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Discussion Starter #1
I have a tank of four zebra danios, one being a Yellow GloFish. As of the last two days or so, he's been looking pretty sickly. He only swims to the top left and right parts of the tank, and seems to stay there all day - he never socializes with the other fish. The other three regular zebra danios swim about the tank, eat voraciously, and generally look good - not my yellow one. He also seems to be very thin - I tried to feed him extra, but he refused to even eat the tiniest bit. I tested the water, and my nitrite ion level is through the roof - the strip pad is bright pink. Are my plants affecting this crazy shootup of nitrite, or is it okay, and just the fish is sick? What do you recommend I do? :cry:

If I need to remove Mellow Yellow (my parents renamed him xD), then I can do so, but I don't have an isolation tank. Hope he doesn't die!
 

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Do a big water change ASAP. I'm talking like 60-70% right now. Nitrite is extremely toxic to fish so high nitrite levels are a big problem. Luckily zebra danios are extremely hardy but this is no reason to keep them in such conditions.

Next, get yourself a good liquid test kit. The paper strips aren't very accurate and the liquid kit ends up being less expensive over the long run as it's much cheaper per test than the strips. Get good readings for ammonia, nitrite and nitrate. Any reading for ammonia or nitrite above zero is bad; do water changes until these are below 0.25ppm.

Plants can only be a good thing, so don't worry about those having any sort of negative impact (unless they're all dead and rotting, or something).

How long has this tank been set up? Did you cycle it before you added fish?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The tank has been set up for about a month, and nothing like this has happened - I had like NO ammonia or anything . Alright, I've got water set up, and I'm going to do a major water change. It's just so weird - Mellow Yellow's the ONLY one acting weird and not eating - the other three are normal and super happy. o.o" However, I did notice my peacock plant thing sort of changing shades - it looks like a different shade of green. Can't tell if that's growth or decay! Do you know? Thanks for the tip, iamntbatman! :D
 

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The bacteria that convert nitrite to nitrate reproduce at a much slower rate than the bacteria that convert ammonia to nitrite, so it's possible to have a nitrite spike like you're seeing without having seen an ammonia spike before it. I'd be willing to bet that your ammonia spike went unnoticed and you're just now seeing the nitrite spike in the aquarium cycle.

I've never heard anything about GloFish being particularly more susceptible to nitrite poisoning than regular zebra danios, so it could just be that he was weakened previously or something like that. Keep us updating on his condition though; hopefully it will improve along with your water quality.

Is it possible to post a picture of your plants? That'd be much easier to respond to than just a description of its condition.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Ok, just did a major water change - no immediate results. Will look for dead fish/retest tomorrow morning.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I'll try to post a picture of the plant - let me see if I've got a good camera....
 

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In looking at your aquarium info tab your water temp is about 7 degrees too cold at minimum. You are housing tropical fish. The water temp needs to be higher that 70 F. Turn it up a couple degrees and wait so as to slowly increase it to at least 77 degrees.
Secondly, you have 4 fish in a 2 gallon tank. You're about limit there pal if not over. In that small of a tank you may be over feeding and putting the hurts on mr glo fish because it's such a small tank.
Good luck mate
 

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Discussion Starter #8
:( My heater doesn't work well - if I leave it on (it doesn't have a dial), it goes up to 85 degrees. The guy said that since I have 2.4 gal tank, I could house about 5-6 zebra danio max. Maybe he was wrong...I feed them just enough that they eat it all (very small pieces), but you could be right - maybe he just feels stressed with his hyper tank mates.
 

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I didn't know the tank was so small. Danios need a lot of swimming space as they're very active fish. The sooner you can upgrade to something bigger, the better off they'll be.

They should be just fine at 70*F. Danios come from colder waters than most tropical fish, so standard tropical temperatures are actually at the upper end of their tolerance.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Okay, I changed the water significantly, and Yellow ate a teeny bit for breakfast, and is now swimming around with his other tankmates. The nitrite level is much lower now, too, but I have a feeling Mellow Yellow's gonna die - he's so gaunt (thin) compared to the other fish! I will try to get a bigger tank soon (maybe for my birthday?)
 

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I didn't know the tank was so small. Danios need a lot of swimming space as they're very active fish. The sooner you can upgrade to something bigger, the better off they'll be.
+1 at least a 29 gallon. for future reference, NEVER (I mean NEVER EVER) let the LFS tell you about a fish. Even if they sound very convincing, they almost ALWAYS give me wrong advice. If I sound preachy, sorry, it's frustrating as a newbie listening to LFS employees like they are all-knowing and come to find out they sold me something totally wrong for my tank and parameters. Aargh.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Wait, I'm confused - one danio per 29 gallons? o.o Maybe I misread. Anyway, I think Yellow is in the process of dying. He gave up and refused to even go against the current of the filter thing - he's just lying at the bottom of the tank. He also still refuses to eat anything, and the other fish are just ignoring him, eating and swimming about. There's nothing more I can do for him as far as I know. :( I don't know why only he was affected by the nitrite level...
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks for all your help, though, guys! :3 It is comforting to know there is someone out there who knows what this feels like.
 

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Can you take a picture of him? It could be that he's got some other problems other than just poor health. Danios are noted for how often they come down with "skinny disease." Keep up with those water changes to keep those nitrites in check and we'll see what happens.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Yup. He died, so I removed his body and gave him a little trumpet solo. And I've never heard of skinny disease - could you describe it in more detail before my other fish come down with it? xD Checking the nitrite level now....whoa, still pretty high. Going to change water right now. The other fish still seem to be fine, too...
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Pictures of Peacock Plant - Discolored

Here are two semi-crappy pictures of the plants - as you can see, the zebras are darting around in the photo, so they are quite blurry :roll: Whoops, I kinda knocked it over when changing the water :-?
 

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Wait, I'm confused - one danio per 29 gallons? o.o Maybe I misread. Anyway, I think Yellow is in the process of dying. He gave up and refused to even go against the current of the filter thing - he's just lying at the bottom of the tank. He also still refuses to eat anything, and the other fish are just ignoring him, eating and swimming about. There's nothing more I can do for him as far as I know. :( I don't know why only he was affected by the nitrite level...
No but min. 29 gallons for a group of danios. Really if you can't get a bigger tank you should take those danios back to the LFS and get something way smaller. I don't know of anything in particular that could be in such a small tank at a low temp, but someone else might.

Your nitrites will go up rapidly because of the small tank size. Test daily using a liquid test kit, and do water changes when the ammonia or nitrite levels above zero. Keep the plant in there as that could be helping absorb the ammonia...if you take it out, the ammonia level could go up and resulting in an even higher nitrite spike. And avoid overfeeding, you fish will eat when he's ready. That's another thing that will contribute to nitrite spike (indirectly).

@MeanHarri good call on looking at the tank specs... I guess that's why there's the sticky with questions on what to post when you have tank probs.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
That's what it looks like...>_>" They seem to be discolored; some of the leaflets are a lighter, solid minty color. Should I remove the plant? I'm trying to get them more direct sunlight, but it's pretty hard.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
My dad's girlfriend did say that it is easier to take care of a larger tank....maybe I can convince her to get me one.
 
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