Bala Shark Problem

Charbonne

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ED47CF94-F2A1-4ACA-86B1-6A9C5681D651.jpeg 58549EA8-ACE5-429D-A7D4-7693005A9659.jpeg 74510C3B-9825-4399-BD2B-4563DD405F97.jpeg
I have a problem with my bala shark. Originally it was in a smaller tank, but recently I moved it to a larger tank along with another to give them more room. However, when i went to transfer them, one jumped out of the bucket I was transferring them in and floundered for a few seconds before I returned it to the bucket. I disn’t notice anything at first, but a day ago I realized it’s missing its jaw. I have no idea how it happened, as nothing i could tell would have caused anything like this.

Currently my tank parameters are:
pH: 7.0
Ammonia: 0
Nitrites: 0
Nitrates: 0
Tank size: 30 gallon

Yes I know these fish get quite large, but this is merely a tank they are in until they get larger. I’m just worried that what happened to my bala actually did destroy its jaw and that I would have to kill it to end any suffering it might be experiencing. It is currently in a quarantine net to prevent any further injury.
 

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Jerrod Grant Robker said:
Looks to be swimming sideways and upside down. I'd put him in my garbage disposal and send him on his way. No, really.
That's extremely inhumane, you should never do that.

Charbonne said:
View attachment 436846 View attachment 436847View attachment 436849
I have a problem with my bala shark. Originally it was in a smaller tank, but recently I moved it to a larger tank along with another to give them more room. However, when i went to transfer them, one jumped out of the bucket I was transferring them in and floundered for a few seconds before I returned it to the bucket. I disn’t notice anything at first, but a day ago I realized it’s missing its jaw. I have no idea how it happened, as nothing i could tell would have caused anything like this.

Currently my tank parameters are:
pH: 7.0
Ammonia: 0
Nitrites: 0
Nitrates: 0
Tank size: 30 gallon

Yes I know these fish get quite large, but this is merely a tank they are in until they get larger. I’m just worried that what happened to my bala actually did destroy its jaw and that I would have to kill it to end any suffering it might be experiencing. It is currently in a quarantine net to prevent any further injury.
Hello! I am quite sorry for this sickness.

Firstly, you have a way to small a tank to contain a Bala Shark, which needs a small school and a tank of 125 gallons or more.
I do not see anything wrong with your tank, that's not the issue. I personally do not know how to treat this fish, but if it is missing it's actual jaw, meaning the entire bone is gone, it'll never recover.

If that's really the case, then I wouldn't hesitate to euthanize this fish.
 

Rtessy

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Is there any way you can get a clearer picture? Believe me, I know how incredibly difficult it is, even with a sick fish. Especially with a stressed fish. Is he swimming sideways/upside down? If so, the swim bladder is likely damaged, I know that happened to one of the King of DIY's arowanas, he has some videos on treating that, but I don't know the title... also he never figured out quite what happened and his arowana did pass. However, you do know what happened so there may be a chance. From the pictures (sorry my eyes are pretty good but not the best, a little color blind with darker colors, so I'm just having trouble seeing what's what) but is the area you're talking about on the underside of the jaw? About how large would you estimate it to be?
 
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Charbonne

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Fanatic said:
That's extremely inhumane, you should never do that.



Hello! I am quite sorry for this sickness.

Firstly, you have a way to small a tank to contain a Bala Shark, which needs a small school and a tank of 125 gallons or more.
I do not see anything wrong with your tank, that's not the issue. I personally do not know how to treat this fish, but if it is missing it's actual jaw, meaning the entire bone is gone, it'll never recover.

If that's really the case, then I wouldn't hesitate to euthanize this fish.
Yeah, that’s why I wanted someone to take a look and get a second opinion. And yes, I do know the size requirements for balas but currently mine are 1 1/2 inches long. I just figured I wouldn’t worry too much atm until they’re bigger.

Rtessy said:
Is there any way you can get a clearer picture? Believe me, I know how incredibly difficult it is, even with a sick fish. Especially with a stressed fish. Is he swimming sideways/upside down? If so, the swim bladder is likely damaged, I know that happened to one of the King of DIY's arowanas, he has some videos on treating that, but I don't know the title... also he never figured out quite what happened and his arowana did pass. However, you do know what happened so there may be a chance. From the pictures (sorry my eyes are pretty good but not the best, a little color blind with darker colors, so I'm just having trouble seeing what's what) but is the area you're talking about on the underside of the jaw? About how large would you estimate it to be?
CF06D532-EB98-4366-97C8-80410EFBB6F3.jpeg
That’s probably the best I can do, I couldn’t get a clearer image without holding it still for a moment. Also, he seems to be swimming just fine, it’s when he stops that he goes sideways.
 

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If he goes sideways when he stops, he still probably damaged the swim bladder to some degree. For right now, I'd just keep an eye on it. It's a good sign that it only happens when he doesn't have forward momentum. I'll be honest, I've never had balas, and I haven't had that particular injury happen. That being said, it looks like the rest of his jaw is in the proper place. That part missing likely won't grow back fully, there may be some regrowth of the skin, but the bone won't regrow. Currently, I think you have three main issues. The first is food; if he can still eat, I wouldn't jump to euthanize, and he may recover. Where are their teeth located? I know they aren't true sharks, do they happen to have any like in the back of their throat or something (sorry I'm a goldfish person, goldfish are kinda weird)? The second issue would be a bacterial infection, so I recommend large water changes every day or every other day for a few weeks to prevent that. Thirdly is the supposed damage to the swim bladder, but the other two are more important I think.
 
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Charbonne

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Rtessy said:
If he goes sideways when he stops, he still probably damaged the swim bladder to some degree. For right now, I'd just keep an eye on it. It's a good sign that it only happens when he doesn't have forward momentum. I'll be honest, I've never had balas, and I haven't had that particular injury happen. That being said, it looks like the rest of his jaw is in the proper place. That part missing likely won't grow back fully, there may be some regrowth of the skin, but the bone won't regrow. Currently, I think you have three main issues. The first is food; if he can still eat, I wouldn't jump to euthanize, and he may recover. Where are their teeth located? I know they aren't true sharks, do they happen to have any like in the back of their throat or something (sorry I'm a goldfish person, goldfish are kinda weird)? The second issue would be a bacterial infection, so I recommend large water changes every day or every other day for a few weeks to prevent that. Thirdly is the supposed damage to the swim bladder, but the other two are more important I think.
Well, he seems to be eating fine as the incident that would have caused it happened a couple of weeks ago, that's why when he started swimming sideways I decided to investigate. Also I'm not sure where his teeth are either, though a good guess is that they're on his jaw, I think, maybe? I tried looking it up, but nada.
 

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If he's eating, I actually wouldn't worry about it. Was he swimming sideways directly after the incident or was that more recent?
 
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Charbonne

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More recent, like the last two days recent. Before that, he was swimming just fine.
 
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