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Old 11-13-2007, 11:58 AM   #1
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Dead Clown

I bought two small clowns on Sunday and drip acclimated them to the 10g quarantine tank. I am using a small HOB filter with a sponge that runs in the main tank. This morning the smaller one of the two was dead. I had noticed he was a little lighter in color yesterday. My water parameters are nitrite 0, nitrate 20, and ammonia .5 ppm. I did a 40% water change this morning. I can continue water change's from the main tank. Why is there ammonia present? Shouldn't the sponge filter be enough to control it? Is that what killed the fish? The larger one seems to be fine for now. Both fish ate last night. Also I didn't notice any aggression issues between the two. I'm about ready to give up.
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Old 11-13-2007, 01:31 PM   #2
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If you just bought them, you have no idea how they were handled before you bought them, if they are wild caught, they are already stressed quite a bit, you know. I wouldn't think it was something you did. Sounds like you acclimated correctly (though you didn't give a time, I'm sure you took your time and did things slowly). The ammonia present is likely from the dead fish only. If a water change seems to take care of the ammonia problem, that is likely what it's from.

Sorry about your loss though. Hopefully your LFS has a return policy?
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Old 11-13-2007, 01:59 PM   #3
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Sorry to hear about your loss. Does your lfs have a return policy? Most don't on sw fish, but it's always worth the try.

How often do you check the QT tank parameters. It's a good policy to check daily for the first week to make sure you are not taxing the filtration. Also, keep enough sw mixed to do a 10-20 percent pwc for a couple of days should you need to. I'm changing a gallon a day in my 30 (only have about 25 gallons in there), plus a weekly 5 gallon change.
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Old 11-13-2007, 07:37 PM   #4
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I've found that even using a seeded sponge or biowheel from the main tank, when it gets switched over to the QT, I usually see just a bit of a reading of ammonia for a day or two. I do 30% water changes or so those days, and then things seems to settle back down. Probably just the bacterial population "catching up", in my mind. Even if that level of ammonia was present to start with, it's low enough that I wouldn't expect it to kill the clown outright in just a couple days. Agree with Lindsay... doesn't sound like it was anything you did - just keep an eye on the water parameters as your sponge filter adjusts to the new bioload.

Also... seems like most LFSs (even the really good ones) only have a 24 hr refund for dead fish. Wouldn't be surprised if you don't get a refund, but it doesn't hurt to ask! Especially since the other one is still doing OK.
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Old 11-13-2007, 08:15 PM   #5
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Well I bought the fish from my friend who works part time at the store. He already gave me 50% off the fish and I think he will even replace it. That part I'm not worried about. It's just sad that I've lost another fish. As far as acclimating, I dripped for about 3 hours or so. They were tank raised and they were at the store for a couple weeks before I got them. Who knows? I do check the water daily and do daily water changes. Water temp has been steady as well. You're probably right that the fish may have been sick or weak when I got him.
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Old 11-14-2007, 12:46 AM   #6
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A 3-hour drip is pretty long. Probably too long. Not sure if that could be an issue, but I wouldn't (and haven't) dripped a fish for longer than 1 hour. It's really a double-edged sword... too long and you end up with oxygen/temperature problems; too short and you end up with salinity/pH maladjustment.
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Old 11-14-2007, 06:19 PM   #7
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Old 11-18-2007, 11:09 AM   #8
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Well now the other guy is freaking out now. He has what looks like a stringy thing coming off him. Like he is peeling. He's not eating. Water parameters: ammonia 0, nitrite 0, nitrate 15, temp 78, salinity 1.025
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Old 11-18-2007, 02:17 PM   #9
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Any chance of a picture? Is the stringy thing poop? Where's your pH at?

Only thing I'd probably do at this point is a couple 20% water changes over the next couple days to get those nitrates down. The nitrates aren't bad, but water changes can never hurt and pristine water goes a long way to reduce the stress on the little guy.
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Old 11-18-2007, 02:33 PM   #10
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No it's attached to his head. pH is 7.8. The pictures are to fuzzy to see anything. I don't think he's going to make it. He's swimming backwards, floating to the bottom, looks thin.

edit: just lost him. I don't get it. I can't seem to keep fish alive. My first clown and yellow tang lived 2.5 years and now I can't keep anything 2.5 weeks.
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