Help seven deaths today....
Tropical Fish

Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources » Freshwater Fish and Aquariums » Freshwater and Tropical Fish » Help seven deaths today....

Help seven deaths today....

This is a discussion on Help seven deaths today.... within the Freshwater and Tropical Fish forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> I need help and feedback please. I have a 37 gallon tank that I have had since christmas. Water is 78 and the 5 ...

Check out these freshwater fish profiles
Red Tailed Shark
Red Tailed Shark
Platy
Platy
Reply
LinkBack Thread Tools vBmenu Seperating Image Search this Thread vBmenu Seperating Image
Help seven deaths today....
Old 04-11-2012, 02:30 PM   #1
 
Help seven deaths today....

I need help and feedback please. I have a 37 gallon tank that I have had since christmas. Water is 78 and the 5 in 1 test strips all say my water is fine the pet store even checked it. Nitrate is under 20, Nitrite 0, water is soft alkalinity is low and the ph is 6.2 to 6.4. I know the master kits are better, but I havent gotten one yet. The levels on my tank have remained unchanged since christmas. We do weekly to bi weekly water changes. I started with two red fin tetras, three black fin tetras, two cory cat fish, a skeleton catfish, two african dwarf frogs, and 3 platy. Everyon had been fine for atleast three months with tank cycling properly prior to set up. I moved a month ago and everyone was fine water looked clear and better than ever...i decided it was time to move fish. My husband added a pleco against my better judgement we dont really have algae so we buy him algae tablets, 4 glo fish, and a skeleton. This was about a week and a half ago. One glo fish died last weekend. Few days later the skeleton died. This morning i have had seven fish die total. Levels are fine according to my readings and the pet store. One platy looked like he may have had spots (ich) not sure hard to tell or air bubles. The fish that all died had notjing on thier bodies. The pet store guy and i commented the black fin tetras fins may have been a little ragged
(nipped perhaps). I have had tanks before and have never expedienced this suggestions please. I am devastated. No I didnt quarrantine last batch of fish I know this is a big no no, bu have never had a problem before. All that is left is pleco, two frogs, two cory, one tetra and three glofish. If everyone dies how do I put more fish in the tank? How do I restart without knowing the problem or disease?
Tude is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-11-2012, 02:41 PM   #2
 
Platy's should not be in a tank with PH that low. They can survive longterm and will be stressed. Dont put any further livebearers into your tank.

Did you notice anything unusual about the dead fish? You mentioned some had torn fins? That is possibly because they need a group to feel secure. 6+, again this would cause stress and weaken the immune system. Without a proper size group less dominant fish get picked on excessively.

As to the pleco, if it is a smaller pleco that only gets to 6" or so it will be fine. However many plecos such as the common pleco's get 18" which is far too large for your tank.

Aside from the pleco all the fish you have remaing need groups of 5-6+ to feel safe and not so stressed.

Last edited by ladayen; 04-11-2012 at 02:53 PM..
ladayen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-11-2012, 04:20 PM   #3
 
Byron's Avatar
 
Ladayen is quite correct on the platy, this may well have killed them. No more livebearers.

He's also correct on the numbers for the shoaling fish, but first, you may want to decide exactly which fish you want and only increase those, and there is insufficient room for all of them in decent numbers. The Skeleton Catfish I assume is the Glass Catfish, you can read how delicate these are in our profile (click the shaded name). This may be one to forget at least for the present.

What exactly are the red and black fin tetra? If the former happen to be Serpae Tetra, that is real trouble as explained in the profile, and I wold not get any more of these. Is the black fin the Black Phantom Tetra? This is peaceful and a nice fish in a group of 8 (male/female 4/4). But they will be hounded mercilessly by Serpae Tetra, and likely the Glofish which are modified zebra danio [read their profile]. If the black fin are instead Black Widow Tetra, these can be very nippy themselves, and need a larger group (8+) and cannot be combined with sedate fish esp in small (to the fish) tanks.

Stress is the cause of 9 out of 10 fish deaths because the stress leads to other problems that actually kill the fish. Avoiding stress by careful matching of species, ensuring their water parameters are met and their environmental needs provided (plants, shelter, dim light, whatever), suitable numbers in the group, is preventing disease rather than having to cure it later--which is not always possible.

Hope this helps a bit. Don't hesitate to ask questions here.

Byron.

Last edited by Byron; 04-11-2012 at 04:22 PM..
Byron is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-12-2012, 09:54 AM   #4
 
Byron I understand what you are saying and appreciate the help. These platys have been living in these parameters for four to five months. There is something more going on. There are now 9 dead. Parameters are all ok minus the questionable ph that has always been that way! None of this seemed to have started until I added the last batch of fish. No one that died even looked diseased. All thats left is the pleco, two dwarf frogs, two cory catfish, and three glo fish. Its driving me nuts not knowing went wrong???? Obviously not now but what if I wanted to add fish down the road??? Do I just assume the whole tank is contaminated? Do I have to restart from scratch? What are your suggestiions? Thanks
Posted via Mobile Device
Tude is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-12-2012, 10:42 AM   #5
 
Byron's Avatar
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tude View Post
Byron I understand what you are saying and appreciate the help. These platys have been living in these parameters for four to five months. There is something more going on. There are now 9 dead. Parameters are all ok minus the questionable ph that has always been that way! None of this seemed to have started until I added the last batch of fish. No one that died even looked diseased. All thats left is the pleco, two dwarf frogs, two cory catfish, and three glo fish. Its driving me nuts not knowing went wrong???? Obviously not now but what if I wanted to add fish down the road??? Do I just assume the whole tank is contaminated? Do I have to restart from scratch? What are your suggestiions? Thanks
Posted via Mobile Device
Diagnosing a problem like this is complicated. And I am going to digress a moment, because the info I gave last time was extremely relevant.

