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Old 06-13-2012, 06:01 PM   #1
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Okay - A Plethora of Issues With My 60 Gallon Goldfish Tank Since Last Post...

Hello AA Friends.

Since my last post in the (mainly) General Freshwater area, many things have taken place in my tank that I require some assistance on making sense of. First of all, as many of you may have read in a thread which I contributed to entitled "Do Goldfish Have a Pecking Order?" we recently introduced a young, small Red Cap Oranda to our 60 gallon, which accompanied a large Red Cap and Chocolate/Gold fantail (both which are now two and a half years old in our tank, growing since we set the tank up) in addition to a Black and Gold Moor. Immediately, the new small Red Cap began bullying the large Red Cap and Chocolate/Gold fancy, chasing them around and what appeared to be pecking at their rears. This ended up resulting in red, inflamed areas around their anal canals, the Chocolate fantail in particular looking really inflamed and bad, and what began as thinking this may had been a mating ritual between an aggressive male and two females had turned to concerns of bullying to death.

We went out and purchased, yesterday, a 10 gallon starter kit from a local Petsmart, and I netted the aggressive Red Cap from the main tank ultimately putting him in the 10 gallon starter kit. When we set the 10 gallon up, because we were in a bit of an emergency thinking he was going to kill the larger fish in our main tank, we washed all gravel and decor in warm water per the instructions (no soap of course), filled it with tap water and I immediately began Prime treatment as well as Stablility treatment to kick-start the cycle. In the meantime, we actually had the bullying Red Cap in a little vase temporarily, and then I poured him into the starter 10 gallon where he looked like he was going into shock. This was no surprise due to all the trauma he suffered, coming from the main tank, going into a flower vase and then being dumped into a new tank -- unbelievably, he is still alive today, even with being dumped into uncycled water and with all this trauma, but there are many issues now going on with his tank and our main aquarium...

First of all, the internal power filter that came with the cheap starter kit we bought was a complete piece of crap, offering no flow and not seemingly doing anything, so today I went out and bought an Aqueon QuietFlow 20 for this 10 gallon. I set it up and it's pumping water into the small tank, and I have also continued dosing the water with Seachem's Stability to continue kick-starting the cycle process because there is a fish in there -- I believe Seachem suggests dosing for a week with this stuff. At any rate, the Red Cap in this 10 gallon still appears to be in semi-shock, swimming around sometimes and even eating now and then, but he is still alive. Before I get to what's wrong in our main 60 gallon, here are the questions I have about this starter tank:

Firstly: Does this fish stand a chance of survival being that we dumped him from a vase into this tank that was not cycled at all (but has been dosed with both Prime for declorination and Stability to help with the bio kick-start)? What's even weirder is that the new tank syndrome which causes the horiffically cloudy water (which this tank had upon startup) has somehow disappeared -- just today, after setting up the Aqueon 20 power filter on the 10 gallon, I noticed that the water in this starter tank is nearly crystal clear (the kit came with a hood and light as well). Isn't that odd?

Perhaps even stranger is the fact that I am looking at the Red Cap in the 10 gallon from my seating position right now, and he's actually swimming a bit and coming to the top, acting kind of healthy -- earlier today he didn't look that great, sitting at the bottom motionless even when I tapped on the glass, but since installing the Aqueon filter (probably just a coincidence) he has begun swimming more and acting a bit different...

So, my questions about this emergency 10 gallon we set up are: 1) Should I expect this fish to survive these conditions? 2) Should I continue to dose this tank each day with Stability? Is this helping the cycle process? 3) Was the Aqueon QuietFlow 20 the right filter purchase for this tank? Should this be enough filtration on a 10 gallon with just one goldfish in there as of now?

