Planted Tank Enthusiast
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Blaine, Minnesota
You didn't mention the size tank here, but adding a couple 3-5 barbs more might help a lot. I've got about 10 tiger barbs and they all get along just fine, ignoring everyone else in the tank. My tetras are fine and my fire mouth chidlids with flowing fins and leisurely swimming habits don't get nipped.
The idea of a large shoal is so the aggression is spread around; with lots of fish, no single one will take the brunt of the chasing / nipping.
And yes, that 45 degree angle (head down) swimming position is normal for most T.B.'s ... I don't know why they do that, possibly from inbreeding(?) or deformed swim bladders ++shrug++