Posted: 2007.01.17(Wed)15:26 Post subject: 2 months in still having problems Please HELP!
Greetings to all and thanks in advance for any help.I must say I'm really getting discouraged.I've taught myself to sew my own designer clothing,play guitar,mandolin,and bluegrass fiddle,shoe and train my own horses, make and repair saddles,many other challenging hobbies and activities and conquered them all but this fish thing is DRIVING ME CRAZY!I'm more than two months in have read everything on this wonderful web-site and others have learned a lot .I had numerous problems with fish loss probably related to new tank and cycle problems ?[not really sure as I had so many different reasons for fish loss]swim bladder disease, bad case of ick,bloat,fin rot etc...ect...Lost 3 placos each in24 hours after purchase,mutiple guppies,multiple neons, 2 clown loaches, 3 black tip shark catfish.Finally gave up on adjusting pH couldn't keep it stable- now stays 7.3 to 7.7.Had 9 neons that survived all these other fish dying -were eating and growing well hadn't lost any in over a month tried to add 2 platys .They were shy and didn't want to eat then female platy seemed to bloat or had swim bladder disease and died on 3rd day after purchase.If fish doesn't swim and lies upside down but can swim if stimulated is that swim bladder disease?Next day I lost 4 of my neons they were just dead in tank .Could they have caught what the platy had that quick?The male platy is still alive but still not eating are they usually that shy?I've treated my tank with anti-bacterial and fungal meds haven't lost anymore- yet- I also had added a small dose of Cycle when I added the new fish...what did I do wrong? Just bad luck on the 2 new fish? I am going to add some new plants and start over with a few new neons at a time any suggestions ? I am heartbroken about my poor neons after making it through all the other problems. _________________ Greetings. I'm a new beginner,30 US gall tank, so many problems.... I'm a fish murderer. I am getting very discouraged.
okay, time to go over your problems. first of all, let me tell you that no matter how much you read up on fishkeeping beforehand, you'll learn just as much after about 6 months worth of experience. first, just quit adjusting pH. those pH down things don't work and your better off leaving it, most fish will adjust to it and I suspect the fluctuating pH caused most of those deaths.
first of all, you didn't mention if you cycled the tank or not. if not, just take out all the fish and cycle the tank before doing anything else. and also, don't add all the fish in one dump, that'll trigger another cycle.
As for your more recent fish deaths, I think that the platies just came from a bad tank, but keep in mind that all fish need to acclimate to new tanks and they will often be stressed, and not eat, etc. in the first few days.
also, I question your choice of adding the black tipe reef shark. first of all, I'm surprised they are even available. second, they are saltwater and do NOT go with any of the other fish mentioned. and clown loaches are too big for a 30 gallon.
I suggest you check out our comic, the link is in my sig. read up a bit more, both about fishkeeping, and about the individual species of fish you plan on purchasing, and start over again is probably the best option at this point. _________________ New to fishkeeping? Click the banner
The bottom line on fish keeping is to keep "Good water quality". Then the fish look after themselves. You should also aim to keep stable water. This means keeping the temperature and the pH from changing, trying to change the pH with chemicals often results in pH swings and this kills fish.
Apart from cycling a tank, the next fundemental issue, is stocking.
If you have too many fish in a tank, they have a tendancy to die a lot.
The other factor in this, is keeping fish that should grow large in too small a tank.
Plecs should grow to 18 inches, they pump out lots of Ammonia and really shouldn't be in a 30 gallon tank. Clown Loaches are similar, they can easily grow to over a foot long, not suitable for a 30 gallon.
The only chemical you want to be using in your tank is a de-chlorinator. Most other chemicals and quick fix stuff (Cycle) are at best a waste of time and more often than not harmful.
To help you with the situation you have now, we need some more info:
Can you measure your tank LXWXD?
What sort of filter do you have?
What is the full stock load? We need species and numbers for example 6 Neons, etc. Are there any other animals in the tank apart from fish?
What sort of water change routine do you do? In other words how often and how much water do you change?
Do you have plants, what de-chlorinator do you use?
What is the temperature of the tank?
If you can answer all those questions as best you can we can work out a plan to keep your fish alive and trun you into a good fishkeeper
The more basic info you can give us, the more helpful we can be.
