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SO FRUSTRATED!


Reds12

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Good morning! I know I don't say much on here, but I just wanted to thank everyone who contributes. I do pop on to read up on things, I just don't really have much advice to give so stay pretty quiet.

Anyways...I'm beyond frustrated and hoping for some advice (once again, sorry!)

Back story - I have 2 orandas that are 4 years old. When I first got them as babies/young'ns, they had dropsy pretty badly, but after about 2.5-3 weeks or so got better. Since then, they have had dropsy more times than I care to count. It seems as though they are more sensitive to off water parameters than I think they would have been if they never had it in the first place.

- this year alone, they have had dropsy 3 times...this will be the 4th. ugh.

This is where I'm stumped. I've disinfected the tank, added more filtration, removed potentially irritating decor (sharp, painted etc), added oxygenation, changed water conditioners, changed food, increased water changes, treated for bacterial infections, treated for parasites, treated for fungal infections...nothing seems to be working. I'm now beginning to think a few things.

1. my water is WAAAY more messed up than I think. I do use API master test kit, as well as API KH & GH tests (which I compare to city parameters on tap water for accuracy) but now wondering about minerals - copper, iron etc, and potential rust? My house is 34 years old with original pipes.

2. they have some sort of kidney issues - damage? birth defects? who knows. They are pet store goldfish so very well could be malformations for all I know.

3. I suck at this way more than I would like to think I do and don't know how to read/test water properly or something. GRRRR!

Anyways.

Water parameters:

TANK - ph 7.2, ammonia - 0, nitrite - 0, nitrate - 0. KH = 108ppm, GH = 210ppm temp = 72-74 (KH & GH took the range they fell in and it coincides with city survey averages, hence the precise values)

TAP - ph 7.2, ammonia - 0.5-1.0, nitrite - 0, nitrate - 0, KH = ranges 80-130ppm, GH = ranges 136-222ppm

I have 2 filters running - both aqueon quietflow 30. Filter 1 has quietflow filter pad as well as Seachem Matrix, filter 2 has filter sponge, matrix and purigen.

I treat water with seachem prime and filter it for 24hours prior to adding to tank. Water changes at least once a week.

I have 2 bubblers going, one on either side of the tank. They eat omega one goldfish pellets as well as boiled peas and the occasional bloodworms or algea wafers

Since april-ish they have received treatments with general cure, furan-2, maracyn-oxy, methylene blue, kanaplex, aquarium salt, epsom salts and a good 'ol hydrogen peroxide dip. Sounds like overkill written down, but they weren't all at the same time, or on the same incident.

Did I miss anything?

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Once a fish has dropsy, they often have recurrences. You're not necessarily doing anything wrong. But that is a lot of meds . . . . what were you treating for?

What do you filter your water with before adding it to the tank? :idont

What size is the tank?

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Once a fish has dropsy, they often have recurrences. You're not necessarily doing anything wrong. But that is a lot of meds . . . . what were you treating for?

What do you filter your water with before adding it to the tank? :idont

What size is the tank?

I filter with a charcoal & floss filter pad. The tank is 55gal.

As for meds, most was on recommendation from mods on this forum. I'm linking the threads if interested. :)

http://www.kokosgoldfish.invisionzone.com/forum/index.php?/topic/117038-sick-fish/

http://www.kokosgoldfish.invisionzone.com/forum/index.php?/topic/118314-what-is-this/

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I did a large water change the other day, but filter media & substrate etc are all the same. So probably not as much as normally would be...

A tank is cycled or it's not. Cycled means that the tank has a population of beneficial bacteria that convert ammonia to nitrite, and another set of BBs that convert nitrite to nitrate. Most cycled tanks have nitrate, unless perhaps it is very heavily planted. The fact that you have zero ammonia and nitrite is good and points to your tank being cycled, but it's highly unusual that you wouldn't have nitrate.

BBs live on surfaces in the tank and on the biomedia in filters, so a water change doesn't change whether for tank is cycled or not. However, a too-thorough cleaning can harm your cycle.

Edited by ShawneeRiver
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You are a little underfiltered. You should have 10x the tank size, so your filters together should have a flow rate of 550 gallons per hour. Yours are doing 400 gallons per hour.

Have you ever tried losing the charcoal and adding biomedia to the filter? That can help you maintain our cycle, and charcoal isn't necessary. Many people here use a combination of just mechanical filtration with biomedia such as ceramic rings or plastic bioballs. Mechanical filtration goes first, so for example, in my canisters I have a porous sponge on the bottom layer, to get the big stuff, then filter floss in the middle to catch the finer stuff, and ceramic media is on the top for the beneficial bacteria. I rinse these things when I clean the filter, but I don't change them. When I've used HOBs, I use essential the same setup.

Not only is it cheaper to skip the charcoal, it's potentially healthier as old charcoal can leach nasties.

Edited by ShawneeRiver
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You are a little underfiltered. You should have 10x the tank size, so your filters together should have a flow rate of 550 gallons per hour. Yours are doing 400 gallons per hour.

Have you ever tried losing the charcoal and adding biomedia to the filter? That can help you maintain our cycle, and charcoal isn't necessary. Many people here use a combination of just mechanical filtration with biomedia such as ceramic rings or plastic bioballs. Mechanical filtration goes first, so for example, in my canisters I have a porous sponge on the bottom layer, to get the big stuff, then filter floss in the middle to catch the finer stuff, and ceramic media is on the top for the beneficial bacteria. I rinse these things when I clean the filter, but I don't change them. When I've used HOBs, I use essential the same setup.

Not only is it cheaper to skip the charcoal, it's potentially healthier as old charcoal can leach nasties.

If thats the case then yes, my tank is cycled since all I did was a water change, the media is not new nor was it cleaned, I only rinsed the gunk out in the tank water I was removing. I'm sure the nitrates are zero due to fresh water treated with prime.

I honestly, am only using the filter pads since I have them until they are gone. I did learned here from one of the mods that they weren't necessary so as soon as they're gone, I won't be using them anymore, since you're totally right that they're expensive!

For biomedia, does seachem matrix not count? I was under the impression it worked as biomedia in your filter. If not then I will definitely have to get some.

I am definitely underfiltered right now, but they were in 36 gallons with the 400GPH filtration, and now that they are in the 55gal tank, I have the 400GPH filtration and I am building another filter which will add another few hundred gph filtration to the mix. Could being under-filtered really be that big of an issue over a short period of time when the water quality is still good?

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I'm very sorry you are dealing with this. It does not make fish keeping fun. :( You said they get dropsy a lot -- are they ever healthy and swimming normally?

Thanks :) It definitely makes it more work than enjoyment. They definitely are healthy and swimming normally more often than not. Prior to this year they would have problems 1-2 times a year. This year has been worse, but they're still happy when doing well.

I moved them to the 55gal a few days ago, but symptoms were already showing. I figured they were just getting too big for the 36gal and were dirtying the water too quickly and becoming stressed.

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