Above: Shown in the picture above is a premium quality Bala Shark. As you can see, it's shiny with yellow fins that are trimmed with jet black edges.
This fish was about 3" long and swimming in one of our aquariums, when one of us snapped this picture.
Origin: The ancestors of our Bala Sharks originally lived in the Malay Peninsula, Sumatra, and Borneo, but now they're raised on fish farms and found living in aquariums throughout most of the world.
Maximum Size: In aquariums they can grow to be about 14" long, which is too big for most home aquariums.
We estimate that a few of them would need an aquarium with at least 240-gallons of water, and bigger would be better.
Behaviors: this fish species is a very active swimmer that's not aggressive.
It's important to always keep their aquarium tightly covered, because Bala Sharks are very skillful jumpers.
Compatibility: Some recommended tank mates include, Rainbowfish, Clown Loaches, Danios, Barbs, Gouramis, and many other medium size aquarium fish.
Click here to read more about compatible groups of pet fish.
Temperature: Balas can live pretty well from about 70 to 80 degrees F., but they're probably most comfortable at about 75 to 78 degrees F.
Click here to learn about aquarium temperature, aquarium thermometers, and aquarium heaters.
Feeding: Premium Fish Food Flakes when small and Premium Pellet Food when larger.
Click here to learn more about and shop online for premium fish foods.
Water Conditions: Bala Sharks seem to be tolerant of a wide range of water conditions.
Probably a pH of about 7 with moderate hardness is best.
Most water in the US has a higher pH and is harder but seems to be OK, so it's probably best NOT to adjust the pH or the hardness of the water.
Here in our facilities the water is hard and the pH is usually about 7.8.
We ship them in this water.
Click here for a lot more information about aquarium water conditions.
Aquarium Size: When young and less than 3" long, it's probably best to house them in at least a 30-gallon aquarium, but bigger is better.
Later when they grow bigger, they'll need a much bigger aquarium, probably bigger than most aquarists have available.
Decor: Bala Sharks do not need gravel, and a layer of gravel more than 1/4" thick will usually fill with bits of uneaten food that will contaminate the water.
Click here for more about aquarium gravel.
Live Plants: are beautiful and improve the water quality.
Bala Sharks enjoy live plants.
Click here for more about live Aquarium Plants.
Aquarium Filter: Bio-Wheel Filters are highly recommended. A Penguin 200B Filter in an aquarium with 30-gallons of water is OK, when they're small, but a Penguin 350B Filter is the right size for a 30 to 60-gallon aquarium.
When Balas grow to be over 10" long, they'll need to live in aquarium with at least 150-gallons of water and have have as many Penguin 350B Filters as will fit along the back edge of the aquarium.
Click here to learn more about aquarium filters.
The addition of Lava Rocks will keep nitrates in the ideal range.
Click here to learn more about using Lava Rocks in aquariums.
Life Span: Bala Sharks live for several years and possibly many years with excellent water and premium food.
Gender: It's not easy to tell the males from the females, when they're young, and sometimes even as they mature.
As females mature they often fill with egg and become plumper, which may be a clue to their gender.
Breeding: Bala Sharks scatter a large number of eggs on plants or special breeding mops made of nylon yarn.
But because of their large mature size they rarely spawn in aquariums.
Popularity: Bala Sharks have been one of the most popular aquarium fish for many years, and they're still very popular.
Names: The scientific name of the Bala Shark is Balantiocheilos melanopterus.
Variations: We know of only one type of Bala Shark and no variations.But there is another very rare species in the same genus.
Click here for a lot more information about keeping and caring for Bala Sharks, including a picture gallery.
We hope you've enjoyed reading these comments.
DrT - 01/02/2015
We have 380-aquariums with lots-and-lots of popular aquarium fish plus lots-and-lots of rare fish!
We consider ourselves to be the link between the world's best sources of fish and the world best customers. We love our work, and we are very responsible.
All of our fish are Premium Quality Fish from the best suppliers in the world. Our fish have better health, more energy and brighter colors, as you can see in our pictures on this website.
We also offer lots and lots of information about keeping pet fish, all from the knowledge of the Bailey Brothers, who have a combined total of 100+ years of experience as breeders, wholesalers, and retailers of pet fish!
Our fish and our customers are treated with the best of care, and we work energetically everyday to make sure every customer enjoys their new fishy friends.
When you purchase pet fish from us, you know you're receiving premium quality fish and premium quality service.
"Received my fish last night and was so pleased! They all arrived alive and appeared to be healthy.
"Once in the tank, they became very active and are now thriving in their new home.
"Beautiful fish, I asked for color and aquariumfish delivered. Processing and shipping was extremely quick."
Nevin and DrTom, the Bailey Brothers
This website is owned and operated by the Bailey Brothers, DrTom and Nevin, who've been together in the fish business for more than 50-years.
The Product Manager has been with the company for more than 35-years.
So we feel very confident that this is the fishiest crew anywhere.