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Discussion Starter #1
I am about 8 months in to the hobby after a long hiatus.

I had 4 Panda corys in my 20g tank, and over the last 3 weeks, I've seen 1 die off every week, leaving me with just 1 left.

Additionally, last evening, I noticed my one Glo-fish was stuck against the intake tube of my filter (Aqua Clear 50). I am not sure if it got stuck and then died, or if it died and got stuck to the tubing. Either way, now I have 4 dead fish in about 3 weeks.

Water parameters are all normal and nothing else in the tank or other fish look off. I have 3 more Glo, 2 Tiger Barbs and an Oto [in addition to the remaining Panda].

Could this just be a case that I got all my fish at the same time (2 weeks separated each type when stocking) and they are aging out? I have gone to the same local store for everything and this seems to have happened all of a sudden.

Any ideas?
should I get some more fish to replenish my schools?

Thanks!
 

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I’ve seen toxic water be called “normal” before, so is it possible you can post the actual values for ammonia, nitrite and nitrate?

For a fish to get stuck to the filter intake and then die, it would have to be in very poor health prior, so whether the fish died before or after isn’t really important.

I would hold off on new fish till you don’t have any deaths for at least a few weeks. Did the dead fish exhibit any symptoms? Did you have a sense that there was something wrong with the fish before they died?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
all parameters are 0 PPM. tested last night.

no sense of trouble. The Corys usually hide and what not so can't say that nothing there was abnormal. when I see them laying there, nothing looks off. The Glo fish was fine and swimming around an hour before I saw him on the tube.

Plan to do a big water change this evening and do a minor one every few days, may its something I'm missing.
 

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all parameters are 0 PPM. tested last night.

no sense of trouble. The Corys usually hide and what not so can't say that nothing there was abnormal. when I see them laying there, nothing looks off. The Glo fish was fine and swimming around an hour before I saw him on the tube.

Plan to do a big water change this evening and do a minor one every few days, may its something I'm missing.
If all parameters are zero, you are not cycled. You should be getting a reading for nitrates.

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I am about 8 months in to the hobby after a long hiatus.

I had 4 Panda corys in my 20g tank, and over the last 3 weeks, I've seen 1 die off every week, leaving me with just 1 left.

Additionally, last evening, I noticed my one Glo-fish was stuck against the intake tube of my filter (Aqua Clear 50). I am not sure if it got stuck and then died, or if it died and got stuck to the tubing. Either way, now I have 4 dead fish in about 3 weeks.

Water parameters are all normal and nothing else in the tank or other fish look off. I have 3 more Glo, 2 Tiger Barbs and an Oto [in addition to the remaining Panda].

Could this just be a case that I got all my fish at the same time (2 weeks separated each type when stocking) and they are aging out? I have gone to the same local store for everything and this seems to have happened all of a sudden.

Any ideas?
should I get some more fish to replenish my schools?

Thanks!
I've had a tough time keeping my Cory's alive too since starting a small community tank for my daughter. The most recent one perished a week after a full water change. The only thing I can deduce is that there is not enough food getting down to the Cory cats. I may try for a food tablet option which may allow more food to be available to the catfish.

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A couple things to consider - it takes a really, really long time for a fish to starve to death. Especially a forager like a cory. They would all look thin and weak if they were starving to death. Is that how they look? Not to be argumentative, but starving to death due to lack of food is highly unlikely. There are parasites that can block the digestive track, which starves the fish. The fish will try to eat, and will seem to be ravenously hungry, but will spit out the food. There are a number of internal parasites that will cause the fish to appear to be starving to death...because they are. I have a hard time believing that you would let your fish starve to death without simply feeding more at some point, so again I don’t think they starved due to lack of food.
 

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This is what i would do. Sell the remaining fish back to the petstore where you bought them from. Sterilize the tank, filter and ornaments, and start over again with fish from another source. If what you say is true, and your water is 0 ppm of nitrates, nitrites and ammonia, along with I assume you have been running the tank at least 4 weeks with a good pH, then the problem is your fish stock source. If its a disease some fish may live and get pass the illness, but they'll be carriers of the disease, and any fish you introduce to the tank will go through the same process. If it's a parasite, they will all die, and the water will have them in the tank even after all the fish are dead. Whether its a disease, or parasite, it doesn't matter anymore. You can treat it if you know what it is. Since you're asking us here, then I don't think you know what it is. Only option is to sterilize and start over. After all that is done, get your fish from another source.

I know its frustrating, but this is the only logical solution to me. Good luck in your decision.
 

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This is what i would do. Sell the remaining fish back to the petstore where you bought them from. Sterilize the tank, filter and ornaments, and start over again with fish from another source. If what you say is true, and your water is 0 ppm of nitrates, nitrites and ammonia, along with I assume you have been running the tank at least 4 weeks with a good pH, then the problem is your fish stock source. If its a disease some fish may live and get pass the illness, but they'll be carriers of the disease, and any fish you introduce to the tank will go through the same process. If it's a parasite, they will all die, and the water will have them in the tank even after all the fish are dead. Whether its a disease, or parasite, it doesn't matter anymore. You can treat it if you know what it is. Since you're asking us here, then I don't think you know what it is. Only option is to sterilize and start over. After all that is done, get your fish from another source.

I know its frustrating, but this is the only logical solution to me. Good luck in your decision.
I still say, if there are no nitrates, you are not cycled.

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I still say, if there are no nitrates, you are not cycled.

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Except for heavy planted lightly stocked tanks, I would agree.
 

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I have no nitrates in my planted 40 gallon goldfish tank. It has 1 ranchu and 6 nerites snails. I have to add nitrates for good plant growth. So no nitrates does not always equate to an uncycled tank.
 

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I have no nitrates in my planted 40 gallon goldfish tank. It has 1 ranchu and 6 nerites snails. I have to add nitrates for good plant growth. So no nitrates does not always equate to an uncycled tank.


Yeah if plant consumption rate is greater than fish waste production rate, then no nitrates. Fish waste greater than plant consumption - climbing nitrates.

I think it’s a safe assumption that anyone who is new to the hobby, posting questions about why fish are dying, and who has no nitrates is not cycled. Or in other words, anyone who cant adequately explain their lack of nitrates is not cycled.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
i'm liquid testing and had store test it after initial cycle.

I had nitrates after the tank was set up, thats when I added my fish. since that time, I have not had nitrates, but went from 2 fish to 12. I tested after each addition and the bioload only showed small amounts to zero ammonia/nitrite readings.

I vacuumed my gravel after my initial post and it was quite a sight. I'm guessing that is why the Corys died. the other fish was just not smart with the filter sucking. I am paying more attention to keeping clean and no more deaths except my tiger barbs literally eating my Harlequins.....my mistake there.
 

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Yeah tiger barbs aren’t good community fish in most situations. They have a tendency to kill each other too, if not properly kept.
 
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