Sudden death platy, other lethargic?
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Sudden death platy, other lethargic?

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Sudden death platy, other lethargic?
Old 10-20-2011, 03:10 PM   #1
 
Sudden death platy, other lethargic?

Hi-
First time poster here, but excited for the resource. Hoping to upgrade aquarium, but want to try to perfect things first.
I did my usual tank maintenence this past Sunday. My fish all looked good at that time. Monday night I noted one of my platy's at the bottom of the tank laying in the plants. It had the sunken abdomen/arched spine appearance. I moved it to a separate smaller tank to isolate. Once moved the spinal arch was more along the lateral plane. The platy died overnight.
I took the fish to work with me the next day to attempt to do a post mortem exam. I was hoping to be able to evaluate organs for lesions suggestive of TB. If so, I would have made slides to look at and confirm.
On PM, the platy looked pretty much normal on the outside. Gills were quite pale. The body cavity was potentially too broken down, as I couldn't identify any specific organs. I identified what was potentially the cranial kidney that was pale in color. Everything else was colorless/clear in appearance. It was not slimy in consistency. I suspect based on the lack of color everywhere that this fish was quite anemic. Since I couldn't really identify organs, I couldn't determine any potential lesions. I didn't end up making any slides, but took some pictures of the cavity to show what I mean about the lack of color.
I have one other platy left. That platy seems like it could be a bit lethargic/less active, but I am not certain if it is or if I am just paranoid...Did eat some flakes yesterday after ignoring blood worms. The other fish all appear fine. The platy's dorsal fin looks a bit lower/droopy than I think it was before.

I checked tank parameters prior to the maintenence on Sunday. pH of 7.8, Ammonia 0-0.25ppm and nitrite negative, nitrates at ~15ppm. Did use a siphon vacuum to clean gravel, 50% water change. More specifics below in stats, also have tank profile entered (20H). Conditioned water prior to adding, siphoned into tank. I did then change some of my filter media. In the course of doing that, I released a bunch of filter accumulation goo into the water. It became cloudy for a bit, but cleared within a couple of hours. I rinsed the foam filter, used the same filter bag but rinsed. Added new charcoal and added some Seachem Matrix (small handful mixed with charcoal) to the filter bag. Have not used Matrix prior to this. Also used Seachem Nourish-soaked some flakes and blood worms prior to feeding.
Rechecked tank parameters yesterday. pH of 8, Ammonia definitely 0.25ppm, nitrite negative, nitrate 5ppm.

I am still worried about fish TB...really nervous that the rest of the fish are going to fall ill soon.

1. Size of tank? 20 gallon, high

2. Water parameters
a. Ammonia? 0.25
b. Nitrite? neg
c. Nitrate? 5ppm
d. pH, KH and GH? 7.8
e. Test kit? Ap Freshwater Master test kit

3. Temperature? ~72 degrees (F)

4. FW (fresh water) or BW (brackish)? Freshwater

5. How long the aquarium has been set up? Years. Originally had cichlids. Did partial change of gravel when changing from cichlid to general tropical community.

6. What fish do you have? How many are in your tank? How big are they? How long have you had them?
Have had all fish in tank for at least 3months. Have 1 small/medium angel, 1 cory cat (3 inches), three ruby tetras (1.5-2 inch ea) and one remaining platy (2.5 inch).

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. Bad, bad me.

8. a. Any live plants? Fake plants? All live plants- 3 moss balls, 3 Aponogeton, 1 red java fern, 1 Anubius hastafolia, 2-3 strands of floating hornwort, and 2 other I still need to get re-identified.

b. Sand, gravel, barebottom? Gravel, about2.5-3 inches deep.

c. Rocks, woods, fancy decors? Any hollow decors? Three small granite river type rocks, one large clear polished quartz rock.

9. a. Filtration? Whisper 30 filter. Currently has bagged charcoal and Matrix media and the foam/sponge filter.
b. Heater? No. haven't found one that seems to work...

10. a. Lighting schedule? What lights are used? Light goes on around 7-8 am, off around 10-11pm. Don't recall light bulb type, is a fluorescent bulb rated for plants. Don't have package to give specifics and bulb is not labeled.
b. Any sunlight exposure? How long? Exposed to sun through window tank sits next to against wall. No direct sunlight.

11. a. Water change schedule? Every 2 weeks I do a 50% water change.
b. Volume of water changed? ~10 gallons
c. Well water, tap water, RO water? tap water
d. Water conditioner used? Seachem Prime, Stability, also use Stress Guard. Use a touch of Tetra Aquasafe (i think Aquasafe and not Easybalance) since it claims to help with nitrate regulation and I had been having problems before with Nitrate levels hovering around 40ppm.
e. Frequency of gravel/sand (if any) vacuumed? With water changes, every 2-3 weeks.

12. Foods? Tetra Color flakes, Freeze dried blood worms, sometimes soaked in Seachem Nourish.
How often are they fed? Every 1-3 days. Small amounts (estimate size of all fishs' eyeballs as estimate of stomach size, and to be sure is gone within 30-60 seconds).

13. a. Any abnormal signs/symptoms? See above.
b. Appearance of poop? I guess normal- haven't witnessed any fecal material.
c. Appearance of gills? Normal on live fish, appeared pale on deceased fish.

