Aquarium Forum
 


Menu
  · Tropical Fish Home
· Fish News
· Aquarium Forum
· Buy & Sell
· Calculators
· Equipment reviews
· Free Aquarium Ebook
· Feedback
· Link to us
· Photo gallery
· Plant species
· Tropica Plant DB
Tropical fish species
· By Common name
· By Scientific name
Tropical Marine fish
· By Common name
· By Scientific name

_________________
 
      
        Via paypal

  AC news is a part of
      Nature Blog Network

      Reef Aquarium Blog

Privacy & Ad Policy

Articles
  · African Cichlids
· Algae Control
· Aquarium Decoration
· Aquarium Resources
· Aquatic Plants
· Barb Fish
· Betta Fish
· Breeding Fish
· Catfish
· Central American Cichlids
· Cichlids
· Clownfish
· Corals
· Corydoras Catfish
· Discus Fish
· Dwarf Cichlids
· Fish Diseases
· Frogs and Turtles
· Goby Fish
· Goldfish
· Gourami
· Invertebrates
· Jellyfish
· Killiefish
· Lake Victoria Cichlids
· Livebearers
· Malawi Cichlids
· Marine Aquariums
· Marine Aquarium Fish
· Other Fish
· Pleco
· Predatory Fish
· Photography
· Pond Fish
· Responsible Fish Keeping
· Rainbow Fish
· Shark Fish
· South American Cichlids
· Tanganyika Cichlids
· Tetra Fish
· Tropical Fish Food
Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 21
  1. Default Help - Death everywhere


    0 Not allowed!
    So I have now lost 5 (at least) fish in as many days from my 36g. My stock is/was 12 neons, 10 rummy nose, 3 ottos, 2 black skirt (??? not 100% sure) tetras, 1 GBR, and 1 Bristlenose. Also somewhere around 8 - 10 assassin snails.

    In the last few days I have lost 4 neons, and 1 rummy nose. There are only 6 neons in the tank. This leave 2 neons unaccounted for, which I can't figure out. I may be off by 1 or 2 of the original total amount but still...I feel like there should be at least 7-8 if I only lost 4 (this is my fault for not knowing exactly I know, but I haven't had problems of this magnitude since I started the hobby several years ago).

    Anyway, most of the parameters were fine aside from a slightly elevated ammonia ~0.25 (perhaps from missing/rotting tetras somewhere?) also the pH seems a little high, around 7.6.

    The tank is medium-ly planted with a lot of driftwood, its very possible for something to go missing in there without me seeing it. I moved Oct 12th, and managed to not lose any fish. 1 week later (the 19th) I decided to add 5 neons, and then 1 week after that (this past weekend the 25th) is when this trouble began.

    I know there are a lot of variables here which makes it hard to figure out what's happening, but will appreciate any help you can offer. My cycle was left in tact during the move as I only moved about 15 minutes away, the filter was untouched and never allowed to dry, I saved almost 15 gallons of the original tank's water to use in the new place.

    At first I just blamed this on the neons having a tough time acclimating, which wouldn't be a first as they are not hardy fish. However, when I lost a rummynose today is when I became very concerned as I have had them well over a year, they survived a freezing tank during the hurricane Sandy blackout, so now I am worried as they are typically very hardy and I have not noticed any strange behavior.

    Yesterday, I came home to a dead neon being eaten by an assassin snail, today I came home from work and found my bristlenose literally ripping the dead rummynose into pieces, it was gross. First of all, is that normal?? (and perhaps where my missing tetras went?) Second of all, do you think someone (namely the GBR or one of the black skirts as they are pretty big, but I am not sure thats even the right species) is killing them off when I am not looking? I don't see how it can be blamed on water quality as its just 1 by 1, and many of the parameters came in with normal results. Please help :(

  2. #2

    Default


    2 Not allowed!
    As you say, there are a lot of variables, but here is my take on this.

    You probably lost some of your bacteria during/after the move - not enough for you to detect initially, but enough for it to be weaker than it normally would be (a few rotting neons in an established planted tank would normally not even register as an ammonia spike).
    And after that, I think it was probably one of two scenarios:
    1 - you added to the bioload too soon, before your filter was able to fully recover from the move/new water/etc, causing the ammonia spike that killed your neons/rummynose.
    2 - the neons you bought were sick/had trouble acclimating, and the dead nons caused the ammonia spike, which killed your rummynose.

