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Jazander 06-08-2011 04:17 PM

New Cory problems
 
My tank has been running for about 3 weeks now. And all my nitrate levels and such where fine. So I decided to add two julli corydora catfish... one of them was sick when I got it. I hadn't noticed till I got it home and looked at it and it was just laying on the botom of the bag. When I put it in the tank it just fell on the bottom and the only thing moving is its gills. Its been doing that for almost 24 hours now. The other one was jsut fine livly eating and swimming around the bottom.

Today I thought I should rinse out my filter a bit cause it looked kinda messy. So I took it out and rinsed it but didnt add the cartrage back in it for about 10 minutes. Well my healthy corry started flipping out all of a sudden. So I tested the water and stuck the cartrage back in. Turns out my ammonia spiked after being fine for so long. So I did a 20% water change and added a double dose of cycle. But my corry is just laying in the plant not moving except for its gills. Do you think they will die? Should I get a new cartrage for my filter cause mine is looking kinda dirty. And when I pulled it out of the filter it dropped some nasty looking stuff into the water. Could this have caused the ammonia spike?

gmyers0203 06-08-2011 04:25 PM

I'm no expert but one thing I learned the hard way was to not replace the filter that early on in a cycle. Your tank has likely not completely finished the cycle, though every tank varies. Best thing to do is next time you do a water change, capture some of the tank water in a 5 gallon or 1 gallon bucket. Once you've done so, you can take the filter and rinse it out in the old tank water. If you do not, and put a brand new filter in there, you will likely start your cycle completely over, or cause a set back in the amount of time it takes for the cycle to complete. In a tank that young, it is likely that most of the beneficial bacteria is still forming on the filter and you don't want to get rid of all your hard work!

Have you tested your tap water for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, pH, etc? This is important to know and will likely help anyone else that chimes in.

Also, please post the current levels in your aquarium, pH, ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, hardness if you know them. And are you getting these numbers from a paper test kit or a liquid test kit?

Once you provide this information, along with the size of your tank, we may be able to help you out better!

Jazander 06-08-2011 04:43 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by gmyers0203 (Post 695806)
I'm no expert but one thing I learned the hard way was to not replace the filter that early on in a cycle. Your tank has likely not completely finished the cycle, though every tank varies. Best thing to do is next time you do a water change, capture some of the tank water in a 5 gallon or 1 gallon bucket. Once you've done so, you can take the filter and rinse it out in the old tank water. If you do not, and put a brand new filter in there, you will likely start your cycle completely over, or cause a set back in the amount of time it takes for the cycle to complete. In a tank that young, it is likely that most of the beneficial bacteria is still forming on the filter and you don't want to get rid of all your hard work!

Have you tested your tap water for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, pH, etc? This is important to know and will likely help anyone else that chimes in.

Also, please post the current levels in your aquarium, pH, ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, hardness if you know them. And are you getting these numbers from a paper test kit or a liquid test kit?

Once you provide this information, along with the size of your tank, we may be able to help you out better!

i am using a liquid test kit. My tank is a 10 gallon. This morning my readings were : ph - 7.0, ammonia 0, nitrate 0, nitraite 0. I cant remember what they were when my cory started flipping but now after the 20% water change and the cycle dose. (I also added water treatment to remove cholrine and such). The readings are PH 7.3, amonnia 0.6 (when I match those up on my chart I get 4.9 eeks!) nitrite 0, nitrate 0. My 3 mollies are doing just fine. I have a broad leaf live plant and a tall water sprite live plant in there also.

Byron 06-08-2011 06:14 PM

The fish store shold be willing to replace the cory that was actiong like you describe in the bag, should it die. It may well have been injured when netted, it is very easy to do this. Once injured, other stress such as a new environment can make it worse, and having to cope with ammonia or nitrite could finish an already weakened fish. Corydoras are very sensitive fish in my experience over 20 years. If one or both do not make it, wait until the tank is well established before getting more. And when you do, 3 is better than 2; they are very social fish.

During the 3 weeks did ammonia and nitrite rise and then fall back to zero?

