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Old 05-02-2004, 03:23 PM   #1
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emergency question

hey
i have a 45 gallon freswater tank and i have lost 6 out of nine fish in the past 3 days!!!! i had my water tested by petco and they said that my ph is off the scale!!!! i had tested it with 2 different testers ( strips and drops) but they seemed ok!!!! cant figure it out!!! any ideas!! also i had tested the nitrate nitrite and other features and tings were fine.. i just dont want to keep dumping loads of chemicals in but if i have too i will!!!!
need help thanks
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Old 05-02-2004, 03:30 PM   #2
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[center:ced6d64745] Welcome to AA, hartman57! [/center:ced6d64745]
First, STOP any chemicals you are putting in the tank.
The best thing right now are water changes. Do a 50% water change, add only dechlor and test your water and post back.
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Old 05-02-2004, 03:33 PM   #3
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Secondly, please post your actual readings for both strips and drops for the following water parameters: ammonia, nitrite, nitrate and pH. You should know that liquid tests are more reliable than strips.
How long has the tank been set up? How long have you had the fish? How often do you do gravel vacs along with water changes? How were the fish acting before they died? Have you added anything new to the tank--decorations, substate, a complete filter change?
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Old 05-02-2004, 03:59 PM   #4
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i had done a 25% h2o change and then the fish started dying!!!!!! id ont understand it i had no problems before !!! the tank is about 3 mths old and the fish were about 1 month!!! didnt need to vaccuum because about a month ago i had a really bad case of ich and i shut my tank down cleaned it all including gravel and did the normal preps. everthng was good until the water change the things that i have put into the tank was ph down, de-chlor, and freshwater salt!! petco said that my ph was 8.0 or so my teaters said about between 7.2 - 7.6 (pretty normal) i dont know if my testers are bad (2 types) because petco gave me an 8.0 reading.... also no new decorations or gravel.
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Old 05-02-2004, 04:00 PM   #5
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also all of my other test nitrate nitrite and hardness were ok
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Old 05-02-2004, 04:03 PM   #6
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Do not add pH down to the tank. If there is not a strong buffer, you could be getting swings in pH, which are very harmful to the fish. There are natural ways to lower pH including peat and/or driftwood.
You should be vacuuming the gravel weekly along with a 25% water change. This takes care of waste produced by the fish and excess food that has fallen to the bottom.

How old are your test kits?
One more thing, pour a glass of tap water and let it sit out over night and then test it for pH. If you have an airstone, add that and test tomorrow morning.
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Old 05-02-2004, 04:07 PM   #7
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my i test kit for ph is 3 mths old and my others are 2!!!!!! what will sitting a glass over night do just give me a base reading so something else!!
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Old 05-02-2004, 10:58 PM   #8
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The PH out of your tap can change. It's a good idea to do as Menagerie says because it will give you an understanding of whether or not this is occuring.

Most fish can acclimate to a high or low PH relatively easily. But sudden changes in PH can stress a fish fataly.
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Old 05-03-2004, 11:20 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hartman57
petco gave me an 8.0 reading.... .
Petco found and 8.0 value for your pH and said this was 'Off the scale" !!?!?!?! - do me a favor and go back to the store and slap that idiot up-side the head.

8.0 is relatively OK.....the normal range is 7.5 to 7.8 or so....but LOTS of people run their tanks closer to 8.0...mine, for instance is at 7.9, and I have had no fish die in over 4 or 5 months now *knocks on wood*....the trick is to allow for a buffer so that your fishes can handle any changes in pH....water quality is key man.

any sudden change in pH is bad...so be careful....it seems you went overboard with the chemicals and the water changes imo

and don't take any advice from Petco or Petsmart or any of lfs as the definite rule. ALWAYS come here to corroborate whatever advice you were given; there is absolutely NO substitute for the experience/knowledge base on this messageboard.

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Old 05-03-2004, 03:15 PM   #10
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Aquariums are very sensitive environments that are easily affected by small changes in the water. It is always best to do things in little steps than to try to fix a problem all at once. If your ph comeing out of the tap is 8.0, try to get fish that like that ph from now on. If you try to lower the ph, you are in for a constant struggle until you get some more knowledge about how everything works. As stated earlier, even if the ph is a bit high or low compared to what you want, it is most important that the ph remains stable instead of changing rapidly as you try to "fix" it.

The only chemical you should use regularly is water conditioner to make the tap water safe to add to the tank when you do a water change.
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Old 05-03-2004, 10:21 PM   #11
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another fish had kicked the bucket last night!!! so i have 1 of 9 fish left!!! i had taken a glass of water out of the tap, let it sit overnight and tested the ph this morning with the same testers as the previous and it gave me the same reading as the tank!!!!!!!! im going to do a 50% water change tomarrow and see what happens then!!!! hope it works
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Old 05-03-2004, 11:08 PM   #12
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After just getting informed that you need to take small steps, you want to go ahead with a 50% water change? A ph of 8 is not likely going to kill fish once once they acclimate to it. Some full details on your aquarium would be nice like the current remaining fish, the fish you had to start, current levels for ammonia, nitrites, nitrates, and tank equipment like the filter, heater, and light... Since you are experiencing a large die-off, look for sources of contamination like household cleaners or non fish safe items in the tank.

Again, having a ph of 8.0 would not kill 8 of 9 fish if they were acclimated to the ph level. Something else is likely causing the deaths imo, depending on the fish you have.
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Old 05-09-2004, 11:05 AM   #13
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i had gone ahead with the water change and everything seems well so far!!!! all of my levels (nitrate, nitrite, hardness,amonia) are good...... it has been 2 days now and my one fish i have left seems good!!!! i am going to test my ph tonight to see the level but when i tested after the change it was 7.8. i firgued i let it go to see what happens hopefully i can put some fish in maybe tis week but i want to take it slow and see what happens...
also i didnot get any new orniments gravel or contaminate the tank with any household cleaners!!! i dont clean the glass with anything else but water (outside).
the fish that i had that died i dont know the exact names for all cause im kinda new at this but a shark (black with red tail and fins), a couple ather sharks, bottom feedersplacos andi think a gourami.
sorry i cant help in the naming but again i am new at this!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 05-09-2004, 06:41 PM   #14
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A month ago when you cleaned the Ich out of your tank, did you use any chemicals. If I'm not mistaken, some chems can get in the aquarium sealant. Even after rinsing very well. They can then leach into the water.
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Old 05-10-2004, 04:37 PM   #15
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no chemical useage with the ich!!! i just cleaned it with water!!!
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Old 05-10-2004, 04:42 PM   #16
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!!!!!!
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2x Sunburst Platys (2M, 2F) // 3x Neon Tetras (?) // 2x Cherry Barbs (1M, 1F) // 2x YoYo Loaches (?) // 1x Bushy Nose Pleco (M) // 1x Clown Pleco (?) //

*15H marine*
-30# Live Rock
-Mixed Snails (Nassarius // Cerith // Astrea // Black Turbo // Mexican Turbo)
-8x Blue Leg Hermit Crabs // 1x Banded Serpent Star // 1x Cleaner Shrimp
-1x Royal Gramma // 1x Percula Clownfish
-2x Mushroom Leather // Metallic Green Star Polyps // Pulsing Xenia // Striped Xenia // Blue Mushroom
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