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Everything posted by rickibarnes

  1. Thanks for the sympathy everyone, it does help. Part of the reason I'm getting discouraged is the ridicule I'm getting here at work. I don't want to make that sound like I'm being bullied or anything - we are a very small workplace and it's more like a family, really. But everyone else here is a sceptic to all the new techniques I've been learning ("I've had two fish is a tank a third of the size of that one, and they've been going for 4 years!" is the sort of thing I'm hearing (and true, I have to admit)) and the prevailing opinion seems to be that I'm actually causing this to happen by over-managing it. I don't believe that, but it's a hard position to maintain when the last two fish I've had each lasted less than two weeks, and the one before lived for a few years in a bowl then died shortly after being put in this tank! Is there any chance there could be some truth behind the tank of death nickname - i.e. that the tank I have is somehow killing them itself? It is a product that is manufactured in China by a Chinese company, though presumably it still has to meet Australian standards. Is there any reason why an all-in-one tank like this one (built-in filter, attached hood with built-in light) is less suitable for fish keeping?
  2. Thank you for all the help. I don't know how I feel about getting another fish yet (although I had already decided to still go and get the medication, if that says anything). I am very discouraged by the tank of death at the moment. I didn't realise that people quarantine all fish - I have seen it mentioned before but I figured it was just for fish being introduced into a tank that had other fish already. Maybe that would make a difference. Do you have to have a second tank for quarantining, or if you only have the one fish could you do it in the main tank?
  3. Thanks for that recipe, though it's looking less and less likely that he will live long enough to eat any of it. The vet has rung back and I can go and pick up the Metronidazole at 11.00, but I don't know if he is even going to make it until then.....
  4. I don't know if he's going to be able to eat, even if I do get the meds and make the gel food in time. He has been listing for a while now, not really able to swim at all this morning, and has just ended up completely on his side
  5. Thanks 4prettyfish Helen, no not yet - I am just waiting for the vet to call me back and confirm whether they will sell me some without examining the sick animal! How do you usually get your hands on it - I presume nobody actually takes their fish to the vet?
  6. I'm just looking to see if I can find a medicated gel food recipe - a site search of Koko's doesn't seem to turn one up? Can I just go ahead and Google for it, or is there one that you guys would consider to be recommended?
  7. Ha no - I am already in paroxysms of guilt over having inadvertently made it worse. Though I'm hoping the fact that I didn't kill him is an indication that he is pretty tough and therefore might pull through!
  8. Yep, got the salt dip thing. I only did the dip before because I didn't know it was bad for him in this case. I didn't think there was an expiry on the Epsom salt, but on closer examination I see it's kind of stamped into the box. Seems to be January 2013, which I guess answers that question.
  9. OK, I'm happy to be imagining the eyes. He is a very poor little guy. Since he's still alive I have hope, though. Also on the win side of things is that even though I work for the same place all the time, I am technically self employed - so no one can say anything to me if I choose to go off in the middle of the day to make medicated gel food
  10. Just nipped him out (in a tub this time - well, a jug actually, but a big one) for some more photography. This last one probably gives the best idea of everything, despite the reflection. I think his eyes seem more protuberant in comparison to yesterday's photography, but I don't know if I am making that up or not.
  11. OK so step one is achieved, in that he is still alive this morning. I'm sort of relieved, but he is worse than ever - pineconing a bit more and hanging at the surface looking very very sad indeed. It's a bit hard to tell but I think he might be starting to get pop eye as well. No salt in the water, I took him out to do the salt dip. That was just in sea salt, 100% salt without any additives or anything. I have some Epsom salt but I will have to wait another hour and half at least for the shops to open so I can see about the vet and pet store. Also the Epsom salt has been opened already and I'm not sure how old it is - should I get a fresh box?
  12. I might see if I can get to the vet tomorrow when they open then - is it a common thing that most vets would have? And once I have it, then I have to make it into gel food, is that right? Also given that there's just the one fish, would I move him out of the tank? I don't actually have another tank I could put him in, but this one has the plants and snail - should I take those things out?
  13. An instructional video on pea preparation... I should've known there would be such a thing! Thank you, internet I don't know about the Metronidazole or Flagyl (are they the same thing?), they sound like they would be controlled substances?
  14. Oh, re: the ramshorn snails - I would actually prefer not to have them, they were hitchhikers on the plants and I just can't get rid of them. I did try lettuce baiting back before I got the golden apple snail, and not a one was interested, apparently! I was surprised as I've had snails before and they went nuts for lettuce. I don't really know what else to do. I have seen you can get snail killing solutions but that's not really for me, let alone that I now have my apple snail to consider.