What water conditioner are you using?

Jazander 06-08-2011 09:12 PM

The ammonia and nitrate levels went up slightly and then everything was back at zero. I have been using "nutrafin aqua plus water conditioner" and "nutrafin cycle bacteria supplement". I am happy to report that one cory is back up and running after being actually belly up for awhile and trying to jump outta the water. The other one i am taking back tomorrow as it is now breathing rapidly and laying on its side.

One of my female mollies is now hiding in her the cavr and will not come out after getting extra attention from the male... *sigh*... So many issues.

I added an extra dose of cycle just now and am going to test my water levels in the morning... I hope everyone survives this ammonia spike as i hsve become slightly attached to my fishes.

genewitch 06-27-2011 03:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jazander (Post 696056)
The ammonia and nitrate levels went up slightly and then everything was back at zero. I have been using "nutrafin aqua plus water conditioner" and "nutrafin cycle bacteria supplement". I am happy to report that one cory is back up and running after being actually belly up for awhile and trying to jump outta the water. The other one i am taking back tomorrow as it is now breathing rapidly and laying on its side.

One of my female mollies is now hiding in her the cavr and will not come out after getting extra attention from the male... *sigh*... So many issues.

I added an extra dose of cycle just now and am going to test my water levels in the morning... I hope everyone survives this ammonia spike as i hsve become slightly attached to my fishes.

Every LFS around me says something different, but I take a week to "cycle" my new tanks and i use a specific microbe in a bottle thing made by "Ecological labratories" called "Microbe Lift Special Blend" It's in a light purple and white box, it smells like hydrogen sulfide, and my water is completely crystal clear and always tests perfect. You have to use it weekly or bi-weekly and a $7 bottle lasts 4-6 months with a 30 gallon. The pH of my tap is wrong so i balance it with a smidge of salt. I have a salinity bob in my tank and the salt doesn't even register - about 1 TBSP per 10 gallons and adding more when i do water changes.

I am going to attach a picture of my filter for you if i can, it's 3 weeks in an has had a 5 gallon change since i installed it because i put in a bunch of new plants. Your water should turn cloudy while you're cycling it, and then turn clear, without any intervention on your part.

As for the corys, they should be able to withstand hanging out in a temporary fish bowl with dechlorinated and treated tap water at the right temperature while you wait for your tank to properly cycle, if you can't or don't want to do this, i'd take them back... I've had to isolate my Corys in a hospital 1 gallon tank when my large tank caught ich and i was treating the tetras and whatnot.

Filter top off: http://cloudp.ath.cx/images/100_0853.JPG
Filter media itself: http://cloudp.ath.cx/images/100_0854.JPG
inside the tank: http://cloudp.ath.cx/images/100_0856.JPG
http://cloudp.ath.cx/images/100_0858.JPG

Byron 06-28-2011 09:59 AM

Quote:

The pH of my tap is wrong so i balance it with a smidge of salt. I have a salinity bob in my tank and the salt doesn't even register - about 1 TBSP per 10 gallons and adding more when i do water changes.
Not fully understanding this. Salt, assuming you mean ordinary salt, has no effect on pH adjustment. And it is not good long-term for soft water fish. Perhaps you could tell us the pH of the tap water and what you want in the tank? Also, the hardness of the tap water as this has a direct bearing on pH [you can find out the hardness from your water supply folks, they may have a website with data posted].

And welcome to Tropical Fish Keeping forum. Glad you joined us.

Byron.

genewitch 06-28-2011 03:06 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Byron (Post 715125)
Not fully understanding this. Salt, assuming you mean ordinary salt, has no effect on pH adjustment. And it is not good long-term for soft water fish. Perhaps you could tell us the pH of the tap water and what you want in the tank? Also, the hardness of the tap water as this has a direct bearing on pH [you can find out the hardness from your water supply folks, they may have a website with data posted].

And welcome to Tropical Fish Keeping forum. Glad you joined us.

Byron.

I've always been told that a very small amount of salt helped with their gill function and warded off most external diseases, does the "not good long term" outweigh these benefits or are there no such benefits?

