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FAQs on the Freshwater Minnows called Sharks Identification

Related Articles: Freshwater Minnow SharksBala or Tri-Colored Sharks, Redtail Sharks, Redfin Sharks, Black Sharks,

Related FAQs:  Minnow Sharks 1, Minnow Sharks 2, FW Shark Behavior, FW Shark Compatibility, FW Shark Selection, FW Shark Systems, FW Shark Feeding, FW Shark Disease, FW Shark Reproduction, Bala or Tri-Colored Sharks, Redtail Sharks, Redfin Sharks, Black Sharks,

two silver sharks have started swimming against the current of my pump together. Species?  - 10/09/10
I have two silver sharks in my tank along with about 5 guppies, and a nursery with a baby guppy inside.
Recently, my two silver sharks have started swimming against the current of my pump together, circling each other.
They do this for quite a long period of time, a few times a day. any ideas what it is their doing? Thanks.
<Are these Bala Sharks or Colombian Sharks?
Both are called Silver Sharks, which confuses matters. Bala Sharks need lots of space and tend to be sensitive and neurotic if kept in tanks smaller than, say, 100 gallons. Colombian Sharks are brackish to marine fish that won't ever do well in freshwater tanks. Even in brackish or marine conditions they are very active fish being migratory animals in the wild, and need at least 100 gallons and realistically 150, 200 gallons to look their best. In short, more information will help track down the problem here. Cheers, Neale.>  

FW minnow sharks  - 01/24/06 My fiancée wants to start a fresh water tank, and like most he is looking for sharks.  i have a freshwater tank which is 29 gal. I believe.  Now he does not want to go crazy like most he would be happy with something that grows a couple inches.  He eventually wants to invest in a 180 gal tank but that won't be for a while yet.  What would be his best choice of shark to start with?  If you can help me persuade him in the right direction instead of a head ache in the future please let me know. <There are no marine sharks that stay less than feet in length. There are a number of "minnow sharks": http://wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/minnowshks.htm Bob Fenner> thank you Tammy Tri-color/Bala Shark Hello  My name is Matija and I just got a tri color shark. It is about half an inch big and I was wondering how big is it going to grow, if it is going to grow. Also what kind of food should I give to it. I have gold fish food and people in the pet store told me that that food is fine. also if you can give me some tips on what should the temperature of the water be and how often should I feed it. Thank you very much and I hope I will hear soon from you. Matija <Thank you for writing. I wonder if this actually is what most folks call a "Tri color shark", aka Bala shark (Balantiocheilus melanapterus)... as the very small size at retail surprises me... This minnow-like fish (same family as your goldfish) does get quite big in the wild... a couple of feet, though rarely half this in captivity (most jump out onto the floor when no one is around to put them back in the tank, so keep your tank top completely covered!). This "shark" actually needs more meaty, high protein food than your goldfish, and I would at least supplement its diet with a tropical fish staple food... fed at least twice a day. Some frozen, defrosted foods like brine shrimp (best fed in the morning) would be good for it and your goldfish as well.  The temperature is a bit tough to accommodate both the goldfish (which are cooler water) and the tropical "sharks" but something in the low to mid seventies should be good for both. Set your aquarium heater thermostat to around this (have your parents help here, it's a bit tricky). Be chatting. Bob Fenner>

Freshwater Sharks?  Really Cyprinids - 08/18/2005 Hello Wet Web Media Crew, <Hello, Mark; Sabrina with you, today!> First of all I would like to thank you for the time you have taken to respond to this e-mail. <You bet.> I just purchased a 90 gallon tank from my friend. The tank is in great condition. I am looking to find a freshwater shark, and I was hoping to find some options. I have been doing a lot of research today on freshwater sharks. <I have to assume, if you've been researching, that you know that there are no such true sharks that exist solely in fresh water....  And that the cuties that we refer to as "sharks" (balas, rainbows, red-tails) are actually Cyprinids. Minnows, essentially.> I have read about the small species such as Bala sharks and redtail sharks. <Balas are by no means small, easily capable of reaching over a foot in length.> However, I am interested in getting something larger, but small enough to fit in a 90 gallon tank. <Balas are perfect.> I was wondering if there are any types of freshwater sharks that can fit and live in a 90 gallon freshwater tank. Thank you very much. <See here:   http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/minnowshks.htm  and also here:  http://www.fishbase.com/Summary/speciesSummary.php?ID=6089&genusname=Balantiocheilos&speciesname=melanopterus .  A small group of balas would be ideal.> Mark <Wishing you well,  -Sabrina>

