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Old 07-13-2008, 06:48 PM   #1
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Yellow Tang not looking well

I have a 78 gallon reef tank with a naso tang, clownfish, damsal fish, miniature coral, yellow tang, sea cucumber, some soft coral, lots of live rock and a bubble anenome, which is the newest addition.
All fish have been very healthy until recently (last week or so) my yellow tang has been looking pale, with tiny red streaks (looks like veins). Her dorsal fin is looking distressed also.
I usually feed flake food in morning and frozen brine shrimp in evening. She seems to be eating OK.
The PH and nitrate is good. The Ammonia is a little high. I added some charcoal to my filter which, I hope, will help the ammonia. I need to do a water change soon also.
What do you think is the problem??
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Old 07-13-2008, 06:59 PM   #2
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How long has it been up and running with fish?
Type filter?
Describe the lighting units (type bulbs, total wattage).
What are the current water parameters? Ammonia, nitirte, nitrate, pH, salinity, temp, calcium and alkalinity. Please post numbers of results.
As a precaution, do an immediate 25% water change
Also reduce your feeding to once every other day.

Signs of Ammonia Poisoning:
Fish gasp for breath at the water surface
Purple or red gills
Fish is lethargic
Loss of appetite
Fish lays at the bottom of the tank
Red streaking on the fins or body

ANY AMMONIA is DEADLY to fish. How high is your ammonia reading? Did anything else in the tank die recently?

How much live rock do you have (in pounds) and how long has it been in the tank?
Do you have any other filtration?
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Old 07-13-2008, 08:46 PM   #3
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Thanks for the quick response. I apologize up front - I'm fairly new at this, just about 2 years so I don't know all the answers. The tang doesn't seem to have lost appetite and she doesn't show red gills. She doesn't gasp for breath either.
Ammonia - .5
Nitrite - 0
salinity - 1.021
temp - about 82-84
ph - 7.8
My lighting was sold to me used from the guy where I buy my fish. He said that it is appropriate for my tank but I don't know the wattage, etc.

I have a Aquaclear 500 filter, coralife protein skimmer and two powerheads.
I don't know how much rock I have - I have just been adding rock every so often.
I will do a 25% water change tomorrow and not feed until tomorrow night. I will also post pics so it may be easier to diagnose.
Thanks
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Old 07-13-2008, 09:07 PM   #4
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You are correct in needing a water change; Prepare enough for a 50% and see how things progress after your 25%. If you can perform one today that'd be best. If you are adding rock every so often, have you added any uncured rock within the past week or two? Red gills are healthy gills, pale pink suggest anemia, and tan-brown = NO2 poisoning. Are all you are feeding is flake and brine? The symptoms may suggest NH3 poisoning along with a bacterial infection.
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Old 07-13-2008, 09:56 PM   #5
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Tangs need Nori. for proper diet. Then just because its not gasping for air doesnt mean theres enough oxygen.
What size or model powerheads and how are they pointed?
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Old 07-13-2008, 10:00 PM   #6
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I just did a 20% water change and ammonia is still the same. I will do about 30% tomorrow and see what happens.
Thanks
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Old 07-13-2008, 10:03 PM   #7
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I agree that the ammonia is the problem. A reading of .5 is not good and a PWC is needed. Is there away you can run GAC or chemi pure to help expedite the ammonia removal. Be ready to do another PWC soon and find out what the cause of the ammonia is.
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Old 07-13-2008, 10:09 PM   #8
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Your water source if tap could be adding ammonia in small amounts. Then your LR and LS will help convert ammonia into harmless nitrogen so if low is flow it cant work as well. Then feeding habits helps. Its better to feed small amount more often to reduce uneatin food and excess waste from fish.
I dought this is from 1 source , you could do a larger water change like 35% then weekly 25% untill its under controll.GL..
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Old 07-14-2008, 01:26 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by conniey View Post
...
I don't know how much rock I have - I have just been adding rock every so often. ...
Unless you've been adding fully cured rock, then this is probably your ammonia source. Anything other than fully cured will have some die off that will kick off a mini cycle in your tank each time you add rock.
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Old 07-14-2008, 09:49 PM   #10
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I also believe that the new rock may be a cause of the ammonia. You need to prepare to do 30% - 50% water changes dailiy for the next few days to get the ammonia to ZERO and keep it there. Pristine water does a lot to help fish recover on their own.

Have you tested your nitrate level? What is it?
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