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Red Streaks; Fish On Bottom; Child's Pet


Guest jooli

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Guest jooli

We have a 10gal tank with a large goldfish (charles) won at a carnival two years ago by my then 3 year old. We added a smaller white goldfish (fiona) and have an algae eater (waldo) (both added one year ago). On vacation 2 wks ago, algae eater died :( . Replaced him (waldo 2). Checked water, nitrates very high. Changed water Wed night & vacuumed.

Charles swimming on the bottom alot; keep top fin down. Getting red streaks, esp in tail. Fiona following similar behavior. Waldo2 stays in cave.

10 gal tank; carbon filter top

Nitrate 80+ (always is high; how do I keep it down?)

Nitrate 1

PH 6.2

My child is very worried about the fish. We are too. Please advise what to add/change/

THANK YOU SO MUCH :unsure::unsure:

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Guest VxShady

have you tested for ammonia? Red streaks can be a sign of a couple of things, one being ammonia poisoning. What about the conditions of your tap water? Because of the nitrates I would do a 50% water change right now. And just to let you know, your tank is overstocked. That may be why you're not able to keep your nitrates down. What kind of filter do you have on the tank?

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Guest jooli

The test strips I have don't show ammonia level. Our filter is a Top Fin, 3 way filter cartridge carbon, we just changed yesterday. The boWater from our tap seems okay (all our water here is hard, though). We do put in the stress coat water conditioner with the water changes. I'll go do water change right now.

Fish eating great. we just use the regular goldfish flakes.

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  • Regular Member

Hi and welcome to the site.

How nice that your child won the fish, we often hear of such stories and many of us have gotten fish that way.

Ok, so on to your problem. Hopefully by now you have taken a look around the site and know that each gf require 10 gal of water. So you are overstocked. This attributes to the high nitrates, thus caused by high waste produced by the fish. You should probably think about upgrading your tank to at least 20 gal, but with the pleco too (they are messy) you should go 30 gal. I know, but it helps with water quality or you will be fighting having sick fish all the time.

The nitrites being at 1 are danerously high. An immediate water change is in order.

HOw often do you change the water in the tank? High nitrites usually indicate ammonia, so my thoughts are to get a test for this asap.

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Guest jooli

I thought the pleco was supposed to be helpful for the tank??? Keeps the tank clean? Is that correct?

Our water changes are not often enough, as I've looked around the site; probably every two weeks.

If we get a new tank, can we go ahead & put them in it if we condition the water? I was trying to read about setting up a new tank; it seemed like several days of cycling before you should add the fish.

Sorry to be so ignorant! We want to give these fish the best possible care!

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  • Regular Member

Hey that is ok, we all have to learn and this is usually how.

Plecos help to clean algae off stuff, like the sides of the tank, decorations etc. They do however produce waste just like gf, so they need to be "counted" in contributing waste into the water.

Common plecos don't do well with gf, they tend to get 2 feet and are aggressive. Bristlenose and Rubberlip plecos are usually suggested if someone wants a pleco to help with algae.

You are correct in assuming you can put the fish in a bigger tank. What is recommended is to use the water from the smaller tank along with any gravel you may have. If changing the color of the gravel, putting the old gravel in a nylon stocking and hanging it in the new tank can serve to keep "some" beneficial bacteria in the tank.

When looking at filters for the new tank, Power filters with bio wheels are great. The biowheel helps with keeping the good bacteria in place so that the cycle of your tank doesn't bump around alot when cleaning the filter cartridges.

Of course you will have to cycle the new tank, so along with the old water and gravel, using the filter "floss" from the old filter is great too. If you don't buy the same type of filter you can do with it the same as the gravel, put it in a nylon.

Filters should filter 10 times the water an hour..........example a 30 gal tank should filter 300 gal of water an hour.

Always use a water conditioner when changing water. Also you will need tests for ammonia, nitrites, nitrates and Ph. Cycling a tank is very hard on fish, so you will need to test everyday to see where the levels are at.

There is tons more I can tell you, but I think that is good for now.

