My Fish are Randomly Dying Off! - Page 2 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #11 of 15 Old 11-09-2009, 01:47 PM
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I was at big als one night and I was talking to them about my levels cause they were high and I got on the topic of a fish or two dying..... any way the employee told me that a good way to wipe out your whole tank is to add baking soda..... not sure if it's true but because she told me that I will never add baking soda to my tank.... but that's just my opinion....

60 Gallon Fresh Water Tank
-17 Guppies (10 females, 7 males)
- 4 Mollies (3 females, 1 male)
- 4 Cory Cats
- 2 Algae Eaters
20 Gallon Baby Tank
- 20 Guppy Fry
- 5 Molly Fry
- 2 Cory Cats
*** Running for three months :)
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post #12 of 15 Old 11-09-2009, 07:21 PM
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Just a comment on a post previously made....DO NOT GET TEST STRIPS, they are extremely unreliable....also....most petcos use test strips to do water tersting....i would strongly urge you to spend the extra money and get a liquid master test kit like the one made by API. Also, if you havent mentioned previosly, could you let us know your cleaning routine/frequency, and any water conditioner you may use??

"Fish are friends not food"
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post #13 of 15 Old 11-14-2009, 11:48 AM
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Originally Posted by 1077 View Post
There are a few things that I would submit for you to consider. You say the tank has been set up for a year. The acidification (low pH) is natural process as aquariums age. Routine,, weekly water changes help keep pH from drifting by supplying minerals like calcium that help buffer the water.Without regular weekly water changes the ph over time will become lower possibly than what fish store water or your tapwater produces. It is for this reason that acclimation of new fish becomes important . Could be the sudden change in ph is resulting in osmotic shock to fishes. Were it me,(and it ain't) I might try acclimating the fish slowly, by floating the bag with fish in the tank for twenty minutes. Then I would open the bag and try and add approx half cup, to a cup of aquarium water to the bag of fish every four to five minutes until the bag became full. You could also place new fish in a bucket with the water from the bag and use airline tubing and suction to allow water to drip from your aquarium into bucket with fish for twenty to thirty minutes. With both methods, once bag became full, or bucket became half full ,you could then net the fish from the bag or bucket and gently release them into the aquarium. Throw the acclimation water out or down the drain. (don't put in aquarium).
Something else you mentioned,,, (cleaned the tank and filter) When cleaning the filter material.,, best to use tank water that you take out during weekly 20 to 25 percent water changes or dechlorinated water in a bucket. Tapwater contains possible chlorine or chloramines that damage or destroy beneficial bacteria that is needed.
As Pasfur mentioned,, fish should be added slowly and a few at a time over several weeks .
Get a test kit so that you don't have to rely on fish stores to test your water.
Ask fish store what ph in their tanks are and then measure the pH from your tank. If there is significant difference,, acclimate the new fish slowly to your tank as described.
Use a dechlorinator such as PRIME or AMQUEL+ to treat the new water you add to the tank during weekly water changes and try to make new water close to same temp as water in the aquarium.(note)..topping off tanks to replace water that eveporates ,does not = a water change.
I hope some of this helps you or others.
P.S.Resist the urge to add any chemicals and or potions to your aquarium to alter the ph . Doing so can cause pH to fluctuate significantly and kills many fish in the process. Best to have stable pH values rather than those that are not. Many of the fish you mentioned can adapt to your ph if acclimated slowly.
I would agree to everything but amquel+ -- my experience with amquel has been great, but amquel+ has some weird ingredient that seems to take away oxygen from the water while it's doing it's job. if you do use amquel + make sure you have an air pump & air stone for at least a day to offset the oxygen loss.

If you do not have that equipment, i'd go just with amquel and also cycle if possible. I've had tremendous success with them.

