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Bottom Sitter---alot?


Smilingfish

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My oranda Fiona seems to sit at the bottom of the tank quite a bit, usually it the same spot by "her" plant. This has been pretty much the norm for here since I brought her home over a month ago. This is day or night, light on or light off. She has usual behavior otherwise. Looks & acts very healthy & eats well. Should this be something I am to be concerned about?

Or is she just a sleepy fish?

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Hi Smilingfish! :)

It probably wouldn't hurt to start a thread in the Diagnosis and Discussion forum, answering all the questions in the box at the top of the forum. That can help us to get a more clear picture of what is going on.

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Hi. I am going to move this over to D&D for you - then you do not have to start a new thread.

As far as bottom sitting...... in general, a healthy fish will use the entire tank for swimming and enjoying. Larger fish, particularly, if they are the only fish in the tank do tend to sit or hover still a lot more than when there are multiple fish in the tank. Multiples swimming tend to "disturb" each other's sitting and roust the sedentarty fish into activity.

That said, even by itself, sitting on the bottom is something that should alert you to possible problems - and you should start to look for them. Many goldfish problems go hand in hand in hand. Parasites open up the body to bacterial infection. Bacterial infection causes stress which make the fish more susceptible to parasites. A stressed, lethargic fish can become constipated - and the unexpelled food waste can set the fish up for floating issues as it ferments inside the fish. The fermentation can breed more nasty bacteria and so it goes round and round. The fish is lethargic and bottom sits, and, on a gravel base, any opportunisitic parasite that has a life stage that puts it into the gravel is capable of climbing aboard all the more readily.

A low level infestation with a common parasite, flukes, is very common and sitting on the bottom of the tank is frequently the beacon that alerts the fishkeeper to this problem. Flukes can stress a fish - causing them to not want to work any harder than necessary. They can swim and eat and act normally, but will not exert any excess energy when not necessary. As the fluke load increases, the lethargy increases.

Fish can carry a load of flukes for years with no particular symptoms other than minor listlessness. But change anything in a tank and they can take over.

If I had to guess, I would guess that your fish MAY carry a small load of flukes. Since treatment for flukes most commonly involves fairly benign medications, I suggest that you may wish to give it a try.

The easiest and cheapest way to treat is to use salt. 0.3% salt for 3 weeks or so can often do the trick. If it does not erradicate all the flukes it will take the population back to such small numbers that your fish will feel much better. Raise the salt in 0.1% increments every 12 hours. It is 1level Tablespoon per 5 gallon OR 1 level teaspoon per gallon of large grained aquarium salt.

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Hello again, Smilingfish.

As you recently lost a fish and have another with a mysteriously- missing fin, make sure to include this and any other background info so the whole picture can be seen.

Will keep a look out for your replies :)

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  • Test Results for the Following:
    Ammonia Level? less than 25
    Nitrite Level? >.5 ppm
    Nitrate level? >20 ppm
    Ph Level, (If possible,KH and GH and chloramines)? 7, 120,120,
    Ph Level out of the Tap? Not used
  • Tank size (How many Gals) and How long has it been running? 29 gallon running @ 4 months
  • What is the name and size of the filter/s? Biowheel 350
  • How often do you change the water and how much? every other week

  • How many fish in the tank and their size? 2-- 2" Lionhead, 3 1/2 "Oranda
  • What kind of water additives or conditioners?
  • Any medications added to the tank? no
  • Add any new fish to the tank? no
  • What do you feed your fish? frozen peas, dried Flakes, color enhancing granules, occasional Orange
  • Any unusual findings on the fish such as "grains of salt",
    bloody streaks, frayed fins or fungus? none
  • Any unusual behavior like staying
    at the bottom, not eating, ect..? Oranda sits on bottom of tank @ 50% of the time
    We are headed out the door to get Aquarium Salt now. Thanks for helping out Pixiefish.

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Well before we consider any possible illness - here's a problem straight off

  • Test Results for the Following:
    Ammonia Level? less than 25
    Nitrite Level? >.5 ppm
    Nitrate level? >20 ppm
    Ph Level, (If possible,KH and GH and chloramines)? 7, 120,120,
    Ph Level out of the Tap? Not used
  • Tank size (How many Gals) and How long has it been running? 29 gallon running @ 4 months
  • How often do you change the water and how much? every other week

What we have to figure out is why your 4 month old tank is showing ammonia and nitrite. In a cycled tank these readings should be zero. These parameters alone will make a fish bottom-sit. In addition your water must be changed-out weekly rather than fortnightly; this prevents the build up of bad bacteria which will easily make a fish sick when its immunity is lowered by the stress of imperfect water.

