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Help? New Fish Sitting On Bottom


Guest danxxx

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Guest danxxx

Hello, my new little friend is feeling poorly! Hope someone can help. I just had the water tested at the shop this a.m. Here's all my fishtank details:

Amonia: 0

Nitrite: 0

Nitrate: 10

Ph: 7.5

Tap Ph: 7.5

Tank Size: 6 UK gal (30 litres) I know it ought to be a bit bigger, but didn't know that when I bought it!

Filter: Internal sponge type (and bigger than needed for this size tank)

Water changes: Right now almost every day as tank is new and cycling. How much depends on

H20 Additives: Stresscoat dechlorinator, Stresszyme (for helping kickstart cycle)

Fish: Just the one. It's a black moor about 3 inches and new.

Food: Granules, Bloodworm paste, live brine shrimp (haven't fed this fish much though as it's so new)

Ok, I just got this new fish 5 days ago and the tank, filter and pebbles are new as well. The 1st couple days it was really active, but yesterday and today it's spent almost all its time sitting around. I'm really worried because that's just what my last black moor did for a month before it died. The new fish also has today started making long, pale, stringly poo with a bit of air in it. The previous fish did that too before dying. Do you reckon it could be some kind of internal illness? Because the water quality is great. I read today that sometimes snails can carry diseases & parasites, and I'd got a snail just before the previous fish got sick. I don't have that snail anymore, but there are a couple of other tiny snails in there which must've come with the pieces of wood with plants growing on them which I got at the fish shop. Does anyone have any ideas? Don't want to use medicine as tank is cycling. Can I use salt? I'm sorry my post is so long, but I'm terribly worried. I don't want this fish to die!!! Thanks for any help anyone can give...

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  • Regular Member

Your water quality sounds great, thanks for posting that info. I would say that if those params have been in place at least 2 weeks you have a cycled tank.

Now is the fish doing anything other than laying on the bottom? Any spitting out food, or rubbing on anything?

How long has it been since the water has been stable and not cycling?

Many fish need a while to recover from the stress. Salt is a wonderful thing to add for a bit to help him.

Are you thinking of getting a bigger tank anytime soon? This may help him as well.

OH yes with that type of poo he could have a bacterial infection starting. I would put him on a antibotic food from Goldfish Connection (online) like Medigold or Metromed. Make sure when feeding a medicated food that you give it exclusivly for 7-10 days.

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Guest danxxx

Thanks for writing back! No, the fish isn't doing anything odd except sitting at the bottom most of the day. Now 'n' then, when it's doing this it kind of has it's nose down and tail up, but most of the time just sitting around on its tummy. Having said that, the fish has been swimming around happily, rooting, etc for the last 3 hours now. And been eating well all along, though I've not fed it much yet. The tank definitely ISN'T cycled yet cause I've just had it set up for 5 days and the fish is new. The water quality is good just because I've been testing and changing some of it every day. Do you reckon all the sitting around at the bottom might just be stress from recently being brought home and put in an unfamiliar home? I'm just real worried, cause like I said, my last fish showed the same symptoms for a month before it died. Do you sugeest using salts? Would that be wise since the tank IS cycling? For that reason, I defintiely don't think I ought to use antibiotics unless TRULY needed.

PS: Sadly don't think I'll be able to get a bigger tank anytime soon as I just got this one, but 30 litres ought to be pretty decent for awhile I hope? My last fish lived for quite awhile in a much smaller tank! I wish I'd known about tank size before I'd got it.

Thanks so much for your help!!!!

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Guest danxxx

Hello, me again-I forgot to ask; what's antibiotic food? I'm pretty new to fishkeeping, so I'm having to learn real fast. Does antibiotic food cause any problems for the cycling of the new tank? The fish (Mary) did seem better for most of this evening, but now back to sitting at the bottom (nose down and tail kind of up-ish this time). Has done this a few times-swam around for a little while, then went back to the bottom for hours. Does anyone else have advice? Thanks so much!

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  • Regular Member

Wow only 5 days huh?? I would suggest testing the tap water and write down the results. I have a sneaking suspision that you have nitrates in your water.

Using the salt won't hurt a cycling tank, infact it will help the fish with the stress of the ammonia and nitrites to come.

Antibotic food is purschased from Goldfish Connection, a really good online site for gf lovers. Metromed and Medigold are the 2 best foods out there. I am amsuming you are in the states here.

With what you describe the fish doing, I think the fish may have a touch of SBD. Swim Bladder Disease is often a problem with fancy gf. I will let you read up on it but they often do what you said when having problems.

Fasting your gf 1-2 days a week is good for them and helps to prevent SBD. A good thing to feed after the fast is peas. You can get frozen peas, thaw 1-2 and deshell them. Cut them into bite size pieces for the fish and feed them. Peas are a natural laxative for gf and will help them out.

Some other things to ward off SBD is soaking their food, make sure all foods sink and they don't eat from the top.