Byron 06-29-2011 12:34 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by genewitch (Post 715475)
I've always been told that a very small amount of salt helped with their gill function and warded off most external diseases, does the "not good long term" outweigh these benefits or are there no such benefits?

There are no such benefits. And for soft water fish in particular, continual salt is detrimental. I have posted the reason previously, but will copy the text here as it is important for all of us to understand the science behind what we do so we can be better equipped to provide a healthier environment. Before I get to that, i also posted a link to an article on common fish "myths" the other day, one of which is this idea that salt is "necessary" so you might enjoy having a read of that; here's the link for you:
Fishkeeping myths that just refuse to die | Blog | Practical Fishkeeping

Here's my blurb on salt:

Salt is detrimental to freshwater fish and plants in varying degrees. To understand why, we must understand what salt does in water.

Salt makes the water more dense than the same water without salt. The aquarium contains water. The bodies of fish and plant leaves also contain water [just as we do--we are, what is it, 70-some percent water?]. The water in the aquarium and the water in the fish/plant are separated by a semi-permeable layer which is the cell. Water can pass through this cell. When either body of water is more dense, the other less-dense body of water will pass through the membrane to equalize the water on both sides.

Water is constantly passing through the cells of fish by osmosis in an attempt to equate the water inside the fish (which is more dense) with the water in the aquarium. Put another way, the aquarium water is diluting the fish's body water until they are equal. Freshwater fish regularly excrete this water through respiration and urination. This is the issue behind pH differences as well as salt and other substances. It increases the fish's work--the kidney is used in the case of salt--which also increases the fish's stress in order to maintain their internal stability. Also, the fish tends to produce more mucus especially in the gills; the reason now seems to be due to the irritant property of salt--the fish is trying to get away from it.

Dr. Stanley Weitzman, who is Emeritus Research Scientist at the Department of Ichthyology of the Smithsonian Institute in Washington and an acknowledged authority on characoid fishes, writes that 100 ppm of salt is the maximum for characins, and there are several species that show considerable stress leading to death at 60 ppm. 100 ppm is equal to .38 of one gram of salt per gallon of water. One level teaspoon holds six grams of salt, so 1 tsp of salt per gallon equates to more than 15 times the tolerable amount. Livebearers have a higher tolerance (mollies sometimes exist in brackish water) so the salt may be safe for them.

Plants: when salt is added to the aquarium water, the water inside the plant cells is less dense so it escapes through the cells. The result is that the plant literally dries out, and will wilt. I've so far been unable to find a measurement of how much salt will be detrimental to plants; all authorities I have found do note that some species are more sensitive than others, and all recommend no salt in planted aquaria.

genewitch 06-30-2011 02:04 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Byron (Post 716731)
There are no such benefits. And for soft water fish in particular, continual salt is detrimental. I have posted the reason previously, but will copy the text here as it is important for all of us to understand the science behind what we do so we can be better equipped to provide a healthier environment. Before I get to that, i also posted a link to an article on common fish "myths" the other day, one of which is this idea that salt is "necessary" so you might enjoy having a read of that; here's the link for you:
Fishkeeping myths that just refuse to die | Blog | Practical Fishkeeping

Here's my blurb on salt:

Why are all the fish shop proprietors such morons, i'm actually more than a little angry about the salt thing (especially since the salt bath saved my tetra's life.)

Every time i deal with fish "experts" there's a different story. What temperature to keep the water, salt or no salt and how much, how often and how much water in a water change; more recently whether 4mm gravel is too big for corydoras. It seems more like these folks are in the business of replacing fish than helping people keep them as pets.

When i was growing up we had a 10 gallon with 3 goldfish with an undergravel filter and they lasted about 10 years i'd say.

If these were cats or dogs they were selling there'd be store closures, right?

Thanks for the head's up about the salt, i'll not add anymore (we're done buying fish so ich should be out for good until a bigger tank!) and start doing slightly more (10% more) water changes the next few times to get some extra salt out. i was only adding ~10 grams per 35 liters on water changes.


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