  15. Hi Helen, thanks for taking the time. I'm finding it hard to judge the scale in that picture above, but I think those worms are a lot bigger than these little spikes. I didn't notice any forked ends, but they are so tiny that it's possible I just couldn't see that. Definitely no red or inflamed areas on his body though (apart from the gills). They don't seem to move at all, but again, it's very hard to see. They are only really visible against the light. I was wondering if they could just be something to do with his slime coat. I couldn't find anything similar with my searching that would confirm likely parasite or otherwise. Oh and yes, they were there pre-salt dip - it was the suspicion of a parasite that led to the salt dip in the first place. So with the pea, would you feed a whole pea at one time, or is it still just bits? I'm trying to imagine it holding its shape if it's been slightly pre-smooshed and then broken into bits. Ir would you divide it up before microwaving (yes, you are correct in thinking that is the only option at work. My little guy is still at work while I am now at home, but I'm not above going back tonight if someone has immediate emergency action suggestions. Although it is now 8.00pm where I am, so I'd have to see it before I go to bed.
  16. OK final update before I go home for the day - he has definitely been more active, and has been less clamped with his dorsal fin. However he's still spending a lot of time being sad in a corner, and the pineconing hasn't gone away (also hasn't got worse). His gill flaps (don't know the technical term) seem also to be curved slightly inwards. I'm not sure whether that was the case earlier, or if it has gotten worse - it doesn't look the same in the photos I posted, but that could be the angle. Hoping I don't come in to a little floating corpse tomorrow morning....
  17. Thank you, I am already very attached to him so a recovery would make me very happy! I vaccumed the gravel but didn't get any further into it than that. Likewise the water has been changed but not 100% drained. I almost drained it 100% when I started my fishless cycle, but there was a bit left swishing around in the bottom because it's not really practical for one person to upend the tank. I have a fine filter medium that is kind of like cotton wool, that one has been changed. Other than that the filter has those bio ball things in it, I didn't change them but did rinse when starting the fishless cycle.
  18. Thank you, I hope so too. I don't think I could possibly get another fish if the tank of death claims another victim Just want to also add, he hasn't passed his pea from this morning yet - is this sign of a blockage? How long would it usually take a goldie to poop?
  19. Thank you, I hope there is some hope for him! Here are the answers to your questions - I'm using plain sea salt for his bath, as per instructions from brother-in-law. It's just 100% salt. I don't know what Epsom salt is - isn't that something your nanna would have around the house? I didn't sterilise my tank per se - but I was so traumatised by the passing of my last goldie that the tank has been empty (but running!) since September 2010, does that count? This is another reason my workmates make fun of me, actually - just had a tank with nothing in it for so long. The water parameters are from this morning (post WC) but they were very similar previously - pH 7.9, Ammonia 0, Nitrite 0, Nitrate 20. I was a bit surprised the nitrates didn't drop after the water changes - does that seem normal? Here's my photos, hope you can see. This is back to the "worse" stage - he was a bit better than this first thing in the morning and also after his salt bath. He is still perkier post-bath, although he did not like being out of the water at all when I transferred him for the picture - he was only out for 5 seconds or less and the container just had aquarium water but he was listing pretty badly at first. Frustratingly, no sign of the white bristles from these shots either!
