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Discussion Starter #1
Need to figure out the best way to treat my fish.

FluvalEdge 6gal
6 serpae tetra (1 x 1.5" 5 x < 1")
6 weeks in to fish in cycle, largest fish has been in since day 3. other 5 have been in for less than a week.

Not sure if i technically finished cycle. Live plants use ammonia so ammonia is at zero but nitrites have not been at zero. Live plants have been introduced slowly over the last 2-3 weeks. Java Fern, Anacharis, and Crypt Parva. Also one decorative lava rock.


Ammonia - 0 - api
Nitrite - - api and tetra easystrip
nitrate - 0-20 - api and tetra easystrip
Gh - 75 - 150 - Tetra EasyStrip
Chlorine - 0 - Tetra EasyStrip
KH - 120-180 - Tetra EasyStrip
pH - 7.2 - 7.8 api and tetra easystrip
temp - 73* - 75*

Been doing 20-50% water changes depending on the readings. been water changing every 3-4 days. Again depending on readings and how much food they let get to the bottom. They don't have any interest in food thats on the substrate.

With high nitrites, new fish, huge water changes, and new surroundings i think that stress is the most likely culprit of this situation.

Now i just need to figure the best method for treatment. Temp and salt seems to be the preferred method. Would i need to go get a different heater and just use that one instead? Even if all fish dont show signs of Ich yet would i be better off treating them all in the tank rather than quarantine?

Thanks guys!

p.s. I am aware of being a little over stocked. I have a plan in motion to re-home one of them for now. He is too aggressive for my tank but i need to solve this problem first. I am not going to give a fish with ich to someone else and let them worry about it, to me thats just not right.
 

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I wouldn't add salt to the tank because of the plants unless you have a way to keep them alive in a diff. tank while you treat it.

You want to raise the temp slowly in the tank and for 6 gallons you should be using a 50w heater depending on where you live and how cold the fish room gets.

Here's a great link about Ich that Aunt Kymmie shared with me here a few years back

Ich | The Skeptical Aquarist

Good luck with treatment.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
i do have a 50w heater, it doesn't looks like you can adjust the temp at all though, does that mean i need a new one/ bigger one for treatment?
 

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i do have a 50w heater, it doesn't looks like you can adjust the temp at all though, does that mean i need a new one/ bigger one for treatment?
I can't think of any other way that you'll be able to raise the temp unless it's adjustable.

You can always decide to go with an Ich med. like Kordon's Rid-Ich+ instead but I think most members who've dealt with Ich will agree that heat is the way to go.

A lot of people don't like to add chemicals/meds to a tank unless it's as a last resort.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I am not far enough into the hobby to say i have had to use any chemicals but initial thoughts have me thinking i would like to stay away from chemicals. Especially with a small tank where things can get out of hand rather quickly. I have started researching nad found adjustable heaters so i may get one of those to start with and save the one i have now in case i need it for a quarantine tank later. thanks!
 

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I am not far enough into the hobby to say i have had to use any chemicals but initial thoughts have me thinking i would like to stay away from chemicals. Especially with a small tank where things can get out of hand rather quickly. I have started researching nad found adjustable heaters so i may get one of those to start with and save the one i have now in case i need it for a quarantine tank later. thanks!
I like that idea. You should get one fairly quickly tho. Petco brand 50w submersible fully adjustable heater has worked great for me in my 5 gallon tank.

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
im waiting till 5:30 when my guy gets in. The guy that i talk to at petco is the genius. Petco as a whole sucks imo but this guy really knows his stuff and has even told me when its better to go to the LFS rather than his store.
 

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im waiting till 5:30 when my guy gets in. The guy that i talk to at petco is the genius. Petco as a whole sucks imo but this guy really knows his stuff and has even told me when its better to go to the LFS rather than his store.
It's great that you have someone you trust at a chain store. That doesn't happen too often. The Petco closest to me has outstanding bettas that are always in clean water. I judge the fish dept. on how they care for their bettas.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I got my water heating up...rasing temp some...first dose of salt added. I removed my plants and i have a feeling i may lose them. Hope not. I have 5 java fern plants, a few anacharis (care less about bc its cheap and grows so fast), and a few Crypt Parva (my newest plant that i really don't wanna lose) Lets hope for the best!
 

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first dose...13 hours later...all 6 fish are dead

I didn't think i was this attached to these guys but i feel real bad. I know i made mistakes and i know i jumped in to it way to fast. I especially feel bad for Fishy Fisherton, he was my favorite :BIGsad: . Sad morning to come home from work to that. where to go from here...

Obviously Ich was in my aquarium. I did one dose of salt...should i just do a huge water change, add the plants back in and start the cycle over? With no fish to host them they will die off...correct?
 

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I'm not very familiar with salt (never use it), but I don't believe it's something that you dose more than once. It stays in the tank, so the only time you would need to add more is after a water change.

