Go Back   Aquarium Advice - Aquarium Forum Community > Saltwater and Reef > Saltwater & Reef - Sick Fish or Coral
Click Here to Login

Join Aquarium Advice Today
Closed Thread
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on AquariumAdvice.com
 
Old 07-19-2003, 08:49 PM   #81
AA Team Emeritus
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 7,224
Send a message via Yahoo to Hara
why on earth would you add a cycle fish?!? I would think you have lost enough of them by now. There are alternative methods to cycle tanks. It sounds to me as if your tank had not really cycled properly to begin with and with adding all the other fish, you just kept prolonging the issue.

I would shut the skimmer off, let your tank cycle properly then slowly add fish. Slowly equals one at a time with a week at least between them.
__________________

__________________
Hara is offline  
Old 07-19-2003, 09:05 PM   #82
Aquarium Advice FINatic
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Dallas, TX, USA
Posts: 507
Send a message via ICQ to Gauge Send a message via Yahoo to Gauge
Quote:
why on earth would you add a cycle fish?!?
I meant a cycle fish for my QT tank considering these two are likely going to die. I'll replace the water in the QT tank with new, freshly mixed water, sterilized the filter/bioballs/biowheel, and start it from scratch. Once it's cycled I can keep it up full time and use it for new additions to my main tank

Quote:
There are alternative methods to cycle tanks.
Like what? (not sarcasm... I sincerely think I'm missing something big here)

Quote:
It sounds to me as if your tank had not really cycled properly to begin with and with adding all the other fish, you just kept prolonging the issue.
Okay, I can definitely agree with the first part. The tank probably did not cycle properly to begin with. It took significantly longer than I heard was average. I started with 6 green chromis (as per a LFSs suggestion) to get the cycle going. They were all dead before it was over (about a week and a half to kill them all). Then I was told to wait for the nitrites to come down and then start adding fish again.

Here is an idea I have about it that seems to contradict with what you're say, though, so tell me if the idea is wrong - I was of the opinion that if you add sources of ammonia, whatever they are, and regardless of whether or not they live, that will promote the growth of a bacteria population that will then turn that into nitrites. By adding the fish you add ammonia to the tank which is poison the the fish, but food to the bacteria, right? So if you kill the fish, but replace them, the bacteria will continue to grow until there are enough to process all the ammonia (i.e. food) and then everything balances. Then the same thing happens to nitrites. Is this not correct? And if so, how could my tank NOT have caught up by now? It's had a steady load for well over a month and a half, but the nitrites just won't hit rock bottom yet.

Quote:
I would shut the skimmer off, let your tank cycle properly then slowly add fish. Slowly equals one at a time with a week at least between them.
Okay, then here is a plan... tell me what you think. I'm going to take the skimmer off, run the lights as normal, feed nothing into the tank, and keep all my fish out of it. I will wait for these two to die (which is inevitable), re-do the QT tank with new water and sterilized equipment, buy a fish to put in it for QTing, and then after two weeks of it sitting in QT move it over to the main tank, which would then have had two weeks to balance out. If it takes longer than that for the nitrites to hit zero, I'll keep the fish in QT for a little longer, then. Sound like a plan?
__________________

__________________
- Gauge

92-gallon corner tank, 100lbs of LR, 140lbs of sand, 250watt 10,000K MH, 110watts of actinic PCs, Mag 7 return, custom refugium, AquaC EV180 w/ Mag 5

Female lyretail anthias, eyelash blenny, tomato clown, saddleback clown, firefish goby, 2 sand-sifting stars
Gauge is offline  
Old 07-19-2003, 09:14 PM   #83
steve-s
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gauge
I took a water sample to the LFS a few days ago, and here were the results:

Nitrates: 10-15
Nitrites: 0.1 (which my test agrees with, but I didn't previously know for reasons stated above)
Ammonia: 0
PH: 8.2
That is what I though you had said in a previous thread I saw but couldn't find it. These readings are what is confusing me and leads me to suspect it is low O2 (from low GPH) or possibley high ambient CO2 but your pH seems fine and does not support that. The pH test should be done as soon as you remove the water sample from the tank. Allowing it to sit uncovered will aerate it and skew the results.

