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cherry barbs in new tank

This is a discussion on cherry barbs in new tank within the Cyprinids and Atherinids forums, part of the Freshwater and Tropical Fish category; --> well I think I'm on my third or fourth week with the 2 Barbs and added 3 neon tetras a week later. I've noticed ...

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cherry barbs in new tank
Old 01-19-2011, 01:21 PM   #11
 
well I think I'm on my third or fourth week with the 2 Barbs and added 3 neon tetras a week later. I've noticed the Cherry Barbs coloring has paled quite a bit to the point now that the one I thought might be female has hardly any.

Any ideas why this happens? Are they not happy? I tried lowering the light to one bulb on one side and added a few real plants but I fear I'm not seeing the forest through the trees.lol
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Old 01-19-2011, 01:43 PM   #12
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fishyfarts View Post
well I think I'm on my third or fourth week with the 2 Barbs and added 3 neon tetras a week later. I've noticed the Cherry Barbs coloring has paled quite a bit to the point now that the one I thought might be female has hardly any.

Any ideas why this happens? Are they not happy? I tried lowering the light to one bulb on one side and added a few real plants but I fear I'm not seeing the forest through the trees.lol
What is the tank size (that wasn't indicated previously in this thread)? The only fish are 3 cherry barb and 3 neon tetra, correct? Have you tested for ammonia and nitrite? What is your water pH?

With this information, we may be able to offer advice.
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Old 01-19-2011, 02:26 PM   #13
 
sorry, it's a 14 gallon "tall" tank, there are 2 barbs and 3 tetras. The water was checking perfect for the first couple weeks untill two days ago when the ammonia, nitrate, and nitrite levels were all high. I hadn't checked at that point for at least five days before that. I immediately did a 20-25% water change out and rinsed the filter bag and filled it with some fresh activated carbon I happened to have. I also have four very small living plants in the tank. An Anubas, and three Vale that are still establishing (slowly). The next morning after checking the water all levels had returned to zero. I keep the tank at a pretty steady 76 degrees and it's in a room without any direct sunlight getting about 13-14 hours light a day on a timer. I also have some rocks that have started to grow some bright thin but dense green algae. It's not bad looking but it's speading slowly, so far only on the rocks.
That's about all I know about my tank so far. :)
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Old 01-19-2011, 02:31 PM   #14
 
I'm thinking my tank is just in it's first cycle or two and the fish are maybe stressed a bit from this. I'll see if I can get a pic of thing tonight and post up tomorrow. All the fish are very small yet so I don't think my bioload is over the top at all. But I would like to get on with things and try some cories and maybe a few more tetras and barbs in the future. I'm also thinking maybe the barbs would like a shading (floating) plant to hang under (I heard they like shady water).
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Old 01-19-2011, 02:34 PM   #15
 
Oh and I have a high ph water source which is common for my area. The LFS guy said he's been doing fish since he was a toddler and never saw ph as something to worry too much about as long as the fish aren't that picky and you transition them slowly which I did. I can't even give you the ph because the kits don't go that high. lol
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Old 01-19-2011, 04:13 PM   #16
 
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Thank you for all that info. I would surmise something caused a mini-cycle as we term it, or of course the initial cycle was peaking. Cycling a new tank takes anywhere from 2 to 8 weeks normally; it varies depending upon many things so one can't be precise. Whatever, I believe the "washed-out" appearance is indicative of stress from ammonia and/or nitrite, both of which are highly toxic at any level you can test with one of our basic test kits [you don't say the number, when providing info always give numbers so we know more exactly how significant/serious this or that may be]. "Toxic" meaning the substance is causing stress, which can be little or great. Unfortunately, ammonia/nitrite "poisoning" can cause internal problems that may only surface weeks or months later with increased health issues or early death.

The pH would concern me if it is that high. Neons and cherry barbs prefer soft, acidic water, and while tank-raised fish are accustomed to harder basic water, there is bound to be a limit. I am not suggesting this was/is the issue, but at the same time it would add some degree of stress if the fish are having to internally counter very hard water.

I would not add any more fish until it is certain things are "normal," and that means a couple of weeks. Check ammonia and nitrite periodically, maybe every day for a few days then less often, say before the water change. [I trust you are doing a partial water change every week, without fail? This is very important. You can change 1/3 to 1/2 the water using a good water conditioner every week.] What is the nitrate test number? While less toxic at lower amounts, nitrate is still a concern if it is high or rising, as this indicates something is off biologically and this can trigger other things too.

Live plants will certainly help. Are you using any fertilizer?

Byron.
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Old 01-20-2011, 07:42 AM   #17
 
Got home last night to take pictures and found a new problem. There are what look like smudges on the inside of the glass and reddish brown spots popping up on everything. I took pictures of it all and you can click on the thumbnails below to check it out. gonna have another look at the algae facts. The red stuff is something that started right after this water change. We have something in our well water that will grow if left in a container like the tank on the back of the toilet. Someone called it iron bacteria but I'm not sure about that. Never thought it would come out in the fish tank though. Everything was going so well before I bought those 3 Vale and 3 Tetra?
Thanks a ton for the help. I'm afraid this has turned into more than just a Barb problem...
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Last edited by fishyfarts; 01-20-2011 at 07:47 AM..
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Old 01-20-2011, 08:11 AM   #18
 
btw I haven't begun to get into fertilizer for the plants.

Also test last night came out higher again. I can't remember the numbers at the moment but if I can relate to the color card that comes with the API kit, the Ammonia was at the second color from the top maybe .25?, the nitrite and nitrate were both about half way down the scales when I compared them with the card. Sorry for the vague referrence but most people ought to know them pretty well. From now on I promise to write down the results. I was actually keeping a log book when I started but after the first couple weeks of no change I quit.

I think I will have to do another water change tonight but this time I will get some store bought water and change out most of it.
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Old 01-20-2011, 08:12 AM   #19
 
Now if I could just find that area devoted to algae I was on a week ago.
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Old 01-20-2011, 11:00 AM   #20
 
Well, it looks like I have Bg algae and some brown starting. Also sounds normal for a new tank for the most part. I have yet to buy a vaccum cleaner and I think I will do that. Also looks like maybe going down to one bulb might have been a bad idea.

another question; can you black out a tank with fish in it? and how long is this necessary?
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