called. I really feel like he is suffering and needs to be put out of his misery but I don't want to lose him so I am torn. We did the water change and it really helped the cory it seems but not the bala. Maybe I should give it more time but it is a tough call to see him suffering.

02-25-2008, 09:32 PM
possibly swim bladder problems then.

02-26-2008, 05:55 AM
Your original post is not deleted, "Fish can't swim correctly" http://www.aquaboards.com/viewtopic.php?id=1469

How high are the nitrAtes? Did you test the nitrItes? Did you test ammonia? How long has the tank been set up? What kind of filter do you have? Exactly how many and what kind of fish are in the tank? How often and how much water do you/have you changed?

Anyways,,, if it was a water quality problem the other fish would be having problems too.

I've got balas and neons, they've never "played dead". Fainting goats on the other hand will play dead...

02-26-2008, 06:35 AM
Did you have to go and mention those Fainting goats?

02-26-2008, 06:48 AM
Hi, I just saw that I had not deleted my other post. I just thought I had-newbie mistake. Lets see I will try to remember what you asked. The nitrates were off the scale of the test kit I had but ammonia, nitrite and everything else was fine. The pH is 7.5 and the temp is 78 and the other fish look healthy. I don't even see any sign of disease on the sick bala and he even eats normally. However, he can't swim well and it may be a lost cause at this point unfortunately. It is a 37 gallon tank with cory cats, pleco, the botias I mentioned, and the balas and some cherry barbs. This is a total of 12 fish but the balas are very large. The filter I have is a bio wheel which is big enough for this size tank according to the box and is supposed to have both biological and chemical filtration. All the nitrate is high in all my tanks but no other fish is sick. Kind of strange.

02-26-2008, 10:35 AM
Did you have to go and mention those Fainting goats?

Yes :tongue: My daggum dog doesn't even play dead...

back to the problem at hand...

"Off the charts" doesn't tell me anything. What's the number? NitrAtes of 40 really isn't an issue, really nitrAtes are rarely an issue. Ammonia and nitrItes are killers, but normally not nitrAtes unless of course the water has never been changed, then you would have a pH drop like a bomb, and all the fish would be suffering.

I'm going to go out on a limb here and guess that the tank is overstocked, mainly because the balas could easilly reach 12" in the optimum environment. Depending on the type loaches, they can get huge also. The harassment of the bala by the loaches is probably what's making him swim crazy. Could the bala go in another tank? It might help that particular one, but then they might turn their attention to the remaining balas.

With the pleco, cories, and loaches, I'd also take a guess that there are too many bottom dwellers in the tank also. Anyways, if he's eating he's not a lost cause, but I would seriously think about getting him into a tank without the loaches. Have a nice day, Shannon

02-27-2008, 06:37 AM
Shannon, I will take your advice to heart and thin out the bottom feeders and I have already moved the bala to another tank. Also, since the water change, the nitrate has dropped although it is still somewhat high in all my tanks. No more fish are suffering at this point. Have a great day and thanks to everyone for their help with this one!!