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Discussion Starter #1
my blue dwarf guarami is sick!! laying at the bottom of the aquarium and won't move but is still breathing. hasent been eating and stomach looks a little swollen. also it's head is a darker blue than the rest of it's body and i don't know what that means!!! and my water wisteria also looks bad and the leaves keep coming off, don't know if it's related or not...HELP i want to save my fish!

20 gal
ph 7
nitrites 0
ammonia 0
temp 78
1 dwarf blue guarami
3 tiger barbs
 

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Staying on the bottom of the tank usually means the fish is sick, or being harassed.

Do you have a liquid tester for Nitrates?

Worst case scenario, your Gourami has Dropsy.

I would quarentine the fish as soon as you can, so if it does have a disease, it won't spread to your other fish. Try feeding some anitbiotic food, and add Epsom salt at the rate of 1/8 teaspoon per every 5 gallons of water. This should reduce the swelling of the fish.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
it's not being harassed because the tiger barbs are little and don't bother it it's usually the other way around. i don't have a nitrate tester im getting one tomorrow.

bad news...i don't have a quarentine tank...i just have the 20 gal!

also it's scales look kinda funny, not sure what, they just don't look right.
 

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Are the scales standing out? If you look at the fish from the top does the fish look similar to a pinecone? These are symptoms of dropsy.

The fish needs immediate attention if the scales are like that and it is not eating. Dropsy is a pretty hard disease to treat. I would advise you that you would need another tank if you want to treat the fish, and it will also prevent the disease from spreading to your other fish.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
i can't tell if the scales are standing out or not...that might be why the head of the fish is darker maybe...but at 12am nowhere is open. :BIGsad: i'll just have to get something first thing in the morning! don't know what else i can do...i added some aquarium salts and turned on the bubbles...it just seems weird that it happened at the same time my plants started looking bad.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
i can't tell if the scales are standing out or not...that might be why the head of the fish is darker maybe...but at 12am nowhere is open. :BIGsad: i'll just have to get something first thing in the morning! don't know what else i can do...i added some aquarium salts and turned on the bubbles...it just seems weird that it happened at the same time my plants started looking bad.
 

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Epsom salt should be the only salt used, as it has the ability to draw OUT liquids from the fish. Using other kinds of salt, like aquarium salt, actually may pull water IN to the fish, worsening the dropsy...

Do you have any large rubber bins or trash cans that are clean? Or something to house the guy overnight? Hopefully he'll be okay for the night if if you can't find anything, even with the aquarium salt added. I would maybe do a couple small water changes to dilute the salt a little.

The earlier you start treating it, the better the chance of the fish living.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
oh i didn't add much of the aquarium salt...but i do have spsom salt and have added 1/2 tsp...but i have a feeling he won't make it till morning. This happened all so quickly! :cry: the water level was about a gal low so i did add 1 gal of fresh tap water to the tank. this is a pic i just tookm don't know if it helps any .
 

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Well I hope he makes it to see another day, that way maybe you can try treating him...but dropsy is a killer, but it's definitely not impossible to cure.

If you do end up treating it, it would be IDEAL to get another tank, you can probably get a 10gallon for 10 bucks. Then get some medicated food, like Romet B or Medi-Gold and feed that for 2 weeks. Try to get the temperature up to around 84-86 degrees for about 2 weeks and be sure to add some aeration to the tank, it is crutial because at such high temperatures water doesn't hold as much oxygen. Continue usin Epsom salt.

Best of luck to you and your fish!
 

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Hopefully it will be ok, but usually if it lays on the bottom, that it's very ill. If it tries to swim upright, but cannot and sinks quickly, then it may have swim bladder problems.

A nitrAte reading would help...

How long have you had the gourami?

When you added water, did you add dechlorinator?

It looks like you have live plants, do you add fertilizers or CO2?

If the scales were protruding, it would be very easy to tell, since the fish will look like a porcupine around it's stomach. It appears that the scales are NOT protruding. I'm not sure if the picture was taken with the fish swimming through the plants or it's just sitting there. If it is just sitting there, then unfortunately, it may not be long before it goes. Due to it's weakened state, moving it to another tank maybe be a bad idea.
 

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Just in case the fish dies in the main tank, be sure to remove it as soon as possible. The way dropsy is contageous is when another fish eats the internal organs of an infected fish.
Just so you don't feel too bad, dropsy is something nobody knows yet where it comes from, what causes it. It is a termimnal illness, and while in some fish you can treat symptoms for a while, eventually it is fatal. There is no actual cure.
If possible, I'd get that fish out of the main tank asap. Then, if it doesn't survive, the other fish are not at risk of contracting the disease.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
The water movement was making her hit the rocks when she tried to swim so I did remove her to a bowel, but unfortunately she did die (but NOT in the tank). I just hope my tiger barbs don't get it!!!! I had her for about a year and she was one hardy fish! I Use AquaSafe when adding water or changing it.
 

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Sorry to hear about the death. Just make sure you keep the tank clean. I would look into what happened before it got ill...

Ferts - Make sure it's diluted properly.

Outside chemicals - Any glass cleaning, bug spraying around the tank?

Acclimation - If it's a new fish, maybe the fish was not properly acclimated.
 

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That sucks about the Gourami...sometimes there's just not much you can do to save a fish's life, but at least you made an effort. Best of luck with your other fish.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
my nitrates are 10 ppm (mg/L). I'm not sure what that means though, I would appreciate it if someone would let me know it that's good or bad.

My other fish (3 little tiger barbs) are doing ok i think. 2 of them look like their stomachs are kinda swollen but eat anyways and then get a little fatter. They act fine so I just gave them some frozen peas. If that dosn't make them better could it be the dropsy???

How long should I wait to put another fish in? My 20 gal tank looks so empty!
 

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10 ppm of nitrates is fine.
For dropsy cases, be on the lookout for symptoms such as bloated abdomen, protrusion fo scales and eyes popping out of the socket.

I can't answer the last question but an empty tank would definitely have mini-cycles as bacteria has nothing to feed on with the absence of fish and the wastes which serve as ammonia, food for the bacteria.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I fed them some fresh unfrozen peas and now their stomachs look even worse!!!!!!!!! They seemed overly happy to eat the peas and even darted around to see who got the pieces first!!! They seem to be working harder than they should to be staying upright.

 

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"Headstanding" is something Tiger Barbs do when there is high nitrite. I would test again for nitrites. Are you using a good liquid test kit? The barbs tend to do this in the early stages of nitrite poisoning. Don't think feeding them a pea would make it worse, or suddenly make them headstand.

How long have they been doing this?

Test your water parameters again, and if nitrite is indeed high, immediately do some water changes.
 

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That's odd. The pic shows the barbs don't have large stomachs but if viewed on their backs, it probably is. But green peas should act as laxative and smoothen the flow of their wastes out of their bodies.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I just tested again and Nitrites are 0...To me in the pic their stomachs look bigger than normal, could it be im just not feeding them enough maybe??? I stuck the tip of my finger in the water and they nibbled me like they were paranas or something...Maybe i'm just being overly paranoid because of all the bad luck i'v had in the past.
 
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