This brings me to what is happening in our main 60 gallon, which houses a larger Red Cap Oranda, a Chocolate/Gold fantail and a Black/Gold Moor. The repeated attacks by the bullying Red Cap who is now in the 10 gallon upon both the larger Red Cap and Chocolate fantail lead to horrendous, red, open sores on their behinds -- I mean really bad looking. Additionally, due to the bullying characteristics of the smaller Red Cap, the Chocolate fantail appears to have suffered bruises on the sides of his body that are clearly evident when you look for them...they almost appear as black-and-blue marks on the scales. Because of this, I immediately started an API Aquarium Salt bath in the tank as a relief tonic, but I didn't add the dose as stated on the box -- according to API, something like 16 tablespoons of salt should be added to a 60 gallon tank, and I just didn't want to stand there and spoon out 16 tablespoons...and so I merely just added a few tablespoons which quickly fell to the gravel and began releasing into the water column. Additionally, we went out and bought API's Melafix (Melafix® - API) which is supposed to treat open sores, wounds, etc. which we thought was perfect for this problem...and immediately started dosing the six teaspoons for our 60 gallons. The directions claim we should do this for 7 days and then do a 25% water change, and then add more if the symptoms haven't cleared up...they also said that activated carbon should be removed from the filter if possible. Here are my dilemmas with THIS tank now:

First of all, since adding the API salt, the water in the 60 gallon has gotten weird -- where it was once crystal clear from a recent addition of Purigen packs, suddenly there is a fizzy, alka seltzer-like foaming coming from my bubble bars and the water itself in the tank looks club-soda-like and a bit murky...is this normal for salt to do this to fresh water? It looks like the tank is filled with colorless soda...

Additionally, did we do the right thing with regard to the API medication for the fish's wounds? We're on our second day of dosing with this stuff, but is it possible this will actually heal their red sores and make them feel better since the smaller Red Cap attacked them? I don't really like the behavior of the Chocolate fantail since starting the medicine and salt, as he's not eating that much and is kind of just floating and breathing, not really interested in swimming which is very uncharateristic of him -- especially the eating. Is it remotely possible the API stuff is working on him and soothing the wound on his rear end? Or is it that the medicine is making him sicker than he is now, combined with the salt in the tank?

Should I continue dosing with the API medicine for the full 7 days as the instructions say, and then do the 25% water change at that time? And then what about the filter media in my two HOB's on this tank now -- the Aqueon QuietFlow 55 has two carbon cartridges (which I didn't remove before dosing with the medicine) and a 100ml pack of Purigen in it, while the AquaClear 110 (the other HOB we're running) has the sponge, two 100ml packs of Purigen and the BioMax rings in its media basket. What should I do with all these pieces of media while the medicine is treating the water/fish? Should I wait the week before I actually rinse them or change them -- should the Aqueon's cartridges at least be changed out at the end of the medicine dosing? And what about the Purigen -- do these need to be tossed out and replaced now due to the fact that medicine got inside the packs? The packs are only a week or so old...

That's all I can think of for now with regard to all this; if anyone could assist with these problems and questions, it would be greatly appreciated because we don't want to lose any of these fish -- if we lost the aggressive Oranda who is now in the 10 gallon starter tank it would be easier than losing the two larger fancies we basically raised since they were small in our main tank, yet we really don't want any deaths...
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Old 06-13-2012, 06:33 PM   #2
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Hi! Ok, dont panic about anything. Nothing here is beyond remedy. First, the fizzy/cloudy water in your 60g is from the melafix. Salt has nothing to do with this. I would suggest an immediate water change to remove as much as possible. I honestly dont care for melafix and dont think it does anything that healthy water cant do. Dont worry about your filter media either- just leave it be. The odd behavior your fish are displaying is from a combo of melafix & dumping salt into the tank. Salt needs to be properly dosed, predissolved in container of tank water & added gradually over 24-48hr period of time. Do you know how much salt you added? Is it still sitting on the bottom of the tank? If so, start sucking it up with your water change.

If red sores/bruising are the only physical symptoms (theres no fuzziness on the sores or white hairlike tufts/growths), just keep their water healthy. Without being pushed around, they should recover just fine on their own with healthy water in about 2wks or so. Just do some extra big water changes & keep a close eye on them. If you notice the wounds are not healing over the next week or the wounds start to show any signs of infection, then additional meds may be necessary. If you feel the need to do something proactive for the wounds, purchase a product made by Hikari called Bio-Bandage. You can apply this directly to the wounds once a day until they are healed.

Ok, the oranda in the 10g. He will survive just fine as long as you stay on top of your daily tests & water changes with temperature-matched, properly conditioned water. He is probably in a bit of shock right now but hopefully, he will settle in soon. Keep his lights off to limit additional stress for next few days. You will be doing a fish-in cycle with him. Heres the link for more info:

I just learned about cycling but I already have fish. What now?! - Aquarium Advice

Think thats about it! If you have any questions, just ask!!
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Old 06-13-2012, 07:05 PM   #3
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As always, jlk, thank you VERY much for this thorough response. Let me reply to individual areas to keep the discussion on course...

