Okay, so here's what's going on with our tank (pictures included); Please keep in mind that none of the rams, nor the Pictus, are displaying any symptoms are are healthy and swimming and eating normally and actively.
The previous night (1/17/2012) we had moved seven (7) long-fin zebra Danios to the 55g from our already-established 20g that we've had them in for the past two (2) weeks with no problems. We previously had five (5) long-finned pearl Danios in the 55g tank, as well as fifteen(15) leopard long-finned Danios in the tank before we moved the long-finned zebras from the 20g to the 55g.
This didn't happen until this morning (1/18/2012), when we woke up to five (5) of our fish dead. We came home tonight after visiting a specialty fish store, and we're going to lose four (4) more by morning, possibly more.
We've spent the day monitoring our fish and there have been no signs of aggression, aside from the occasional chasing that happens among dithers. The rams school and stay towards the bottom of the tank, and wander around. They leave the Danios and the Pictus alone; just as well, the dithers leave the rams and the Pictus alone, and the Pictus hangs out at the driftwood. Keep in mind that this tank is also fully-planted.
Because three of our rams have ich, we've increased the water temperature to 88 degrees (we did it in small increments so that we didn't shock any of the fish with the temperature change), and so far the ich has been dropping off and the rams are improving. The leopard and pearl Danios have been in the tank with the rams for the entire week in this water temperature being closely monitored and have had no problems until last night, until after the zebras were introduced. So far none of the zebras have been included in the casualties.
I don't know what to do, do you guys know what it is? Are the zebras bullying the rest of the Danios, or are they (*gulp*) being cooked alive? If so, I will remove them *right away* and get them their own tank tonight if need be. Please help! Details are below.
1. Size of tank: 55g
2. Water parameters
a. Ammonia? 0 ppm
b. Nitrite? 0 ppm
c. Nitrate? 0 - 5.0 ppm
d. pH, KH and GH? pH is 7.0 - 7.2, don't know about the other two.
e. Test kit? API master kit
3. Temperature: 87 degrees
4. Fresh water
5. How long the aquarium has been set up: 4 weeks total, 3 weeks of a planted cycle before-hand with two pictus catfish
6. What fish do you have? How many are in your tank? How big are they? How long have you had them?:
1xElectric blue ram
3xGerman Blue rams
(currently)22xDanios, soon to be 18x, possibly lower by morning.
This is the first batch of fish in this tank; all of the Danios are their full-size, and the young rams are two or three months away from reaching maturity. The golden rams are already mature.
7. Were the fish placed under quarantine period (minus the first batch from the point wherein the tank is ready to accommodate the inhabitants)? No quarantine, first batch of fish in the tank.
8. a. Live plants: Micro swords and various stem-plants (anubias, ro-something...)
b. Sand, gravel, barebottom? Eco-complete substrate
c. Rocks, woods, fancy decors? Any hollow decors? A large piece of drift-wood, no sharp edges (on the outside), has lots of hiding areas, as well as leafy stem-plants and a thick carpet of micro-swords to hide in, and floating roccia.
9. a. Filtration? 70g biowheel filter from Marineland
b. Heater? 2x150w
10. a. Lighting schedule? What lights are used? 8 a.m. - 10 p.m., 4x6500 compact fluorescent (23w/bulb)
b. Any sunlight exposure? How long? No sun-exposure
11. a. Water change schedule? 1/week
b. Volume of water changed? 25%
c. Well water, tap water, RO water? RO water + Conditioned tap, aged
d. Water conditioner used? Prime
e. Frequency of gravel/sand (if any) vacuumed? 1/week
12. Foods? Nutrafin Max (Small tropical fish micro-granules)
How often are they fed? Feed for two days, skip the third, feed another two days, skip the third, so on and so forth.
13. a. Any abnormal signs/symptoms? Tail fins and sometimes the under-fins completely gone by the time of death, mass discoloration of the bodies that starts in small patches but quickly covers the body. Fins don't disappear before the discoloration moves over the body, all happens at the same time.
b. Appearance of poop? Normal
c. Appearance of gills? Normal
14. a. Have you treated your fish ahead of diagnosis? Heating the tank in case of ich.
b. What meds were used? None
15. Insert photos of fish in question and full tank shot if necessary.
This fish in the picture below, right under the leopard on the top, is showing the symptoms.
Please help me.