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  1. My pH is a stinkin' 8! What the heck. No clue why it's so high. Tap is 7.2 We're sure this is ok? Also I got my new filter up and running, tank is crystal clear!
  2. Alright let me hit everything. Gotcha on the cleaning and ceramic media. Thanks for the heads up up on the plants. I'll figure that out when I'm home. I've absolutely posted about Gabbie on here before. I think 99% of my posts pertain to her. I've treated her for EVERYTHING. Almost lost her 3 years ago to a phantom butt lump which took over a year's span to wipe out completely. She's been treated for parasites, fungus, bacterial...everything. If someone figures out what's up with her, I'll transfer my bank account to her. I think she's just...Gabbie. I'm not sure there's anything persistently wrong with her. She's always been a sitter/gulper. Bernie is FINE, forever. He never shows symptoms. Which is nice, but also frustrating because I feel like I have no control. My tank is cycled, has been for years. I just think I eff it up a bit every now and then. I still have nitrate readings. And she is on probiotics, started that with the last batch of food. And thanks! Looking forward to it being over haha.
  3. Ok so swish the blue pad in tank water weekly? I can do that. Thanks. I'm going to be honest, I have no idea what ceramic media is, can I get a link or something to start out with? I love Bernie but he can be a brat haha. He looks like he's in prison right now, he just sits behind the divider and stares at me. I didn't realize a fish could project anger, but he sure does. Ok, I'll kill the sword. I feel bad killing it, I've had it forever. The anubias...that just sits at the bottom or what? I'd try that out. Do you get yours online or at an LFS? My LFS is great but they have fish with all of their plants, so I'd prefer avoiding that. So where it stands, I'm killing the plant and nothing else right now. I changed the water last night and only half dosed my Equilibrium and baking soda, bringing me down to 8 drops on the gh and kh. Should I bring that back up to 12? I need a high range pH kit to test my pH since it caps at 7.6. Anything else? Thanks everyone! PS, Gabbie has been milling around a bit more than usual, which is nice. She still falls to the bottom every now and then, but she's more active. She's never been a model of health, so unfortunately this is normal for her.
  4. Thanks for the replies, everyone. First, an update, then I'll go down the list. Today was the first time where I've had extended time with them in a while. After feeding, Bernie was really tormenting her. He had her on her side at one point just pecking at her. I put the separator in, and she's now able to be calm. He's had a history of bullying, usually when she doesn't feel well, but it's been a while since it's been bad. Wonder if that's why she's been so blah recently. I'll leave the divider in for a few days and see if that perks her up. So my plant need to go, eh? That sucks. I like having a plant, what can I do about it? Am I chucking this one or just rehousing it, or what? When I move I'd like there to be more plants, so I'd love to know a proper way to do this. I potted this one myself a few years ago with crushed coral and was pretty fond of it. It's lost 70% of it's leaves over the years, but I like them having something to peck at. I don't seem to get what "media" is versus the filter. So the blue pad, that's the filter, right? What am I supposed to do to keep things clean and running smoothly without killing my cycle? I seem to not really get how to do that. My Biowheel, for instance, consists of the plastic parts, the filter pad, and the wheel. What should I be doing for weekly maintenance? The top fin has been like that for a few months. Same with the tail. She's had a history of nagging rips. If she's stressed from bullying, I imagine that would delay repairs. Like I said, small hint of black, too, which makes me think she got ammonia burns. Regarding diatoms, yea my light is probably on way too much. Typically 16-17 hours a day on weekdays, 12 weekends. What should I aim for? Thanks everyone!
  5. I'm also going to add this, since it's been a problem literally since day one, but I can't get rid of diatoms. I brush them off with a toothbrush weekly and they drive me insane. Hopefully they haven't been an issue. Would love to get rid of them since the tank will be becoming a display piece in a few weeks.
