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Old 04-16-2006, 06:06 PM   #1
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Panda Cories - Shrimp pellets too big?

So I read that cories love shrimp pellets, so I bought some of those Omega brand ones that are supposed to be high quality. They look small in the bottle but get almost twice as big as they sink to the bottom of the tank.

My cories didn't have a very good start...I found them at my local Petsmart (rare find) several days ago, but they appeared to be sluggish and had damaged fins. I figured that I'd give them a try and bought 3 of 'em.

Feeding them has turned into my biggest problem. They're not very active and don't seem to have an immediate interest in food. They sometimes sit around together and sometimes they sit around at different areas of the tank (10 gal). I'm guessing this inactivity is due to stress from the change and poor treatment in shipping?

Anyways, I caught one trying to nibble one of the Omega shrimp pellets and it couldn't seem to eat any of it. Are these pellets meant for bigger cories to eat in one bite? Or are they supposed to slowly soften so they can be broken up and eaten in smaller bites? I also put in algae wafers but I've never seen them eat it. I was thinking of trying bloodworms but they seem rather expensive, not to mention my piggy neons would try and eat them before the cories do.

I really love how these guys look and I'd like them to survive, but things aren't looking so good. I've been treating with Melafix and Pimafix to try and battle the damaged fins which almost look like a stub because they lost the fin appendages (could be finrot, but I don't see any frayed white edges). Should I start dosing with Maracyn 1 and 2(sp)?

EDIT: Want to add couple more bits of info. They aren't COMPLETELY inactive...They sometimes scoot around the tank looking for stuff to eat (they seem to ignore the food). Their barbel whisker thingies look intact.

Thanks!
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Old 04-16-2006, 06:21 PM   #2
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My cories never go right for the food. Besides that, I usually feed them after lights out. Someone on here once told me that they see in the dark . Whether that's true or not I don't know, but the wafers and shrimp pellets I put in are always gone in the morning and they're still alive and healthy.

Yes, the shrimp pellets do soften and disintegrate and they get little bits when they peck and swipe at them. You're not going to see them taking noticable bites out of the pieces.

Sorry to hear they're sick. I treated one of mine that had fin rot for about 10-12 days in a QT 5-gallon bucket with Melafix and he's fine now...just missing one of his pectoral fins that didn't grow back (it's kind of weird, he's just got the bone sticking out there, but he's "seemed" fine for a while now post treatment.) The bucket had an airstone and a couple fake plants and he turned right around. Not sure if you need to dose Pimafix too. Might be overkill.
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Old 04-16-2006, 06:25 PM   #3
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The pellets should soften. Mine eat them just fine. Just takes a little time to soften, then they disappear, lol.

I'd do a large PWC, then use Maracyn Two, if the Pimafix and Melafix isn't working. I've never used the Maracyn, and have heard it could possibly interfere with the tanks cycle, as you definitely don't want to start another cycle. I've used Maracyn Two with success, and no interference with the cycle of the tank.

Also, what are your water parameters? Ammonia? Nitrite? Nitrate? ph? temp?
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Old 04-16-2006, 06:45 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lonewolfblue
Also, what are your water parameters? Ammonia? Nitrite? Nitrate? ph? temp?
Ammonia, nitrite undetectable and nitrate @ a little less than 20. Ph is a little on the soft side (not sure off hand, I know its more than 6).

I'm keeping the temp at 79 which seems to be the max healthy temp for the cories. Maybe lowering it several degrees would help? I would think the higher temp would help more.

I tried putting in the algae wafers last night after I turned the light off but it didn't look like it was touched in the morning. When I turned the light on the tetras made a quick meal of it. **** pigs.

I guess I'll just have to keep the feeding up...The uneaten food I've been putting in has been fouling up the water so I've had to do 3 or 4 small water changes / gravel vacs a week.
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Old 04-16-2006, 06:50 PM   #5
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May want to get your ph checked. If it's down near 6, could have some problems. But I'm sure it's not that low. If you don't have a ph test kit, take a sample to the lfs and have them check it. Are you adding anything to adjust the tap? It's best not to add anything to adjust the ph.
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Old 04-16-2006, 07:16 PM   #6
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Actually, most cories like the temperature a little lower, in the 72-76F range.
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Old 04-16-2006, 07:20 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gill
Ammonia, nitrite undetectable and nitrate @ a little less than 20. Ph is a little on the soft side (not sure off hand, I know its more than 6).

I'm keeping the temp at 79 which seems to be the max healthy temp for the cories. Maybe lowering it several degrees would help? I would think the higher temp would help more.
The pH could be a problem, if it is very low. You need to get an accurate reading, to know for sure.
Actually, most cories like the temperature a little lower, in the 72-76F range.

Oops, sorry about the double post. If someone could delete the first, that would be great.
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Old 04-16-2006, 07:26 PM   #8
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Just a note on feeding the panda's. They like to make a mess and then hoover it up. They were alone in my 30 gallon for a while and what they usualy did with the shrimp pellets was wait till they softened, then spread each pellet around into nearly a 1 foot circle of pellet bits. Then they'd finally go back and start sucking up all the bits.

From what I can tell they don't like to or can't bite into anything, so they spread it out into tiny bits. It works best in sand where they can really put them whiskers to work.

As for temperature, my tank is up to 82 right now without a heater. The younger panda's don't seem to mind at all, the older guys are having a rougher time of it and get pretty lethargic in the heat.
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Old 04-16-2006, 07:39 PM   #9
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i keep my tank at 78-79 and my cories are doing just fine. Very active....
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