6 serpaes in a 6 gallon is not a tank set up for success - sounds like you are aware of that now. As long as you don't make that mistake again they will not have died in vain.

Ich is in the tank, and yes it will die without hosts. However, that doesn't mean that you have to nuke the tank and start all over. I would put another fish in there, only appropriate for the tank size this time, and proceed with the heat treatment. Ich is very easy to take care of, provided it's caught early. I do preemptive heat treatments on all new fish, so it's not something you have to wait till you see spots to do. I have never used salt - the heat alone works - so I would do a massive water change to get it out first. I'm sure those that use salt will say to leave it in, but I am anti-salt so I say get it out. There's always more than one way to do anything, so it's just a matter of what people have found works best for them.

Also, moving forward, the heat treatment is best administered when it's caught early on. If the fish are infested (spots everywhere, clamped fins, moping around the tank), then meds are the way to go as they need immediate relief. Quick cure is my preferred med, though it's been ages since I've had to use it for ich. The heat treatment takes several days - time a dying fish just doesn't have. Quick cure works in 2 days. Is there a chance the meds will kill the fish? yes, but a fish that is that infested is already knocking on deaths door, so it's a little late to be concerned about that. The reward of timely relief outweighs the risk of killing a fish that's near death as it is, in my opinion.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
They died bc of the temp. it is the only thing that makes sense. they were not completely covered, in fact my gf noticed it at first and until i looked close i did not agree. only 1 or 2 seemed to have signs.
 

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They died bc of the temp. it is the only thing that makes sense.
I seriously doubt it. I've administered the heat treatment on at least 50 species and haven't found one yet that could not handle it, including serpaes, and a number of "cold water" fish. It's far more likely that you overdosed them with salt, in my opinion. Out of curiosity, what did you get the temp up to? It's can be quite challenging to get the temp right in such a small tank.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
the temp jumped about 3-5 degrees in 13 hours, that is why i believe it to be temp. i was reading 72-75 before and when i got home i was reading closer to 80.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
every where i read that has said to use salt, said to use 1-2 table spoons per 5 gallons. so i used on the lighter side of the correct salt dosage. I dunno. could be either one.
 

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I agree, the temp being raised should not have killed this species unless it went way too high. Around 86F is sufficient, and in a week this should deal with ich.

The salt could more likely have killed them. Characins are highly sensitive to salt, and indeed to chemicals and ich medications are often copper-based.

This is a lesson learned, and most of us have gone through it. But looking ahead, to avoid similar, consider only small fish for a 6 gallon tank. There are several in our profiles. Take note of your water parameters out of the tap, and look for suitable fish. Cyprinids contains some, a few in characins.

Byron.
 

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im a salt and heat user to get rid of ich i use them in combo and about the same dosage as you did but i only dose once with the heat cranked. your second dose of salt is likely what did them in. when dealing with fish sensitive to salt half the dosage. with ich you have to be somewhat patient but lesson learned liek they all said here. it was the heat it was the double dose of salt. i have also read where people will do a salt dip on fish to help the situation but ive never done this and could only imagine it would really stress the fish. if i were you i would drain the tank and let it sit dry for a few days was everything no soap and then refill add ur conditioner and wait a few more days then start over from square one. yea you will have to go through the cycle again but u have plants now and have been through the cycle and will know what to do to get through it.so we learned

half dose salt on sensitive fish
dose salt only once
raise heat slowly (which you did)

keep your head high and move forward ive lost more fish then i wish to count to mistkaes exactly like this. its going through the things like this that teach us what should be done in certain situations. GL on further restocks!!!
 

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In my opinion, ich is not a reason to tear down a tank or start over from scratch - It's the easiest ailment in fishkeeping to cure, and it's important to learn to do so.
 

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In my opinion, ich is not a reason to tear down a tank or start over from scratch - It's the easiest ailment in fishkeeping to cure, and it's important to learn to do so.
of course, however starting fresh isnt goign to hurt anything and he already knows what hes doing. making sure he gets it gone when he restarts isnt a bad idea and what i woudl do if i were him. but then again we all have opinions and this is mine take it or leave it
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Byron - to your unknown quote in your signature, you can add botanist for us live plant keepers.

Mitch - Thanks for the good words. I was told from multiple sources that 1 tbsp is "one dose" if thats the case i only did one dose. if .5 tbsp is one dose then i did 2 two. Just to clarify. When you said I did two doses in your post i was not sure if you meant i did 1 or 2 tbsp. It was only 1.

As of right now, since i have nothing else in there, i left the heater at 86 and added 2 more tbsp of salt. I think i am just gonna let the salt ride out with the high temp for a bit rather than tearing down. If all plans come through, this will be my qt tank in the near future. I want a 30-55 gal community tank.
 
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