  6. How the heck did you know that I just got a new camera and was dying to use it?? Pictures will be at the end. 1) See pics 1 & 2. There is a SMALL amount of black, which leads me to believe there was some excess ammonia present at some time. 2) He nudges her with his face. Sometimes he sits on her, which seems pretty harmless to me. He also had a scale missing one day after he was really bugging her, so I think she got him back. I have no idea what their genders are btw. Just go by names. 3) See pics 3-5. I was it ENTIRELY. I take a tooth brush to every plastic part, and scrub the pad with my fingers in the tub. I clean that sucker, and rinse out the harder sponge. With the Biowheel, the problem is that if the pad is in all of the way, it overflows. If I lift it up, it still overflows a bit. Another annoyance is that if the pad is down, it doesn't flow out the front enough and turn the wheel. All that's in there that isn't mechanical is the wheel in the front and the pad. The thing flows like crap. I get good, consistent flow out of the tiny one, surprisingly, and RARELY have I seen an overflow. 4) I'm fine with two. I want to get a workhorse for sure. At the end, whatever I decide on, I really need to learn how to properly maintain the filters without destroying the cycle. 5) Ok, so should I continue doing my routine of baking soda and Equilibrium? I suppose having proper gh/kh is one thing I'm doing right. If it's not pH, I have no idea what my overarching problem is. Crap. Also Bernie isn't sitting in the pics, he's chillin'. He likes hovering sometimes. And thanks! Should be interesting lol. NOT looking forward to moving these guys 20 miles (that's a topic for another day, I have no clue how to do that properly).
  7. Test Results for the Following: * Ammonia Level(Tank) - .25 * Nitrite Level(Tank) - 0 * Nitrate level(Tank) - 20 * Ammonia Level(Tap) - .5 * Nitrite Level(Tap) - 0 * Nitrate level(Tap) - around 8 * Ph Level, Tank (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines) 7.6+ (drops stop at 7.6), 214.8 gh/kh * Ph Level, Tap (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines) 7.2 ph, need to do the others. Other Required Info: * Brand of test-kit used and whether strips or drops? API drops. * Water temperature? Around 78. Hovers between 70-80 depending on the time of the year. * Tank size (how many gals.) and how long has it been running? 29 gallons, 4.5 years. * What is the name and "size of the filter"(s)? Aqua Tech rated for 15 I think, Biowheel 150 (definitely something I need to fix). * How often do you change the water and how much? Once a week, around 24 gallons. * How many days ago was the last water change and how much did you change? Last Sunday, 24 gallons. * How many fish in the tank and their size? 2 fish, relatively small. Unsure of the exact size. * What kind of water additives or conditioners? I use pro ammonia detox on changes. Have also been putting in 1.5 TBSPs of Baking Soda and 2 TBSPs of Equilibrium. * What do you feed your fish and how often? Soilent Green 6 days a week, switched to once a day recently, 1 pea each once a week. * Any new fish added to the tank? Nope. * Any medications added to the tank? Nope. * List entire medication/treatment history for fish and tank. Please include salt, Prazi, PP, etc and the approximate time and duration of treatment. Lol, this is a lot. I've salted a bunch but haven't for well over a year. I've Prazied, Metro Medded for roughly 6 months (1 month spurts, until the last one of 3 which knocked out a lingering issue), Jungle AP, Maracyn 1&2 a few years ago, Mela/Pimafix. Nothing in the past few months. * Any unusual findings on the fish such as "grains of salt," bloody streaks, frayed fins or fungus? Yes * Any unusual behavior like staying at the bottom, not eating, etc.? Yes Alright. These fish have a history. Gabby has been a NOTORIOUS bottom sitter. She went through a really bad stage a few years ago which required the MM for months. She had a huge lump near her butt. Thankfully that's gone. But she's always either sitting or gulping. She was especially lethargic a few months ago, so I upped the feedings and adjusted my kh and gh, which were low. I also have some crushed coral as a subtrate. She was doing pretty well for a while there, with the most energy I've seen in a while. Then I noticed a patch on her dorsal which just wouldn't heal, and a rip on her back tail. I found traces of ammonia, which I found weird, and cut the feedings a bit. The reason for this is because I'm literally not going to be home with my tank for the next month at nights, and have no chance to change the water except Sunday mornings. I just