Shark Question... I bought what was described as a banded shark (fresh water) from my local aquarium centre. He is currently living in a small tank (about 31L) with 3 goldfish and is about 3 - 4 inches long. I have checked the internet for info on this species to find out more but can't readily identify exactly what it is. I found an article on the Hi Fin Banded Shark which looks similar but appears to grow much bigger Any ideas exactly what it is, how big it will grow and therefore what tank size I would need. Regards Christopher Marks <This may be the same species of Hi-Fin Banded Shark just young... the dorsal elongates with age/growth... or another of the Minnow family (Cyprinidae) that is similar looking, related closely or no... If you have time, enough interest, scroll through the MANY cyprinids listed and images associated with them on FishBase.org... a large pot of coffee or tea might help. Bob Fenner>

Myxocyprinus asiaticus asiaticus "China Shark" 7/29/04 Hello. I recently bought a fish called a "China Shark". It has a sucker mouth, is freshwater, about 2 inches long (juvenile?), black with white vertical stripes not unlike a tiger barb (except for color), and a dorsal fin very much like an Orca whale, and is peaceful in my community tank (50 gallon long). I know I should have researched about it first before purchase like I have hundreds of times before in the last 20 or so years of this hobby but the fish was stunning and was kept with non aggressive fish in the store.   I just can't find any info. Can you help? Thanks. < I think you have a Myxocyprinus asiaticus asiaticus. They get over two feet long an prefer cooler water like goldfish. They do come from northern China and are not too particular on the chemistry of the water.-Chuck>

Myxocyprinus asiaticus - Chinese Hi-fin banded shark (FW) 10/8/03 I'm at work so I can't take part in a chat room.  E-mails are acceptable.  I have two banded sharks (yesterday there were 3).  Not sure why I lost the 3rd.   I've had the first one about 10 weeks; the others maybe 5 weeks. I have found very little information on them on the net.  I would like to sex them to know if I have two of one or one of both sexes.  They are going to a club show Saturday and I need to know how to classify them besides egg layers.  I know they get really large in the aquarium but I need more information to help them grow that large.  Linda Lou Corwin   :-) <the scientific name of your fish is Myxocyprinus asiaticus. Do use this name for a search on fishbase.org and abroad on the net to find an amazing amount of information on the species. Be sure to follow the many small links at the bottom of the fishbase page for this species. Much on reproduction, foods, natural conditions, etc. And FWIW... this fish grows to an enormous size. Best regards, Anthony>

ID of a friend's fish Hello,    I've got a identification question of a friend's fish that will probably be pretty easy for you guys--I just haven't run into this type of fish before in my freshwater fish experience.  The attached photo is a picture of my buddy's fish, it's about 5 inches long living in a 30 gallon tank.  I appreciate any help you can provide. Sincerely, Shay Harrison <It's one of the "shark-minnows" called a Black Shark in most places... Labeo (formerly Morulius) chrysophekadion... and it gets MUCH larger. http://www.fishbase.org/Summary/SpeciesSummary.cfm?ID=12102&genusname=Labeo&speciesname=chrysophekadion Yep, ninety cm.! in the wild... times four cm./in... that's three feet! Keep that tank covered as they are great jumpers. Bob Fenner>

Black Shark Gage- you're right.  I finally found a less "mature" photo of this fish and that is definitely what I have. ( http://species.fishindex.com/species_2904labeo_chrysophekadion_black_shark.html)  I guess I better hurry up and get the big tank cleaned up and set up!  Sounds like from the description, it should be content with a couple of convicts and the smaller fish.  It also explains the jumping to escape in the beginning.  Thanks for the help! Shel <Yes, and plan for a larger tank in the future, with good water quality and proper diet he will be a monster in no time.  If the Convicts are much larger than him they may pick on him, just be prepared to separate them if things get ugly.  fishbase.org is also a good place to find info on these fish.  Best Regards, Gage. >

