Problems.... - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 32 Old 10-05-2011, 01:52 PM Thread Starter
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Problems....

Good evening all,

Before i start, i will apologise as i know you's all probably get a lot of people coming on and saying they have problems with their tanks and cannot figuire it out. I have had a good scurry around to see if i can find a solution from previous posts, but struggling still.

I currently have 3 tanks, 1 at 165litres (an aquaone 850) 1 at 64litres(a fishpod with fluval u2 filter) and a small one of around 30litres (with a elite stingray 10 filter) currently occupied with around 15-18 mollie fry.

My problems seem to be with the two main tanks though. the 64litre has been running since January but i started having problems with fish dying a few months ago, it currently has 3 platies, 4 guppies, only 3 remaining neon tetras, 3 harlequins a common plec and a small algea eater. also stocked with 3 live plants, 2 fake and a few ornaments. When i started to loose fish, i hant changed anything from what i would normally ie water changes of approx 20% weekly poly carb filters changed every 4-6 weeks. PH is around 7.0, ammonia 0, nitrite 0 but nitrates constantly reading around 60/80ppm, Temp is 78 deg.

The larger tank has been running since June and i had problems with fish dying near the start (only the odd one every other week though). But this week alone i have lost 4 fish and a few others don't look too good. It currently has 2 German Blue Rams (did have 4) 4 praecox rainbows, 2 small red robin gourami's, 2 silver mollies, 3 guppies, 3 silver tip tetras, 3 cherry barbs, 2 small (1.5") clown loaches and 2 tiny plecs. PH around 7.0, ammonia 0, nitrite 0 and nitrates are also up like the other tank 60/80ppm?? This tank also gets about 25% water change weekly.

Can someone please help me with some ideas as to what i'm possibly doing wrong!

Thanks very much in advance!
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post #2 of 32 Old 10-05-2011, 02:13 PM
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There are some serious issues with the mix of fish (species), but I'll leave that and turn to the nitrates which I suspect is a key to this problem. First, though, a couple questions.

Did you cycle the tank in June, and how?
What water conditioner do you use?
Is any substance (aside from water conditioner) going in the tanks, then or now?
Have you tested the tap water for the following, and what is the result: pH, nitrate, ammonia, nitrite.

Byron.

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 #3 of 32 Old 10-05-2011, 02:23 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Byron View Post
There are some serious issues with the mix of fish (species), but I'll leave that and turn to the nitrates which I suspect is a key to this problem. First, though, a couple questions.

Did you cycle the tank in June, and how?
What water conditioner do you use?
Is any substance (aside from water conditioner) going in the tanks, then or now?
Have you tested the tap water for the following, and what is the result: pH, nitrate, ammonia, nitrite.

Byron.

Tank was cycled for 2 weeks using interpet filter start treatment, then a few harlequins, barbs and guppies were added to finish it off.

I use interpet bioactive tap safe or nutrafin water conditioner.

only other substance is a little aquarium salt.

Tap water is reading about 7.6 PH, havent checked it for ammonia, nitrite,nitrate
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post #4 of 32 Old 10-05-2011, 02:32 PM
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best guess: your nitrates are too high and that is causing your fish to die.

nitrates above 20 ppm are potentially dangerous. have you checked your tap water for nitrates? and how much do you feed? over feeding can lead to higher levels.

you say you do about 25% weekly water changes. you probably should up that, maybe 40% twice a week until you get the nitrates under control.

adding more live plants can help prevent the nitrates from getting up, too.

**I freely admit that most of the information I share I have learned from other people on this forum and am simply repeating. I thank you for sharing your knowledge and ask that if I say anything incorrect someone will kindly correct me**
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post #5 of 32 Old 10-05-2011, 02:36 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by KendraMc View Post
best guess: your nitrates are too high and that is causing your fish to die.

nitrates above 20 ppm are potentially dangerous. have you checked your tap water for nitrates? and how much do you feed? over feeding can lead to higher levels.

you say you do about 25% weekly water changes. you probably should up that, maybe 40% twice a week until you get the nitrates under control.

adding more live plants can help prevent the nitrates from getting up, too.

I havent checked it for nitrates, do i need to let the water sit over night to check or can i just check it just now?

Currently they only get fed when i come home from work (about half 5) enough for them all to get some, then a little more around 9.30 before the lights go off, everything gets consumed thoroughly!!!
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post #6 of 32 Old 10-05-2011, 02:38 PM
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you should be able to test nitrates right away. also, what kind of test do you use?

**I freely admit that most of the information I share I have learned from other people on this forum and am simply repeating. I thank you for sharing your knowledge and ask that if I say anything incorrect someone will kindly correct me**
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post #7 of 32 Old 10-05-2011, 02:39 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by KendraMc View Post
you should be able to test nitrates right away. also, what kind of test do you use?

ok i will test just now and will also change some of the water just now. I use an API Master kit
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post #8 of 32 Old 10-05-2011, 02:40 PM
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make sure you are shaking the second reagent long enough. i know the directions say 30 seconds, but it seems 2 minutes works better

**I freely admit that most of the information I share I have learned from other people on this forum and am simply repeating. I thank you for sharing your knowledge and ask that if I say anything incorrect someone will kindly correct me**
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post #9 of 32 Old 10-05-2011, 02:54 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by KendraMc View Post
make sure you are shaking the second reagent long enough. i know the directions say 30 seconds, but it seems 2 minutes works better

shook the bottle for a good 2 mins there, its reading 0 there or there abouts
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post #10 of 32 Old 10-05-2011, 02:55 PM
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then i'd start with water changes to get the levels in the tank down.

**I freely admit that most of the information I share I have learned from other people on this forum and am simply repeating. I thank you for sharing your knowledge and ask that if I say anything incorrect someone will kindly correct me**
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