  20. Hi everyone, I've put all the symptoms into the topic title because when searching I find it really difficult to see whether things are relevant with titles of "Don't know what's wrong" "<Name of fish> isn't happy". Please let me know if that is wrong or unhelpful. Here's my stats: * Ammonia Level(Tank) - 0ppm * Nitrite Level(Tank) - 0ppm * Nitrate level(Tank) - 20ppm * Ammonia Level(Tap) - 0ppm * Nitrite Level(Tap) - 0ppm * Nitrate level(Tap) - 5ppm * Ph Level, Tank (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines) - pH 8.0. I don't have hardness levels because my kit has expired, but historically KH is between 3 - 6°d and GH between 11 - 18°d. * Ph Level, Tap (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines) - pH 8.0, not sure about the hardness. * Brand of test-kit used and whether strips or drops? - API drops. * Water temperature? - between 20 - 23 °C, currently at 22°C (that's 68 - 73.4°F, currently 71.6°F). * Tank size (how many gals.) and how long has it been running? - 62L (16.5 gallons). It has been running for several months, mostly with nothing in it. I did a fishless cycle at the start of this year, then added plants, then finally the apple snail. The snail was in there for about 2 months before I got the fish, who has gone in 10 days ago. * What is the name and "size of the filter"(s)? - the filter is one that is built-in to the tank. They don't seem to make my exact model any more, but it is very similar to: http://www.aa-aquarium.com/catalog/product_info.php?products_id=317. I don't even know what is meant by "size" of the filter - is that a reference to how much water goes through it? I also wouldn't know the answer to that question . . . * How often do you change the water and how much? I haven't really got on to that yet as I haven't had the fish for long enough! Did 30% change when adding him to the tank and therapeutic changes yesterday. * How many days ago was the last water change and how much did you change? - Yesterday, 20% water change in the morning, 40% water change in the evening. * How many fish in the tank and their size? - One fantail goldfish, ~4cm long body, ~6cm long with tail (~1.6 inch body, 2.4 inch with tail). Other tank occupants are one golden apple snail, and untold numbers of extremely tiny ramshorn snails. * What kind of water additives or conditioners? - Prime. * What do you feed your fish and how often? - So far pea (defrosted, skin removed, broken into small pieces, but not cooked) and freeze dried bloodworms, once daily. * Any new fish added to the tank? - He is new! Been in for 10 days. * Any medications added to the tank? - No. * List entire medication/treatment history for fish and tank. Please include salt, Prazi, PP, etc and the approximate time and duration of treatment. - One salt bath this morning, 30g/L (4oz/gallon). In it for 30 seconds, then gently swished through the tank in the net to revive. This recipe is one that my brother-in-law has got off a friend who is an experienced aquarist - the natural reaction is obviously that is too much salt, but he swears by it. * Any unusual findings on the fish such as "grains of salt," bloody streaks, frayed fins or fungus? - He has extremely weird little white spikes all over the body and tail. It's definitely not the traditional ich "grains of salt" - they are much smaller and a different shape. They are less than 1mm long (I don't know how what is your next imperial unit of measure down from an inch, but that is 0.039 inches) and would be maybe 0.2mm wide (0.0078 inches). They stick straight out from the scales, I can't see what they do on the tail. They look almost like tiny bristles of hair. I say "white" but they are translucentish white, so kind of grey. Very hard to see, and impossible to take a photo of! I spent a good half hour with my art director's loupe over the lens of my phone trying to get a good shot - you could actually see them quite well but of course he won't stay still for long enough to get a proper shot. Apart from this he is a bit bloated looking, seems to have redder than usual gills, and as mentioned, is pineconing. This was just starting when I came in this morning (he lives at my work), got worse for a bit, but has improved back down to be only barely perceptible since the salt bath. He has not got to the really bad stage of the scales sticking right out - only maybe halfway, and much less than that right now. * Any unusual behavior like staying at the bottom, not eating, etc.? - Yesterday he spent most of the day hanging at the surface with a clamped dorsal fin. He seemed to like being in the corner furthest from the airstone / filter splash, with his face pressed up against the glass. He would perk up whenever I went over there, and did do little expeditions to nose around at the bottom of the tank in the morning, though still with a clamped fin. In the afternoon he got more listless, including a little bit of bottom sitting and hiding in his bell ornament, so I did the 40% water change. After that he was back to the morning's behaviour - constantly clamped fin, but a little more perky. Mostly at the top of the tank, but nosing around a bit. Appetite is still good, but he seems not to be able to open his mouth quite properly. I just fed him some pea, broken up into the usual size, but he couldn't seem to get them in. He was very keen, though, and kept going at them. Before the pea he was hanging at the surface, since then he has been nosing around at the bottom of the tank. He isn't doing much, but it's not that classic bottom sitting behaviour. So I think that is the entire history, let me know if any other information is required! I didn't see him on Sunday, but I came in on Saturday to give him some food and he was 100% normal and fine. Then yesterday morning when I came in, I could tell right away he was not quite right. Please help me! This is the third fish in this tank who hasn't gone well (first had tumor/impacted eggs/internal parasite that had no symptoms before one morning when I came in and he was in the awful pineconing stage; second had ich and despite salt treatment as per coaching from my previous goldfish forum, died anyway). My workmates are now nicknaming this the tank of death and advising me to just put the fish in a bowl, and honestly, I'm tempted! I know that's not right but I'm basically at the end of my tether as I have perfect water levels, test regularly, do water changes, etc, etc, and yet the fish don't do anywhere near as well as any goldfish in a bowl I've ever met! It seems the more I learn and try to do the right thing, the worse my fish fare...... Thanks in advance for any suggestions.
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