Quote:
Originally Posted by jlk View Post
Hi! Ok, dont panic about anything. Nothing here is beyond remedy. First, the fizzy/cloudy water in your 60g is from the melafix. Salt has nothing to do with this.
Really? And I had always thought this was coming from the salt treatments as I would have guessed the salt would make the fresh water a bit...well..."salty" and fizzy looking...

Are you positive this is coming from the Melafix? The bubbles from the bubble bars have taken on a fine, slow-rising appearance as well, which I found really strange, and at the surface have been "foaming"...is this all because of the medicine?

Quote:
I would suggest an immediate water change to remove as much as possible. I honestly dont care for melafix and dont think it does anything that healthy water cant do. Dont worry about your filter media either- just leave it be.
Should I stop dosing with the Melafix then too? Don't continue for the 7 days? What about my filter media -- it's okay that the Melafix has been running through it? I can leave the Purigen, Aqueon cartridges (carbon) and AquaClear sponges intact?

Quote:
The odd behavior your fish are displaying is from a combo of melafix & dumping salt into the tank.
Do you mean this is a "reaction" to the medication and salt? Shouldn't aquarium salt let them breathe a bit better and add electrolytes to the system? Why would this cause them to act weird and not really be into eating?

Quote:
Salt needs to be properly dosed, predissolved in container of tank water & added gradually over 24-48hr period of time. Do you know how much salt you added? Is it still sitting on the bottom of the tank? If so, start sucking it up with your water change.
Well, we definitely didn't predissolve the API salt -- all I did was dump about four or so tablespoons (measured on an actual spoon) of the crystals right from the container into the tank. The crystals fell to the gravel and then became invisible, so I don't know if they're actually still down there...

Putting salt directly into a tank like I did doesn't do anything? The salt is not actually released into the water column this way? API's instructions don't mention anything about adding the salt to tank water and predissolving it, unless I didn't understand the directions right...

Quote:
If red sores/bruising are the only physical symptoms (theres no fuzziness on the sores or white hairlike tufts/growths), just keep their water healthy. Without being pushed around, they should recover just fine on their own with healthy water in about 2wks or so. Just do some extra big water changes & keep a close eye on them.
I'll check closely for the symptoms you mention -- my wife said something about possibly seeing white "strands" of something looking like scales near the wounds initially, but she says now she may have been mistaken. I'll consider the water change route; let me ask this though: Is it possible the aggressive Red Cap did in fact cause these damages to the other two fish? Can "bumping" and picking by an aggressive fish cause these types of sores?

Quote:
If you notice the wounds are not healing over the next week or the wounds start to show any signs of infection, then additional meds may be necessary. If you feel the need to do something proactive for the wounds, purchase a product made by Hikari called Bio-Bandage. You can apply this directly to the wounds once a day until they are healed.
What kinds of additional meds are you referring to here? Not the Melafix? With regard to the Hikari -- how is something like Bio-Bandage applied to fish? You need to scoop them into a net to apply this? I don't think I would attempt this to be honest...

Quote:
Ok, the oranda in the 10g. He will survive just fine as long as you stay on top of your daily tests & water changes with temperature-matched, properly conditioned water. He is probably in a bit of shock right now but hopefully, he will settle in soon. Keep his lights off to limit additional stress for next few days. You will be doing a fish-in cycle with him. Heres the link for more info:

I just learned about cycling but I already have fish. What now?! - Aquarium Advice
Thanks; here's the thing though -- he is definitely in properly conditioned water, treated with Prime (added when the tank was first filled with fresh tap water and again when I topped off today) and even with Stablility; you didn't mention anything about the Stability, so I was wondering if I should continue to dose with it every day (I was under the assumption that this would kick-start the cycle and further stabilize the water). I am definitely keeping his incandescent light off (which came with the hood package) right now to reduce stress. How many water changes do I need to do with this 10 gallon right now? And is the Aqueon filter (made for tanks up to 30 gallons) I bought today good for this tank? I think it cycles over 100 gallons per hour according to the specs...

