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New To Gold Fish/possable Problem


Guest Nightheron

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Guest Nightheron

Hi! Im new here and this is my first post. So please bear with me if I mess up any of the protocall.

Im new to gold fish. And have set up a new/used tank. 45 gal. I added some bacterial substrate from one of my other tanks to help get it started. And let the tank aclimate for 6 weeks with heavey to moderate airation the whole time. The tank ph was a bit high 7.4 and has been brought down to about 6.8+- over the last few days. The day before a bought the fish I treated the tank with Aquarium Pharmasiticals "Stress Coat" alo vera aquarium water conditioner. I have also checked the water hardness. I stoped this test when the hardness level was determined to be over 300. I have a water softner pillow. but its being used in another tank at the moment.

Ammonia Level = 0

Nitrate level?= unknown

Ph Level out of the Tap? = 7.2

What kind of Filtration?= Wisper Power Filter #2

What kind of Water additives or conditioners?= Stress Coat

Any Medications add to the tank?= No

How many fish in the tank and there size?= 6 2.5-3" fantails

Add any new fish to the tank? = These are the only ones.

What do you feed your fish? = OSI Goldfish aquarium flake food. And on one occasion tubefex worms. Is this ok ?

Any unusual findings on the fish? Such as

"grains of salt", bloody streaks, frayed fins, fungus?= No

Any unusual behavior? Like staying

at the bottom, not eating, ect..? = Yes . One stays on the bottom a lot. When it notices Im there, it will start swimming normaly/looking to be feed.

Tank size(How many Gals) and How long has it been running? = And have set up a new/used tank. 45 gal. I added some bacterial substrate from one of my other tanks to help get it started. And let the tank aclimate for 6 weeks with heavey to moderate airation the whole time.

How often do you change the water and how much?= Havn't done a change yet. the fish have only been there a few days. But I plan to do a 25-50 % water change every 6 weeks depending on the condition of the tank.

Add any new fish to the tank?=No

If you can what is the chloramines Level

from the Tap? = The water here comes from an artesien well. And is not

connected to public water. And is 100% free of addditives.

All the other fish seem to be healthy and happy. Thank you in advance for any help /advice that you can offer.

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  • Regular Member

Hi there nightheron and a big welcome to Koko's :D

As they're new fish - there's a very good chance the one ailing may be stressed, harbouring a parasite or could have a bacterial infection. As a suggestion, you could salt your tank to 0.3% as there's nothing more natural or beneficial for your fish. It kills many of the common parasites found on fish and it helps them develop and maintain a strong slime coat (a must for a healthy fish). It protects the skin while containing substances your fish?s body uses to fight off infection. That's why IMHO there's no reason to use commercial products such as stress coat as they also coat the gills, making it more difficult for the fish to breath.

Anyhoo, to do this - just add 1 teaspoon of salt (any kind that doesn't contain YPS) per gallon then in 12 hrs, repeat and then repeat in another 12 hours. Also, when you do any waterchanges, just add back the salt taken out... I'd keep this up for 12-14 days.

Now if you see no improvement - post back and then we can recommend some further treatment...

Just on your ph - the reading out of your tap is fine so no need to mess with it. As long as PH is stable, then you have no problems... it's when it fluctuates the problems start. Just on your hardness (KH), I believe softener pillow's successfully remove GH although i believe it has no effect on KH? One of the easiest ways to reduce GH and KH is with a water filter I believe... (I'm hoping someone can confirm this)

I hope this helps :D

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That's great advice from JenW - just one thing to add: with 6 goldies in a 45 gallon, your tank is already maxed out. I realize you did jumpstart the cycle by adding gravel, etc, from a healthy tank, but you still might be getting a little ammonia buildup, or possibly nitrites. My black moor, Gilbert, was very sensitive to nitrites and would bottom sit if there ever were any in the water. So you'll need to check your water chemistry pretty often and change water as needed. HTH!

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Guest Nightheron

Thanks for the reply's. Ill get a test kit for nitrates/rites. ASAP. But I think Im missunderstanding the salt thing that Jen said. I can put the 45 tsp. of salt. But repeat this every 12 hours for 14 days sounds pretty excessive. Im sure Im I must be thinking wrong. Can you please clarafy this? Thanks.

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Ah sorry - let me explain :D You add the teaspoon per gallon which gives you 0.1%. Then you repeat in another 12 hours giving you 0.2% and then in another 12 hours - repeat once again. This will give you a total of 0.3%. Maintain the level of 0.3% for roughly 14 days (if you see improvement). If you see a deterioration, then we might need to look at another form of medication.

Hope this makes more sense :D

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Guest Nightheron

Thanks. Im on it. Ill keep you up to date. BTW What else could it be? And what do you think it might be now?

