Emergency! Fish are dying! - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 6 Old 09-03-2011, 10:21 PM Thread Starter
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Exclamation Emergency! Fish are dying!

Two of my fish just died in the last two days. They were both looking under the weather for some time though anyway. But when I tested the PH 3 days ago it read 9.0!!!!! I have been doing everything right with my fish. I had a ten gallon tank with 3 danios, one molly, and one cory catfish. Now I have 2 danios and a cory catfish. Because of this high PH I did daily water changes. And THE PH was still high! Is this what killed my fish? Or was it something else? I treated the tank for parasites a while ago because one of the fish (he died) had a parasite. There is no ammonia in the tank... Nitrates, Nitrites - 0... My water is VERY hard though... I have nnooo IDEA why! It's just my tap water, But I use a water conditioner during weekly water changes. I Don't want my other fish to pass away, and the cory catfish has been looking a bit under the weather too :( he is just lying on the bottom kind of still. But I know that cory catfish do this a lot... But he isn't moving too much... What is up with my tank? I even checked the fish that died to see if I saw any signs of parasites but nothing showed. His gills were a tiny teensy (only the slightest bit) red though. Please help!

Is it normal for danios to swim around the bottom of the tank? Because right now mine are (but they seem happy enough)... My tank is like 4 months old, I do weekly water changers. I use tap water that is really hard with a conditioner... I do not over feed my fish... I did a 50% water change three days ago due to high PH... But I ran out of test strips today and when I checked the PH, it was 9.0 again.
I also have an air pump and a filter with Ammo Chips in it (it removes ammonia)!

Last edited by mjsweetz; 09-03-2011 at 10:25 PM.
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post #2 of 6 Old 09-03-2011, 11:38 PM
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Hello and welcome to TFK

First have you tested your water from the tap to find out what the ph is? Also what type of substrate do you have in this tank? Do you have any rocks in there, and other types of decorations? Other than water conditioner have you used any other type of chemicals in the tank. Also has the ph always been this high, or is this something that is new. If it is new has there been any new changes that you have done to the tank?
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post #3 of 6 Old 09-04-2011, 09:12 AM
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Well...IMO you shouldn't be using the ammonia chips unless you are having a problem with ammonia. If you are having a problem with ammonia you need to find out why.

You should get a liquid test kit. Strips are generally inaccurate. If nothing else, take a water sample to your fish store. They will test the water for you. It might be helpful to see and make sure your testing strips are accurate or reasonably so.

I agree with Barb. Check the pH of your tap water. If the tap water is NOT 9.0 then that means something in your tank is causing the pH to change.
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post #4 of 6 Old 09-05-2011, 08:05 PM
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What was the parasite you treated for?

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post #5 of 6 Old 09-13-2011, 12:01 PM
Check the pH of the tap water. If the tap water is coming out with a pH of 9.0, you will probably need to find an alternative water source, as there are not many fish that will thrive with a pH that high. Luckily a 10 gallon is small enough that you won't have to buy 50 gallons of water every time you do a water change :)

It sounds as though there are a couple things going on here - one of them is definitely the pH of your water. You sound like the 9.0 pH was a surprise to you- is this the first time you've tested it, or was it a spike? What was it beforehand?

If your nitrates are reading 0, it likely means that your tank is not cycled. You may want to take the opportunity while you have fewer fish to do a fish-in cycle to get the bacteria in there. There are plenty or articles on this forum and people here willing to help and answer questions. It will be better for the fish and will stabilize your water conditions.

Lastly, I hate to say it but you have some stocking issues. You don't say how long you've had the fish or how long the tank has been set up, but I have a feeling it's relatively new. Danios and cories are both shoaling fish. Danios should be kept in groups of at LEAST 5, and cories in groups of at LEAST 3. In a 10 gallon tank, that's about your stocking limit right there. You don't say what kind of danio, but in general danios are not well suited to 10 gallon tanks, they are either too active or too large.

If you can provide some more information about your tank, the equipment in it, maintenance schedules, etc. in addition to testing the pH of the tap water I'm sure we'll be able to help you get things under control.
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post #6 of 6 Old 09-14-2011, 01:18 PM
if your pH is that high out of the tap, i'd call your water company. that high isn't good for anything. you pretty much have to have a contaminant of some form to get it that high.
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