Posted: 2007.01.17(Wed)17:50 Post subject: more info on still having problems
Wow! Thanks for quick reply.I have looked at your fish "cartoon strip" and it was simple and informative and cute. I understand the cycle process and I agree that new tank syndrome probably contributed to the deaths ,and I was trying to get pH to optimal levels and had the pH fluctuations.I want to clarify that somr of my guppies and my loaches lived 2 or 3 weeks in the tank before they died so I wondered if they died from new tank or the diseases they seemed to exhibit?Halfway through the process I got a terrible case of Ick from some new guppies I introduced and thats definitely what killed my loaches and the black tipped shark catfishes[.Also to clarify I had no black tip SHARKS but "black tip "shark" catfish]I also understand that I shouldn't add too many new fish at one time as will have "bio-filter" overload.However I have read things that are confusing so may I ask:I read that you shouldn't clean entire tank at one time as to not interfere with "bio-filter" so do you lose a significate amount of beneficial bacteria when you clean or replace filters?Can you "replace"them with the Cycle product?As to cleanliness should you let mulm acculimate in gravel...some- or a lot? When I had the guppies and loaches etc... tank got filthy in gravel although some of debrie was probably food I was feeding to my bottom feeders that they weren't cleaning up.Once I got down to the 9 neons only tank was very clean and I only did water changes cause I thought I should to keep water from going stale even though water was clean looking and even pH and ammonia checked out great?I guess I'm confused how clean a tank should be maintained.Once when I "scrubbed" algae off my tank walls the next 2 days I had guppies die like I had stirred up bacteria and they got sick?They bloated and seemed to get swim bladder disease. Possible? At this point I am almost starting over with stocking and am going to put in some low light plants and a few neons and then add some rosy barbs.Question: every fish supplier I have been to always have dead fish which of course have usually just arrived in new shipment so how do you know whether to buy them or not?This is really freeking me out .When I bought the 2 platys they had been in shop about 24 hours and looked healhy and shop keeper said she hadn't lost any yet out of that group and then I lost half my tank of good strong healthy fish. _________________ Greetings. I'm a new beginner,30 US gall tank, so many problems.... I'm a fish murderer. I am getting very discouraged.
Posted: 2007.01.17(Wed)18:33 Post subject: reply Bob on Stronsay
30 U.S. gall - 30" length,12"width,16"deep very shallow gravel,well aged from old tank,cleaned and air dried,Whisper type filter for 30 gall,newer type with bio- sponge and filter pads.Have ball of moss type plant Java Moss I think, also few Aponegeum type plants growing O.K. and a few artificial plants just to give them some additional hiding spots.Do water changes every 7 to 10 days 25%- use Tetra Aqua Safe de-chlorinator and some aquarium salts, temp stays steady at 78 - 79 degrees.pH stays somewhat steady at 7.4 to 7.7.And I now have 5 neons and 1 platy. _________________ Greetings. I'm a new beginner,30 US gall tank, so many problems.... I'm a fish murderer. I am getting very discouraged.
I would get into a weekly routine of changing 15 to 20% of your water, whilst you are doing this, you can clean the gravel with a syphon.
When it comes to cleaning the filter, all you do is take out the media (Sponge etc) and give it a gentle clean in the water you have taken out of the tank at a water change, only change filter media when it is falling to bits and never clean it under the tap (The Chlorine would kill the bacteria our tanks need).
Get a couple of weeks of stability and then consider adding some new fish, but this time do it slowly, and choose more suitable fish.
For you info you tank can hold 30 inches of fish (Not the same as 30 fish). For example it could hold 15 Cardinal Tetras or about 20 Neons. A single Plec is counted at 18 inches, but because it is a much larger fish, it actually needs a lot more room. A 6ft tank would be about right for a Common Plec.
This is part of something I posted on another board many months ago, I hope it helps:
We often get users on the board with un-explained deaths or illnesses. They often say I have checked my water and all seems OK, I am getting 0 Ammonia, 0 Nitrites and Nitrates are whatever but seemingly OK.
With a bit more investigation we often find it is a tank that is either overstocked, or often with small, but potentially large fish, that are in a tank that is far to small for them.
This can be anything from a 10-gallon tank with 20 small fish, or 20/30/50/100 gallon tanks that contains Silver Sharks and or Clown Loaches etc. We always answer the same.
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