Recently stopped by a new (a few months old but wasnt aware it existed) fish store very local to me (10 minutes or so). Fell in love with their catfishes so i set up a 50G and redid my 75G and moved the stock to the 50 (actually a 46 bowfront). For the 75, i got 4 bala sharks,an albino polypterus, a peacock bass, a 3" or so pleco, and a channel catfish. Yes, i know they will outgrow the tank.
I have a few questions:
1) For some reason, the bala sharks just hide which i find odd because i had them in the past and they were fine. They seem to have some discoloration on them (like lighter silvery blotches lighter than their normal color). I dont know if thats normal or they got sick when i put them in the tank 2 days ago? I Also just looked and couldn't find one but am hoping that its just hiding somewhere and that it didnt die and the catfish ate the corpse or something. I'm not exactly new to fishkeeping and know what to look out for and i think the discoloration has to do with their behavior but i dont know what it is. They wont even come up for flake food when i feed them. They are around 3" or so, i'd say. Maybe 2.5".
2) What is good to feed the catfish and peacock bass and polypterus? I tested a few foods so far and it seems like noone likes floating cichlid pellets. The catfish actually ate veggie rounds for the plecos and such, but i bought it sinking carnivore rounds instead which are going to arrive in a few days. The polypterus ate quite a few sinking shrimp pellets made for cory's and catfish and such and seemed happy with that. Haven't had much luck with the peacock bass. Tried freeze dried krill and my girlfriend (even though i made it clear i want to try and get him on a diet of other stuff and only supplement with fish as i am against feeder fish; seems messed up to me) threw 2 feeder fish in there which i know he ate at least 1 of. The other is MIA so someone ate it.
I was thinking of trying to breed black worms in a little plastic bin. Throw and airstone in there and a few pieces of veggies and some gravel and see what happens. Is this a good way to get some food? Was hoping to do it to feed a few a day to these guys for nutrition other than prepared foods as well as some other tropical fish i have as treats.
3) What other fish can i put in there to help make things more lively once i get everything sorted out? There is very little activity and it sucks :/. Catfish is hiding in his cave, pleco and polypterus just kinda hang out unless its night time and so dark you cant see them, and the bala sharks are acting funny and hiding. I'd say its because they are afraid of the bass but this cant be true as the bass is only a teeny bit bigger and doesnt seem to bother them. They also gladly float around outside of cover, they just stay on the bottom of the tank and dont do anything. If they were afraid of it id think theyd also hide in some sort of cave or something.
Added Question 4)
Im not the biggest fan of feeding live fish, but will do what i have to. I was looking into breeding my own fish for long term savings. Was considering either livebearers (guppy's) or some types of worms. Going to give black worms a shot i think and see if i can get a decent colony of those going. Could feed em to all of my fish so thats a bonus. Any suggestions or anything of the sort?