Urgent, need answer about tiger barbs! - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 26 Old 03-23-2009, 01:45 AM Thread Starter
Urgent, need answer about tiger barbs!

I may be worried for no reason but still want some answers to ease my mind. I bought 5 tiger barbs about ten days ago. I put them into my established ten gallon tank. They were a little pale from the store but put them in my tank and they got their color back and started looking fantastic. I have to say, They were small when i got them. The largest was less than an inch long, and they will be moving up to the 55 as soon as it is established. When they make the move they will also be joined by 5 more tiger barbs (not all at the same time). They are currently the only fish in the tank. Until last night i had an incandescent hood on the tank. Last night i switched over to a florescent hood. For some reason today a few of them seem like their colors are fading again, and getting a slight green tint to their stripes.. what could this be what could cause it? Some of them still look as vibrant as can be, but some don't. Could the lighting have anything to do with it? Too much lighting? Not enough? I will have to get the parameters on monday after school. I did a 50% water change a few days back as i was paranoid about an ammonia spike from adding 5 fish at once. Other than the color they all look healthy, they're all eating well. Please let me figure this out as i want everyone to survive.

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post #2 of 26 Old 03-23-2009, 11:36 AM
Twistersmom's Avatar
It could just be that the color looks different under the new lighting.
My tiger barbs sometimes fade out when They are stressed from fighting or water changes, but quickly returns to normal.
Definitely check your water quality, bad water can cause fading color. If the water checks out ok, I would not worry to much about it.
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post #3 of 26 Old 03-24-2009, 12:30 AM Thread Starter
Okay, checked the water parameters today, here is what i got:

Ammonia - somewhere between 0 and .25 (wasn't directly on either one)
Nitrite - between .25 and .50 (closer to .50)
Nitrate - 10
PH - someone has misplaced the card for the ph test, so i do not have results on this

How urgent is it to check PH? Will it fluctuate once you get the tank set up?

It looks like I did get the ammonia spike i was fearing. Is there anything else it might be? Anything to check for? Anything i can do to help? How bad do the numbers look?

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post #4 of 26 Old 03-24-2009, 12:38 AM
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Need a 50% water change, keep ammonia and nitrite under .50 preferably under .25

55 Gallon

-10x Zebra Danio
-3x Angelfish
-5x Velvet Red Swordtail
-3x Albino Cory Cat
-3x Clown Loach
-3x Black Mollie
-1x Red Tailed Shark
-1x General Pleco
-1x Snail

10 Gallon


37 Gallon (Wanted)

Not Sure

150 Gallon (Wanted)

-5x Bala Shark
-2x Neon Blue Goarami
-5x Clown Loach
-1x Black Knife Ghost
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post #5 of 26 Old 03-24-2009, 12:52 AM Thread Starter
I need a 50% water change now? I just did one a few days ago, not to say i don't need one now. Just putting that out there. all parameters are under .50 currently. If ammonia spiked then turned to nitrites, the nitrites shouldn't go any higher should they? Or since the ammonia is still falling could the nitrites still potentially rise?
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post #6 of 26 Old 03-24-2009, 01:01 AM
.5ppm of nitrites and ammonia can kill your fish. .25ppm can as well. You need those levels at zero. A 50% WC is needed.

And I hope you meant that all params except nitrates are lower than .5ppm...
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post #7 of 26 Old 03-24-2009, 01:23 AM Thread Starter
Sorry Cody, what did you mean by the last line of your post?

I know the nitrites and ammonia need to be zero but i added 5 barbs and from what i can tell the ammonia spiked. everything was perfect before this. I'm trying to get it all sorted out and get the levels back down. The barbs seem to be doing great, other than slight color changes. And even that is only in a few, it isn't all of them. They don't seem to be stressed from what i can tell. Is there anything i can do to help get the spike under control? anything else it can be?
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post #8 of 26 Old 03-24-2009, 03:08 AM
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As others have already stated, Any levels of ammonia OR nitrites above zero are harmful to the fish.
Were it me,, I would do as suggested. Either a fifty percent water change or daily smaller ones. You can also reduce feedings as well.

The most important medication in your fish medicine cabinet is.. Clean water.
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post #9 of 26 Old 03-24-2009, 06:50 AM
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You say your fish dont look stressed?...............Dont you think the loss of color could be a sign of stress?.........The best thing you can do is the water change everyone is suggesting, that will definitely help the ammonia level and the nitrites to drop.........
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post #10 of 26 Old 03-24-2009, 07:37 AM
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Sounds like you are part way through your cycle. You ammonia is lowering, but nitrites will continue to rise for a while. That is why the water changes are going to be needed. When I have done fish cycles, I set my goal at keeping ammonia and nitrates under .25ppm. That meant doing daily 50-25% water changes everyday for a couple weeks or until the cycle was complete.
Its a good idea to know what your ph is, but it is not something I test for on a regular schedule. You can save yourself some money and just take some tap water and tank water to the store to be tested for ph. Maybe do this every few months to make sure there are no changes. I do not recommend trying to change your ph, unless it is unsuitable for fish.Most fish will adapt to your ph.
Yes, since the color of your tiger barbs has not returned to normal, they are showing signs of stress from poor water quality. If it where me, I would do all I could to make it more comfortable for them.
Good luck! Any more questions, just ask!
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