Baby Sun Cat Behavior

Zak03

Jack Dempsey
Original poster
MFK Member
Dec 23, 2018
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PNW USA
Hey, I have a baby sun cat in a 40 gallon tank (will upgrade when he grows older). I did a water change today, and rearranged the rocks/decor, although keeping them in the same general area.

PROBLEM: The sun cat keeps "freaking out". Swimming frantically against the back glass wall. Other days, he just enjoyed swimming throughout the entire tank, sometimes quickly, sometimes at a nice leisurely pace. But now he just swims back and forth (sometimes up and down) quickly against the back wall. The other fish, (2 baby oscars and 2 dino bichers) seem completely undisturbed.

This isn't constant though. He would swim frantically for some time, and then go and hide for a while.

I think it's because I rearranged the tank decor a bit, but I'm not so sure because my other fish aren't behaving out of the norm.

Is there anything I can do help calm him down?
 
Last edited:

moe214

Goliath Tigerfish
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Oct 13, 2014
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Sounds like someone’s bullying the sun cat to me of it’s truly frantic but if it’s just fast swimming, you could just have an active one. You’d be surprised how small changes we make, make big changes in behavior
 

Zak03

Jack Dempsey
Original poster
MFK Member
Dec 23, 2018
121
57
36
18
PNW USA
Sounds like someone’s bullying the sun cat to me of it’s truly frantic but if it’s just fast swimming, you could just have an active one. You’d be surprised how small changes we make, make big changes in behavior
I doubt he's the one being bullied cause the other fish seem to swim away from him when he gets close. I've already seen some nicks on the fins on my Oscars, so I believe a pecking order has already been established.

I don't know for sure if it's frantic or just fast swimming. He swims against the same wall, back and forth when before he would swim throughout the entirety of the tank.
 

moe214

Goliath Tigerfish
MFK Member
Oct 13, 2014
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Could be learning how to beg for food if it's in the area you drop food in most
 

thebiggerthebetter

Gold Tier VIP
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Dec 31, 2009
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Naples, FL, USA
It's hard to say how bad or benign this might be. At the face value it sounds strange but not unfathomable. Pangasidae are especially known for this behaviour and Horabagridae are related to them.

I'd think it will get used to the new setup and calm down but if not or if it bothers you, you could switch back to how the furniture had been or could paint the back wall of tape black paper to it or some such. Sometimes fish do that when they want to escape and they feel they could swim through the glass if only they find a passage. They don't' realize there is no water behind the glass.

Needless to say the basics must be in check - the water tests must read zero ppm of ammonia and zero ppm of nitrite by an API liquid test and the water must be well aerated and the pH, hardness, and temp stable.
 
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