Tropical Fish Keeping banner

1 - 5 of 5 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi all. To make a long story short, there are only a few fish remaining in my 55 G that I setup last August. I made sure the tank was cycled before adding any fish. Starting out, I had 22 small fish total: 6 brilliant rasbora, 5 red eye tetra, 6 blood fin tetra, and 5 bolivian ram. I didn't add them all at once either, but over the course of several weeks to a month. For the first few months everyone looked healthy, was eating well, moving well, etc.

Then the slow dying off process began.....:-(

I did not quarantine any of the fish and bought all of them from local petstores.... At the stores I made sure they looked healthy and also noted if the tanks were well kept or not.... But what I couldn't see led to trouble...

The red eye tetras were the first to start dying off. They all exhibited the same general symptoms: puffed up, looked like small white bubbles sticking to their bodies, etc. I euthanized 2 with clove oil. They all died off over the course of a month. Then a few brilliant rasbora started to go downhill. Several of them displayed symptoms of hemorrhagic septicemia. A few bloodfins also died and their main symptoms were always being at the top, losing the brilliant red color in their fins and then being found dead on the bottom or pulled into circ pump suction side....

Then 4 rams died over about 2 months... There were no obvious signs of parasites, infection etc. I did notice that all the ones that died looked very malnourished and thin and that they had like a red mark on their vent. The one remaining ram was the largest. In the beginning they all ate sinking cichlid pellets voraciously. I also mixed in frozen brine shrimp which they devoured....


Keep in mind that I also did not add any medications to the tank during these months. I was afraid that doing so would harm the "healthy fish". I did try regimens of AQ salt and epsom salt but none of that made a difference. I tried feeding crushed peas to the bloated red eyes, etc.


So I know that I did many things wrong, but I also know that my water parameters could not be better as I tested each week before the 10 gal weekly PWC: 0 ite, 0 ammo, <20 nitrates, and stable ph of 7.4, stable temp of 80 F. I have a smaller 10 gal tank with a few danios and a betta and another 5 G betta only tank and none of the fish in those tanks has ever shown any sign of being sick in the slightest and those tanks have been running longer than my big tank.

So my question is this: Once all the fish in the 55 G have died, how do I "reset" the tank? How do I disinfect it? Are there chemicals I can add that would kill any parasites that may be clinging to gravel, decor? I know it would crash the cycle but I'd make sure that was established again before adding a fish.

My plan is to add one fish only (likely a green terror) since generally the larger the fish, the better the chance it has to survive...

Please advise...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
See below for more info:

1. Size of tank? 55G

2. Water parameters
a. Ammonia? 0
b. Nitrite? 0
c. Nitrate? < 20
d. pH, KH and GH? 7.4 ph; GH and KH are around 4 deg hardness
e. Test kit? API FW Master

3. Temperature? 80 F

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

5. How long the aquarium has been set up? 8 months

6. What fish do you have? How many are in your tank? How big are they? How long have you had them?

see first post for the starting totals of the fish (that were added over the course of a few weeks); Currently the only remaining fish are 3 brilliant rasboras; 2 bloodfin tetra, 1 Bolivian ram; the ones that survived the die off were the largest in size and most healthy looking of all the other fish that died....

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

8. a. Any live plants? Fake plants? Fake plants
b. Sand, gravel, barebottom? combo: majority is fine white sand with some darker course gravel added to front area of tank (so rams showed darker coloration there)
c. Rocks, woods, fancy decors? Any hollow decors? 2 med size driftwood, 4 cubes of zebra stone that support a flat slate rock; 4 hollow cichlid stones (that they all initially loved to use as hiding spots and territories...)

9. a. Filtration? top fin 75 with a aqueon circ pump on side wall opposite side of where the filter intake is: that is the filter and circ pump are diagonally opposite each other and the circ pump directs water from far side of tank into filter intake
b. Heater? qty 1 150W no-name brand that came with tank kit; qty 1 200W fluval heater

10. a. Lighting schedule? What lights are used? LED lights with tank kit, Lights on auto timer for 10 hrs per day
b. Any sunlight exposure? How long? minimal through dark curtains, maybe a few hours where the light is brightest, but still heavily shaded through the dark curtains

11. a. Water change schedule? once per week
b. Volume of water changed? 10 Gal
c. Well water, tap water, RO water? tap water
d. Water conditioner used? Prime
e. Frequency of gravel/sand (if any) vacuumed? half side each PWC; alternate sides each week

