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Old 07-18-2013, 04:17 PM   #1
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The great goldfish die off.

My 46 gallon goldfish tank is having serious issues for the past few days. I had a ph swing overnight 3 nights ago but it has since been stabilized, it went from 7.4 to 6. I lost a black moor from that (at least I think it was that that caused his death, he was dead when I turned the lights on). The next day I lost another one, with no warning or odd behavior. So I did a 50% water change and checked my parameters. Don't remember what they were now, but nothing was out of the ordinary, ammonia, nitrates/nitrites were at 0, ph was back to 7.4 like usual. Last night I checked my parameters again before bed and all was well, but I did a 10% change just to be safe. This morning when I turned my lights on my oranda was laying at the bottom kind of sideways looking sad. Checked my parameters, everything was the same as it was the last 2 times (ammonia/nitrates/nitrites 0, ph 7.4). So I did another 10% water change. Went to work and came home and now he is at the top swimming (see pictures), so again I checked my levels and everything was the same. After the first one died I started feeding sweet peas 1x/day and a little garlic in case it was bloat. Any ideas what I could have going on, or possible ways to fix it??? I'm thinking about tearing the tank apart this weekend and putting half new substrate in (maybe half sand/half the existing gravel) in case it's something going on in the gravel... If I do that will it cause my tank to cycle or mini cycle?


Here's my fine details:
46 gallon bowfront, now stocked with 2 fancy goldfish (did have 4 but 2 died)
Filters- aqueon 50 and fluval c4, fully cycled and running since January, fluval added in march.
Water treated with prime at water changes.
Ph- 7.4
Ammonia/nitrate/nitrite- 0
Temp- 70-72
Feeding them sweet peas and garlic currently, but normally they eat omega 1 flakes with peas 1-2x/week and garlic 1x/week.
I think that's everything.
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Old 07-18-2013, 11:38 PM   #2
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Hi! Ok, the extreme ph crash is enough to sicken or kill any goldfish. Four fancies in a 46g is overstocked. What kind of wc schedule were you following? 10% wcs is not enough even on a minimally stocked tank.

Is the goldfish in the pics representative of all the goldfish? He looks very thin and appears to have a red sore under his chin and the base of pectoral fins are red. Can you please post a pic of your other remaining fish as well? Any other symptoms?

For now, 50+% wcs daily. Are you in the US or another country so we can make further suggestions (meds and diet)?
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Old 07-19-2013, 01:22 AM   #3
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[QUOTE="Mommachef;2567525"] I'm thinking about tearing the tank apart this weekend and putting half new substrate in (maybe half sand/half the existing gravel) in case it's something going on in the gravel... If I do that will it cause my tank to cycle or mini cycle?
/QUOTE]
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Ammonia/nitrate/nitrite- 0
It looks like your ph crash has caused your tank to cycle again, so this would be a good opportunity to switch out your gravel for sand.
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Old 07-19-2013, 02:33 AM   #4
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No, he is the only one that looks/looked like this. The other two were fine and then overnight died. And I believe- but I could be wrong- that the red marks you are referring to are his coloring, but I will double check/look closer in the morning, as well as get a picture of the other guy.
My water changes-
Monday, wed, fri, sun 50-75% because my tank is overstocked.
I only did the little 10% changes because I didn't have the time at that moment to do bigger changes (Had To go to work).
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Old 07-19-2013, 02:44 AM   #5
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This evening after this post I did another 50% - that makes a 50 and a 10 every day for 3 days now.
I kind of thought my ph crashing would push my tank into another cycle, so I figured it'd be a good time to switch out my substrate.
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Old 07-19-2013, 06:44 AM   #6
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Okay just got home from work (it's almost 7am, I worked the graveyard shift), and turned the lights on to find my grey guy sitting in the bottom. The other one is sitting on the other side behind the plants breathing heavily. I'm on the verge of a nervous breakdown because I can't figure this out and I'm upset over finding sick or dead fish every morning.
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Old 07-19-2013, 08:32 AM   #7
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Okay just got home from work (it's almost 7am, I worked the graveyard shift), and turned the lights on to find my grey guy sitting in the bottom. The other one is sitting on the other side behind the plants breathing heavily. I'm on the verge of a nervous breakdown because I can't figure this out and I'm upset over finding sick or dead fish every morning.
She looks fine to me-are you sure you didn't catch her napping? She's very pretty.

