Having tiger barbs in your fish tank has the potential to be very satisfying. These are neat fish that you’ll likely enjoy observing.
If you only just recently added tiger barbs to your aquarium, you might still be getting used to them. Perhaps you’re even worried if they’re adjusting to the tank properly.
When these fish seem to hide all the time it’s going to cause you to worry. What makes tiger barbs want to hide?
Keep reading to learn about some of the reasons why tiger barbs hide. It should give you some insight into what’s happening with the fish.
1 – They Might Still Be Getting Used to the Tank
If the fish are still relatively new to the tank, it might not be anything to worry about at all. Many fish are shy when they get added to a new aquarium.
It’s common for fish to hide when they’re not yet used to their new environment. Give it another week and see if they adjust and stop hiding so much.
Sometimes when you don’t acclimate the fish properly it will make them take longer to get used to a new tank. This is why it’s recommended to float the bag before putting the fish in a new aquarium.
The basic idea is to float the bag that the fish come in on top of the water in the fish tank. You then cut the bag open a bit so you can add water from the tank to the bag slowly.
After approximately an hour of removing water from the bag and adding water from the tank, you’ll be ready to introduce the fish to the tank fully. This helps them to have an easier time feeling comfortable in the fish tank.
2 – Stress
Another possibility involves the fish being stressed. Tiger barbs might become stressed for a number of reasons.
If the conditions in the tank aren’t appropriate for tiger barbs, they’ll have a tough time. This might stress the fish and cause them to act strangely.
Perhaps the water temperature isn’t right or the pH balance might be off. It could even be related to the size of the fish tank.
You must be sure that the tiger barbs have enough room to thrive. They don’t do well when forced into tanks that are too small for them.
It’s also important to know that these fish do best in small groups. The best thing to do is buy six of them at once.
If you only have one or two fish, the tiger barbs in your tank might be stressed and insecure. Try to see if anything in the tank is stressing the fish so you can fix the problem.
You want to do your best to maintain the tank to prevent stress issues. Be sure to clean the tank regularly and do normal water changes.
3 – Bullying
Bullying might be the cause of certain fish hiding. Sometimes tiger barbs will get bullied by the dominant fish in the school.
These schooling fish will fight from time to time to establish the pecking order of the school. Typically, the bullying won’t be too bad, but something could have gone amiss.
There have been situations where tiger barbs have bullied smaller and weaker tiger barbs to death. This doesn’t always occur, but it’s something to consider.
Other fish in the tank could be bullying the tiger barbs, too. If you put the fish in a community tank without researching the compatibility of all of the fish in the tank, you might have a problem on your hands.
You always want to ensure that all of the fish in the tank are compatible. If they’re not, it could cause some of the fish to get hurt or killed.
4 – Sickness
Does the tiger barb that’s hiding seem sick in any way? You might want to look at the fish and try to determine if something is wrong with it.
Pay attention and note any symptoms that the fish is exhibiting. If the fish is sick, it might be separating itself from the group due to being weak.
Catching illnesses early will give you the chance to treat them. If the fish is sick, you should be able to come up with a treatment plan after determining what is wrong.
Diagnosing the issue might not always be simple. Most will choose to look up common illnesses and try to match up the symptoms with what the fish in the tank is experiencing.
You could also reach out to an exotic veterinarian. However, most shy away from this idea due to not wanting to spend the money on vet bills.
5 – The Fish Are Just Sleeping
Tiger barbs sleep in a sort of funny way. They usually sleep in groups, and they line up vertically.
When they do this, they like to hide in the plants or really close to the plants. It makes them feel more secure when they feel as if they have cover.
You might have simply caught the fish while they were sleeping. These fish are light sleepers and will generally start moving if you approach the tank.
If all of the fish appear to be lined up vertically, it might be that they were just sleeping or resting. Perhaps you have nothing to worry about at all.
Your tiger barbs could be hiding for various reasons. It might simply be that the fish aren’t used to the fish tank yet.
In this case, you might need to give the fish a bit more time to feel comfortable. Stress might also cause fish to hide more than usual or act strange in certain ways.
Bullying might cause fish to hide. A tiger barb might hide due to feeling threatened by its tank mates.
It’s important to research tank mates to ensure compatibility. You should also check to see if the fish might be sick in some way.
Hopefully, you can do some troubleshooting and figure out what’s wrong. Use the information above to try to get to the bottom of the situation.
Jeff has always enjoyed having pets, but as a child, he was drawn to his family’s fish tank. Being able to maintain a small ecosystem and observe the behaviors and interactions in the underwater world peaked his interest early on and has kept him hooked until this day. On Avid Aquarist, Jeff shares everything he’s learned about helping aquatic life survive and thrive in a home aquarium.