12. Foods? tetra min flakes; frozen brine shrimp; sinking cichling pellets
How often are they fed? 6 days fed with 1 day fast; every other day during the 6 days they are fed in morning and evening; the other 3 feeding days are once/day

13. a. Any abnormal signs/symptoms? See first post; also to add that generally most of the fish seemed to be lethargic, no energy, not interested in food, for about a week or so before being euthanized or being found dead....
b. Appearance of poop? did not notice any
c. Appearance of gills? did not notice

14. a. Have you treated your fish ahead of diagnosis? no;
b. What meds were used? none; only 2 regimens of salts were used (not at same time of course!): For a few weeks I treated with AQ salt to try to boost their immune system. A month or so later, when there were lots of bloated fish, I tried epsom salt treatment, but it was probably too late. None of the bloated fish ate any crush peas either....

15. Insert photos of fish in question and full tank shot if necessary.

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,042 Posts
Sorry to hear about you losing the fish I know that sucks I have been there before.

I have read you can clean with a little bleach and water but you have to wash out very well before you add fish.

What I do is take everything out of the tank, spread the gravel out so it drys and allow the tank to dry out for a few days. Then wash the inside and outside of the tank with hot water from the tap, scrub it down all over and allow it to dry. The gravel and other decor I do the same thing wash with hot tap water and allow to dry.

So far I haven't had any problems doing that and I had one tank catch a nasty bug that killed all my fish in less than 24 hours. That one scared me I was really worried I would lose every fish I had but I allowed that tank to site dry for a month cleaned it and it's been in use for about a month no issues at all.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
690 Posts
Bleach is the thing to use. 1 part bleach to 10 parts water will take care of any nasties. Toss the gravel in a large bucket, stuff a hose in it, run tap water through it until it runs clear, 20 minutes should do the trick. As mentioned let it dry afterward. Scrub everything with the bleach solution, let it stay wet for 20 minutes, then rinse well. If you can leave it shut down long enough so that everything completely dries after the bleach nothing aquatic related as far as transferable diseases will survive. I use bleach all the time on fishroom related gear, used properly it's not an issue, chlorine bleach is a concentrate of the chlorine in your tap water.

What concerns me is the other two tanks doing so well, unless you kept everything used for tanks totally separate between them & the 55 it's surprising nothing got transferred over. This could indicate the substrate, decorations, or perhaps an outside household product getting into that tank & causing issues.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Bleach is the thing to use. 1 part bleach to 10 parts water will take care of any nasties. Toss the gravel in a large bucket, stuff a hose in it, run tap water through it until it runs clear, 20 minutes should do the trick. As mentioned let it dry afterward. Scrub everything with the bleach solution, let it stay wet for 20 minutes, then rinse well. If you can leave it shut down long enough so that everything completely dries after the bleach nothing aquatic related as far as transferable diseases will survive. I use bleach all the time on fishroom related gear, used properly it's not an issue, chlorine bleach is a concentrate of the chlorine in your tap water.

What concerns me is the other two tanks doing so well, unless you kept everything used for tanks totally separate between them & the 55 it's surprising nothing got transferred over. This could indicate the substrate, decorations, or perhaps an outside household product getting into that tank & causing issues.

Good observation. The 5G and 10G share a smaller sized siphon, drain bucket, and new water refill containers. The 55G has its own larger sized siphon and buckets.

However, the one item shared between all tanks is the algae scrubber.... Additionally, a few days after the rasboras were first introduced into the 55G, I used water from that tank to seed the cycle in my 5G betta only tank. The betta only tank also has the same fine white sand used in the 55G for its substrate.

The 6 remaining fish in the 55G all look healthy. It really seems to me that the group of 5 red eye tetras had some bugs that spread to other susceptible fish. The rams also may have had something.

I am interested in adding a green terror to the 55G. I plan to use an online vendor to hopefully get a fish in better starting health than would be at any local pet store. My main concern is that once he is larger than the other fish he will eat them! :shock:

The 3 rasboras are about 2.5- 3"; the 2 bloodfins are about 2" and the single Ram is about 2.5"... The Ram doesn't appear to be growing and certainly doesn't have the same zest for food that he did when his other 4 friends were alive... I heard or read somewhere that if a fish (that will be larger than all the other fish in the tank) is raised with the smaller fish from a small size, that it won't eat them when it is larger. Is this true? The vendor indicates that the green terrors will be about 1.5-2" at purchase.
 
1 - 5 of 5 Posts
Top