Animal Stories - Silver-tipped Shark


Animal-World Information about: Silver-tipped Shark

   Though this is a very attractive fish and fun to observe, the Silver-tipped Shark or Shark Catfish gets rather large, up to 14 inches (36 cm) and needs several companions. This equates to a rather large aquarium!
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Charlotte - 2012-06-08
Hi can anyone tell me why my shark cat fish are losing the black off them and are just silver now, bit worried as 1 died few days ago from white spot which I've treated and the 2 are clear of it. Wondering if it could have anything to do with the treatment I put in the water. They are also not eating like they usually do lots of?  

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  • Jeremy Roche - 2012-06-08
    Check your amonia levels.
  • Desiree - 2013-05-09
    they are called silver tip sharks and there also called columbian sharks.. i have had a few of them they do loose there black when they get older hints the name silver tips. they also do way better in a brackish water. they do eat differently when they get older.. hope this helps you
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Soumaya findlay - 2012-11-24
Hi can anyone help I brought a Catshark two weeks ago its seems to do most of it's swimming once the light is off when light is on it mostly sits lays in the same corner moving every now and them, Is this normal

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  • Clarice Brough - 2012-11-24
    These fish don't tend to settle down until their environment is right. As in your example, if they are uncomfortable they will tend to stay in a corner, often near a filter. This fish is quite lively when young, and can be kept in freshwater for awhile, but as it ages it will need an increasingly more brackish, even marine environment.



    They are not difficult to keep as long as they have the proper tank setup. They are nocturnal, predatory, and migratory fish. This makes them very active, especially at night. They need a good sized tank with a large filter that creates a good current. Provide them with some caves for hiding, a dark substrate, and subdued lighting. They grow rather large, reaching at least 8' (20 cm) in length, and are a schooling fish, so its best to keep at least three.



    The tank should have a turn over rate of about 8x's the water volume, and about 10-12 times a day. As they mature this species requires a high salinity brackish water. They will need a specific gravity of 1.010 or above to keep them healthy. Start with a bare minimum specific gravity of 1.005 and slowly raise it. Use a hydrometer to measure the salinity and use only marine aquarium salt, not aquarium salt.
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KatiJ - 2012-08-25
I bought two silver tipped cat-sharks a few days ago. They were acting quite erratically, swimming side to side in the tank bouncing off of the glass. When I left my house this afternoon both fish were doing fine and ate with my other fish as usual. When I returned home a few hours later, they were both upside down at the top of the tank. One of them was clearly dead, and the other was laying there twitching quite a bit (kind of looked like a seizure). So I removed them from the tank and looked closer. The one fish looked pretty much normal aside from looking like it had a loose piece of skin here and there, and a small hole on the top of its head, nothing that looked really violent like an attack from another fish. Then I looked at the second one, it had a beige-ish looking semi see through substance on it, also there was a hole on the top of its head between its eyes like the other fish but it was ragged looking with the weird substance on it. Their nostrils looked a little beaten up from hitting the glass also. I tested the PH, Nitrite, Nitrate, and Ammonia levels: all were normal except the PH and Ammonia. I checked the PH this morning and it was 7.5 ppm, then it jumped to 8 ppm. and the ammonia was at 4 ppm. I have no idea what happened here and I know its a lot of information, but any help would be greatly appreciated.

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  • Clarice Brough - 2012-09-17
    I'm guessing they were sick when you got them... possibly a parasitic infection.
  • The Cat - 2012-10-29
    The hole in the head is probaly hole-in-head disease. But the other things I don't know.
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Anonymous - 2012-08-23
I have one of these sharks, my son bought him 18 years ago when he was only 3' long, in a 10 gallon tank. Now he went from a 10 gal, to a 20 gal, to a 55 gal and now he is in a 75 gal. tank. From 3' to 24 plus' now. No other fish can be with him, can't have anything in the tank with him ( plants, rocks, etc. ). Have pumps that pump 160 gallons a hour, change 5 gallons of water every other day. Change 6 filters every week. Great fish but one problem, every so often he gets frightened and goes crazy in the tank, water goes every where. Thinking about letting him go in a river, getting tried mopping water up.

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Sarah - 2012-07-27
Was wondering if they can eat fresh liver?

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  • Jeremy Roche - 2012-07-28
    Some will take fresh meat.  But it will dirty your tank and any meat that isn't finished can cause issues in the tank if not removed.
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Pete Gold - 2012-03-02
I'm new here sorry but can someone give me some advice...
Started up my new Aquarium with the intent on getting Malawi Mbuna. Got the special live sand and got some starter fish to get the eco system going. 4 Giant Danios 2 Plecos
and 4 small ST Sharks. Two days now. Sharks are NOT doing well and one is dead. LFS guy says Ph too high at 8.0 this web site indicates these guys can do ok in this range???
No Amonia 0.0, Nitrites 0.0, Nitrates 0.0... Temp is 76-78F
Used API Master test kit... Water hardness - do not know at this time
It is a new tank but used the LIVE SAND and Bio Clear additive as well.... I see no reason to start cycling water YET as no abnormal water tests? All other fish dong well...
ANY IDEAS FAST? HELP!

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  • Jeremy Roche - 2012-03-02
    Did you put them in all at once? May need to add some veggies to the tank since it's not established yet. The Live Sand you used, was it for fresh water? That could be an issue if it were Marine Live Sand.
  • Anonymous - 2012-07-16
    Check your salt levels! This happened to me, my ST shark was not eating and my salt was too high. As babies, they are more brackish then salt. Keep the salt around 1.016-1.020. let him get used to the salt. As the ST shark begins to grow, up the salt levels to 1.020-1.025.
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Tasha - 2012-07-09
Okay, totally new about this. So my boyfriend and I decided to get a ten gal tank for my sons room, thinking he would love it. (He does btw) but when we got it, I had already had a tadpole (unknown species & bought from petstore) and a snail (which was found at the lake). We had them in a one gal bowl and really needed to upgrade. So we went to the petstore because we wanted new fish.. Well we left with a fish that looks just like the catfish, or the guy called it a 4 tail shark catfish? Anyways, and two comets.. The guy didn't tell us the catfish needed salt or fresh water? But they are all doing great, all get along fantastically, but should I worry if the catfish will eat/kill any of them or if he/she will hurt them? I mean like I said they get along great so I don't feel like I need to worry.. But I'm not even sure if that's what it is, AND how do you know if it's pregnant or just plain fat?!? I'm worried, I don't want babies!! Haha but really I just don't know & hope someone can help me!!!

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  • Jeremy Roche - 2012-07-10
    This fish will end up out growing the tank.  Not really the best starter fish.  I would return it and start with mollies, guppies, platties or sword fish.  If you plan on keeping it plan on upgrading again.  They are pretty cool fish.  I would guess it is just plump!  They are sensitive to water condition changes and like a little salt, but that wouldnt be good for tadpole.
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Daniel - 2012-07-02
What sound I do if my silver-tipped shark stoped eating the pellets I feed him?

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  • Jeremy Roche - 2012-07-02
    try flake, bloodworms. or may be some live shrimp.
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Linda - 2012-06-26
My husband wants to get this type of fish and I've been doing some research on it. I pretty much know most of what I need to. However, I was wondering if someone could tell me exactly which fish would be good to go in a tank with it? As in the specific names of the most compatible fish.

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savannah - 2012-06-22
I just got one of these from wal-mart and didnt know anything about them. Its about 3 inches and is in a 10 gal tank by itself with brackish water. Will it survive in a 10 gal tank?

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  • Jeremy Roche - 2012-06-22
    Yes but will out grow the tank fairly fast.
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