Help please! Need to know why fish are dying
I bought a new tank a couple weeks ago because I've always wanted to have one and I'm still grappling with the basics.
1. 5 gallons
2. Water parameters
N/A yet, just starting to research problem, and gather materials I used Aquasafe to treat tap water, and I'm using Melafix to treat water for sickness because that's what I thought was wrong.
3. 76 degrees F
5. About 3 weeks
6. Originally I bought 15 fish with the tank, they all looked small so I thought the 5 gallon was enough for them. Six have died and now two are showing same signs as the others. When I called the pet place all the guy would tell me is I have too many and I needed to buy a bigger tank. He didn't even give me time to explain symptoms... I understand that I have too many I guess, but I wanted to post on here too in case anyone may be able to say anything more.
5 platies, all are still alive
2 guppies, 3 have died
2 mollies, 3 have died
1 Plecostomus (Was given to me by previous owner who didn't want it anymore)
Each are about an inch long. the Plecostomus is about 3.
7. Were the fish placed under quarantine period (minus the first batch from the point wherein the tank is ready to accommodate the inhabitants)?
8. a. Fake plants
9. a. Filtration? Yes
b. Heater? Yes
10. a. LED light
b. No sunlight exposure
11. a. Water change schedule?
b. Volume of water changed? N/A
c. tap water
d. Water conditioner used? Aqua safe
e. Frequency of gravel/sand (if any) vacuumed? N/A
Once a day, in the evening
13. a. Any abnormal signs/symptoms?
They were fine, but then started sitting at the bottom of the tank, not moving very much. Some times they would swim up about a inch from the aquarium bottom and swim in place but shake somewhat rapidly.
b. Appearance of poop? Nothing abnormal, as far as I can tell.
c. Appearance of gills? Nothing abnormal, as far as I can tell.
14. a. Have you treated your fish ahead of diagnosis? yes
Was hoping for any advice, does it sound like all I need to do is get a bigger tank, or does it sound like a disease or something? I'm waiting for my test kit for water to arrive in mail.
Omigosh :shock: You were and still are WAY overstocked for a 5 gallon tank. I'm guessing that the ammonia levels are out of control in that tank.
And I'm also assuming that the tank was never cycled before fish were added?
Do daily water changes starting right after you read this post if possible of at least 75% just to keep the fish alive at this point. Are you going to get a larger tank real soon? You can set it up and re-home all of the fish into the new tank - I'd say at least a 20 gallon will do with what you have left.
And sorry to say that you'll have to return the Pleco. They are notorious poopers and get really large. They really need a large tank to thrive in.
Here's a link to the Nitrogen cycle process for a freshwater aquarium:
Finally - welcome to the forum. Sorry to burst your bubble right off the bat but we're here to help you get off to the right start.
To help the fish you have now yo should change the water daily. A pain, trust me, but worth it in the long run. Do you have any friend or family who could take the fish while you sort this tank it?
Is this your first tank?
Romad is right, heed the advice given.
Something else you could do as a stop gap emergency action is to buy some water conditioner called Prime by a company called Seachem. this temporarily renders ammonia and nitrite harmless for a certain period, normally 24/36 hours. there is dosing instructions for emergencies on the bottle. this will keep the fish safe. keep on top of water changes and try and rehome some of those fish, unless you are going to buy a new bigger tank, but this new tank will need to cycle so is not an immediate remedy.
sorry this is happening but thankfully there are places of information and support like this website that will get you on the right track.
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