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post #11 of 13 Old 05-10-2007, 02:34 AM
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Ok, you already know you have an overstocked tank, and that it was done way too soon. The first and most important thing to do now is to decide what can stay and what has to go. If you keep all of these fish in this tank and try to "sort it out", you're going to lose fish, there is no simple way or easy way for me to say this, but in that size of a tank, being that new, there is no way to prevent the death of many of these fish other than to take them back to the pet store. If it were me, I'd also be complaining to a manager for the bad advice and contributing to your problems, and I'd be demanding my money back while insisting they take the fish.
The best things to keep out of your selection would be up to 3 of the barbs. You can add more compatible fish later once it's safe to do so, and once you have more information on how many will fit.

I will need to know your current water params for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, and pH in order to be of much help in dealing with the water quality issues, along with how much and often you are feeding the fish, what foods you are offering, how often you are still doing water exchanges, and how much, what the temp is in the tank, what kind of filter you are using, and what kind of test kits you are using. I would suggest taking a water sample (seperate, with no fish in it) to the LFS with you when returning the fish, and have them test it also, have them write down the exact numbers and kind of kits they're using, so we can compare results for accuracy.

If you haven't already done so, slow your feedings down to once, every other day, and only what the fish completely finish within 1 minute each time. Keep up daily water changes of up to 30% until things become more stable, and add an air stone to increase oxygen content in the water and add to the circulation in the tank.

Something many people don't know or understand about bio spira, it is a great product if used properly, and in your case... it was not used properly. With an ammonia level that high, it would have killed most if not all of the bacteria as soon as you put it into the tank. There are specific instructions concerning the use of bio spira, and it has to be added when the fish are first put into the tank so that the waste they put out feeds the bacteria without overwhelming it. The concept of the bio spira is that there is enough live bacteria in a proper dose to feed a proper fish waste load from the start.... in your case, the ammonia was already there in such multitude, it would have quickly killed the bacteria. Yes, sorry to say, you wasted your money and I would not suggest adding it again. If you wish to add a bacteria suppliment to help, which I would suggest, a better and much cheaper option would be biozyme.
I would stock up on it for a little while. Biozyme is a powdered "inactive" form of the same bacteria, and because of it's form, it would be the better way to approach starting a healthy bacteria culture in your current situation. I have used this stuff for years, fixed many people's problems with this and the maintenance that goes with getting a tank healthy. It works, and can be used daily without any risk of "overdose".

I will watch this thread for you to post your information, and I will do what I can to help. Patience and diligence will see you through... but first thing is first... get those fish out of that tank asap!

Just for info purposes, I did a breakdown of the ratio of fish you have in that tank. As was pointed out, when using the 1 inch per gallon rule to help guide you, always figure adult size of the fish because most fish grow quickly and as they are growing they are taking up more space in the tank by the day...
Here's what you have currently:
5 tiger barbs = up to 15 inches
1 bala shark = up to 14 inches
1 red tail shark = up to 8 inches
4 red glass barbs 4 – 6 inches each/16 – 24 inches
5 bumble bee catfish = up to 5 inches, needs brackish water
2 rosy barbs = up to 6 inches
Total = 64 - 72 inches

Dawn Moneyhan
Aquatics Specialist/Nutritionist
Juneau, WI
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post #12 of 13 Old 05-10-2007, 09:16 AM
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That is a severe overload.

So how's it going then eh.

Tanks: 40 gal FW setup, 10 gal Reef tank.

Old BC8 setup:
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post #13 of 13 Old 05-10-2007, 12:44 PM Thread Starter
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ok thanks alot for the info i have a 155 gallon bow front on its way with a stand for the balla and some other fish and as far as the water its doing better i got a good solid reading of .25 ppm for nitrites and 4.0 ammonia and no nitrate yet soo im doing better and i only feed once a day and i know the rule feed what they can eat in a minute. i will keep u guys and girls informed
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