The frequent large water changes will allow the fish to recover and regain their good health
Unless there is a visible turn for the worse, I'd suggest you keep doing what you're doing- and they will like the sand better and it won't store up all the crud that gravel does.
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Old 07-19-2013, 09:40 AM   #8
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She looks fine to me-are you sure you didn't catch her napping? She's very pretty.

The frequent large water changes will allow the fish to recover and regain their good health
Unless there is a visible turn for the worse, I'd suggest you keep doing what you're doing- and they will like the sand better and it won't store up all the crud that gravel does.
Thank you, he(or she!) is my favorite fish I have, and I will be totally devastated if something happens to it! It's a few hours later and he's still hanging out on the bottom, which is very unusual for him. I'm getting ready to do a big water change. My water looks cloudy now(it didn't earlier), but all of my parameters are still the same. I think maybe my tank is going through a cycle and maybe that is what is killing them off? But I don't know, really. At this point I'm just grasping random ideas hoping for something to work and save them. Haha
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Old 07-19-2013, 11:00 AM   #9
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Thanks for the pics! Quick question on him- do his eyes normally look like this (they appear slightly bulged)? Are his scales laying perfectly flat (viewed topview down)? Light reflection in pics can make scales appear as though they may be slightly lifted and I just want to make sure this is not the case.
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Old 07-19-2013, 11:48 AM   #10
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Thanks for the pics! Quick question on him- do his eyes normally look like this (they appear slightly bulged)? Are his scales laying perfectly flat (viewed topview down)? Light reflection in pics can make scales appear as though they may be slightly lifted and I just want to make sure this is not the case.
No his eyes are always that big! They crack me up! Haha =D and yes his scales are all flat. He is now swimming around the tank like he usually does, so I think when I took the pictures he was napping.
I did my 50% water change and I also dosed with some API general cure? (the stuff that treats the internal parasites) because I found a good bit of white stringy poop in the tank when I was in it. Immediately after I dosed it the white and orange one started swimming around with the grey guy again- but he's not out of the woods yet. I'm hoping that this is the problem and I can keep these two alive! They both ate some peas out of my hand this morning as well, so I found that very encouraging.
The picture is what the white one was doing right before my water change.
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Old 07-19-2013, 11:58 AM   #11
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Poor little guy! He looks quite miserable. Ok, my suggestion is to stick to daily big wcs and redoes the GC after the wc. Plan on doing this for no less than 7 days and we can see how everyone responds. Feed them lots of veggies daily in addition to a quality sinking pellet. The white poop is most likely a stress induced reaction and not an internal bug issue. Metro in the GC can do wonders for a fish that is not feeding well and is having some buoyancy issues so hopefully you will see some marked improvement in his appetite and behavior. Keep us posted!
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Old 07-19-2013, 04:08 PM   #12
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The picture is what the white one was doing right before my water change.
Aww, so sad!
I've never seen a fish that looked like it might cry before!
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Old 07-19-2013, 04:59 PM   #13
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I see airline in the pics... do you have an airstone in the tank? Goldfish need lots of oxygen, especially in warmer water.
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Old 07-20-2013, 09:08 AM   #14
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I see airline in the pics... do you have an airstone in the tank? Goldfish need lots of oxygen, especially in warmer water.
Yes, I have 4 air stones running. One is a large disc and the others are smaller ones.
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Old 07-20-2013, 09:13 AM   #15
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Aww, so sad!
I've never seen a fish that looked like it might cry before!
Lol I thought the same thing! He just looked so bummed out!
The general cure must be helping because this morning I turned the light on to find him swimming around with his buddy. I'm doing another water change now and re dosing the tank.

Thanks everyone for all of the help, I greatly appreciate it!
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