I'm glad your tank has stablized, but get a water testing kit -- API Freshwater Master Kit is one of the best out there, and has almost everything you need (except for the kh and gh test, as well as some misc tests)

this forum along with that test kit has saved my wallet and my emotions from being strung out to dry =D

-=+8 Gallon Planted+=-
1x Honey Gourami
2x Otocinclus Affinis
6x Flame Tetra
6x Ember Tetra
2x Apple Snail (Hitched on Rotala)

Dwarf Sagittaria
Ludwigia Repens X L. Arcuata
Staurogyne Repen
Cryptocoryne lutea
Cryptocoryne Wendti
Cryptocoryne spiralis
Amazon Sword
Java Moss
Java Fern
Anubias minima
Water Primrose
Pogostemon Yatabeanus
Limnophila sp. 'mini'
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post #14 of 15 Old 06-14-2010, 11:19 AM
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Okay, we use baking soda at my petstore to euthanize fish. Just sayin'
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post #15 of 15 Old 06-14-2010, 12:50 PM
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Wow, a lot to mention here..

I wouldn't add baking soda, but only because I've tried it.

It didn't kill my fish, but the problem is that banking soda is an unstable acid. (normally called a weak acid, but that has little to do with the ph of baking soda- pure baking soda has a ph of about 8, but the molecules of sodium bicarbonate quickly break down, reattach to other free elements, and create "strong", AKA stable, acids, resulting in a Ph that might be slightly lower than you started- either way, it won't help raise the Ph for more than a day before it quickly bounces back.)

It's true that fish will 'adjust' to a non-native Ph, but surviving and thriving are two completely different things.

I would get rid of the Guppies and Danios, and stick with the tetras and cories. (Or the other way around...)
I reccomend the tetras and cories because they love acidic water- a ph of 5.5-6.5 is pretty much perfect for them.
Fill a glass with Tap water, let it sit overnight, and then please let us know the Ph, Kh, and Ammonia levels.

Also, I personally use the Tetra Laborette test kit- It was a bit cheaper, and it has a test Kh which is very important IMO. It doesn't have a test for nitrates, but I think Kh is more important than nitrates. Ideally you do want a test for both.

Personally, I also avoid albino fish. Albino is a very rare mutation, and to keep producing albino fry you have to keep albino parents... Even then, usually some of the fry end up normal. The solution, is breeding parents with their offspring, over and over until 100% of the fry are albino, and then mass produce them.

There's a reason it's illegal to marry your cousin. Inbreeding results in weaker genetic code, and extremely susceptable fish. I would stick to normal cories- you're paying extra money for weak fish. Same reason I'll never buy black mollies again. They're inbred as well.

As for the Amquel +, as long as you don't have a canister filter, I don't think the oxygen levels will be a problem. If you have a canister filter, then get some live plants. PM me, and I can help you with that.
Plants absorb ammonia and produce oxygen- they're the only "shot in the dark" remedy that I would ever reccomend, because there's no worst case scenario like there are with chemicals, baking soda, Ph additives, etc.

I agree that most LFS chain stores (Pet Supplies Plus, Petco, etc) use strips to test the water- they might as well just smell at the water in question, and say "It smells a bit acidic..." lol.

Also, never let your filter media touch tapwater- dip out a cupful of aquarium water and squeeze the filter media out in that. The chlorine, the heavy metals, the temperature shock, the (sometimes) extremely high CO2 levels, will all quickly destroy the good bacteria.

Do be honest, I don't add water to the bag while they're floating. If I had extremely sensitive fishes (like some wild-caught rasboras I'm ordering soon) I'd use the drip method, but with most pet store fish, just float them and then net them out. The adding of cupfulls of tankwater to their bag is just more stress to a fish that's probably already having an anxiety attack from the rough netting at the pet store and the temperature fluctuations of the car ride home.

Sorry, I have to say something to Thain too:
How can you use Baking soda to euthanise a fish? That's almost like dipping a dog in hydrochloric acid to euthanize it.
Just pop it in the freezer- I believe it's painless (especially compared to baking soda.)
When I euthanize fish I drop a bag buddy in their water a few minutes later put them in the freezer so they'll go to sleep. Clove oil is also very good for sedating fish, and cheaper if you can buy it.

Originally Posted by Christople View Post
^^ genius

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