    Either way, you will need to do water changes and keep a very close eye on the ammonia, and feed extra lightly for a couple of weeks (basically, you will need to follow the instructions for cycling with fish), and these measures should hopefully resolve the problem. Note that even though all the other paramenters appear normal, ammonia is by far the most toxic product of the nitrogen cycle, and a 0.25 reading can easily be fatal to fish that are already weakened by a recent move/ different water source.

    For your other question, it's pretty normal for fish and snails to scavange a dead (or dying) fish. While it is possible that the GBR or the larger tetras are being aggressive (could be a possibility since you only have 2 of the tetras, they would be more peaceful in a larger group), if you have seen no signs of aggression from either of them so far, I would definitely address the water quality issue first. 0.25ppm of ammonia IS a serious problem.

  3. #3

    Default


    1 Not allowed!
    My first thought was also connected to the move and the nitrification cycle, but this would rather surprise me given your data. Live plants generally handle this. I have moved tanks, reset tanks, etc. with new substrate and filter media and never had ammonia thanks to the plants and whatever bacteria/archaea lives on the wood. Your handling of the filter, etc should have prevented issues here.

    IF that supposition is correct, then we are left with the fish themselves. I gather we have four neons dead, and these are new acquisitions. Plus one rummynose. In my view, the rummy is just a casuality, fish do die; I've had 20+ rummys for 4 years and out of the blue one will die, maybe one in 5-6 months. The neons are more telling.

    This could be acclimation. Neons are very delicate; generations of commercial breeding have ironically weakened this fish to the degree that many aquarists won't even try it any longer. Were they quarantined?
    How do your water parameters (GH and pH) compare to the store's? You refer to the pH of 7.6 as a little high...what is it normally in this tank? What is the temperature in the tank?

    Byron.
    Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
    Vancouver, BC, Canada

    Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]

  4. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    I agree with Byron and Dizzy

    I ran into this type of problem a few months ago. Had 9 mickey mouse platy's in a 42 gal hex with two clown plecos. Medium density planted tank was cycled with out fish, had the platys in there for like 2 months (started with 6 but soon had 3 babies). I then purchased 4 emerald cory cats and after adding them to the tank, about 4 days later started noticing platys not doing well, starting doing pwc frequently, water parameters all tested fine, this was with liquid test kits. Soon I was finding one dead in the tank every other day.

    The only thing I could think of was that the cories had some type of pathogen and I didn't quarantine them long enough to notice. After losing almost all my stock I quarantined the cories and the plecos in two separate 10 gal tanks for 3 weeks and had to build the tank back up again.

    Most important lesson I learned was to quarantine any new addition to the tank for well over two weeks just to be sure everyone is healthy and safe. Looks can definitely be deceiving, esp. with fish.

    Anyway its been well over 6 weeks and the cories and plecos are healthy and happy back in the newly aquascaped 42 gal hex. I do miss my platys though esp. the little babies swimming in and out of the driftwood :(

    Hopefully this helps someone else before its too late.

  5. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Thanks guys. I hear what you're saying Dizzy and I guess I wasn't totally clear in the OP, the reading on the test kit wasn't a true .25, it wasn't a true zero either (as you know it can be difficult to tell) it was somewhere in between. There was at least 1-2 dead fish in there that I found today and the tank was due for a water change before the initial test. Subsequent tests have read zero. Nonetheless I will go light on the food a few days and do more frequent PWC.

    The other variable was that I also added an airstone and re-established my CO2 system all at the same time. The bubble stream from the air stone was pretty intense but I highly doubt it would be enough to kill anything. I thought maybe the co2 was impacting the pH readings but it comes out of the tap at ~7.6, I have no idea my GH/KH readings.

