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HELP! fish dropping like flies

This is a discussion on HELP! fish dropping like flies within the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> Originally Posted by brandelion cool - that's what I figured :) just wanted to be sure before I go ahead and screw something up ...

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HELP! fish dropping like flies
Old 06-29-2010, 02:14 PM   #21
 
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Originally Posted by brandelion View Post
cool - that's what I figured :) just wanted to be sure before I go ahead and screw something up hehehe
now if I could just get this cycle moving - fingers crossed this last fish survives!! :)
if not - will I just be able to continue putting food in in order the keep the ammonia up or is there something else I'll need to do if I find myself fishless to keep from having to start from scratch??
sorry I'm so full of questions - just trying not to screw up any more than I already have :/
Don't mind the questions, we are all here to offer assistance from our experiences and knowledge.

I have never done fishless cycling because I have planted tanks and the plants do the job as soon as fish are put in with them, provided there are lots of plants (normal well-planted aquarium) and not too many fish to over-balance the plants' capability of assimilating the ammonia/ammonium. But in fishless (and plantless) cycling, you have to provide ammonia, which can be fish food added daily. Some aquarists suggest bits of shrimp or prawn (dead of course), and pure ammonia (with no additives) is another method. If you ask about these, I will let those who have used them respond so I don't mislead.
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Old 06-30-2010, 05:52 AM   #22
 
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thanks :)
and hopefully I won't be doing it fishless either - so far so good with the last remaining cory - I shall name him SUPERCORY!!
anyway... I've noticed that since I started using this Prime stuff that my water looks cloudy - do you suppose that is normal? and will it stop doing that once the tank is fully established??

as for the fishless cycling thing - I'll be sure to post that separately so it is titled appropriately :)
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Old 06-30-2010, 12:28 PM   #23
 
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The cloudiness is probably a bacterial bloom, common in new tanks. Cloudiness should dissipate in a few days, it varies from tank to tank. If it is a bacterial bloom, frequent water changes will actually prolong it. Monitor the ammonia to keep it low (or if using Prime it is ammonium as I explained so that's OK so no need for extra water changes).
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Old 06-30-2010, 01:02 PM   #24
 
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oh I don't have to change the water as often with the prime?? I've been trying to do at least 25% every other day - but yeah the cloudiness does tend to go away if it's more than a day or so between water changes
how often should I be doing water changes now then? and how often should I add the prime? I assume it either has to be done WITH water changes to avoid overdosing the tank with it OR does it dissipate, making it possible to add more without changing the water?
the bottle just says to add it with water changes
how does one come to have all these answers? trial and error? haaa
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Old 06-30-2010, 01:16 PM   #25
 
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oh I don't have to change the water as often with the prime?? I've been trying to do at least 25% every other day - but yeah the cloudiness does tend to go away if it's more than a day or so between water changes
how often should I be doing water changes now then? and how often should I add the prime? I assume it either has to be done WITH water changes to avoid overdosing the tank with it OR does it dissipate, making it possible to add more without changing the water?
the bottle just says to add it with water changes
how does one come to have all these answers? trial and error? haaa
On the last question, yes. We all learn from going through this and most of us made similar or worse mistakes. We also learn from others to avoid those mistakes, which is the great benefit of this forum.

While most water conditioners say overdosing can't hurt, I prefer not using more than necessary. After all, they are chemicals, and while essential to detoxify chlorine/chloramine using more than required to do this is something I would avoid. Prime should be used when adding new tap water, and only enough for the volume of water added.

Prime will detoxify ammonia and nitrite, but in response to a direct question from me, Seachem indicated it is active for about 24 or maybe 48 hours, after which it will no longer detoxify anything. So my advice is to monitor ammonia daily, and watch your fish. If they show signs of stress, do a water change; in this case now I would say try 25%, using Prime. Monitor the results.

Were you using bacterial supplements, like Seachem's Stability? That will, in my view, help establish the bacteria.

And was your tap water tested for ammonia? Just to make sure we are not compounding the problem from there.
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Old 06-30-2010, 03:55 PM   #26
 
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On the last question, yes. We all learn from going through this and most of us made similar or worse mistakes. We also learn from others to avoid those mistakes, which is the great benefit of this forum.

While most water conditioners say overdosing can't hurt, I prefer not using more than necessary. After all, they are chemicals, and while essential to detoxify chlorine/chloramine using more than required to do this is something I would avoid. Prime should be used when adding new tap water, and only enough for the volume of water added.

Prime will detoxify ammonia and nitrite, but in response to a direct question from me, Seachem indicated it is active for about 24 or maybe 48 hours, after which it will no longer detoxify anything. So my advice is to monitor ammonia daily, and watch your fish. If they show signs of stress, do a water change; in this case now I would say try 25%, using Prime. Monitor the results.

Were you using bacterial supplements, like Seachem's Stability? That will, in my view, help establish the bacteria.

And was your tap water tested for ammonia? Just to make sure we are not compounding the problem from there.
ahh well that's good - I was starting to feel like a huge moron haaa
anyway - I've tested my tap water a couple times and gotten zero readings each time
as for the prime - only enough for the amount of water I'm adding is GOOD to know!! I added enough for 20 gallons last night when I only added about 7 gallons to the tank!! I'll have to have the spousal unit do the math on that one or I'll never figure out what fraction of a capful is right for 5 gallons or so :/
being down to only one fish and considering the fact that the other fish went from normal to dead in about 24 hours - is it wise to wait until I see signs of stress before changing water/adding conditioner??
I guess so since that's what ya said - I just want to be doubly sure cause I REALLY don't wanna wake up and find myself fishless and back at square one in the cycling process after all these weeks!!

as for the ammonia in the tank - for the first couple weeks it was .25 - then it changed to .50 and has been that way for like 3 weeks now no matter what I do :/
I did that water change at about 5pm last night and tested the water this afternoon around 1 and it was still .50
it never changes!!
I suppose next time I should check it a little while after the water change - but I'm not made of money so I really don't want to be sitting here testing the water every 20 minutes hehehe

oh and no I haven't been using any supplements at all - until Sunday I wasn't putting anything but water and food into the tank - is there a specific one you think I should try? I'm getting pretty eager to get things moving here - if for no other reason than to stop having to worry so much about my last little cory
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Old 06-30-2010, 09:07 PM   #27
 
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Given the "stall" in cycling, I would in this case recommend Seachem's Stability. The smallest bottle will do, they say to use it for 7 days but if you use it at the recommended dose and it runs out after 5 days or whatever, that's fine. It is live bacteria that will aid in establishing the colony of bacteria. I have used it and it does work.

Byron.
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Old 07-01-2010, 06:23 AM   #28
 
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awesome - thanks!! :)
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Old 07-01-2010, 09:38 AM   #29
 
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In case you can't find Stability, another produce by Tetra is also good, it's called SafeStart. It is also 100% live bacteria. These two I recommend; some others use chemicals, not the same thing.

In either case, a small bottle will do you, once the tank is cycled this stuff is unnecessary and it has a shelf life, being live bacteria. If you don't use it all at first, it will not keep.
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Old 07-01-2010, 09:40 AM   #30
 
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safe start is hard to get though, I've never seen it in any of my LFS's. You could order it online though. Safe start bacteria has a high mortality rate, so use it as soon as you get it.
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