Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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oreil 08-03-2009 05:40 PM

My fish are dying and I need some help
4 Attachment(s)
H iguys/girls don't know if I'm in the right place anyway i have a roma 240L tank filter fluval 305 before I go

any further I'm as green as they come to this hobby I change 25% of the water once every 2 weeks using

aqua safe 5 ml to 10 Lt water I have angle/silver sharks/rainbow/clown/pelco/plattis all in same tank NUTRAFIN

testing kit I have done all test's No2 nitrite =0 No3 nitrate=0 ammonia =0 pH wide range =0 now the problem

3 of my plats died and 4 of my angels also I feed once a day with JMC catfish pellets for clowl and pelco

JMC NOVOBEL for all other fish what am I doing wrong all the help I get will be app.THANKS


aunt kymmie 08-03-2009 06:18 PM

Hi Oreil- Welcome to the forum. I'm sorry you're having troubles. How long has this tank been set up? I'm not familiar with the test kit you are using. Is it a liquid test kit or strips? What is your ph??

oreil 08-03-2009 07:01 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Hi Aunt kymmie it's a NUTRAFIN essential mini master liquid test kit the tank is steup about 4 months you might know the test kit when you see it thanks

oreil 08-03-2009 07:30 PM

just did pH test it shows [A] 7.5/8.0[ B]7.0/7.5

Byron 08-04-2009 11:53 AM

Problems are sometimes difficult to diagnose, but I'll offer a few suggestions.

I'm thinking that the stocking level may be high for this tank. It's a 240 litre (approx 50 gallon) and while you don't say how many of each fish species you had, the number of deaths indicate there may have been more than safe. When problems occur, a higher fish density can often aggravate them, and the fish may feel too cramped and this causes stress, particularly if there are any slightly aggressive fish in the mix. And water quality is more fdifficult to maintain if the bioload is beyond the normal capacity of the filter and biological equilibrium.

Angels and neons are not a good pairing, as the neons can tnd to harass the angels (fin nip those flowing fins) and angels do eat neons if the neons are small enough to fit in the angels' mouths. Sharks can be aggressive particularly with each other and with other bottom dwellers, so this is something to watch out for and perhaps avoid. If the "clown" is a clown loach, this fish needs to be kept in a group as they are very social and shoaling by nature; 5 would be good, but not in a 50g tank. These fish will grow (if they are kept healthy and given the space) to 12+ inches. Kept in too small a tank, they (and all larger fish) may be stunted, where the internal organs try to grow even though the outward body can't due to the lack of space and associated water quality; this again brings on stress, and frequently causes immune system issues. I would find a new home for the clown loach (they store may take it back for credit, or another aquarist?).

The pH reading is OK for livebearers which are fish that prefer basic (slightly alkaline) water. I'm confused by two readings--is "A" and "B" different test kits? The nitrate reading "0" is odd, with this fish load and only bi-weekly water changes the nitrates should be showing something; it is normal to have 5-20 ppm of nitrate; some fish are fine with slightly higher nitrate levels, but it is generally deemed safer to keep nitrates below 20 ppm, and the weekly partial water change does this.

Partial water changes are best when carried out more frequently even if less water is changed. Weekly changes of 30-40% would in my view be ideal, but even doing 25% every week would be better than every second week regardless of how much water is changed. The aim is to maintain a better stability in water parameters, and replacing water more often removes toxins like urine which no filter can remove; only the water change can handle this task, and the more the better for the fish's health.

As for the immediate problem, I would do more frequent partial water changes, maybe twice a week, for a couple of weeks. And consider any changes to the current fish as mentioned above.


oreil 08-04-2009 01:32 PM

2 Attachment(s)
Hi byron I don't have a lot of fish i have 2 rainbows 2 angels 2 silverSharks 3 platas 1 pelco 2 cloun loach the silver are verry calm I have attached the test card for you to have a look at let me know if you understand it

Herky 08-04-2009 02:38 PM

Weekly water changes are the only way to go oreil. I would say it is almost an absolute must to the longevity of your fish. I'm not an expert on stocking, but byron knows what he is talking about. I would think your problem with the angels lies with two problems...the amount of other fish in the tank, and your pH is fairly high for angels. I try to keep mine at 7.0 or below for my angels. They just don't like it at all when I go above that, they become lethargic and spooky. Not sure on why your kit has two readings, but if it is registering 8.0 on a pH's way too high for angels.

oreil 08-04-2009 04:51 PM

thanks Herky I belive thers some kind of pads that i can put in the filters to keep the pH down afk i don't know what the name is ??

Byron 08-04-2009 06:20 PM


Originally Posted by oreil (Post 222778)
Hi byron I don't have a lot of fish i have 2 rainbows 2 angels 2 silverSharks 3 platas 1 pelco 2 cloun loach the silver are verry calm I have attached the test card for you to have a look at let me know if you understand it


First, on the number of fish, that would have been 6 angels and 6 platys before they died, plus the rest. Not that many for the tank, but as I mentioned before some of these grow (or should grow) large and you should consider re-homing them (to the store, another aquarist, larger tank...).

I understand the test; it is quite a wide range test kit, from 4.5 up to 9, which is why the chart is more general than specific. Your tank water is coloured between the green and bluish/green, so I suspect it is around 7.5 which is OK for the livebearers. Angels would be better at a lower pH as Herky mentioned. Lowering pH is not always simple or easy; I suspect the filter pads you mention in a subsequent post are peat pads, but they wear out (as the peat releases its tannins to acidify the water) and would have to be replaced. A better idea might be to determine what your tank pH will consistently be (based upon your tap water that will be used for partial water changes) and select fish that are suited. We can go into this aspect more later, once the initial problem of fish loss has been resolved.

I would do the frequent partial water changes as I suggested before, and monitor the results. Keep us posted on progress. We'll all help where we can.


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