2 fish dead... in my new aquarium. - Page 2 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #11 of 17 Old 09-14-2009, 12:23 PM
Byron's Avatar
Joshheat25, please do not get any more fish. They will only die. Your tank has to be cycled, and that takes anywhere from 2 to 8 weeks. The fish are dying because they are poisoned by the ammonia, and if they survive the ammonia the nitrite (the second stage of cycling) will get them.

Don't add more fish.

The best thing, aside from the suggested partial water changes daily, would be a biological supplement as someone else suggested. I have no experience with TopFin but from the product details I would not recommend it. It contains chemicals and few bacteria according to their fact sheet here Top Fin® Bacteria Supplement - Water Conditioners - Fish - PetSmart
Seachem's "Stability" is pure bacteria, and there are others like Bio-Spira and API's Stress Zyme. Nutrafin's "Cycle" also works, although not as live bacteria, but I have used it. I favour Stability.

You also need to reduce the amount you feed, if you see it on the bottom. This food decays and that also produces ammonia, and as yet the bacteria have not established themselves in sufficient numbers to handle it.


Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

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]
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post #12 of 17 Old 09-14-2009, 09:01 PM Thread Starter
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Thanx byron, yea I should of read your post before I went to the store....:( bought 1 little tetra and a cory cat today. I bought a tetra because they seem to be doing well and the other 2 look like they need a friend! and the cory cat to clean the bottom. I don't plan on buying anymore for a while. I also bought an api test kit. it is the 5 in 1 aquarium test strips. I did the test and teh General Hardness in ppm is around 30 and the Carbonate hardness is around 40 ppm. The Ph is 6-7 in that range and the Nitrate and Nitrite are both zero.

Also another question for you guys. In Regards to my heater. I have a hydor Theo 100w heater. I also have two 15w lightbulbs in my tank and in my room it's probobly 70-75. I have the heater turned down to 71 and my in tank thermometer reads 78-82. something doesn't seem right. I don't think the bulbs are heating the water up that much. Either the Temperature gauge on the heater isn't calibrated or the thermometer isn't right. something is up... I might buy another thermometer to double check the one I have. The light on the heater isn't consistently on.

EDIT: I just held the thermometer and it reads 98 and a half for my body heat.... so maybe the lights are heating the water that much and the heater is only coming on every once in a while.... I guess in the winter time when it's colder in my room the heater will come in handy?

Another question do you guys leave your lights on over night?

Last edited by joshheat25; 09-14-2009 at 09:13 PM.
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post #13 of 17 Old 09-14-2009, 09:16 PM
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first off...if you didn't open your test kit...return it for a API Master LIQUID test kit....strips are unreliable and give false readings, so stay away from those....just about everybody on here uses the API Master Liquid Test kit.....

secondly...to reiterate what Byron said, please do not buy any more fish.....please. The ones you did buy the tetra and your cory cat need to be kept in shoals of at least 6...anything less than that and your fish will be stressed out, which is bad for their health....so again, when it's time....you need to up the counts of those fish...but you will quickly be overstocked for a 10 gallon tank.....so if you wish to keep all the fish you currently have, you'll have to think about upgrading....

and lastly.....You said your heater light is always on....your thermostat on the heater is set to 71....you know your themometer must be ok....because it registered your body heat....chances are it's your heater...it may be over working and gving you a false reading on the thermostat...i'm not positive but i do not think to 15 watt light bulbs would raise the temp in your tank 7 to 8 degrees....maybe something to look into....

hope some of this helps you out!!! but definetly try and return your test strips for the liquid test kit
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post #14 of 17 Old 09-14-2009, 09:37 PM Thread Starter
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yea I wasn't too happy with the setup using the strips.. and questioning how accurate the results are by the slight variation in color... As for the fish I don't plan on buying anymore untill the tank cycles. yea maybe I should look into fluorecent bulbs instead of incandescent? I alaready opened up the strips so I am just going to have to bite the bullet on that one... and buy the other kit. if I didn't use any strips I'd return it.

I turn the light off at night, and I wonder if the heater is being underworked. and the temperature reading on the heater isn't based off an internal temperature gauge but possibly calibrated for heating a certain sized tank. more than likely the second one.

Thanx for all the help. As I am new to this and am trying to learn. :)
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post #15 of 17 Old 09-14-2009, 10:07 PM
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All good advice that was given, but I think it needs to be said again, and I will reiterate...

Don't use salt. It's not good. At all. What it says on the box is marketing targeted to people just like you, newcomers to the hobby. I won't go so far to use the word fraud....but you get the idea.

We've all been there just starting out, it's quite a bit of information and knowledge to absorb at once. Don't get discouraged, we all have to learn somehow, and even the most knowledgeable people on this board probably learn more every day. It's why we're all here.

Good luck with your new tank, and fish. I hope you enjoy getting into this hobby, it's a lot of fun, but it is work and it takes time and certain preparations/research. Everyone here is really awesome, they've been an amazing source of info and help...I started out knowing next to nothing too, and had similar problems with guppies. Welcome to the forum btw.

Two fish are in a tank. One says to the other "So, how do I drive this thing?"
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post #16 of 17 Old 09-15-2009, 10:29 AM
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Good suggestions from prevous responders, so I'll just follow-up on a couple of things.

First, the heater. A 100w heater is probably overkill on a 10g tank; I would see if you can exchange it for a 50w heater. Most stores will do this; after all, they want your continued business. Heaters have a thermostat mechanism and you can set it; some have numbers, others just a dial, so some experimentation is required to get it at the right setting. Start with a lower setting and work up, not the other way; at this time of year the room will not be cold enought to cause any problem until the heater is set. In a normal community aquarium you want it around 77-78 F. Make the adjustments slowly, waiting an hour or two between to allow the heater to set itself. The pilot light is on when the heater is operating, and off when it is not. If it is constantly on, and the water is warmer than 78F, turn the nob down slightly and wait an hour; then again if needed, until you get it adjusted.

Incadescent lights do give off considerably more heat, and fluorescent would be good. However, that's an expense you may not want to undertake, so consider getting the compact fluorescent screw-in bulbs instead of regular incadescent bulbs. The CF give very little heat, and more light for less wattage, and use less power to do it; benefits all round. And yes, the light must be off at night. Fish don't need light at all, it is there only for your viewing (and to grow plants if that is wanted). But a reguar schedule is best, wth at least 10 hours of total darkness. Leaving lights on continually will severely stress the fish, leading to outbreaks of ich and other health problems.

The liquid test kits are more accurate, but at this stage I wouldn't worry about the kit you have; it will work for your purposes. But when its used up, next time get a liquid one.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

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]
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post #17 of 17 Old 09-15-2009, 05:02 PM Thread Starter
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Yea I plan on getting a liquid kit, and it's 82 degrees in my room right now! lol so that and the lights definitely are giving off the additional heat. I never see the heater light on. I am going to get some fluorescent bulbs that connect via screw in traditional lightbulb.

..... my last guppy just died. rip 3 guppies.
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