5 gal FW with fish won't cycle + ick??
On 3-13 I set up a 5 gal FW tank (HOB filter rated for 10 gal tank) with 1 betta (he'd been in a small bowl and posts here made me realize I needed to get him in a bigger tank). Since he hadn't been in a filtered or cycled tank I figured I could cycle the tank with him in it and he'd still be better off than in the small 1/2 gal tank.
3 live plants. water temp a steady 79F. I have not touched the filter media and am running 2 cartridges in the filter.
anyway ... Doing PWC when ammonia hits .5 - (about every 3 days). I test water daily for Ammonia and Nitrites and weekly for Nitrates (api kit) So far no nitrites or nitrates. have never added bio boosters or other chemicals. am very careful not to overfeed. treat water with conditioner prior to filling
On 3-26 I had to add 3 guppies to the tank (had previously added them to my 30 gal b/c I thought the 30 gal was cycled. turns out it wasn't so I got them out of there to relieve the bioload and put them in the 5)
Things were fine even though nothing had happened on the cycle except for unknown reasons the male guppy died 4-14.
On 4-23 I had to move a dwarf blue gourami out of the 30 gal and into the 5 b/c he showed signs up stress (that tank is finally experiencing a nitrite spike)
On 4-24 the gourami was glancing on the rocks and plants all day and darting around wildly so I did a 70% W/C and dosed the tank with Mardel Coppersafe that night figuring the stress had given him Ick. He seems fine now, but today one of the guppies is now glancing.
Reading are 0/0/0.
any thoughts on what might be happening with the guppy and if there's anything I should do?
Should I be concerned that the cycle doesn't seem to be progressing? It's been 6 + weeks since I started
A brief line of questions
1. Do you see anything that looks like grains of salt on any of the fish?
2. Did you treat the water going into the tank with a dechlorinator product?
3. Did you read any articles on fish cycle?
If you see any grains of salt looking objects on any of the fish, then you have Ich.
If you didn't use a dechlorinator on any of the water going in, your cycle likely is dead if your water contains any chlorine.
I would highly recommend reading the following articles in my signature line. The Fish Cycle and the Fishless Cycle by Lady Hobbs, as well as Fish 911 by me and Fish Diseases by the AC.
In addition, I believe your a bit rushing to judgement. Things take time to grow, even a bio filter. Make sure your treating your water for Chlorine, and then be patient and test. In my opinion, 0.5ppm Ammonia is stressful, but not liquid death. It should be ok to let that get to 1. 70% w/c's will likely stop your cycle dead in it's tracks.
Last edited by bignellm; 04-26-2012 at 04:37 PM.
Hi. thanks for the reply. I was already into this before i found the forum and got educated. Next tank will cycle fishless. I've received a huge and wonderful education since thanks to this forum and am trying really hard to be a good fish keeper.
To answer your questions:
1) no grains on the body that I can see. Just the glancing which is accelerating.
2) yes - I always treat the water
3) have read ALL the articles :o) - just too late to stop what was already in progress. I have your fish 911 copied to my desk top :o) BTW
But I am a bit confused by your comments so please bear with me. I thought .5 was the max I should let my ammonia get to before a w/c. You're saying 1 is okay? If so, I will absolutely hold off.
Also - was also under the impression that W/C did not affect the cycle as the bacteria is in the filter media not the water. Where is my thinking wrong here? Not challenging you - I really appreciate your reply - I'm simply trying to learn so I don't continue to make mistakes.
BTW - I generally do a 50% W/C, again, B/C I thought I read that on smaller tanks more diligent care is required.. Only did the 70% 2 days ago because I wanted to treat the tank for possible ich or velvet.
thanks again for your help
Last edited by fishmommie; 04-26-2012 at 04:52 PM.
In blue, are my suggestions, sorry caught in editing, lol.
Originally Posted by bignellm
Just maintain a steady bio load, no more fish adding.
Keep up the testing, you will want to keep some Ammonia to build up the bio-filter, not starve it. I've done this with Ammonia levels from 0.5-2ppm before. But keep in mind the higher end is fairly dangerous. 0.5-1ppm is stressful and likely doable.
The glancing and flashing is the fish's way of saying, this sucks, something's wrong. In a 5 gallon with a Betta, it's the tank is too small and they all feel crowded, likely.
So, don't add anymore fish. Consider maybe taking some of the Guppy out.
If no salt objects, congrats, no Ich outbreak.
Why did you "have to" first move guppies into an uncycled 30 gallon and then into an uncycled 5 gallon and then "have to" do the same thing with a gourami?
You need to stop buying fish so these tanks can cycle and THEN add fish. I would not allow ammonia to get over .25 myself and I'd be doing daily water changes if it did.
I was curious why fish were moved to and fro from your tanks as well. Are you moving them, b/c they suddenly look sick in one tank--so you move them?
Daily water changes is going to be a reality as Hobbs stated. In a 5, with what you have, your going to be spiking more than 0.25. Though 0.25 would be way easier on your stock. I know from exp. Guppy can take a bit more punishment, just don't know about Betta.
Lady Hobbs - I only bought more fish when we had decided my 30 gal cycle was complete. That's when I added the guppies and the 3 cories and the baby pleco. Then it turned out the tank wasn't cycled - so I moved them to the 5 thinking I was taking take the stress of the 30 tank. I have bought no fish since.
I moved the gourami because he was listless and constantly hanging at the top for the water gulping for air. he's a little guy and once got caught in the vacuum hose and I think it's made him a little weaker. It looked to me like he was going to die if I left him there (he'd stopped eating too) so I moved him to the 5. He came around right away - until he started glancing. Now he's fine again.
I'm sorry if I'm frustrating you.
My responses under your quotes in red.
Originally Posted by fishmommie
Bignellm - it looks like both of our posts crossed. thanks again for answering.
What happened in your thirty gallon is normal. I think you may have just had an ammonia bloom from adding new fish.
Originally Posted by fishmommie
I would stop moving fish around. It has to be really stressful on them going from one tank's conditions to the next.
3 Gallon Planted Betta Tank
4 gallon planted Aqueon Evolve Dwarf Puffer Tank