Fish stress occurs from all sorts of things, I won't go into this because I am preparing an article on stress that will cover it. But the platy for example were under considerable stress from soft and/or acidic water, and this weakened them so that when something else came along it finished them. Without the initial issue, they might have got through the second, or third, or fourth... you get the picture. So preventing as much stress as possible is a good preventive approach. Initial stress is not visible to us; if it remains or increases, it becomes what is termed chronic stress, and this eventually kills the fish, always. Usually due to the weakened fish contracting something else, but in the end a shortened lifespan no matter what.

Diagnosing issues is a series of tests to eliminate possibles one by one. The state of the fish themselves cannot be overlooked, and the last fish acquired may have been carrying something. The initial fish in too small a group per species would have caused those fish stress. Going back through this thread, mention is made of possible nipped fins, stress again. The move a week and a half ago undoubtedly messed with the tank's biology, something likely happened here. The readings you say are normal, but what does that mean? Ammonia and nitrite must always be zero, and nitrate must be low, 20ppm (which is high for some fish) is the max. Water changes should be more regular, weekly at the least, and change 40-50% of the tank volume. This will stabilize the water better and prevent swings that may not be picked up by our tests--and which again cause stress.

I would certainly not add fish until those left have survived a few weeks. And in the meantime, suggest which you want/don't want. As I mentioned, some of those species (if my assumption on what they are is correct) will be continual problems for as long as you have them.

Byron.
Byron is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to Byron For This Useful Post:
Tude (04-12-2012)
Old 04-12-2012, 10:50 AM   #6
 
The water is within the parameters you spoke of 0 ammonia and 0 nitrite. The move was over a month ago and I brought alot of the water with me from the previous set up. The only reason we decided to add more fish is all the levels checked good and the tank looked better than ever. I do understand what you are saying though. I have had tanks before with a dead fish here or there. But never a mass death like that. Its troublesome to me is all. Thanks for the info!
Tude is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-12-2012, 11:21 AM   #7
 
Byron's Avatar
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tude View Post
The water is within the parameters you spoke of 0 ammonia and 0 nitrite. The move was over a month ago and I brought alot of the water with me from the previous set up. The only reason we decided to add more fish is all the levels checked good and the tank looked better than ever. I do understand what you are saying though. I have had tanks before with a dead fish here or there. But never a mass death like that. Its troublesome to me is all. Thanks for the info!
I am trying to get at the root and help you, even if I do seem to belabor this or that.

The tank move unquestionably upset the biology, that cannot be helped. I have reset all my tanks many times over the years, and each time it destroys the biological equilibrium and establishes a "new start." That can't be helped, but it too is stressful. And we must remember that ammonia and nitrite can be present even though our test kits do not detect them, and even at this low a level, they are affecting the fish. Then along comes something else...

I have gone through this myself, though not for some time.
Byron is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-12-2012, 11:32 AM   #8
 
I know you are and I appreciate it! I know death is all part of it ...its just hard when you are trying to do everything right. At this point am I just to assume it is water related and not a disease. Is it necesarry to restart the whole tank over?
Tude is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-12-2012, 11:36 AM   #9
 
1077's Avatar
 
Would not start the tank over, but would just wait three or four weeks to see if other fishes do well before considering buying more.
1077 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-12-2012, 11:37 AM   #10
 
Byron's Avatar
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tude View Post
I know you are and I appreciate it! I know death is all part of it ...its just hard when you are trying to do everything right. At this point am I just to assume it is water related and not a disease. Is it necesarry to restart the whole tank over?
If it were me, I would simply let the tank settle biologically. This takes 6-8 weeks. That move upset things. During this period, observe the fish, test periodically for ammonia, nitrite and nitrate--you can test these less as you see stability. Watch the pH (always test pH the same time each day you test, as there is a normal diurnal shift of up to several decimal points and you want to have an idea of the stability which means testing roughly the same time of day). Weekly 40-50% water change with a good conditioner. Don't overfeed, once daily only what is consumed within a couple minutes, and skip water change day (no feeding). Add some floating plants if you don't already have them; it is amazing what these can do.
Byron is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Many Dropsy deaths alexberea Tropical Fish Diseases 3 11-26-2011 12:32 PM
New tank deaths :( uhohima Beginner Freshwater Aquarium 22 09-21-2011 03:01 PM
Deaths ashalon24 Beginner Freshwater Aquarium 9 07-01-2009 10:06 AM
Gack deaths SeaSerpant Tropical Fish Diseases 2 02-02-2008 07:59 PM


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 06:11 AM.