Quote:
Think thats about it! If you have any questions, just ask!!
Again -- thank you so much!!
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Old 06-13-2012, 07:55 PM   #4
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The melafix is definitely causing the foamy/bubbly/fizziness! 100% positive! Its your choice to continue using this product- its the likely factor in your fish's strange behavior. You havent added enough salt that dumping it in would cause a great a concern. If you would like to continue with the use of salt until they are healed, it needs to be predissolved in container of tank water & added gradually over a day. I would aim for 1tablespoon per 10g right now unless theres a need to increase it.

Forget the Biobandage product if you are not comfortable handling your fish (with your hands, not a net). No other meds are needed yet- let us know how your fish look & if theres anything strange with the sores.

The aqueon is fine! Its 10x the tank size at 100gph. The stability product is for you to use at your discretion. I dont use these products & have no experience with them. My best suggestion is to follow the directions for dosing after wcs. Wcs are needed dependant upon toxin levels. If they started increasing beyond .25ppm, then a wc is needed. Daily tests will dictate this.
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Old 06-13-2012, 08:24 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by jlk View Post
The melafix is definitely causing the foamy/bubbly/fizziness! 100% positive!
What is in this product that makes the water and bubbles do this?

And is it normal for the bubbles from my bubble bars to now be rising in a very finely distributed formation where before they were large, quickly cascading bubbles? It's almost like they're rising in slow motion -- why would the medicine do this? I will try and video this phenomenon for you unless you know what I'm referring to...

Quote:
Its your choice to continue using this product- its the likely factor in your fish's strange behavior.
But why though -- what is it doing to them that's making them act strangely?

If I continue to use the Melafix for the seven days, will this kill the three goldfish do you think? What do I do about the filter media at that point?

Quote:
You havent added enough salt that dumping it in would cause a great a concern.
But is the way I did it -- just dumping the crystals onto a teaspoon and then adding it right to the tank -- basically doing nothing in terms of getting a salt treatment in there for a tonic/healing formula?

Quote:
If you would like to continue with the use of salt until they are healed, it needs to be predissolved in container of tank water & added gradually over a day. I would aim for 1tablespoon per 10g right now unless theres a need to increase it.
So, for a 60 gallon aquarium, I would need to drop SIX tablespoons of salt into a bucket of water, and then add THAT to the tank? How do I do this exactly -- do I just throw the crystals into the bucket and let them dissolve? Can I just take a bucket of dechlorinated tap water (treated with Prime) and add the salt into that?

Quote:
Forget the Biobandage product if you are not comfortable handling your fish (with your hands, not a net). No other meds are needed yet- let us know how your fish look & if theres anything strange with the sores.
Yeah, I'm definitely not comfortable with that. The last time my wife and I looked at the fish (a couple of mins ago), the sores were pretty much the same; perhaps turning a bit purple in color now on one of them (the concerned Chocolate fantail); I don't think I see any of the white areas you mentioned though...

Quote:
The aqueon is fine! Its 10x the tank size at 100gph.
Okay...it just seems like this little filter doesn't have much flow power...
Quote:
The stability product is for you to use at your discretion. I dont use these products & have no experience with them. My best suggestion is to follow the directions for dosing after wcs. Wcs are needed dependant upon toxin levels. If they started increasing beyond .25ppm, then a wc is needed. Daily tests will dictate this.
Okay; but the Stability product is supposed to "kick-start" the bio-cycle; Seachem recommends using this for a week, I believe, and I figured I would use it because we simply dumped a fish in the 10 gallon without cycling at all. Please read here and tell me what you think about this product:

Seachem. Stability
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Old 06-13-2012, 08:40 PM   #6
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Have you ever shaken a bottle of salad dressing (vinegar & oil)? The oil is dispersed through the water/vinegar as fine little bubbles. The melafix is tea tree oil & has a similar effect. It also has some soap-like properties which cause even more foaming/bubbling. Normal! You added a chemical & they are reacting to its presence, plain & simple. If you are worried about their behavior, remove the product with water changes.

You added some salt but a very small amount so its effects would be nominal. If you would like to increase the amount of salt, get an empty water jug or other closed container & add the salt dose to treated/tank water & shake until its dissolved. Its difficult to dissolve but it will. Then, slowly add this over a couple of hours a little bit at a time.

