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Old 08-29-2011, 08:58 PM   #1
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What am i doing wrong??

I currently have a 20 long and a 55 gallon tanks. I have had more fish die than I can count.

The 20 long has gravel substrate, 2 small pieces of drift wood, plastic plants, heater, bubble stick with pump, and a marineland penguin 200 filter. This tank has been "set up" for over 2 years.

The 55 gallon has gravel substrate, 2 heaters, 2 large pieces of drift wood, plastic and 2 new live plants, and a marineland 350 filter. No air stones of any kind. This tank has been "set up" at least 9 months.

I have had more dead fish than I care to count. All my fish have been purchased from local pet stores in the Indianapolis area. When my water is tested for a return it always tests "fine".

I've read the book, I've subscribed to the magazines, I do regular water changes, I have a gravel siphon. What am I doing wrong?
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Old 08-29-2011, 09:42 PM   #2
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You say your tank has been "set up" but has it been cycled?
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Old 08-29-2011, 09:50 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by powermatt5000 View Post
I currently have a 20 long and a 55 gallon tanks. I have had more fish die than I can count.

The 20 long has gravel substrate, 2 small pieces of drift wood, plastic plants, heater, bubble stick with pump, and a marineland penguin 200 filter. This tank has been "set up" for over 2 years.

The 55 gallon has gravel substrate, 2 heaters, 2 large pieces of drift wood, plastic and 2 new live plants, and a marineland 350 filter. No air stones of any kind. This tank has been "set up" at least 9 months.

I have had more dead fish than I care to count. All my fish have been purchased from local pet stores in the Indianapolis area. When my water is tested for a return it always tests "fine".

I've read the book, I've subscribed to the magazines, I do regular water changes, I have a gravel siphon. What am I doing wrong?
Do you change your filter media or something every so often? Do you add any chemicals to the tank? If so what kind? "Fine" could mean a lot of different things. Do they test with strips? What are the levels that come back?
In case you haven't read:
1.The (almost) Complete Guide and FAQ to Fishless Cycling
2.I just learned about cycling but I already have fish. What now?!
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Old 08-29-2011, 09:50 PM   #4
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over years and 9 months i say his tank is cycled...
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Old 08-29-2011, 10:29 PM   #5
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Matt, If you can find your way clear, buy your own API Master Test Kit for test kits and do the parameters and post them here. Your tanks should both be cycled after all this time, so the problem is most likely in fluctuating parameters or some unknown water condition that "fine" doesn't reasonably answer.
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Old 08-30-2011, 05:47 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bruinsbro1997
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Do you change your filter media or something every so often? Do you add any chemicals to the tank? If so what kind? "Fine" could mean a lot of different things. Do they test with strips? What are the levels that come back?
In case you haven't read:
1.The (almost) Complete Guide and FAQ to Fishless Cycling
2.I just learned about cycling but I already have fish. What now?!
Quote:
Originally Posted by -Mac-
Matt, If you can find your way clear, buy your own API Master Test Kit for test kits and do the parameters and post them here. Your tanks should both be cycled after all this time, so the problem is most likely in fluctuating parameters or some unknown water condition that "fine" doesn't reasonably answer.
They (PetCo) use the test strips when testing my water, and yes I do use API Stress Coat, and Stress Zyme with my water changes, and "try" to change the filter pads around 4 to 6 weeks.
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Old 08-30-2011, 06:58 AM   #7
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I agree, you should get a liquid test kit so that you can see what the water parameters are for yourself. What is your water change schedule like? What is the death rate like exactly? How long do the fish live in the tank, etc? What kind of symptoms do they show when they die? There are multiple things that could be part of the problem.
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Old 08-30-2011, 12:17 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jetajockey
I agree, you should get a liquid test kit so that you can see what the water parameters are for yourself. What is your water change schedule like? What is the death rate like exactly? How long do the fish live in the tank, etc? What kind of symptoms do they show when they die? There are multiple things that could be part of the problem.
Right now the problem is with the 55 gallon. Petco had there neon tetras on sale 5/$5. I know neons don't have the best reputation for being "hardy" and Petco doesn't have the best reputation for having quality fish. I was buying them 5 at a time around every 3 days with a 5 gallon water change about the same rate. I was replacing dead neons faster than I could goto the store. The only thing in the tank were 2 cories and now there dead as well.
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Old 08-30-2011, 03:02 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by powermatt5000 View Post
They (PetCo) use the test strips when testing my water, and yes I do use API Stress Coat, and Stress Zyme with my water changes, and "try" to change the filter pads around 4 to 6 weeks.
Test strips are notoriously inaccurate. If that's what the store is using then you are not getting good readings about your water's parameters. For better information about your aquarium's conditions it is recommended by most of AA to use the API Freshwater Master Test Kit to test the water. It's cheaper at Amazon than your local PetCo/Smart or lfs.

What type of filter are you using in your aquarium?
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Old 08-30-2011, 04:01 PM   #10
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The problem I see is that you're changing the filter media ever four to six weeks. The problem is that most of the beneficial bacteria lives in the filter pads, so you're getting rid of all that when you throw the cartridges out. I would suggest, if you just replaced the cartridge and still have the fish in the tank, try to fish-in cycle. It's tricky but can be done.
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