bought a house, have a wedding and a honeymoon coming up. Life should stabilize in May, and I only cut the feedings to prevent excess ammonia as a temporary fix. Anywho, she's also been more lethargic, and Bernie, my other fish, has been a little aggressive with her, my guess over the lack of food. But who knows. I need to finally stabilize my tank. I have no idea why I still have ammonia. I will say a few things that I do, that someone can tell me hopefully if it destroys my cycle. They don't have much gravel, but I vacuum it weekly. There's a potted plant that gets a TON of gunk in it, and I vacuum it every 2-3 months. I try to do it sparingly because I'm sure it houses some good bacteria. My little filter gets gunked up pretty bad, and I know this isn't the best, but I wash it entirely, including the pad. It eventually gets like a white cottony fluff on it, which I can't fathom is good. It's my hopes that keeping the other filter running keeps the cycle intact. The other filter I maybe rinse the pad once a year. It's doing well, but overflows a bit, which makes me assume I need one bigger one. So I definitely need and want to upgrade my filter. I'm open to recommendations, especially on how to keep my current cycle intact, and also how to maintain this one to not destroy my cycle every 3 months. Alternatively, my pH is too high. I'm assuming this is because of the coral and baking soda. I have no idea how to have a good kh/gh without raising my pH, and welcome suggestions. I feel like my problem is that I've always been reactive versus proactive, and I really want to get it all fixed before my honeymoon in early May. Thanks for your help everyone. Sorry if I'm doing really dumb things.
  8. So I got the pills in today and attempted to make the gel. I have NO idea if it took or was too hot, I waited like 20 seconds and stirred it in and it dissolved immediately. No way of knowing, either, so I guess I can just hope it took. I've fasted her multiple times in the past few months just to rule that out. Thanks for all the help! I'll post updates as they happen. She's off the Epsom next Sunday.
  9. Up the quality to 1080p, if you can. I'll say this, she is a sitter, so while concerning, it's not a death sentence with her. She'll sit for hours, always has. Also she's taking a pretty normal looking poop right now. (Fish make you say weird things)
  10. Alrighty, I can order that and whip up a new batch, no problem. Hopefully I can keep the stinkin' gel from cooling; it typically does it in under 10 seconds. So that'll be tricky haha. We'll see. Is there any ratio I'm looking for specifically or will it be on the bottle? As for Gabby, she's looking better. She's swimming around more and ate a whole pea. Hoping for the best. I'll get that video asap. I genuinely think she ate the Equalizer. Also I tested gH and kH, gH at 179, kH at 125.3. I attribute that to the continuous epsom salt. I know to add more baking soda at changes now, no biggie. Uploading a video now.
  11. That's persistence haha, holy crap. I did use the MMs on her before, that's actually what knocked out what was ailing for her almost a year, ended up doing about 3 months worth to eventually knock it out for good. I have an excellent LFS a few miles away, but their medication section isn't well stocked right now, checked tonight. I can pick up anything on Amazon, at least. I could get that, but I'd be inclined to treat them both since he likely has whatever she has at this point. I feel a lot better about having her in the bigger tank, plus he lays with her when she doesn't feel well, which is absolutely the sweetest thing. They love eachother haha. But if it's necessary, I can.
  12. I don't think I've given any probiotics, but I'm also not 100% sure what constitutes one. I have a small 5 gallon QT tank. I have on hand: Maracyn I&II, Prazi Pro, Metro Meds, Medi Gold, Jungle AP & BP, Melafix and Pimafix.
  13. I wish I did but I have no idea. I want to say I did a 4 week cycle. Poop is hard to tell, I don't see it come out too often and her's gets mixed with Bernie's. Like I said earlier, some were a bit rocky looking, looking like she ate some Equalizer. I found the old thread. I did 5 rounds of Prazi summer of 2011. Looks like I dosed her summer of 2012, as well. I could have sworn I did one last year but I don't have it documented.
  14. It was at least a year ago. I don't remember the protocol, it was in the thread where I was told to do it but it doesn't seem to exist anymore. If that thread exists anywhere I could tell ya. I've been doing epsom since Monday. Did a 70% change yesterday.
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