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Well NH - if going by a process of elimination, fish can exhibit many different symptoms which can indicate what they may be suffering from for example:

If a fish starts to flash (sudden spurts of frantic swimming)/scratch - it may be due to the presence of flukes, trichodina or almost any parasite. It could also mean sudden shifts in ph or a high count of heavy metals in the water... so first, we rule out whether it's an issue with the water and if not then (assume) it's a parasite and treat accordingly.

or - if it starts to exhibit clamped fins - this again may be due to parasites or poor water quality - especially a pH crash. So again, rule the water quality out first then try and treat for parasites.

and when a fish tends to rest on the bottom of the tank - you could divide it into two classes. Sinkers who have to struggle to swim into the midwater or to the surface may have a swim bladder problem or if that's ruled out, it may be due to bacterial infection or a fluke infestation...

That's why if i ever see any of the above symptoms, i'll check my water parameters first, then if ok - will add salt to their tank. As a precaution, i will also administer salt dips (at 0.6% - or higher, depending on the severity) which is basically 1.5 teaspoons per 1/4 gal of water. I'll keep them in this bath for roughly 1/2 an hour before putting back in the tank (could be of benefit to your fish). If i find the salt isn't working and there's a definite deterioration - i'll pull out the appropriate medicines and start administering (after doing a scrape and viewing under microscope).

So if i was to give you a definitive answer on your current problem then i'd be talking through my 'derrier' (s'cuse me) :D ... but it's easier to pinpoint as symptoms manifest themselves and water quality isn't an issue....

I hope this helps and please post back with updates :)

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Guest Nightheron

:krazy::blink: Wow ! You sheer r smart. LOL. Really Thanks a bunch for the info.

:crp Sadly I had a fishy death. But it wasnt the one we were talking about. Ill just chock it up to common fish martality from the store I did the first salt treatement last night and as of 3PM EST all the other 5 fish seem to be doing fine. The one in question hasnt been laying on the bottom sence. Should I continue the salt treatements as planed? Or should I just continue to observe.

I have recently recived a gift of another fish keepers stuff. Lots of really cool stuff to help me increase my ability to take good care of my little buddies. Acouple of the high-lights are a system*1 Bio filter (very nice) and a microscope. So if there is ever the ocassion that you would want me to use the microscope its there.

Im very happy to have joined this site. And I cant thank you enough for your help.

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Guest Nightheron

Update. One of the other 5 is starting to do the same rest on the bottom thing. And seems to be having trouble eating. only took one spek off food and spit it out after a min. Ive continued the salt treatment and have one more to go.

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I'm sorry to hear that NH :( and yes, i'd definitely keep up the salt as you may have a parasite or bacterial outbreak.

As a suggestion, you could get a 1/4 gallon of water, add 1.5 teaspoons of salt and place the fish in there for 1/2 an hour - it's worth giving him a saltbath. Keep an eye on him for this time and then put him back in the tank. See if there's any improvement... Also, can you have a look at their gills and check to see whether they're a healthy meaty red? not pale, tattered or torn...

Do you have a heater you could use?

Also, could you check all your water parameters? I think it's important we rule out any ammonia/nitrite or ph shift.

Once you post back, we'll take it from there :)

PS - woohoo to the goodies, i agree, this is a great site and you're welcome :lol:

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Guest Nightheron

I did the salt bath. He didnt like it at all. It may made him worse.opps I returned him to the tank where he mostly floats kind of dead looking then darts around franticaly without direction upside down sideways twisting and then floats for a while and so on.I only let him stay in the bath for 15 min. Im sorry to say that for some reason the bath seemed to be in this case not a good idea. At any rate he seemes to putting up a fight to stay though Im not sure for how long. While I had him in the jar I was able to magnafie enough to see his gills were dark red but his body in general kind of tatered fins starting to slit and his body looking sort of ahhhhhhhhhhh loose film. The other fish were harder to see but all are active . One was active picking at rocks and I could see the gills were dark red and healthy looking. The water is getting pretty cloudy from the salt. Is this normal? I wolnt be doing the 3rd treatement untill tomorrow. Im using sea salt because I ran out of aquarrrium salt. Is this ok?

I checked the ammonia levels again. and they came up clear.zero ammonia. I dont have a nitrite test kit yet but Ill try to get to the store tomorrow and get one. And yes I do have a heater in the tank. currently it is not turned on. temp is fairly level at 68 degrees.

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:( I know that you mentioned using a jumpstart from another tank to set up the 45gal.,and that you let the tank sit for 6 weeks,but I'm unclear as to whether you actually got the tank itself to cycle?Did you test the water parameter's through all of this? Do you only have an Ammonia kit,or did I misunderstand this all? If I did then please excuse the error on my part,not feeling up to par today. :) How much substrate did you use from your other tank,and how long has that tank been set up??
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NH - sometimes when you give a saltbath - fish will kind of roll for a little while after (depending on what state of health they're in). See how he goes in 1/2 and hour and post back... all going well, there should be some improvement.

