Hey everyone, against my better judgement, I got two more goldfish yesterday, and I figured I would keep them quarantined in the 55 gallon tank before I was to put my three goldfish into it(the two fish in question were a comet, and a common, both bought from different places)
The tank has been set up with play sand that was washed well for the substrate, and has spent weeks settling(although it did almost look like the fish were slightly sandy, so perhaps that is the cause?) three very large chunks of rock, and a slew of smaller rocks. I purchased the rocks on craigslist, so perhaps they had been pesticided from time to time, but I washed them all thoroughly in hot water, and I checked them all with vinegar and no fizzing.
I had checked the various levels, albeit with a strip test, and the hardness, alkalinity, ph all seemed fine, and of course 0 nitrites and nitrates as it hasnt even started cycling yet. Just tested for ammonia, and it is under .5 after the two fish died in it sometime last night.
The tank has a small sump tank with filter floss, some porous rocks, and some small sections of PVC. it has a PVC overflow, that uses regular white pvc, and pvc cement, that was allowed to cure for several days in 70+ degrees, occasionally as high as 80 degrees before being used. I did not feed them during the time they were in there, but I did put a clay pot that was covered with brown algae from my (seemingly)established 10 gallon tank for them to have a little bacteria and some algae if they needed something to graze on. I also used GE Silicone for exterior purposes(not GE II, and not with mold inhibitor) and plastic cd cases that I had washed for the baffles in the sump tank.
The 55 gallon tank, and the pump being used for the tank we both used as saltwater originally, but I cleaned everything multiple times as well as I could, but I will be getting something to test for salinity to see if somehow that was an issue.
I can't think of anything else to add here, other than that the first fish I had gotten around 2:30 yesterday seemed to just be laying on the bottom after about 9:00 last night, but then I also saw him swimming around looking just fine after this.
Both fish were acclimated, I left them in their bags floating in the tank, and slowly added a little bit of the tanks water for about 20 minutes, and then put them and all of their water into the tank, each at their own seperate times.
And as far as hiding, I do not have much, but i have two pretty good sized fake plants in there(about 10" high each, one with plenty of leaf hanging, one with some spread out thickish stalks) One chunk of slate/rock leaned against the side with plenty of space to hide under, and just a ton of rocks spread throughout.
Temperature 69 degrees
Ammonia <.50 ppm
Although everything aside from ammonia is from a strip test, I don't know how far off they can be, and it just all seems so weird, since the water is the same water I use in the 10 gallon that has had my three goldfish in it for almost 2 months now, seemingly quite happy, while these two fish both died within 12-18 hours, which seems like it would be so fast that there would have to be a problem.
If I can't find a problem with anything, I guess I'll just be taking everything out, cleaning very good again, and I'll get new substrate, build another overflow and sump tank, leave out the rocks, and stick with new decorations.
Would just be nice if I could figure something out so I don't have to scrap everything I have so far, but it seems like it would take something very bad to kill two seemingly healthy, and still very small goldfish in so much water virtually overnight.
Thanks for anyones help.