14. a. Have you treated your fish ahead of diagnosis? No
b. What meds were used? N/A

15. Insert photos of fish in question and full tank shot if necessary.
Have tank photo, and photos of fish abdominal cavity during PM evaluation. Uploaded as attachments.
fish1.jpg

fsih2.jpg

fish3.jpg

tank.jpg


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Old 10-20-2011, 10:55 PM   #2
 
ADDENDUM:

Tonight the other platy is looking worse again. It appears to be unsteady, wobbling and appearing to work to stay upright. Imagine a drunk fish. It is looking quite red over the gills, color may be a bit faded in appearance. Trying to decide if belly appears bloated or if I am imagining an increase to the arched appearance. Removed from tank and isolated in separate container. Wonder if it will be alive come morning.
Tetras, angel and cory all still look fine, no red gills.
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Old 10-20-2011, 11:09 PM   #3
 
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Just wanted to bump this up for you. I wish I could help you, but I can't. I applaud your thoroughness! I hope some can help you soon!
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Old 10-23-2011, 09:26 PM   #4
 
Platy is still alive, but now much more lethargic. Had been doing better and put him back in my main tank. Back to isolation tonight.
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Old 10-24-2011, 02:31 AM   #5
 
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Could have been genetic in nature considering that tanks full of these fish, (livebearer's) are often from one spawn.
Ammonia readings in a tank set up for year's as you indicate,should not be.Could ammonia reading briefly have been result of dead platy?
Sometimes we can get overly aggressive with cleaning and clean too much at one time. Gravel vaccuming, followed by rinsing of filter material, and replacement of carbon media which over time(weeks) becomes a source of biological filtration could have depleted a sizeable portion of beneficial bacteria.If too much is lost,,then ammonia spike could be realized.
I might were it me,, make thing's as easy as possible and eliminate all (potion's) errr,chemical's, with exception of PRIME all in one conditioner. It does all of what the other product's claim to do while detoxifying toxins such as ammonia and nitrites.
Would maybe use once a week water change to manage nitrAte level's although more plant's would be as effective.40 pppm is nothing to worry bout in my view and weekly water change rather than every two weeks would be my aim.
Would also offer more veggie based or algae based foods for the platy's who are largely herbivorus .
They will do poorly without these foods.
Fish TB is quite rare by most account's and I would not be inclined to take any drastic measures other than remove,euthanize,such fish as you describe .
Would look to see that fishes are not being harrassed by tetra's or Angelfish and consider that the Angelfish,with proper care, will soon need larger quarter's and warmer temps than the 72 degree's that tetra's and platy's enjoy.Angelfish prefer softer water, and temp's around 78 to 80 degrees F,
At lower temps,,their metaboloisim slows,digestive process slow's,and fish can become stunted and or bloated.
Might also consider reducing lighting period to eight hour per day (could place on timer).
Not much photosenthizing by plant's after nine hours, and fishes are less stressed under floating plant's and or dimmer light.
Floating plant's like Pennywort,or water sprite which can also be rooted in substrtae,anacharis,and Vallisneria,would all help with water quality as well as provide source of plant matter and infusoria for fishes diet.
These are some things I might consider were it me, (and it ain't).

Last edited by 1077; 10-24-2011 at 02:45 AM..
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Old 10-24-2011, 11:36 AM   #6
 
Well, the second platy died overnight. Both were in a separate isolation tank when they passed, so did not contribute to ammonia. Of all the fish, the platys were most ignored in the tank. The herbivorous nature may explain why he ignored the blood worms and went after the flake style food more. Have floating plant where he did hang out much of the time. Just added more plants, and upgraded the lightbulb to favor photosynthesis, so hoping the ammonia goes back to 0, though it has not gotten higher than 0.25. Doing weekly water changes of about 1/3 volume for the past couple weeks. Interestingly, ammonia was 0.25 before and after water change.
My tetras and angels look good.
If I add a heater to bring temp up for the angels, will the tetras tolerate it well? So much to learn!!!
Gone are the days of a goldfish in a bowl on the side table....

Thanks for your help. Am glad I can relax about the TB thing.
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Old 10-24-2011, 12:06 PM   #7
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Srkdvmmom View Post
Well, the second platy died overnight. Both were in a separate isolation tank when they passed, so did not contribute to ammonia. Of all the fish, the platys were most ignored in the tank. The herbivorous nature may explain why he ignored the blood worms and went after the flake style food more. Have floating plant where he did hang out much of the time. Just added more plants, and upgraded the lightbulb to favor photosynthesis, so hoping the ammonia goes back to 0, though it has not gotten higher than 0.25. Doing weekly water changes of about 1/3 volume for the past couple weeks. Interestingly, ammonia was 0.25 before and after water change.
My tetras and angels look good.
If I add a heater to bring temp up for the angels, will the tetras tolerate it well? So much to learn!!!
Gone are the days of a goldfish in a bowl on the side table....

Thanks for your help. Am glad I can relax about the TB thing.
76 degree's F should suit them all.
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Old 10-24-2011, 02:57 PM   #8
 
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Sorry to hear about your Platys :( A few things came to mind while reading your thread.

1) Have you checked your tap water for ammonia?

2) You might want to get more variation in their diets. Hikari and Omega make a great fish food and I'd also add a few frozen foods a few times a week like bloodworms, daphnia, brine shrimp.

3) Your cory would appreciate more of his kind. At least 3 or 4 more. They are very social and should be kept in groups.

Good luck with the rest of your fish.
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