Watching the nitrates not get over 20, anything higher can aggrevate a fish with SBD.

Good luck, there is tons to learn here. And you sound like you are trying really hard. Hang in there, last year I knew so little about them and learned fast. Take care.

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Guest danxxx

Hello, thanks for writing back again; I'm really taking your advice.

I actually did have the tap water tested this a.m, and the nitrate was actually only 10, so good I guess. The tank water tests the same.

I'm going to try salt. Just a little at first-1 teaspoon per UK gallon (I'm in the UK, not America. I am American though). I hope this salt's OK. It's called Aqualibrium "A Physiological Salt For The Aquarium" which"Promotes The Health of Freshwater Fishes". The fish shop guy said it'd be good for this...Do you just dump the dry salt right into the tank; or dissolve it in water first, then pour that in?

I think I'll hold off on the antibiotic food for now; Mary just made a much healthier-looking poo (still a kinda long, but dark-the colour of the food I fed her this a.m.). So maybe no gut-bacteria infection? What d'ya think? I guess we'll see...

I did read a bit about SBD and constipation today, and I'll read more. But what you said made sense. And they might well be brought on by the stress of moving to a new home, being fed new foods, etc, huh? I'll not feed her for the next 3 days, then feed peas for a couple days.

What worries me most I guess is that these are the all the exact same symptoms my last goldfish had before he died.

Well, thanks again- You don't know how much I appreciate it.

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Guest danxxx

Hello, me again. More observations and questions! Hope it's alright adding my own replies like this...I just want to make sure I get it right. It's the next day now. I added salt last night & today Mary's not doing much bottom-sitting; instead she's spending most all her time just resting near the top with her nose upward (and then swimming around a bit now 'n' then). So from what I've been told and read, I reckon it really must be swim-bladder troubles with constipation (I hope that's all it is)! Does 3 days fast then peas, with 1 teaspoon salt per gallon and good H20 quality sound like the best remedy? Does it seem like I'm right about what's wrong? Does anyone have any more suggestions or advice? I know this SBD/constipation isn't a horrible serious thing, and from what I've read it sounds like it's common, but I'm still worried. Maybe I'm wrong. Like I said, I'm really new to this! Thanks! :newfish

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Guest kayti29

my fish also acts in this way, over the past few days i have been very worried about her, i have 2 fish who seem 2 be courting and i wondered if that may have something to do with it?

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  • Regular Member

I think your salt dose is fine. With the 1 teaspoon per gal will give you 0.1%, you can take the dose up slowly over 36 hours to a 0.3% by adding the same amount a couple more times 12 hours apart.

It is always best to dissolve the salt in tank water first and then adding it to the tank.

SBD and constipation can be a bad disease if let g oand not controled. Once a fish's swim bladder gets so messed up the fish can't stay upright, it is usually a slow death. So being on top of it early is the way to go.

Now as for the courting, this could be a problem as well. If you have a female and she gets egg bound or even worse impacted with eggs you could lose her quickly. A female having problems will often swell and not act right. Constipation is usually the first thing we think of until other symptoms occur and then the fish is very sick.

So at the first sign of swelling (if any) you may need to get the regular salt out of the tank and then start using epsoms. Raising the temp slowly to around 80 degrees will help a female with egg problems as well.

Post back soon.

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Guest danxxx

Wow that's interesting. I'll gradually bring up the salt dose like you said. I'll add the 2nd teaspoon per gallon tonight. She does seem able to swim pretty well (tho a bit wonky at times) when she does swim, so I hope it's not too bad. She seems to be pooing more now, and it's dark again, tho still thin. Do you think that that egg problem you mentioned to kayti29 could have anything to do with mine? I don't know if she's really a girl or not, and she's alone, no mate. But maybe she is a bit swollen. She's really round, but she's new and I just reckoned that's how she was. I guess roundness might be a symptom of constipation too? Koko's info mentioned that, I think...

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Yeah "roundness" can be a sign of constipation. Sometimes it is so hard to tell what disease you are dealing with when only a symptom or 2 is present.

With most egg bound fish or a fish absorbing eggs not expelled, the poo will be white, thin and zig zag in appearance.

I have learned that some fish will have an "occasional" white thin poo, if they are having normal stool as well it is usually fine and nothing to worry about.

I do think the salt and a higher temp can help her (or him) right now.

ONce the fish is feeling better you can slowly lower the temp down.

An FYI on sexing a fish. You can look at the anus, if it is an "outie" then it is female. An "innie" is a male. Of course the fish has to be a little bigger to recognize this.

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Guest danxxx

yeah, her most recent poo was long stringy with tiny spirally 'zig-zags' I guess, but she's also made a few dark, healthy-looking ones tho they're a bit stringy too. Can females get 'egg-bound' whatever that is if there's no male around? I don't know how to tell you how 'round' she is. Not like a black golfball, but pretty, well, uh...rotund. You mentioned epsom salts rather than aquarium salt...Do you reckon I ought to try that, or do you think I ought to go with SBD/constipation & treat it the way I have been, for now? Thanks! This message board is so great.

