Glofish do not school

potatos

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Hi,
I hate to have to bother you guys with all my petty questions, but google has turned up nothing, and i emailed the glofish website, and they told me they had no idea and to go to a vet, lol.

I have 9 glofish, 4 red, 2 green, and 3 yellow. they do not school at all, but go off and do their own thing in the tank, ocassionaly giving chase to eachother. they dont even swim that much, they just lazily drift around, but do not zip around in a tight woven school like i thought they were supposed to. they are always spread out, and sometimes dont even shoal, they are usually not facing the same directions. they seem to enjoy being in the general area of eachother, and occupy the same side of the tank, but theyre is always one or two seperated. the ones together do not face eachother or turn with eachother.

what would cause this? is it because they are different colors, and do not associate with eachother? I added two rams and two pearl gourami, which i hoped would intimidate them into schoolong, but the rams and gourami are almost as lazy (they move more than the danio!)

my water conditions are great, i do weekly gravel vacs, 30% WC, feed a varied diet with frozen bloodworms, brineshrimp, and high quality flakes. They used to breed, but recently have not been producing babies (i also have not been feeding the frozen treats, which i suspect is the cause) anyways, they never schooled, even when they were breeding, so this is irrelevant, sorry.

Any ideas? they do not form the stunning rainbow school i was hopeing for when i bought them, and am very disappointed. Maybe this is just typical of zebra danio? idk.
Thanks
 
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bass master

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thats how my zebras have always acted, I wouldnt really consider them a true schooling fish like tetras, but they do like the company of other zebra danios and will sometimes form a loosely grouped shoal, most of the time they just kinda scatter around the tank and do as they please
 

kreuztraeger

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I have 9 glofish, 4 red, 2 green, and 3 yellow. they do not school at all, but go off and do their own thing in the tank, ocassionaly giving chase to each other. /// Maybe this is just typical of zebra danio? idk.
Thanks
Perhaps the aquarium trade, the relative safety of the fish farm, and genetic engineering has "unnaturally unselected" the schooling trait out of the commercially farmed species? It's possible that they were designed to not school, since schooling offers some degree of protection and a possibility of mating in the wild, and nobody likes invasive species.
 

ppate1977

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I just think some danios get comfortabe and don't resort to schooling because they are not in danger. Don't do this, but I bet knocking really hard on the glass to scare them, and they would school right away.
I had glofish with mollies, guppies, and neons once; and the danios (glofish) always schooled.
 
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potatos

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Thanks for the replies. I do not think they were selectivly bred not to school, the only modification made was the additional DNA. The fish would probably not do well anyhow in the wild due to their unnaturaly bright colours. The glofish coustomer service seemed as confused as i am, but i noticed the same thing in the pet stores tanks.

I was thinking it may be due to the lack of threatening fish as well, and i hoped the pearl gourami and rams would resolve this, but they have not. They do school when i do water changes and everyone is panicking, but i think they only do this because they really have to and are very scared. do you think the different colours have something to do with it( perhaps an all red or all green group would school?)

were your schooling glofish all one colour?
 

Meenu

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I've had regular danios, and they never schooled (but in my tank, even neon tetras don't). I think it's normal.
 

sirdarksol

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From the sound of it, zebra danios are really more of schoaling fish, rather than schooling fish. They like to have others of their kind around, but they don't move as a cohesive unit. There are a number of tropical fish like this, such as guppies and cories.
 

ppate1977

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In my experience danios of any sort only scool when threatened. They mostly chase eachother around. I doubt the is anything to be worried about with your glofish (danios) beahvior.
 

FLGirl

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The only time I remember my danios really schooling was when I first got them...they only stayed together a little bit till the seemed to be comfortable with the new area but they don't avoid each other and are always on the move they are sometimes together but not a tight school by any means lol. I think your danios are prob happy... I think it would be kinda mean to get another fish to scare them into schooling when they are happy....they are still a cool fish, I hope your not too disappointed. Good Luck!!
 

jetajockey

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The CPDs I have shoal together but that's it. The gkiwlight danio (d. Choprai) group that I recently got still school tightly. When feeding they will dart for food but immediately back to the group. They aren't scared, they are some of the largest in tank. Even the smallest of cherry shrimp sit out on the rocks.
 