    I did not quarantine the new additions, and I never have quarantined anything before, I employ the float & dump method if it's from a LFS and float/net/dump store water if its from a big box store. This is the first time I have had anything seemingly "spread" from new additions to current stock however, so maybe I need to rethink things. Althought, I do agree sometimes fish do die, and so far only one rummynose has dropped. Also - typically I find that if Rummies are stressed, water quality is poor, they lose the bright red nose a bit, interestingly enough even the corpse still has its full coloration, which was weird. Same with yesterday's dead neon, in my experience dead fish lose their color very quickly. Not sure if this has any meaning at all.

    I don't really understand quarantine tanks, do you guys have fully-functional-empty tanks in your homes just for new stock and disease breakouts? Maintaining 1 tank is enough work and I don't add stock frequently enough (nor have the space in my apt) to justify keeping a separate tank fully functional and empty 99% of the time.

  6. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Setting up a QT tank is simple. Any small 10g (what I have) bare bottom I have a few plastic plants for comfort if needed. Essentially I fill it and get it to temp. I will buy some fish and bring them home. I place them in the QT tank. I add my bag of bio media from one of my other tanks to instantly cycle the QT tank. I have tons of bio media in my other tanks so I keep a small mesh bag of it isolated in the filters so it is ready when I need it. Note that you do not want to but the QT media back into the main tanks after you quarantined with it.
    Mike
    120g Mixed Reef In Progress
    120g Reef Journal
    55g Freshwater - Out of Service
    My 55g Tank Remodel Project
    72g Bowfront -Out of Service

  7. #7

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    i previously narrowed in on what I thought was the most likely explanation, and I still think it may be. But there are a couple of other issues here that might have some bearing.

    First, the Black Skirt Tetra, or Black Widow Tetra, species Gymnocorymbus ternetzi. Like all tetra, this is a shoaling fish so it needs a group. Six is usually recommended as the absolute minimum, but when space permits, more will always be better (this applies to all shoaling fish). When the fish is in smaller numbers, things can happen to it. Stress is the issue, and fish react usually by becoming more aggressive. And this species is known to nip fins and bully other fish, so when the fish is present in 1, 2, 3 or 4 this tendency can be heightened. Fish can sometimes be very sneaky about this. And they send out chemical signals, pheromones (read by the same species) and allomones (read by other species) which can be stressful even if not accompanied by actual physical interaction. You might consider either increasing the numbers (if you want this species) or removing them; and before deciding, be aware that this species is prone to nip sedate fish regardless, so tankmates have to be well thought out--no angelfish, cichlids or gourami.

    Second thing is the acclimation process. What you are doing has several serious issues. First, never ever put the bag water into the tank. There will be ammonia you don't want, but also pathogens from the store tank. Even if fish appear OK, they are still carrying pathogens. And these days many if not most stores have central filtration systems so the water is moving from one tank to another throughout, and pathogens from a totally unrelated tank can be getting in other tanks, and then into your aquarium. Always net the fish from the bag into the tank.

    But before doing this, you must mix the waters. Some fish might be tough enough to withstand abrupt changes, but tetra cannot. The parameters of the store water may be vastly different from your tank water. GH, pH, temperature and TDS (total dissolved solids) are all critical. Temperature is easily dealt with by floating the bag. This should be done before any tank water is added, so the temperature adjusts slowly; I usually wait 15-20 minutes. Measuring pH is simple to do; I don't usually measure GH, and never TDS, but I kow the TDS will certainly be higher than myh tanks. Once the temp is the same, add some of the tank water (use a cup or other container, never lower the bag into the tank water) to the bag, wait 15-20 minutes; repeat. I usually do this 3 times, adding 1/2 to 2/3 cup tank water each time, but more often with delicate fish. Some do this in a pail, and by drip. Either way is fine, but it must be done. Then net the fish over and discard all water in the bag/pail.