Black sharks.... hey, I just bought two black sharks, <Oh my....  are they all black, or do they have red tails?  The all-black ones are Labeo chrysophekadion, 'the' black shark, the red-tailed ones, Epalzeorhynchos bicolor, are usually sold as 'red-tailed black shark'.> how do you tell the sex of them? <For either of these, the females will be a bit more rounded in the belly, and the males may have slightly longer dorsal fins.> and how big of a tank do you recommend for them? the store told me a 3 gallon tank so that's what there in but it seems kind of small.. <Uhh....  Well, the store that sold them to you seems to have wanted to make a quick buck - the red-tailed ones get nearly five inches in length, which is far too large for a three gallon aquarium, I assure you!  But if you have the black shark, Labeo Chrysophekadion....  The black sharks get nearly three FEET long.  This is one fish suitable only for HUGE tanks - you could fit a couple 3g tanks IN one of these fish, rather than the other way 'round.> please e-mail me back and let me know.. thanks <My biggest recommendation, whichever species you have, is to take them back and get something that stays significantly smaller.  I have a three gallon tank with a few very small livebearers and a couple cherry shrimp; I used to keep a Betta and the shrimp in there.  You could also try white cloud minnows, if you want a few small schooling fishes.  There really are a lot of options for small tanks - but black sharks, unfortunately, aren't a great choice due to their size.  Wishing you well,  -Sabrina.>

Big fish, more info Yeah, they're black sharks, not red tailed ones .. thanks for the help in answering those questions, the people at the petstore didn't seem like they knew what they were talking about at all.. <All too common an occurrence - please research future prospects before buying them, then you'll know ahead of time what you're getting into.> also.. how do you breed black sharks? .. <Well, being that this fish gets three feet long, and won't likely breed until it's quite a bit larger than what you've got, you'd first have to start with an enormous tank, possibly hundreds of gallons.  However, to my knowledge, there are no documented cases of this fish being successfully bred by hobbyists, so it's rather unlikely that they'll breed for you, even in the best of circumstances with a properly sized aquarium.  Here's some more info on them, from fishbase.org:  http://www.fishbase.org/Summary/SpeciesSummary.cfm?genusname=Labeo&speciesname=chrysophekadion   thanks <Wishing you well,  -Sabrina.> Balas are cyprinids Are you serious about the (Bala sharks) being (fresh water minnows)? <Yes, they are> Cause I have a Bala shark of my own and he actually does look like a minnow.  I was also wondering if when it gets older if I could feed it feeder fish. <Not suggested> I hope you right [write] back, I would really like to hear back from you and you could give me more advice that you know and I don't. <Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ See the Google search tool? Put the term: "Bala Shark" in it... Bob Fenner> 

Silver tipped "Shark" Ok we were misinformed when we bought two "sharks". We were told they were freshwater and would be just fine in our tank with goldfish, spotted catfish and various "sucker" fish. We are very immature fish folk. Will these poor "sharks" die in freshwater? And if they need the salt, then we should get a separate tank most likely, yes? <Mmm, what you have are very likely minnow-sharks... cyprinid fishes that look "shark-like"... they are freshwater, not marine... and some are cold/cool water species, that can/do get along with goldfish (which are cool/coldwater minnows/cyprinids... Take a look on WWM here: http://wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/minnowshks.htm.  Do you see your shark? If not use the search tools on fishbase.org and Google... with the terms "silver shark aquarium"... and see if you can find the scientific name for your fish and go back to fishbase.org and plug in this name. This will get you information on the habitat of this species. Bob Fenner><<Turned out to be an Ariid Catfish... please see the root/Marine web re. RMF>>

Unknown shark Help! I have a shark fish that was bought for me.  It was bought at Wal-Mart and I don't know what to feed it, or it's living conditions.  Help me to figure out what kind of fish it is.  thanks. < Go to fishbase.org and I am sure you will find you shark in the galleries.-Chuck><<... they'll be looking forever... see WWM re



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