If your concerned about the filter, add another filter or use a bubble wand with a sponge over it (cheap sponge filter) for some additional filtration/aeration. The stability is your choice- I am not going to recommmend it nor dissuade you from using it. If you would like others opinions on using it, ask a question in general discussion for more advice. I dont use the bacteria products, so I cant speak from experience on their abilty (or lack of) to work. Hope this helps!
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Old 06-14-2012, 12:39 AM   #7
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Just a tip for the salt: I use a coffee grinder to grind it fine and it dissolves much faster and easier. I bought a new one just for this purpose.

Did you use some used filter media from the main tank to "instantly" cycle the 10g?
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Old 06-14-2012, 04:42 PM   #8
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Quote:
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Have you ever shaken a bottle of salad dressing (vinegar & oil)? The oil is dispersed through the water/vinegar as fine little bubbles.
Yes, of course I've shaken a bottle of dressing; I didn't realize the analogy was so similar in characteristic.
Quote:
The melafix is tea tree oil & has a similar effect. It also has some soap-like properties which cause even more foaming/bubbling. Normal! You added a chemical & they are reacting to its presence, plain & simple. If you are worried about their behavior, remove the product with water changes.
Well, I just didn't think what I was seeing in terms of their behavior was so "plain and simple" in analysis -- their behavior concerns me, and I wanted to know, for my own general knowledge and satisfaction, why this product is making them act the way they're acting. You say if I am concerned to remove the Melafix with water changes, but I'm not sure if the medicine is helping the injured fish or not and if I should actually continue the treatment for seven days...or just go with water changes to cleanse the water. I don't know what to do and I don't want to lose the fantail.

This morning, based on your earlier advice to remove most of the API stuff, we did an approximately 10 to 15% change, and I rinsed the Aqueon carbon cartridges along with the AquaClear sponge and BioMax in old tank water to clean off some gunk. Then, we replaced fresh water to the tank from the tap and treated with Prime.

The fish that we're concerned about does not look good at this point -- his dorsal fin is clamped most of the time (NOT a good sign, I know), he's got kind of labored breathing (a side effect of the Melafix from what I understand) and he is beginning to not seem interested in food. He grabs flakes that come past him but then spits them out -- that is NOT characteristic for this Chocolate Fantail. I don't know what to do short of the water changes; I don't want to add more chemicals or medicine to the water.

Should I do more of a water change today in addition to the 10-15% we did earlier, or wait until tomorrow to see if there's a change in his behavior? I also skipped a Melafix dosing today just to see how the fish would react -- I am uncertain if the dosing skip or water change has improved their behavior yet.

Quote:
You added some salt but a very small amount so its effects would be nominal. If you would like to increase the amount of salt, get an empty water jug or other closed container & add the salt dose to treated/tank water & shake until its dissolved. Its difficult to dissolve but it will. Then, slowly add this over a couple of hours a little bit at a time.
Okay, so please bear with me here as I try and follow you and understand...thank you for the confirmation about the salt procedure. You're saying that I should dose a separate closed container with dechlorinated tap water with API's recommended 14-16 tablespoons of aquarium salt based on my 60 gallon system? Then shake it so it mixes and dissolves? What if I were to just add the salt to a large bucket of (treated) water...most of the time, the crystals just fall to the bottom of the bucket, but can they dissolve in a bucket without being "shaken" as you describe?

Sorry for the questions; the salt procedure is new to me and I appreciate your assistance...

Quote:
If your concerned about the filter, add another filter or use a bubble wand with a sponge over it (cheap sponge filter) for some additional filtration/aeration.
Okay; in theory though, this Aqueon QuietFlow 20 should be enough for this 10 gallon...I'm not sure why the flow seems so weak.

The idea to "add another filter" I don't think is really feasible on this setup, as the tank isn't that big and the hood has no more cutouts in the back for another power filter that I'd want to hang; I was thinking of adding back in, though, the POS "internal" filter that came with the starter kit...what are your thoughts?

Quote:
The stability is your choice- I am not going to recommmend it nor dissuade you from using it. If you would like others opinions on using it, ask a question in general discussion for more advice. I dont use the bacteria products, so I cant speak from experience on their abilty (or lack of) to work. Hope this helps!
I understand you don't use them -- but can you please just take a glance at the link I provided and tell me your thoughts on what Seachem is saying about this product and if you actually think it can "kick start" a bio system/cycle? Just looking for your opinion on the matter, that's all.