    Quarantine tank for new fish is very highly advised these days. I have been in the hobby for over 25 years. Until three years ago, I never quarantined. Aside from a couple bouts of ich, nothing ever went wrong. I may have been super lucky, but at the same time I do believe things are very different today. Over the past 3-4 years I have encountered protozoan problems that I previously never knew existed. Twice I have lost about half the fish in a tank because of introducing new fish carrying an internal protozoan. These are absolutely undetectable until the fish just dies. I learned my lesson. A microbiologist friend of mine in the US says that she too has noticed increased pathogens and protozoan in fish, especially those being commercially raised. Quarantining for 5 weeks is advisable; ich may be evident within 1-2 weeks, but protozoan take longer, and the death of the new fish may be the only clue.

    I have my tanks in a dedicated fish room, so it is easy to keep a 20g running all the time to use as a QT for new acquisitions. It is planted, with spare plants from the other tanks. A sponge filter, heater and light. I like this because new fish will be stressed, and adding them to a planted and aquascaped tank (it also has a piece of wood and a couple rocks) will settle them much quicker than a bare tank. The plants deal with ammonia, so there are no cycling issues. This is also useful if you acquire fish that may be very timid eaters, or fussy; the smaller space with just the one fish species allows you to monitor feeding better, adding more food to ensure they learn, and keeping things tidy. Something not possible in the main tank.

    Byron.
    Last edited by Byron; 10-30-2013 at 04:37 PM.
    Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
    Vancouver, BC, Canada

    Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]

  8. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Thanks for the detailed responses guys, I did not lose any additional fish so far (knock on wood) and I have solved at least 1 mystery - one of the neons suicided and was dead on the floor, looked like he had been there for a few days. I have never seen neons jump before, but that's better than another mystery death. I have been testing the ammonia levels quite a bit and have not seen any spikes, is there anything about the air stone that could have been a factor? I have also turned that off for the past 48 hours.

    The only reason I have only 2 skirt tetras is that I bought 3 of them a long while back, but they were the ones that had the neon engineering/injections (I have since become smarter and don't buy this kinda stuff, and I know they should be with 5+ at least). One of them just recently became thinner and thinner, and just slowly died. It seemed like he was being bullied by the other 2. Now I am stuck with two, I don't really like the look of the fish, but in the interest of maintaining the tank properly I may add some because I am noticing that they seem to chase other fish around the tank. My GBR also shows slight signs of fin nipping on the tail fin, which makes me not want to add more and just wait for these 2 to die. I have no way to remove them, I'm not going to establish a second tank in my apartment.

  9. #9

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by fishn00b View Post
    Thanks for the detailed responses guys, I did not lose any additional fish so far (knock on wood) and I have solved at least 1 mystery - one of the neons suicided and was dead on the floor, looked like he had been there for a few days. I have never seen neons jump before, but that's better than another mystery death. I have been testing the ammonia levels quite a bit and have not seen any spikes, is there anything about the air stone that could have been a factor? I have also turned that off for the past 48 hours.

    The only reason I have only 2 skirt tetras is that I bought 3 of them a long while back, but they were the ones that had the neon engineering/injections (I have since become smarter and don't buy this kinda stuff, and I know they should be with 5+ at least). One of them just recently became thinner and thinner, and just slowly died. It seemed like he was being bullied by the other 2. Now I am stuck with two, I don't really like the look of the fish, but in the interest of maintaining the tank properly I may add some because I am noticing that they seem to chase other fish around the tank. My GBR also shows slight signs of fin nipping on the tail fin, which makes me not want to add more and just wait for these 2 to die. I have no way to remove them, I'm not going to establish a second tank in my apartment.
    This is one of those dilemma. I would remove them, esp with signs of possible nipping of other fish; this can only get worse until the other fish become stressed and succumb. Increasing the group is not much better, as this species is a known nipper of sedate fish (like the ram). Any chance a local store would take them?
    Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
    Vancouver, BC, Canada

    Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]

  10. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by Byron View Post
    Any chance a local store would take them?
    Good question, I will visit one this weekend and ask, I will be adding some more plants anyway since they are the only thing I can seem to really do well with lately :D

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •