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Main Index > Detailed Fish Profiles > Cyprinids > Bala shark
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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




Balantiocheilus melanopterus


Your comments:


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: Pete
I've had my two Bala Sharks for about a year now, and both are great fish in the fact that they are easy going, non-agressive fish and are very adjustable to varying conditions in my tank. This may seem deplorable to fishtank owners, but I don't even bother to check my fishtank's ph and hardness, though it is naturally close to 7 due to the fact that I'm using well water and not town water. I keep my tank at around 80-82 degrees F., a 30g. Tank (soon upgrading to a 55g.). The bala's have always done well, but recently I've begun feeding all my fish a mix of tropical flake food and brine shrimp flake food and the colors on the balas have become so much more apparent with the addition of the brine shrimp. The black bands on all fins have dramatically thickened and darkened, and the middle parts of the tail and dorsal fin have gone from clear to a dark orange.
From: Seth
I have been surprised by the rapid growth of my pair of sharks, especially since the demise of one of the 3 male angelfish that share the 55 gal community. I plan to move the remaining 2 angels to a smaller tank and I really expect my sharks' growth to take off. I've observed 1/2 inch of growth in a manner of days. They are now just over 3 in. and the tank has been established for 5 months.
From: Dunxy
I have a little theory as to the strange swimming the Bala's are always reported to do. I have 5 from 2-4 inches long, they lived in a 10 gallon tank for about a month, they always did the weird swimming during and after feeding time and I just assumed as everyone else had this was normal for them. I have now upgraded to a 90gallon tank and they have been in there for around 2 months and have grown considerably, they no longer do the bizarre rubbing and swimming all over the tank though! My bet is they only do it when in TOO SMALL of a tank! Trying to muscle each other out, they were always losing scales etc. in the small tank! Anyone with these do yourselves and the fish a favor by giving them a suitable tank NO LESS THAN 4 FEET LONG! Sure they can survive in a 10 gallon tank, but even when very small they will not be happy!
From: Ryan
I have had 8 bala sharks for about a month now. They are very fun fish to watch. They are energetic and curious fish. They seem to eat anything I put in the tank but go nuts when I put brine shrimp in. Their colors really stand out too with the bright silver body and jet black fins

From: Rick
I have four balas about 8" long, and one is 15 yrs old. They are great fish, and very sharp in knowing who's outside the tank.

From: Emory
I have had three since may 2001. I have since put in a power filter and this acts as a current that they can swim against. My tinfoil's like this too.

From: Benedict
They are very energetic and peaceful fish but do cover your tank as they tend to like to jump.
From: Orlean
I have 2 bala shark's and they've killed 7 neon tetra's. But they are cool to watch but they tend to use your small fish for appetizers
From: Ben
I had three sharks, one died suddenly, no visible disfiguration or signs of illness. Only clue was one of them did try to jump and smacked it's head pretty hard. Could this lead to death about two days later?

From: Ryan
I've had two bala's for about six months now and I've put angel fish in with them and they love it. I have a eclipse filter system the they love to swim against. There also very acctive fish.

From: Mary
My one Bala has outlived all my other fish being that a roommate put 4 inch leaches in my tank for food, idiot. I have had him close to 2 years and because he is alone he is quite aggressive and uses a 30 gallon tank.

From: Tdog
I have 2 Paradise fish who don't bother any of their other tank mates, but they just seem to hate the Bala sharks I introduced. I ended up having to take the sharks out.

From: Martin
I have two Bala Sharks, one is about 3 years old and the other is about 2 weeks old. They are very quiet and non-aggressive fish but when I changed my bala to the other aquarium that I bought he fell of the floor

From: Christine
I bought a bala shark yesterday and put it in the tank with about 11 small assorted fish. He seems very unhappy. Swimming around frantically and then just laying on the bottom. Hopefully he will get used to the environment soon.

From: Brea
Bala Sharks are schooling fish. They are happiest in groups of 3 or more. Thought this might be a helpful hint for you :0)

From: lynore
When I bought my 2 1/2 inch bala shark. I was under the impression that it would only grow about 2 more, but after reading these articles I think I need to get a bigger tank. Taking donations ha ha......

From: Stephanie
I bought 3 Bala Sharks & they grow like "whoa"...They still freak when I enter the room although I've had them for approx. 3 months. I have no clue what I'll do when they grow too big for the tank, because my tank is only 10 gallons.







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