According to the company, this is supposed to rapidly and safely set up a cycled system in a closed tank if you dose for seven days straight with it; I suppose I could ask that question in the general area of the forum as you suggest. Thanks.
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Old 06-14-2012, 04:45 PM   #9
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Just a tip for the salt: I use a coffee grinder to grind it fine and it dissolves much faster and easier. I bought a new one just for this purpose.
But how do you actually go about dosing it -- do the granulated salt crystals get added directly to treated tap water in a bucket and then THAT is dumped into the tank? The crystals shouldn't be dropped in the way I did it, right, by just dumped in on actual, physical teaspoons so the salt hits the substrate at the bottom?

Quote:
Did you use some used filter media from the main tank to "instantly" cycle the 10g?
No. That's why I'm using the Stability every day.
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Old 06-14-2012, 04:52 PM   #10
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Okay, so here's an update since my last post to jlk...

The water was continuing to concern me in the 60 gallon, and the behavior of one of the "injured" goldies (the Chocolate Fantail) was getting weirder and of more concern, so this morning we did a 10-15% (approx.) water change and I added new tap water treated with Prime. (On a side note: Is it okay to treat tap water with Prime the way I have been doing it, which is adding the recommended dose for my size tank, about a cap and a half, directly to the aquarium BEFORE the new tap water goes in? Or are you supposed to directly dose the new water in the bucket?)

We have decided to back off on the Melafix treatment for today to see if the fish react a bit better because their behavior is concerning us -- the Chocolate Fantail in particular is exhibiting a clamped dorsal fin (most of the time), what appears to be semi-labored breathing and is beginning to reject food. He sucks in whatever flakes float past him but then he spits them back out -- and this is NOT characteristic for this fish if you "knew" him.

What is our best plan of action at this point? Should we stop the Melafix dosing and just do water changes to try and save these fish? If so, should I do more than the 10-15% change we did today, additionally today...or do them daily starting tomorrow -- and how much?
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Old 06-14-2012, 05:12 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by ArtesiaWells
(On a side note: Is it okay to treat tap water with Prime the way I have been doing it, which is adding the recommended dose for my size tank, about a cap and a half, directly to the aquarium BEFORE the new tap water goes in? Or are you supposed to directly dose the new water in the bucket?)
Sorry to heat about your troubles!
Either way is fine. If you treat the tank and then put the water in, test for the whole tank. If you treat the bucket, add enough prime for the fresh water.

Fresh, conditioned water is always the best in healing fish unless there is some sort of bacteria or infection. In that case start with adding salt water. Anyway that you can dissolve the salt crystals in the water is fine. I've always put the crystals in a bucket then added water and waited for a few hours
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Old 06-14-2012, 05:56 PM   #12
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I am probably going to miss something here- let me know if you have further questions!

Ok, Prime can be added to the buckets of new water or directly to the tank before refilling (dose to size tank). I did read the Stability link- I am not sure what you are seeking in response. Its interesting & I like Seachems products in general but I have no experience with the product. Your welcome to use it if you think it will help or you can seek the opinions of others on their experiences with the product.

Salt- measure the dose amount, dissolve it in tank/treated water & gradually add it. Shanny's suggestion of using a coffee grinder to pulverize it was excellent idea because it will facilitate dissolving (thanks, Shanny, for such a great suggestion!). At this point in time, I would not add any more salt because your fish are already having too many issues & the addition of salt may further aggravate the situation.

Filters- if you can not fit another external filter & you are not happy with the current one, by all means add an internal filter or a sponge filter in addition to the current one.

Right now, I would suggest increasing your water changes to remove the melafix and just stick to keeping their water pristine while they heal up. I know water changes for you are difficult (did you get a water changer yet?). Healthy water does wonders for injured fish with nothing special needed. Hopefully, as the melafix levels are reduced, they will begin to act more like their normal selves. Sometimes, the best cure for fish is simply doing nothing beyond some extra water changes. In your case, removing the source of repeated injury was the best thing you could do at this point. Now, just stick to decent water changes (50+%) & hope for the best!
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Old 06-14-2012, 06:24 PM   #13
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But how do you actually go about dosing it -- do the granulated salt crystals get added directly to treated tap water in a bucket and then THAT is dumped into the tank? The crystals shouldn't be dropped in the way I did it, right, by just dumped in on actual, physical teaspoons so the salt hits the substrate at the bottom?



