Murderous tetra?
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Murderous tetra?

This is a discussion on Murderous tetra? within the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> I have another thread detailing the failure of a group of Flame Tetra in my quarantine tank. If can be found here: http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/t...ing-no-131012/ Basically, ...

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Old 03-09-2013, 06:35 PM   #1
 
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Murderous tetra?

I have another thread detailing the failure of a group of Flame Tetra in my quarantine tank.
If can be found here: Von Rio (Flame) Tetra dying with no apparent cause

Basically, I got a group of flame tetra, put them in quarantine and they've been dying mysteriously one or two per day for the last week.
I've been home all day today and have really had a chance to study the last 3 fish and I am now wondering if it is possible that one fish has managed to harass 11 other fish to death in less than a week.
He's a real jerk, the other two fish must stay down near the sand, over by the wall, under the heater or he goes ballistic and chases them mercilessly.
Staying where they are put isn't necessarily a guarantee of being left alone, he seems to go over to try and shoal with them and after a minute or two flips out and gets belligerent again.

Has anyone heard or experienced this?
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Old 03-09-2013, 08:02 PM   #2
 
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Just to clarify, we are now discussing a new batch of fish, none from the first [I read through the other thread just now]? And they are in a 10g QT. What substances if any have gone in the water (include your water conditioner brand)?

A couple of things suggest themselves. First, Flame Tetra are commercially raised (not wild caught) so this often makes a difference. Depending where they came from, they could just be no good. I have acquired tetra like this and lost half of them within a couple days. I never have this problem with wild caught fish, or fish from certain dealers. After many such experiences, it makes me wonder.

Second, mention was made of dwarf gourami being in the QT previously; is this fish healthy? These are notorious for carrying health issues, particularly a virus that can affect other fish, and there is no cure for any virus.

Third, fish under stress that is significant can turn very nasty, so this is not a surprise. It is this particular fish's way of dealing with the stress; the others are lying inactive. But the source could be the same.

Fourth, with no external signs, I would suspect an internal protozoan. This is getting common it seems. Feeding new fish for 2 weeks (in QT) with a medicated food is the best way to deal with this. I have used metronidazole. Seachem make it pure, and there is another product called Metro+ that has it. You mix either of these with flake food in a zip-lock bag, a week's supply, then feed it daily.

I may have more after your response to the above questions.

Byron.

Last edited by Byron; 03-09-2013 at 08:06 PM..
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Old 03-09-2013, 10:10 PM   #3
 
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I got 6, but was impatient and added 8 more.
1 died the first night, leaving me with 5.
The morning of the next day all 5 were still alive, and the fish store called and said that my others were in.
I picked them up after work, but when I got home 2 more of the original 6 were dead.
I SHOULD have taken the other 8 back, but I was overly eager and added them anyway thinking that I had a stress/aggression problem and that the additional fish might mitigate it.
That was Tuesday, as of right now I have 3 fish remaining, one of whom is a total jerk, the other two of whom do not really look at all well.
I do not know in which batch the current survivors originated, but there was one fish in the first group that seemed more aggressive than the others, but I don't know that he's the current bully.

They all came from the same store, who get all their fish from the same supplier, so they most likely came from the same breeder as they were all the same size, and came in one week apart.
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Old 03-09-2013, 11:27 PM   #4
 
I doubt its bullying, but you can always quarantine the bully in a bucket with an airstone and see if the others survive.

However, in all likely-hood, there might be something else in the tank that's affecting them. Tetra can be sensitive to a chemicals in the tank.

As Byron said, it could also be something internal, feeding medicated food is a good idea, even if the population has dwindled to three.
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Old 03-10-2013, 08:40 AM   #5
 
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Well, now there are 2

The gourami was quarantined for 3 weeks and now resides in my 29 gallon with 12 corydoras and all seem fine.
As the tetras started dying the first night they were in the tank I would think that were this Dwarf Gourami Iridovirus and virulent enough to kill the tetras that quickly the corys would be ill as well by this point.
I will also point out that the gourami came out of the tank right before I began quarantining the tetras, they were in the water 30 minutes after he was out and he seems fine.

I use Aqueon water conditioner and have added nothing but aquarium salt (for an outbreak of ich) to the tank.
That was also my first experience with ich.
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Old 03-10-2013, 01:55 PM   #6
 
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Quote:
The gourami was quarantined for 3 weeks and now resides in my 29 gallon with 12 corydoras and all seem fine.
As the tetras started dying the first night they were in the tank I would think that were this Dwarf Gourami Iridovirus and virulent enough to kill the tetras that quickly the corys would be ill as well by this point.
I will also point out that the gourami came out of the tank right before I began quarantining the tetras, they were in the water 30 minutes after he was out and he seems fine.
It is possible for a gourami or any other fish to carry a disease without showing any symptoms of that disease, and this can infect other fish; such infection may be specific to certain fish and not others. There is much about fish disease and especially virus that few understand (including me). I'm not saying it was this, but when fish are dying like they are here one has to examine all possibiles.

Quote:
I use Aqueon water conditioner and have added nothing but aquarium salt (for an outbreak of ich) to the tank.
That was also my first experience with ich.
In the other thread, I believe 2 tablespoons of salt was mentioned. If this was in the 10g, this could be the issue, or at least a contributor. Characins (includes tetra species) cannot tolerate salt at all well; my article on salt cites data that any salt over 1 teaspoon in 16 gallons will cause trouble for characins. They also cannot tolerate chemicals/medications, which is why most ich remedies recommend half dose with tetra and scaleless fish (loaches). Raising the temp to 86F is the best treatment for ich with such fish. Several water changes to get rid of the salt might help.


It is possible that the tetra themselves are carrying something. Does the store have any left, and if yes, do you know what state they are in? Have they had any losses at all?

Byron.
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Old 03-10-2013, 02:38 PM   #7
 
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The store says that they have no losses, nor have any been reported.

I will do another 50% WC and add no salt this time, I'll also up the temperature.
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Old 03-10-2013, 02:50 PM   #8
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ogre44 View Post
The store says that they have no losses, nor have any been reported.

I will do another 50% WC and add no salt this time, I'll also up the temperature.
If there is salt in the tank water, then I would be more drastic and change 3/4 of the tank water. Add only the conditioner.

If the ich is still present as spots, increase the temp; but if no spots are visible, don't. Increasing the temp also adds stress, and if this is or may not be necessary, the less stress the more likely the last fish will survive.
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Old 03-10-2013, 02:58 PM   #9
 
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I removed 5 gallons, added 3, and removed 5 more.
Convoluted, I know, but after the first 5 I couldn't get the siphon started again.
I'll do another WC tomorrow and that should have most of the salt out.
Both of the remaining fish have very faint white spots, so I upped the temp.
I also noticed that one fish has a red spot on his side, looks like some scales might be missing.

The two that remain seem to be getting on quite well, no chasing, shoaling up, swimming together.
I don't know.
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Old 03-10-2013, 03:24 PM   #10
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ogre44 View Post
I removed 5 gallons, added 3, and removed 5 more.
Convoluted, I know, but after the first 5 I couldn't get the siphon started again.
I'll do another WC tomorrow and that should have most of the salt out.
Both of the remaining fish have very faint white spots, so I upped the temp.
I also noticed that one fish has a red spot on his side, looks like some scales might be missing.

The two that remain seem to be getting on quite well, no chasing, shoaling up, swimming together.
I don't know.
I'm becoming more certain this was all due to the salt. Salt can burn fish, and it shows as reddish blotches. Any scrape or minor injury if exposed to salt will likely become worse.

I would increase the temp here.
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