Guppies keep dying, water conditions seem fine
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Guppies keep dying, water conditions seem fine

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Guppies keep dying, water conditions seem fine
Old 10-28-2013, 10:00 PM   #1
 
Guppies keep dying, water conditions seem fine

Hi all!

I'll start out by stating that I'm fairly new to the whole fish-keeping scene, so decided to start out with what are supposedly one of the 'easiest' fish to keep, Fancy guppies. For reasons that I can't work out however, they have been dying off at a rate of approximately 1 per week over the last month or so. I do not see any signs of infection (no white-spot, etc) and while one had a bit of a tail attack (bite marks), I don't believe that is the cause (the one i scooped out this morning has no such marks - i actually believe he may have been the 'bully' in the tank doing the nipping).

The tank is a 10g 'wall mounted' tank, planted with some lace fern, mondo-grass and anubias nana (on wood) in eco-complete substrate. It is the home of two catfish (1 Bristlenose and 1 Cuckoo), a handfull of annoying snails that came with one of the plants, and what is now 3 male fancy guppies.



I've been doing weekly water tests which generally show pretty stable readings as below:

pH: 6.8
Ammonia: 0ppm
Nitrite: 0ppm
Nitrate: 1ppm
KH: 1dKH
GH: 15dGH (this does seem to fluctuate a bit, from around 13dGH to 19dGH - the biggest jump I ever had was 3dGH in a week)
Temperature: 27ºC (81ºF)



I do twice-weekly water changes of about 25%, generally including water conditioner, API StressCoat, Flourish and Flourish Excel. Whenever I add new fish, I add the recommended dose of PRIME.

Any ideas on what could be causing these 'hardy' fish to keep dying off?

Last edited by Samon; 10-28-2013 at 10:09 PM.. Reason: Added Nyagua readings graph
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Old 10-28-2013, 10:33 PM   #2
 
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Mondo grass is not an aquatic plant, as far as I know. After a while, it dies off and develops a white fungus in my experience.
As for the guppies, I experienced the same thing when I started out. It could just be the guppies dying of old age, or of an underlying disease. It should stop once the tank fully cycles. It did with mine.
Just a tip: pick out smaller, stronger looking guppies when you buy them. I find that younger guppies do much better with acclimating and surviving.
Good luck with your tank!
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Old 10-28-2013, 10:55 PM   #3
 
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Mondo grass is not an aquatic plant, as far as I know. After a while, it dies off and develops a white fungus in my experience.
Yeah, after I'd planted the mondo grass I learned that it's not actually an aquatic plant (annoyed that the LFS didn't advertise this fact). I'm aware that it won't survive too much longer fully submerged (been in there about 6 weeks now, which from what I've read is about the limit), so as soon as it starts to die off, i'll remove it and try and find something similar-looking to replace it.
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Originally Posted by RainbowhLizzie View Post
As for the guppies, I experienced the same thing when I started out. It could just be the guppies dying of old age, or of an underlying disease. It should stop once the tank fully cycles. It did with mine.
The tank has been setup for several months now, and after the initial cycling, was reasonably stable (water readings as well as fish) for about two months. At this point, I replaced the gravel substrate with Eco-Complete and planted it out as in the image in the OP, it's only been since then (about 6 weeks) that the guppies have been dying off. I'm aware I probably destroyed a lot of the bacteria when changing the substrate (kept 50% of the water plus the filter media), and while I expected that to lead to a spike in Ammonia, Nitrite or Nitrate levels, those levels have remained pretty good, yet the fish are not doing so well .
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Good luck with your tank!
Thanks!
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Old 10-29-2013, 05:47 AM   #4
 
Wow, your tank looks nice!
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Old 10-29-2013, 08:15 PM   #5
 
When I woke up this morning, there were still three Guppies swimming around - 3 hours later I looked at the tank again and found this guy dead on the bottom



That's two fish in two days - I'm getting worried now! Did a water test and change last night, other than the pH being fairly low (6.4) everything else looked to be pretty normal.
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Old 10-29-2013, 08:18 PM   #6
 
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Wow, your tank looks nice!
Thanks! Would look a lot nicer if it could be filled with fish that weren't dying!
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Old 10-29-2013, 08:33 PM   #7
 
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Is your tap water hardness fluctuating that much?? When it does that does the Ph change as well? What about the KH??
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Old 10-29-2013, 08:36 PM   #8
 
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Well looking at your graph are you just checking the lvls ever 10 days or is that just for the sake of making a graph??
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Old 10-29-2013, 08:39 PM   #9
 
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Is your tap water hardness fluctuating that much?? When it does that does the Ph change as well? What about the KH??
We have very soft water here in Melbourne, Australia - pH 7.6, 1ºdGH & 1ºdKH. The water conditioner brings the GH up to about 16ºdGH and 3ºdKH.

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Well looking at your graph are you just checking the lvls ever 10 days or is that just for the sake of making a graph??
Generally I've been doing water checks once per week - the scale on the graph is just how Nyagua (aquarium logging program) displays it - the little dots/circles on the lines show when the actual readings were taken.
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Old 10-29-2013, 08:47 PM   #10
 
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What conditioner are you using just out of curiosity?
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