All my fish are dying!
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All my fish are dying!

This is a discussion on All my fish are dying! within the Tropical Fish Diseases forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> I have a new, ten-gallon tank. It is heated to 78 degrees f, has aquarium rock substrate and a live plant. It also has ...

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All my fish are dying!
Old 02-21-2007, 05:59 PM   #1
 
All my fish are dying!

I have a new, ten-gallon tank. It is heated to 78 degrees f, has aquarium rock substrate and a live plant. It also has a fairly inexpensive filtration system, and is lighted incandescently. I got the tank less than a week ago and over the past few days almost all of my fish have died.

At first I just wanted feeder guppies, with two lyretail mollies and two snails. The first day, all but two of the feeder guppies died. I got more feeder guppies the next day, figuring the others had died because the store I got them from treated them roughly and they were in bad shape from the start. I also got two panda cories and a 2 male and 3 female fancy guppies. Since then everything has died except a few of the feeder guppies, a pair of fancy guppies and one lyretail mollie.

For the most part all of them seemed fine (eating, exploring, etc) until they developed symptoms extremely quickly. One minute they would be fine and the next they would be having a hard time swimming. They would float vertically in the water and just let the current take them, and then they would die. I did notice somewhat fractured fins on some of the ones that died.

I also have another 10 gallon tank but it is in my boyfriends room. It didn't have nearly the problems that I am having. While the number of fish was kind of large, we have had quite a few in the other tank in his room (10 or so) without these kinds of problems. The water temperature is ok, but i haven't tested other water parameters because I don't have a testing kit. It seems fast for the water parameters to go south especially since nothing else seems to be amiss (no coloration changes, plants still healthy, etc). I hope this is enough information and that someone can give me some insight.
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Old 02-21-2007, 06:18 PM   #2
 
Hello! I'm brand new to this hobby but the first thing that comes to my mind is, did you cycle the tank? There's a sticky posted at the top of the forum with different ways to accomplish this. If you're going to use fish, you need hardy ones, but it sounds like the preferred method is using ammonia or shrimp. You can also transfer some filter media and/or gravel from your existing tank to help the process along.

I used to think all you had to do was buy a tank and some fish and presto! instant aquarium. Boy was I wrong!! Very glad I found this site to help me. There's tons of information and you can look back through all the old posts to expand your knowledge base.
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Old 02-21-2007, 06:22 PM   #3
 
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Welcome.

It seems clear to me you were adding fish without cycling the tank. First, let your tank cycle. Use either ammonia or fish(platies or danios). Be sure to get a liquid test kit. API Freshwater Master Test Kit is recommended for this use. In the phase of cycling, you will have detectable level of ammonia in the beginning. Seed your tank with your lfs' established filter media. In a few days, ammonia will sink and nitrites should spike up. Be sure to test your water parameters daily. Nitrites should sink soon and nitrates will rise. If your nitrates is over 40 ppm, do a water change to lower it. If you have receive zero ammonia and nitrites along with detectable leve of nitrates(although not higher than 40), then your tank has cycled.

Panda cories are very sensitive to water quality and so are guppies. Guppies are not very hardy these days particularly due to inbreeding and such.

Since you lost all the fish as you stated, it's time for you to begin cycling the tank. If you prefer to cycle with fish, get 4 zebra danios or male platies. No female platies. They breed too fast and the fry will become difficult to remove.

What exactly were your water parameters? Temperature? Replace your incandescent light with fluorescent. Incandescents give off too much heat and could warm the water. Not only that, they do not provide the correct spectrum for plants.
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Old 02-21-2007, 06:41 PM   #4
 
Ok, so I understand now that I need to cycle my tank, but what I dont get is how come I never had any problems with this with my boyfriends tank? We never cycled it and nothing happened. Was that just luck? Thanks guys!
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Old 02-21-2007, 06:43 PM   #5
 
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What are his fish?:) If those turn out to be hardy species, then it is possible his fish will survive for long. How long has his tank been running?:)
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Old 02-22-2007, 05:58 PM   #6
 
His tank has been running for about 6 months. During this time he has had balloon mollies, panda cories, fancy-tail guppies, and a platy and he has had no trouble.
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Old 02-22-2007, 06:05 PM   #7
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maybekatie87
His tank has been running for about 6 months. During this time he has had balloon mollies, panda cories, fancy-tail guppies, and a platy and he has had no trouble.
His tank may have cycled already without his notice. Ammonia and nitrites should be zero but nitrates should be detectable but not higher than 40 ppm.
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Old 02-22-2007, 06:19 PM   #8
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Maybekatie87
His tank has been running for about 6 months. During this time he has had balloon mollies, panda cories, fancy-tail guppies, and a platy and he has had no trouble.
Most of those fish are hardy, the panda cory is the exception but he might have gotten lucky, every tank is different.
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Old 02-23-2007, 01:56 AM   #9
 
Thanks everyone! Right now the fish seems ok (meaning none have died in the past 5 minutes, hahaah, no but seriously, its been about a day since any deaths) but now my female fancy guppy is nipping at the body of my lyretail mollie, despite the fact that both look healthy and the guppy is about 1/8th of the size of my molly. Is this normal?
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Old 02-23-2007, 02:02 AM   #10
 
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Nothing to worry about.:) Just prepare for Melafix in case fin nipping occurs.
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