If you could test kits for ph, nitrites and nitrates should be added to your ammonia kit... they're invaluable for identifying whether or not the problem actually lies within your water. With an ammonia reading of 0 - chances are your tank is fully cycled but it'll be of benefit to know where the nitrates are sitting....

Post back soon.

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I don't like to base things on "Chances are".The fish have only been in there a couple of days.Depending on feedings and such,there may not be a reading for Ammonia as of yet.A zero ammonia reading doesn't make it a cycled tank. His fish was basically sitting on the bottom.I'd just like to know for sure what the exact parameter's are & have been before I start talking Parasites,etc. :)

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Guest Nightheron

Well . The little guy passed on before the last note was sent,

Basically I shook out the filter into the new tank, 2 of them.

I didnt do checks during the 6 week period.

Il get back to you guys tomorrow.

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Guest Nightheron

Todays update. I ggot a whole new test system. Here are the results.

PH=6.8 + or - .1

Amonia= between 0.0 and 0.25

Nitrite=.5

Nitrate was very hard for me to tell the difference between 40 and 80 on the color chart. So I would guess that the Nitrate level is about 60

The Nitrite level in the tank the substrate come from is "0"

On an up note. Nobody died today. My 4 other fan tails seem to be doing fine.

Please get back to me asap. I value your aid and assistance very much.

Thanks again.

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Gawd - i'm so sorry about your fish. :(

How long has it been since you've done a waterchange? Nitrates should sit <40 so as a suggestion, if you were to do a 50% waterchange, i think you may see a big improvement. While your ammonia and nitrites aren't in the 'death' zone, any reading of both is toxic for fish. The salt will help with the nitrites but i think a big waterchange is what they need - as it will reduce the ammonia, nitrites and take the nitrates down.

Also, when adding the new water, replace the salt you've taken out and try to match the temperature and ph of their tank water. This avoids any shocks for your fish.

Then see how they fare - but the best medicine is perfect water. :)

Again so sorry about your little guy.... :(

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Guest Nightheron

Thanks for the quick reply Jen. I can do a water change tomorrow. How much should I change? And am I misstaken when I think that most folks with goldies dont use carbon in the filter. If so why not?

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If you can, change about 50% and i can't speak for everybody else on carbon as i use it in all my filters :D Hopefully someone else can shed some light on mechanical filtration.

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Guest Nightheron

Thanks Jen Ill keep you posted . All is looking better and I have a feeling we might be out of the woods. For now anyway. :yeah:

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Guest queentut

i noticed earlier in your posts that you only planned on doing a 25-50 % water change every 6 weeks. in my opinion this is too long to wait between water changes. I would suggest a 20% change every week, or if you find this isn't necessary from nitrate tests, every 2 weeks. How are you changing water? do you have a way to vacuum the substrate?

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Guest Nightheron

Hi . Water change has been done

Nitrites are zero

Nitrates are in the 10 - 20 range

The salt is all in. I couldnt find a saleane test kit. Just curious on that.

3 out of 4 goldies seem to be doing fine. The 4th is doing a lot of bottom setting but is eating well and responds to me when I come over. Also dose some swimming around. Seems to have the same problem the 2 fatalities had , but perhaps not as bad.

Under close examination under brite flash light conditions I noticed some marks that sort of looked like oval shapes or blisters. Perhaps under the skin. But Im not certain. This can only be seen under direct brite light.

As a side note I also have a 55 gal community tank very established.

Nitrites are zore And the Nitrates were pegged way up at the top of the test range. Did a 50% water change. And its still at the same level. No change. I changed the filters today and will check it again tonight. Dose anyone have any thoughts on this

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Guest Nightheron

Up Date and Reply:

The sick goldie has developed what apears to be an injured lower lip or it might be a fungus. Its pretty small and hard to see.

Yes after learning more about water quality I agree with you on the water changes. As for changes I only have a syphon hose to take the water out with. I would very interested to know what folks do to vacume there tanks.

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Hi NH - keep a really close eye on his mouth and see if it deteriorates over the next day or so. Also if you can, try and get a better look at it. I have a massive magnifying glass i keep for such occassions and while i may look like a twit to my fish - it helps give a better idea of what may be going on.

If it's fungus - this could be due to an injury. Fungus or tumours can develop if not treated properly although pristine salted water should help.

So again, just keep a careful eye on this and see what happens.

Now - to the business of vacuuming gravel :D You can usually get a gravel vac from any fish outlet. They're fantastic as they precisely lift the gravel and suck out all the waste. It helps keep the nitrates down plus prevents the build up of toxic gases.

Just on your nitrates - can you test your water source? For example, water out of my tap is 20ppm so it'd be interesting to see what comes out of yours. I think you may need to do a couple more water changes to see a reduction but when you say high - how high do you mean? The ideal range is around 20 or less than 40... Also, if you can get your hands on a gravel cleaner - this'll help you also.

Hope this helps :D

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