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Old 04-01-2007, 02:18 PM   #1
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They are expiring one by one help!

I have a 30 gallon freshwater tank that I have been running for more then 2 months now. I've only had 2 tetras in it from the beginning until the tank "settled". Well everything was great for these two months. I checked it for ammonia and there was a slight trace of it, so I did a 40% water change and the ammonia went away. I decided to purchase more fish about a week ago. I had a gift certificate for petco.com and noticed the started shipping live stock. I decided to give them a try. I ordered 2 kissing gouramis, 1 redtail shark, 4 more serpea tetras, 2 rainbow's, and 3 green tiger barbs. Well the first day I introduced them to the 30 gal. tank everything seemed fine. They were swimming around exploring and right away I fed them a little bit and they attacked the food. They just seemed very happy in their new environment. The next morning I found 1 of the rainbows dead with no signs of any kind of injury or disease. Right away I tested the water for ammonia and found that I had an ammonia spike. Keep in mind that prior to adding new fish there was no ammonia. Well right away I did a 35% water change and added some ammolock. The rest of the fish seemed healthy, swimming around exploring, no signs of stress. The next morning they were all good and healthy looking. Later that day when I got home from work I noticed the second rainbow stock to the filter intake and noticed it had some fluffy cloud looking mucus around its entire rear(bacterial infection?) I transferred it to a 5 gal bucket I had and it didn't make it, died few hours later. Again I tested the water and to my surprise the ammonia level was even higher then it was before I did the 35% water change. I didn't do a water change right away and waited until the next morning. The next morning all the fish were swimming looking good and eating like any healthy fish. Well I did another water change of 35-40%. Another day passed and the fish were looking good. I did a test for ammonia again and just like that it was gone. I thought everything should be cool from now on. Once again all the fish looked healthy swimming around exploring still. Another day passes and I started to notice one of the gouramis wasn't swimming as much as the other kissing gourami and its tail was split. Again, I did the ammonia test and there was no ammonia this time, so I didnt think of it much. Well today I woke up and ******, that kissing gourami is no longer breathing. Right away i did another ammonia test, and still no ammonia traces. I decided to do an pH test and it came out to about 7.6-7.7...which I figured is a result of all those water changes. Does anyone have any idea what is causing all these deaths? pH too high? some silent disease? Right now all the fish are looking good. Sorry for the long post, I just don't know what to do any more.

Tank specs:
30 gal acrylic tank
Millennium 2000 filter.( just cleaned it few days ago and put a new cartridge in)
Also got a heater. The temp is at 74-76

Thank you all in advance.
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Old 04-01-2007, 02:24 PM   #2
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Adding that many fish at once would cause a large spike in ammonia. Also you cleaned the filter, and it looks like you left no bacteria in it to let the nitrogen cycle take place. So even after you tested your tank and there was no ammonia, your likely going through another cycle.
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Old 04-01-2007, 02:29 PM   #3
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test your nitrItes
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Old 04-01-2007, 03:08 PM   #4
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I agree with all said. Your tank may have been fully cycled with the 2 tetras, but that biofilter that built up was enough to keep up with only two fish. Adding all of those other fish at once caused you to cycle again because the established bacteria was not nearly enough to accommodate them. It's best to add fish slowly, a few at a time, so the biofilter can keep up.

Ammonia is toxic to fish, but once those show up as zero, nitrItes should be high and those are also toxic to fish. It sounds like you have tests only for ammonia and pH, and your best bet to figure out where your water parameters are is to test for all three products of a true fish cycle (ammonia, nitrIte, nitrAte). You can get an API Master FW Test Kit online for about $13, or a bit more if you buy it from Petsmart or PetCo.

Figuring out what's going on with your water now will save you a lot of hassle and frustration later.
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Old 04-01-2007, 04:06 PM   #5
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Actually I have a nitrItes test as well. Just tested, it's lower then 0.25.

I was wondering if adding some BacterZyme II would help. It says on the bottle "Designed for freshwater management and natural organic conditioning treatment. Nitrifying nitrosomonas and nitrobacter bacteria with enzymes. Rapid cycles aquariums, reduces ammonia and nitrite levels"

Or should I not anything else to the tank for a few days?

I have also noticed one of the tiger barbs is chasing the other two barbs non-stop...will this stress them out?

Thanks.
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Old 04-01-2007, 05:01 PM   #6
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I would not put anything else in the tank, check your water params daily, and manage any spikes you might see with water changes until everything stabilizes. Others may disagree, though.

I can't help with the tiger barb question, although I know others can. I have cherry barbs and they do occasionally chase each other around.
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Old 04-02-2007, 12:16 PM   #7
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Well the second kissing gourami expired today in the morning. Usually fish give signs when they are unhealthy, but all the ones that died so far showed no signs at all. They would swim, eat, act normal during the day and in the morning end up dead. The rest of the fish seem to be doing good. When should I do a next water change? I think I got the ammonia under control for now, but if there happens to be an ammonia spike within the next few days, what would be the best thing to do? PWC? if so how much? I am still wondering if BacterZyme II would help any.
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Old 04-02-2007, 01:14 PM   #8
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The only thing I would add to the tank would be BioSpira. The other products that claim to the cycle the tank do not work. If you can get your hands on Bio Spira, that would be your best bet. It has to be cold though. Do NOT let it get warm otherwise the bacteria dies. If you have ammonia spikes, do PWCs immediately. I'd do at least 50% depending on the reading.
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Old 04-02-2007, 02:07 PM   #9
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I'll see if my LFS has some of that BioSpira.

Thanks
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Old 04-02-2007, 04:12 PM   #10
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To find retailers near you go to this site. Put in your zip code and search. Then call and find out if they carry the Bio Spira. It's easier and you don't have to go to a bunch of places to ask. Big chains like PetsMart and Petco don't carry the product.
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Old 04-03-2007, 01:12 AM   #11
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I would really reccomend going into the article section, and reading up on the CYCLE. Once you understand what's happening in your tank, your test kit is going to make a lot more sense. Right now, pH isn't that important to you. ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate are.

Frequent water changes are going to be the key for you to get out of this little jam you are in (invest in a PYTHON and this won't be that big of a chore).

Reading about the cycle will give youa clearer idea of what you should and shouldn't be doing (eg. leave you filter alone right now...changing your pads just slowed down your cycle; beneficial bacteria cling to surfaces, and your filter is an envirionment that they really like)
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Old 04-03-2007, 12:18 PM   #12
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Thank you all for the help. Today in the morning there were no floaters(deaths).
Hopefully the rest of the fish will pull through. I will keep testing the water for ammonia/nitrite/nitrate at least every other day. Thanks again.
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Old 04-03-2007, 12:49 PM   #13
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Old 04-05-2007, 08:46 PM   #14
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Just an update. Tested the water today and it looks good. The fish are doing good, all eating and all are active. The one barb still chasing the other two, but it doesnt seem to stress them much. The tiny red tail shark occupied a plastic cave and loves it.

I turned the lights on in the morning for the first time since I added all the fish, and they all seemed fine, none of them dashed around or hide. Do you guys usually keep the tank dark for a few days when adding new fish?

Thanks
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Old 04-06-2007, 07:41 AM   #15
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I usually add fish in the evening and turn off the lights for the night. In the morning I turn them on like normal.
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