With ammonia at zero and nitrate so low, there should be no nitrite. That's what does not make sense. Nitrate cannot form without nitrobacters, nitrobacters consume nitrite.

The speed in which I was speaking was the time period between fish additions. I understood that they where not there at the same time. Even though you only add one fish, the bio filter still needs time to catch up. Bacteria only grows to match what is in the tank and producing wastes, it is not always present in abunance but rather balanced. Have you ever used anti-biotics?

With only a skimmer I think 15-20 lbs of LR in 42g tank is very low and not allowing for enough surface area for colonizing bacteria to populate and quite possibley a part of the problem. I really think it's a combination of small things causing your problem, not one.

I think the fish in the QT does deserves the chance for life. It's your choice and I understand the frustration, I've been there.

You do not need a new "cycle" fish. The inverts in the main tank will provide the necessary wastes when you feed them. It will keep the bacteria alive. When introducing new fish, only one at a time after the initial QT and only add one every few weeks.

Any one else have something to add I may have missed

Cheers
Steve
__________________
 
Old 07-19-2003, 09:46 PM   #84
Aquarium Advice FINatic
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Dallas, TX, USA
Posts: 507
Send a message via ICQ to Gauge Send a message via Yahoo to Gauge
What water parameters are affect by O2 and in what way?

Quote:
The pH test should be done as soon as you remove the water sample from the tank. Allowing it to sit uncovered will aerate it and skew the results.
I have a PH test at home, and it agrees with the 8.2, usually at night.

Quote:
The speed in which I was speaking was the time period between fish additions. I understood that they where not there at the same time. Even though you only add one fish, the bio filter still needs time to catch up.
I was pretty much only adding a fish when another died. Most of them were replacements, not additions. And even so, when I started with a few, it should have caught up to them eventually, even if I was replacing them right away, shouldn't it have? I realize now I should've let it gradually increase, but it still should have worked eventually.

Quote:
Have you ever used anti-biotics?
Never in my main tank, no.

Quote:
With only a skimmer I think 15-20 lbs of LR in 42g tank is very low and not allowing for enough surface area for colonizing bacteria to populate and quite possibley a part of the problem.
It's not just a skimmer. The Backpack2 is a filter and skimmer. Wouldn't that be enough? The bacteria population can't need too much to support such a small number of fish at a time.

Quote:
You do not need a new "cycle" fish. The inverts in the main tank will provide the necessary wastes when you feed them.
I was going to get the cycle fish for the QT tank. It can cycle the QT tank while the main tank sits and does nothing for a while. Then I can move him over to the main tank when the ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates are in line. Also, I don't feed my inverts. I have the following:

1 arrow crab
2 blue reef hermit crabs
1 emerald crab
1 anemone crab
1 tiget tail sea cucumber
1 red bali star
1 cleaner shrimp

They all feed themselves, it seems like. Will they still produce the necessary waste to keep the bacteria population up in the main tank?


Does everyone think the ich problem is not an infestation, but just the normal amount of ich in the water (which I hear is always present) attacking fish that are stressed out by the water conditions (specifically nitrites)? Or do you think I should worry about the ich problem, even though it's only shown on about 1/4 of my dead fish?
__________________
- Gauge

92-gallon corner tank, 100lbs of LR, 140lbs of sand, 250watt 10,000K MH, 110watts of actinic PCs, Mag 7 return, custom refugium, AquaC EV180 w/ Mag 5

Female lyretail anthias, eyelash blenny, tomato clown, saddleback clown, firefish goby, 2 sand-sifting stars
Gauge is offline  
Old 07-20-2003, 12:35 AM   #85
steve-s
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Low O2 will result in poor alk levels and problems with ph. Since you seem to be fine on the ph front, then it is less likely.

Quote:
I was pretty much only adding a fish when another died. Most of them were replacements, not additions. And even so, when I started with a few, it should have caught up to them eventually, even if I was replacing them right away, shouldn't it have? I realize now I should've let it gradually increase, but it still should have worked eventually.
Whenever a fish dies it is best to wait, especially if the cause is not clear. It is usually prudent to wait until you can determine the cause and be asured that no other fish are affected or showing poor health.

