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Parrot Hanging At Top of Tank Nose Down

We have had our 4 parrots now for 2 weeks. They are so quirky and wonderful! We purchased some giant danios last week as dither fish and what a world of difference this had made. They now come to the glass and follow our fingers, and do the "feed me dance." Out of the four, one is still a bit shy ... but in two weeks their true personalities are shining through.

My question is .. last night we noticed one of them hanging at the top of the tank facing nose down near the heater. But then it will swim around with the other fish, eating normally, but then goes back to that area of the tank. This morning it was in the caves with the other fish.

We did a water change when we added the giant danios, the temperature is at 76 degrees. It ate just fine this morning and was swimming around the tank. It does not appear to be in any kind of distress.

Any ideas? I am so attached to these guys ... that I have become such a nervous mom! HELP!


i've seen parrots do this a lot. It's not impossible something is wrong with him, but it is likely that he is just trying to hide. When they are very small, their natural hiding behavior is to go nose down into a plant and imitate a leaf! They are very good at it - some of ours have actually fooled us sometimes into wondering where they had disappeared to. When they don't have anything else, they will hang near the top, particularly by the filter or whatever is there that they might conceivably blend in to.

Are there good hiding places in the tank?

Yup, the tank has several (at least 6) caves, but most of the time all 4 are huddled together and hanging out in funny ways (sideways, upside down, etc.) It only seems to go hang out at top when the light is on. Figures since I wrote the post this morning it has not hung out at the top at all. It is currently swimming around with its 3 friends right now. I was just curious. It has a great appetite, gets along well with the others, snuggles up with them, etc. Its color is great, no signs of distress, water tested fine, and temp is perfect. Thanks for your reply. PS It must know I am "talking" about it, its cute little face is staring right at me!!!

I think thats perfectly normal behaviour considering they are new in your tank. Just a quick question since how long has this tank been established. Since you mentioned you recently got your livestock the probability is the tank has yet not cycled and it does not have enough good bacteria yet.

I would suggest you keep performing a 25% water change for the next 2 weeks every 4 days if possible.

Also keep the tank temp a lil high at around 78 / 80 Deg. Since your Danios are new ....there is a possiblity there might be a ich outbreak and this might just be the first signs of it.

As i always suggest and parrots seem to love a bit of salt in the water. Add abt 1 Tble per 10Gal.

Feed only twice a day. Do not over feed. Add some when the lights come on and some just before the lights go off.

Also please post your water parameters.

hope this helps

Nash, thanks for taking the time to post. My husband and I are seasoned aquarium owners - we have a 90 gallon community tank and a 100 gallon cichlid tank (complete with pairs mating and lots of babies growing up). We are new with parrots and just love their quirkiness. This tank was properly cycled, we have performed weekly water changes, all our tanks have salt in them, and no signs of ick. All the fish have thrived in the 3 weeks we have had them... this one parrot seems to like to hang out on top here and there ... otherwise it is just fine cuddling with his friends, eating, etc. Thanks again for your response.

Hi, I'm new to this fish adventure only getting into it in the last 4 years or so. I have two medium parrot fish that I got on a sper-of-the-moment ordeal. They were very timmid never coming out, even when I fed them. I was very worried that they would starv to death. So I went and got two loaches, seeing as I figured I could use some good bottom feeders to eat all the access food. Well would you know it, my two little orange and pink shy ones came out of hiding and eat and even chase the loaches. I keep my water at about 80 degrees and they seem to enjoy that.

I bought two parrot fish and the tank appears to be empty. They are hiding at the top near the filter. I am dissapointed as the two I used to have were a blast to watch. Unfortunatley they went to fish heaven. I dont know what happened but I killed two tanks of fish I have had for 5 years. I did a 30% water change and the fish began to act funny by evening time. by the next day they were all dead. what a sickening feeling. I have well water so there should have been no chemicals to deal with and I asked neighbors if they had added anything to the well ,and can find no reason this should have happened. But on to the new fish. They are hiding and I am hoping they will come out and play like the old ones.
I am going to try adding salt ,wich I didnt know they liked .Maybe that will help?
Yesterday I put two tiger barbs in to see if I could get them out chasing and it worked for one time around the tand back to hiding they went.
Will they ever be like my old ones or was their behavior unlike most? they seemed to be very playfull swimming upside down and backwards.

Give it sometime and let it settle in ur tank...they will have a blast as well..