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Guest queentut

how dirty was the filter when you changed it? there is a lot of helpful bacteria in the filter that process the ammonia and nitrites that could have been removed when you took out the filter. this could have resulted in a disruption of the nitrogen cycle. if the nitrite level is high, i would suggest adding 1tsp/gallon of salt to the water in the tank in order to help the fish deal with the toxicity of the nitrite. this wont get rid of nitrite, but it will help the fish absorb more oxygen, which is the big problem with nitrites. this should be added gradually, and maintained during water changes. i hope this helps, i would recommend buying ammonia test strips as well.

i have heard a lot of different theories about filter changing, i have the same type of top fin filter and a 10 gallon. the carbon in the filter is what goes bad, it is used up in like 3 weeks. in my opinion the carbon is not as important as the physical filter and the bacteria. if you just rinse/squeeze out the filter in a bucket of old/changed tank water, you can use it again to preserve the bacteria in the fibers of the filter. other people use sponges in their filters, i don't know about all that.

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Guest jooli

Did a 50% water change at 9am & used the water conditioner with it. New readings at 2:30p

:(

Ammonia .25

Nitrate 80 (still)

Nitrite 1.0 (still)

KH 80

pH 6.8

Just added Prime 2mL. Both goldfish still mostly hang out on the bottom. Red streaks more prevalent, esp on smaller, white fish. Her underbelly is very red.

We bought a 30 gal tank today. Store told us to wait 72 hrs before adding fish.

I've read here that a new tank is traumatic to the fish. Any thoughts on whether I should wait until this problem is resolved to move them to the bigger tank. It just seems that our chemistry is so out of whack , it might be better in the new tank.

Thank you so much for all your advice.

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  • Regular Member

If it was me - I'd go with the new tank right away. Put in your water conditioner & get those fish in there! (Make sure the temp is as close as possible(& I've been in your shoes before!)

You're still going to cycle but it will be better in the larger volume of water - one thing though - do not add any fish to the tanks (opther than the ones you already have) until it has cycled fully. (& Even then I'm not sure I would really add any more 'cause you've already got three in there).

Hope this helps!

:D Jenn

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  • Regular Member

Jenn is right, don't wait. The fish need to be in a bigger tank and with the extra water to help dilute out the nasties it will be better.

Along with matching the water temp make sure the ph on both tanks are super close. This is important too.

Once the fish are in the tank, use the water, gravel and anything you can from the old tank..........this will cut down on the cycling time and make it easier on the fish. Let us know what the new params of the water are when everything is up and running.

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Guest jooli

This board has been a lifesaver (literally). I kept the fish in the old tank, added salt 2 days, did 50% water changes daily, and added Melafix two days. The fish seem to be perking up. The red streaks are almost all gone. Even the pleco is coming out of his cave.

We have the new tank filled with water & conditioned. We had the old filter in (along with the new biowheel). My husband took out the old filter, because he was afraid of sending the "disease" to the new tank (if it was in fact, a fungus). Should we add the filter back? I'm going to put the gravel in as advised along with our new gravel. The new tank (fishless) has become very cloudy. It was clear the first day, but started gettting cloudy yesterday. Now looks like dirty water. Still okay to add the fish?

Again, thanks everyone so much! :rolleyes:

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  • Regular Member

Ok I would say yeah add them fish. The cloudiness could be a bacteria bloom that needs to take place. Test for ammonia, nitrites and nitrates in the new tank, that will tell us if it is.

An FYI on the pleco they don't do well with salt in a tank, it is hard on the renal system. I unfortunately killed one a while back with this.

I would add the filter, obviously at this point the fish have what they have and the filter holds more good stuff than bad.

Food for thought, I wouldn't medicate at this point either. Very high water quality can "heal" fish quicker than any med known to man. Getting this under control and keeping it there will be a great benefit to them. Meds can be hard and stressful to them, and my bet is the water quality made them sick, fixing that fixes the problem.

So I would run carbon in the filter to "remove" the meds from the water.

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