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Old 04-18-2012, 10:21 AM   #1
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Fish Epidemic

We bought our first salt water aquarium 4 months ago, a 56 gallon tank. For two months we had 6 damsels in the tank and finally felt good about the levels and that the tank was established well. At this time, we exchanged the damsels for two clown fish, a coral beauty angelfish, a blue tang, some crabs, some snails, and a hard corral and a soft coral. After a month with everything going well, we added in a blue tang and diamond gobi sand sifter. The blue tang died the day after adding it to the tank and we bought another after a week of waiting. We added in the new blue tang to the tank along with a star fish and a cleaner shrimp (we have had some brown algea problems throughout the process). Within 24 hours of adding these, all of our fish died (the snails, crabs, shrimp, starfish, and coral are fine). We have done every home test we can think of and everything appears fine. We took in a sample of water to our salt water aquarium store and they can't find anything wrong. They have checked our setup numerous times and can't find anything wrong. They then told us to change 50% of our water with some from their store and wait a few days. We did this and were then told to try 5 damsels again to see how that went. Within two hours of adding the damsels, they all had died!

As of now, there are no fish in the tank and we have no idea what to do or what is wrong (and neither does our aquarium store). Please help! We're open to any ideas, thanks so much! Sorry if I missed some details or had some wrong terminology (I'm new to this).
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Old 04-18-2012, 10:30 AM   #2
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What temperature is your tank at and are you facing any major salinity swings?

What do your water parameters look like?
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Old 04-18-2012, 10:38 AM   #3
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No major salinity swings, stay consistenly near a 1.022 and temp consistenly between 76-78 degrees. What do you mean by water parameters? Thanks for your help!
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Old 04-18-2012, 10:49 AM   #4
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Parameters meaning, Ammonia, Nitrates, Nitrites and so on.

Are you treating the water with anything either?
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Old 04-18-2012, 11:57 AM   #5
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Ammonia, Nitrates, Nitrates, etc. all tested at good levels by my at home kit and at the aquarium store. I'm not treating my water with anything currently. Thanks again!
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Old 04-18-2012, 12:25 PM   #6
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Salinity is a little low, but that wouldnt account for the deaths of the ones that were in there for a long time. How were they acclimated?
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Old 04-18-2012, 12:28 PM   #7
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The fish were all acclimated by floating in their plastic bags in the tank for 30 minutes and adding a cup of water from the tank every twenty minutes 3 times before putting them in the tank. The new fish died but so did the established fishe that had been living in the tank fine for over a month.
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Old 04-18-2012, 01:12 PM   #8
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I think the amount of fish added and the length of acclimation time could have contributed to the deaths. I acclimate my fish at least an hour, replacing all the water in the bag/bucket at least once sometimes twice.

I would also adjust your salinity to natural seawater, about 1.0255. If the fish came from higher salinity that also could have shocked the new guys.

And because it hasn't been said yet, I have to.....the blue tang needs a MUCH MUCH bigger tank than a 56g. I have a six foot tank with a blue tang in it and I'm thinking of upgrading for him/. LOL tangs are super susceptible to ich and other diseases so any stress or a minor issue can be multiplied as far as the tang is concerned.

Good luck! And I think a water change is a great idea. When you do start adding fish again i would seriously start slow and test your water every day for a few days after each addition.
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Old 04-18-2012, 02:45 PM   #9
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Sounds like low disolved oxygen to me
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Old 04-18-2012, 09:09 PM   #10
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Have you put anything into your tank? You can't use any sort of cleaner or anything near the tank.. I knew a girl that cleaned her tank with soap and wondered why all her fish died...
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