Basic Advice

Are Your Fish Acting Funny? What Fish Behavior Can Tell You About What’s Going on in Your Aquarium

Have you taken a look at your aquarium only to notice your fish is acting weird? Fish can’t talk, so spotting weird patterns of behavior is your best bet for identifying potential problems in the tank before these become an issue. Here are some common things to watch out for:

Changing eating patterns—poor appetite may mean your fish is sick or under stress. Watch for leftover food floating around the tank so you can identify this problem.

Red streaking on the skin or gills—a potential sign of ammonia poisoning. There is no cure for ammonia poisoning, so take care to avoid it by doing proper tank cycling.

Hiding, or showing aggression—these may mean that your fish is either experiencing bullying or it itself is being the bully.

Off-balance swimming or floating—could signal a potential intestinal obstruction or swim bladder infection.

Scratching on things—if you see your fish trying to rub up on other objects (this is called “flashing”), it may have a parasite issue affecting its scales.

Gasping at the water surface—may mean that you have insufficient oxygen content in the water. Check your air filter to make sure it’s working properly.

And remember, your aquarium monitoring tools are another way to watch for potential problems, before these even become an issue for the aquarium inhabitants. If you do notice any strange fish behavior, or have any questions, don’t hesitate to call Blue Planet Aquarium’s 24/7 emergency hotline at (773) 774-FISH.

About Jon Wolf

Servicing Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana & Michigan, Blue Planet Aquarium Services has been the most trusted name in aquarium design, installation and maintenance since 1999. A company large enough to be dependable but small enough to still watch out for your best interests, Blue Planet is the only company to call if you are planning to install an aquarium or have one maintained.