No. That's why I'm using the Stability every day.
I grind it fine, measure it by weight rather than by tablespoon (when it is fine you get more in a tablespoon than when it is coarse), put it into a 4L water jug, shake the snot out of it till it's dissolved then add it in slowly over a period of time to allow them to get used to the salinity.

I'm sure you could add it to a bucket as long as you let it sit long enough to dissolve before adding it to the tank. The point of shaking is to let it get it dissolved faster.

I've never done it myself but from what I understand if you add used filter media to a new filter in a new tank it should be cycled almost immediately then you don't have to use products that may or may not work.
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Old 06-14-2012, 06:59 PM   #14
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Sorry to heat about your troubles!
Thank you.

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Either way is fine. If you treat the tank and then put the water in, test for the whole tank. If you treat the bucket, add enough prime for the fresh water.
What do you mean by "test for the whole tank"? Do you mean TREAT for the whole tank? If so, that's what I do -- according to Seachem's directions, each capful is good for 50 or so U.S. gallons, so with our 60 gallon, I normally drop a cap to about a cap and a half into the tank before the new water goes in...

Is this okay?

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Fresh, conditioned water is always the best in healing fish unless there is some sort of bacteria or infection. In that case start with adding salt water. Anyway that you can dissolve the salt crystals in the water is fine. I've always put the crystals in a bucket then added water and waited for a few hours
Okay, so I have been adding the API salt the wrong way all this time -- what I actually do is dump the crystals right from the container onto a teaspoon and drop in like 16 or so tablespoons of the stuff...right onto the substrate. This never sat right with me, and I figured I was doing it the wrong way all this time but...

So in my current situation, what should I do? Should I continue to syphon out old water to remove the salt and medication, or should I continue to add back in dissolved salt and stop the Melafix?
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Old 06-14-2012, 07:10 PM   #15
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I am probably going to miss something here- let me know if you have further questions!
As always, thank you jl....

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Ok, Prime can be added to the buckets of new water or directly to the tank before refilling (dose to size tank).
Okay. Thank you.

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I did read the Stability link- I am not sure what you are seeking in response. Its interesting & I like Seachems products in general but I have no experience with the product. Your welcome to use it if you think it will help or you can seek the opinions of others on their experiences with the product.
What I am asking regarding your opinion of the product has to do with what they claim it does -- that is, rapidly kick-starting a bio cycle...do you think there's anything to this? Should I continue adding the capful or so each day for the week for the newly setup 10 gallon?

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Salt- measure the dose amount, dissolve it in tank/treated water & gradually add it. Shanny's suggestion of using a coffee grinder to pulverize it was excellent idea because it will facilitate dissolving (thanks, Shanny, for such a great suggestion!). At this point in time, I would not add any more salt because your fish are already having too many issues & the addition of salt may further aggravate the situation.
That's what I was going to ask next -- exactly WHAT I should do at this point. Here's the current situation:

This morning, we stopped Melafix treatment and did a 10-15% (approx.) water change. Fed a little and the Chocolate Fantail is having some issues keeping the flakes in its mouth; the other injured Red Cap is eating and seemingly swimming fine. Additionally, during the water change, I took out the Aqueon filter cartridges and the AquaClear sponge and BioMax pellets and rinsed those off in removed tank water. Returned the media to the filters, cleaned everything up, added treated tap water to replace the removed water and left the tank alone all day like that. Seemingly, the fish behavior has not changed from what I can tell -- it hasn't gotten WORSE, but pretty much stayed the same.

Are you suggesting to just leave this alone at this point -- no more meds and no more salt -- and just stick to the water changes? If so, how much more should I do today and then tomorrow and the next day?

Status of the 10 gallon "emergency setup": Water is cloudy again (after being crystal clear yesterday; weird) no doubt due to new tank syndrome, but isolated Red Cap is swimming and eating in there, and I dosed with Stability yet again this morning to hopefully keep the cycle going...


What do you suggest is done at this point?

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Filters- if you can not fit another external filter & you are not happy with the current one, by all means add an internal filter or a sponge filter in addition to the current one.
I like the Aqueons and this QuietFlow 20 seems to be pushing more flow than the "internal" one that came with the tank kit, but I was wondering if I should add that one to supplement the Aqueon just for more flow. The Aqueon, in theory, should be enough though...