Quote:
It's not just a skimmer. The Backpack2 is a filter and skimmer. Wouldn't that be enough?
They are not actually a filter of sorts. More as an addition to bilogical filtration. I have one and would not rely on it. They will also need cleaning fairly often in a new tank.

Quote:
The bacteria population can't need too much to support such a small number of fish at a time.
Incorrect. Bacteria grows in stages. If the nitrosomonas (ammonia bacteria) take up most of the available colonizing space, then when the nitrobacters start, they can only grow to a certain level due to lack of available surface area. That is why more LR is desired as it will provide more surface area for colonization as well as anoxic regions for dentrification.

Quote:
Originally Posted by guage
Have you ever used anti-biotics?

Quote:
Never in my main tank, no.
How was it used and where?

Quote:
I was going to get the cycle fish for the QT tank. It can cycle the QT tank while the main tank sits and does nothing for a while. Then I can move him over to the main tank when the ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates are in line. Also, I don't feed my inverts. I have the following:
When you feed the fish, you feed the inverts by default. They will perform the same task as a fish. Anything that makes waste or decays creates ammonia and supports the bacteria. One or two would not do that much but you have quite a few and should be fine. Just add something for them once or twice a week. Sinking pellets would be best.

Quote:
Does everyone think the ich problem is not an infestation, but just the normal amount of ich in the water (which I hear is always present)
No I do not agree. Ich is never present in "normal" amounts nor is it always in the water or on the fish for that matter.. That is a myth. Fish can live in the tank ich free if quarantined properly first. You should leave the main tank fallow for the next six weeks.

Cheers
Steve
__________________
 
Old 07-20-2003, 02:09 AM   #86
Aquarium Advice FINatic
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Dallas, TX, USA
Posts: 507
Send a message via ICQ to Gauge Send a message via Yahoo to Gauge
This my sound a bit drastic, but this is an idea I'm toying with. I'm thinking that I'm back to square one. My tank has nothing good that it didn't start with. It's not properly cycled. It has some form of parasitic infestation possibly. It has no fish, and a few invertibrates. I'm thinking about wiping the slate completely clean and starting over. Here is what I'm considering doing...

Empty out the water in the QT tank and sterilize the filter with bleach. Take all my invertibrates from the main tank and put them into the QT tank. Take all the rock from the main tank and put it in a cooler with some water in it. Take all the sand and put it in a rubbermaid bin. Empty all the water out of the main tank and filter. Fill the tank with a little tap water and add some bleach. Scrub the sucker down extensively and get it entirely clean and sterilized. Do the same with the sand in the rubbermaid bin. Do the same with the filter and biomedia. Mix up new water and put it in the tank. Put the inverts back in the tank. Then add one fish and start my cycle over again.

In a computer analogy, I'm sick of trying to find the bug in the OS. I just want to format and get a clean install. Is this crazy? It sure sounds good at this point.


Anyway, back to the discussion...

Quote:
How was it used and where?
I set up a QT tank for one of my cowfish and used some antibiotics in it. He never got better, and thus never got moved back. I didn't use any bioballs from the filter or anything.

Here's a question for you... If I leave my tank now with no fish, a few inverts, never feeding it, and it having 0.1 nitrites, and in two weeks the nitrites are still at 0.1, what does that mean? No ammonia production to speak of. At the very least, no *changes* in the ammonia production. The bacteria should catch up at least, if not eliminate the last remaining traces of ammonia in the tank. This just doesn't make any sense to me at all. The only explination that seems to apply to this paradox is Steve-S saying that the nitrite-processing bacteria not having enough room to grow because the ammonia-processing bacteria is taking up too much room.
__________________
- Gauge

92-gallon corner tank, 100lbs of LR, 140lbs of sand, 250watt 10,000K MH, 110watts of actinic PCs, Mag 7 return, custom refugium, AquaC EV180 w/ Mag 5

Female lyretail anthias, eyelash blenny, tomato clown, saddleback clown, firefish goby, 2 sand-sifting stars
Gauge is offline  
Old 07-20-2003, 08:52 AM   #87
AA Team Emeritus
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Raymond, NH
Posts: 916
I understand your frustration, and wanting to wipe the "slate clean". The one major issue I can see is that you'll need to find a temporary home for your inverts - they will not survive a cycle.