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It does sound from reading this and your other post that your fish could be egg bound but as you have only had it for a short while then you have to consider that it has internal parasites, as this can make a fish become unbalanced also.

I think too the sponge filter wont be any good for the fish as the sponge doesnt really offer any adequate filtration. If you can, then you should get a small internal filter such as a clearseal or fluval1. The water may seem clean to you and the test results show that but it doesnt allow for any bacteria building up.

I cant remember how much you are water changing, but you need to do 50% every couple of days to keep the water healthy and give the gravel a good wash out each week.

Filtration for goldies should be 10 times the tank capacity and if you find the flow too fast then the fluval one has a flow adjuster.

you cant get medicated food in this country but to rule out internal parasites then you would need to get a vet to see the fish.

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Guest danxxx

Hi, thanks for writing back. I think from what Fishmerised replied to my other post ('Moor Stiil Sinking & Floating. Help?'), that this most likely egg troubles. I'll follow the advice you all keep giving me, which is to keep the salt at 1 or 2 teaspoons a gallon for awhile, feed peas after the 3 day fast, change up to 50% water daily, and hope nature takes it's course. I think I might have used the wrong words for my filter. I think it is an internal power filter. Not a Fluval, but an Eheim. It goes in the corner and pumps the water thru itself, with a sponge and room for charcoal etc inside. You can adjust the pump flow and add bubbles or not. It's definitely the kind where helpful bacteria grow. It's a size larger than what's recommended for my size of tank. Is is that the kind you meant? Gosh, I hope I'm doing this right. Miss Molly's such a darling and I just got her. I want to do right by her! Thanks again. I'll write back if anything new comes up...Cheers.

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when you said sponge filter i thought of those air driven ones, the filter you have sounds fine and heres a couple of links for you

http://www.mu.edu/~buxtoni/puregold/diseas...agnosis_by_poop

http://www.mu.edu/~buxtoni/puregold/diseas...HEAD%20STANDING

http://www.mu.edu/~buxtoni/puregold/diseas...ting%20problems

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Guest danxxx

Thankyou, thankyou, thankyou! You guys are all so helpful! The 1st two of those links were really helpful too. I appreciate the advice & info. I'll write back if anything new happens. Cheerio...

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Guest danxxx

Hello! Yes, definitly it must be passing reabsorbed eggs. The 'poo' has been clear and crinkly and mucousy, getting stuck to plants. I've been treating her like I said I would anyway, fasting, and salt, and peas last night, which she pooed right away nice and green, She does sem to be swimming around more and just generaly looking happier, but still spending a good deal of time nose upward at the top. But one of the sites you refered me to told me this is also normal for girl fish with egg troubles. So ok. But I just noticed this afternoon that she keeps 'snapping' at bubbles. Actually it looks like she's gulping them down then burping them back up. Why would she do this? Also, how often is she likely to pass reabsorbed eggs? Do they do this regularly, or what do they normally do when having their 'period'. And how often? I'm clueless. Thanks so much for all your help!

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Guest danxxx

Oops, I forgot; I had one more question. I just read that the Stresscoat I'm using isn't great cause the aloe coates the fish's gill? What are some better dechlorinators to use. I'm in England. Does anyone know a few that my neighborhood fish shop might have? Is it ok to go on using the Stresscoat in the meantime, as I'm having to change some water daily right now while the tank cycles? Any advice as to minimize the bad effect while I'm having to use it? Thanks!!!

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Glad to hear that she appears to be passing her eggs. :)

I've heard the same about aloe not being good for a fishes gills. I use the Prime brand of water conditioner (it's very popular with members here) and it also has aloe in it. So I wouldn't worry too much about it. If it really concerns you just check out the ingredients of all the brands available at your fish store. Some are very basic and just dechlorinate. Remember if you are changing the water daily you are removing the old Stresscoat at the same time as you add the new stuff so their shouldn't be a build up.

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  • Regular Member

She is either just playing with the bubbles as some fish do or she could have a gill parasite. fish will grab bubbles and hang from the surface if they have a gill problem. as you havent had the fish long then i would suspect a parasite anyway as shops arent that clean.

what level are you using the salt at? if its lower than .3% then i would raise it again and keep it at that level for a couple of weeks.

as for dechlorinator, i use nutrafin aqua+.

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Guest danxxx

OK, I guess I'll use the Stresscoat for now but get a plain dechlorinator when I can. She's not really gulping & burping bubbles that much. She was just doing it for awhile yesterday and I hadn't seen it before, but she's not hardly doing it at all today. I'm using 1 teaspoon of salt per gallon.

So do girl fishes pass reabsorbed eggs monthly (like having a period)? I don't know anything at all about this.

Thanks as always!

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