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Right now, I would suggest increasing your water changes to remove the melafix and just stick to keeping their water pristine while they heal up. I know water changes for you are difficult (did you get a water changer yet?).
No, I didn't get the water changer yet; we looked at the Aqueon one with the faucet heads at Petsmart but just couldn't afford, right this moment after buying all the stuff to set up the 10 gallon, to buy it (it's not that cheap!). I suppose you answered what I asked regarding what to do next here above; any further detail would be greatly appreciated...

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Healthy water does wonders for injured fish with nothing special needed. Hopefully, as the melafix levels are reduced, they will begin to act more like their normal selves. Sometimes, the best cure for fish is simply doing nothing beyond some extra water changes. In your case, removing the source of repeated injury was the best thing you could do at this point. Now, just stick to decent water changes (50+%) & hope for the best!
Thank you very much, sir. What do you suggest as a water change routine at this point? As I said, we did the 10-15% this morning...
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Old 06-14-2012, 07:13 PM   #16
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Yes I did mean treat, not test. Sorry about that.
The way you are treating the water is correct.
Are there open sores? Or is it just bruising? Sorry if you already answered this. If there are open sores, I would continue with the salt. As for anything else, I have not ever used medications so can't advise. If it is just bruising on the fish, try soaking the food in garlic. Again, I've never done this but heard it aids in health from the inside. I've been thinking of doing it anyway, just for the health of my fish but need to research it more.
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Old 06-14-2012, 07:14 PM   #17
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I grind it fine, measure it by weight rather than by tablespoon (when it is fine you get more in a tablespoon than when it is coarse), put it into a 4L water jug, shake the snot out of it till it's dissolved then add it in slowly over a period of time to allow them to get used to the salinity.

I'm sure you could add it to a bucket as long as you let it sit long enough to dissolve before adding it to the tank. The point of shaking is to let it get it dissolved faster.

I've never done it myself but from what I understand if you add used filter media to a new filter in a new tank it should be cycled almost immediately then you don't have to use products that may or may not work.
Indeed, thank you very much for your continued assistance as well, Shanny!

If I do the sit-in-bucket method (for the next time I would possibly need salt, if that ever arises, as right now, like jlk recommended, I don't think I need to add any in my situation...), just let the crystals sit in the bucket like, say, overnight until dissolved? Does it normally take that long?

Yes, I have heard of the "seeding from an established tank" to get a new tank to cycle as well; I just had a kind of emergency situation and decided to kick start a cycle using Stability. The goldfish in that 10 gallon is still alive though...
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Old 06-14-2012, 07:17 PM   #18
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Yes I did mean treat, not test. Sorry about that.
The way you are treating the water is correct.
No worries; thank you!!

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Are there open sores? Or is it just bruising? Sorry if you already answered this. If there are open sores, I would continue with the salt. As for anything else, I have not ever used medications so can't advise. If it is just bruising on the fish, try soaking the food in garlic. Again, I've never done this but heard it aids in health from the inside. I've been thinking of doing it anyway, just for the health of my fish but need to research it more.
Well, yeah, they're kind of like open, red sores in their anal areas due to the constant bumping and picking the other Red Cap did to them -- I'm wondering if I should just stop salt and meds altogether, as jlk suggested, and just do water changes...

Thank you for your continued assistance, as well...it is greatly appreciated in this time of need.
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Old 06-14-2012, 07:21 PM   #19
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In respect to the 10g, you need to test the water parameters daily & do water changes as needed to keep toxin levels in check. This is unavoidable in a fish-in cycle whether you add the Stability product or not. Testing your water parameters will also give you an indication if the product is actually working or not. As long as your oranda has no strange reactions after adding it, I see no harm in using it. Whether is actually works or not remains to be seen.
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Old 06-14-2012, 07:37 PM   #20
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In respect to the 10g, you need to test the water parameters daily & do water changes as needed to keep toxin levels in check. This is unavoidable in a fish-in cycle whether you add the Stability product or not. Testing your water parameters will also give you an indication if the product is actually working or not. As long as your oranda has no strange reactions after adding it, I see no harm in using it. Whether is actually works or not remains to be seen.
Thanks, jlk; it seems my Oranda does not exhibit any adverse reactions when adding the Stability...
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