kreuztraeger

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It's probably a natural trait for the z. danio to have some independence. You're right, they probably weren't selectively bred to not school. But - I know they say the inserted jellyfish gene only makes them glow under the right light source - I can assure you that by changing its physical characteristics, you are probably changing its behavior as well. It might avoid schooling because it associates bright light with danger, and since they glow, they might be scaring each other from schooling together.
 

kreuztraeger

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In my experience danios of any sort only scool when threatened. They mostly chase eachother around. I doubt the is anything to be worried about with your glofish (danios) behavior.
This is true at least in my experience. Sometimes when I show up next to the tank my zebras will seek each other's company.
 

jetajockey

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there are many different types of danios available nowadays so that should also be kept in mind. I wouldn't say that danios in general are non-schoolers, just that the famous zebra is a non-schooler.
 
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potatos

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It's probably a natural trait for the z. danio to have some independence. You're right, they probably weren't selectively bred to not school. But - I know they say the inserted jellyfish gene only makes them glow under the right light source - I can assure you that by changing its physical characteristics, you are probably changing its behavior as well. It might avoid schooling because it associates bright light with danger, and since they glow, they might be scaring each other from schooling together.
they only glow under black lights when the room is completly dark. under normal light, they are just brightly coloured.

Darn, i guess they arnt schooling fish then.

i dont even need them to school, i just want them to swim around more. they seem like they are trying to do as little swimming as possable.

do you think that adding a few regular zebra danios would help? perhaps they could entice the others into joining into a school or to schoal with them?

thanks for the replys
 

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They aren't schooling because of your tank size. In a 30 gallon they are all within visual distance of each other so wherever they are they are basically in a loose shoal or school. If you put them in a larger tank they will stick together. I've had zebra danios in a 125 gallon tank (about 25-30) and they schooled.
 
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potatos

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i got them in groups of threes about two weeks apart, starting in thanksgiving. i can not afford a larger tank, so if that is the case, i can not do anything. So it seems to be the general concensus that their different colour has noting to do with the lack of schooling? And their is noting i can do to prompt a school? ( i was considering slowly transitioning to an all red school or something)

i also do not have a very strong current. perhaps they do not feel the need to swim because they wont be pushed around by the water if they remain still? everyone talks about how hyperactive and energetic they are, but mine are very docile and swim the minimum amount

Are there any tight-schooling fish i could add that zebra danio would school with? (rummy nosed tetra?)

recently, they have also stopped breeding. i used to find fry in every water change bucket, but i have not found any for a month.

thanks for the replys
 
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Treefork

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Wasn't saying you need a bigger tank, was only saying, basically they are close enough that they feel safe already because the feeling is that they are in a school already.

Don't know about the swimming part, they are usually very active fish. Maybe because the coloring comes from inert corals they take on that trait and just sit still. I Dunno.
 
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potatos

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Glofish as well as regular danios should be very active top swimmers
I know they should be, but they are not, which is what i am trying to figure out. I would be happy of the moved, they dont even need to school.

Two of them just died. I found their bodys during a water change.


EDIT: I have put several of my observations together that may help with a diagnosis. The ones that died we not very active, and had slightly curved tails. I have two that do not eat, and both of which are not active. The ones that are the most active eat the most. They seem to have stopped breeding, or greatly decreased in breeding. I used to find about 50 fry in my waterchange bucket, and i have found none recently. the female that i think has been the mom many times has stopped eating, is not active, and has not swollen with eggs in a while. I used to call her Miss Piggy, because she had an unrelenting appitite, but she has not eaten in a while.

Several of my fry have had spine deformaties, which i attributed to rough handeling from being sucked through a water change syphon, and them removed from the bucket with a turkey baster. several have kinks in their tails, one of wich is sevear, with a depression in the back behind the head, which inhibits its swimming and he resides among the java moss. I have contemplated euthinizing this one, seeing as he has great difficulty swimming or finding food. perhaps some of these symptoms are unrelated.

Can fish TB show without skin leisions and with minimal spin deformations in adults? Lethargy, lack of appitite, and death are symptoms, all of wich they have. How can i know if this is it? IS is common or rare? hopefully i am just getting ahead of myself


thanks

EDIT #2: My female ram now has a sevearly swollen abdomen, and is resting on the gravel. I optimistically hoped she was egg bound, untill i saw her attempt to swim and go careening into the walls, then drift back to the bottom. IDK if it is related, but everything is going wrong
 
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