Now, off to grab some coffee...
ReefLady is offline  
Old 07-20-2003, 11:03 AM   #88
AA Team Emeritus
 
reefrunner69's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Cedar Key, FL
Posts: 1,663
Quote:
Then add one fish and start my cycle over again.
Please read this, "How to cycle your tank, without the use of fish."

I agree with RL, you will need to find a different home for your inverts while you cycle the tank.

Quote:
At the very least, no *changes* in the ammonia production. The bacteria should catch up at least, if not eliminate the last remaining traces of ammonia in the tank. This just doesn't make any sense to me at all. The only explination that seems to apply to this paradox is Steve-S saying that the nitrite-processing bacteria not having enough room to grow because the ammonia-processing bacteria is taking up too much room.
This is quite possible. Just to clarify a bit (I know it is semantics, but how you look at it will determine whether you do it right next time.) The nitrosomonas are not taking up too much room, they are taking the space needed for a colony large enough to process the amount of ammonia your tank provides. Your filter may not have enough surface area for all the necessary micro-organisms needed for nitrification.
__________________
Kevin

Visit Nature Coast Photography
reefrunner69 is offline  
Old 07-20-2003, 12:20 PM   #89
Aquarium Advice FINatic
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Dallas, TX, USA
Posts: 507
Send a message via ICQ to Gauge Send a message via Yahoo to Gauge
To be quite honest, I had a few drinks last night and was a bit under the influence when I made that post. When I woke up this morning, I thought you guys would react poorly to the suggestion and just condem my impatience. The wiping the slate clean idea sounds a little less attractive (as most things do when you're hung over), but I still might consider it. Do you all think I should? It would be cheaper to bleach the tank than it would to buy more rock and stuff. However, do you think the same thing would happen again? I'd like some opinions and input on the idea of starting over.

Thanks a lot, peeps
__________________
- Gauge

92-gallon corner tank, 100lbs of LR, 140lbs of sand, 250watt 10,000K MH, 110watts of actinic PCs, Mag 7 return, custom refugium, AquaC EV180 w/ Mag 5

Female lyretail anthias, eyelash blenny, tomato clown, saddleback clown, firefish goby, 2 sand-sifting stars
Gauge is offline  
Old 07-20-2003, 02:10 PM   #90
steve-s
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Personally I would leave the tank and build on what you already have. I would take the inverts back to the LFS for store credit unless you have a friend willing to house them.

Then I would get another 50 lbs of LR to add the the 15-20 you already have. The using the info RR provided about "Fishless Cycling", start fresh but not necessarily new.

The amount of time it will take to re-cycle the tank with the new LR and such will also be enough time to allow the possible "parasite" problem to clear up on it's own. The "tear down" and bleaching is not necessary.

reefrunner69 has already clarified it but just to add a bit more. When I was refering to the nitrosomonas, I was meaning that when bacteria is formed in a new tank they are first. If the available ammonia is sufficient to support a colony that takes up the majority of the surface area then when the nitrobacters start up they may have sufficient foods (nitrite) but insufficient growing space to colonize. I think greatly increasing you LR will take care of that problem.

No worries about the "rant", but next time your gonna take a sip you gotta share :P

Cheers
Steve
__________________
 
Closed Thread

Tags
ick, sick, sick fish

Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on AquariumAdvice.com

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
newbie questions--plants, cycling, sick fish aharcara Freshwater & Brackish - Getting Started 10 04-18-2008 03:00 PM
Need help! newbie ^_^ Lionfish sick mobman Saltwater & Reef - Sick Fish or Coral 7 09-18-2005 10:37 AM
Please help!!! Newbie with sick fish misterteejay Saltwater & Reef - Sick Fish or Coral 7 12-29-2004 10:37 PM
Help! Newbie with a sick platy... Sara Freshwater & Brackish - Unhealthy Fish 12 11-21-2003 01:30 AM
Newbie with very sick fancy goldfish evilv Freshwater & Brackish - Unhealthy Fish 5 01-23-2003 04:54 PM







» Photo Contest Winners








Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 03:28 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.