A couple fo Q's:

Is there any part of your filtration system which uses zeolite or ammo-chips or any other ammonia absobing media?

I see the PH of the tank is 7.0 but next to the reading for your tap water you've written "not used".

Do you mean you haven't tested the tap or that you don't use tap water?

If you are either using bottled or RO water or something as an alternative to the tap, it could well be that the water lacks sufficient alkalinity to maintain a healthy cycle. Could you clarify these points?

(If the filter does have any ammonia-locking agent, do NOT add the salt until it is removed - all its stored ammonia will be released straight into the tank)

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The water used for water changes is conditioned water. My husband creates a large barrel of it to source his 11 aquariums. Sorry I left that out.

And I misunderstood my husband when he was describing the Ammonia level. I thought he said 25 and he said it was less than .25.Obviously this is my error.

Now what is confusing is that last time I posted regarding my test results my nitrite level is was 0 and someone replied it should not be so. (Or am I losing it here?)

As I mentioned on previous posts my husband is a huge aquariumist, Biology degree with emphasis on Ichthyology but his interest is not Goldfish so I am out on a limb with my new hobby. He is surprised at how much info you all ask. Very impressive! He assures me the levels of the tank are fine but will increase the water changes to every week. Again this is just a starter 29 gallon tank for me with just 2 fish. We've been discussing upgrading my filter system to a cannister as my husband uses for his tanks. His tanks are huge though so I figured the Biowheel 350 would be just fine for now.

So with this new information should I add the aquarium salt?

Again thank you for your heartfelt concerns & information. This site is wonderful! :heart

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Hun, I'm just running out of the door so will post back later on.

Just briefly, Gfish are quite different in their needs to tropicals. Ammonia and nitrIte need to be zero whereas nirAte should be anything up to about 20. It's easy to confuse N'ite with N'ate. Any ammonia or nitrite is not good - so levels are not quite 'fine' yet.

Can you tell me where the conditioned water is drawn from? Is it tap or RO? Ask hubby!

Speak later - I'm late......

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I so appreicate your input! The water is conditioned with Aqueon Ammonia Neutralizer. The water is tap water (pH 7) that has sat out in tubs for at least 24 hours.

So do I still put the Aquarium salt in?

And yes, NOW we are learning the difference between tropicals & gf. Hubby says its been years since he studied gf and it's slowly returning to his aged brain. :rolleyes:

You are a dear.

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OK - so tap water with PH 7 and no zeolite - you are sure there's no zeolite or ammo-chips in the filter system?

Next order of business is to test your tap water for KH and GH. This will tell you two things (a) whether your water has sufficient ability to hold a steady PH (these are measurements of alkalinity and hardness) and (b) whether the beneficial bacteria have sufficient alkalinity to thrive - they do best in a more alkaline environment. Tell us the results when you can.

If you are sure you have no zeolite or ammo-chips anywhere you can start to add salt - do you know how? Click this:

http://www.kokosgoldfish.invisionzone.com/...showtopic=60876

Salt cannot be used with zeolite or ammo-chips and it can affect the cycle slightly. As an alternative, you might think about ordering Prazi as a purge for flukes - many people do this as a matter of course when quarantining new fish. It's gentle on the fish and won't harm the cycle. You can get it from Rick at The Goldfish Connection and various online suppliers.

The most important thing right now, is to test your water daily and change-out enough to bring parameters to zero whenever you see ammonia or nitrIte appear. NitrAte can reach 20 before you need to make a change. If you can stabilize your cycle you will reduce stress to the fish.

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We are fairly confident there's no zeolite or ammo-chips in the filter system.

We did add aquarium salt this evening according to the link when we did a 30% water change & will be ordering Prazi asap.

KH 120

GH 120

Fiona had an active day today & only just now is resting on the bottom of the tank. Lionel the lionhead never rests or so it seems...

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Hubby reminded me when I mentioned to him about the Prazi that we treated the tank with Parasite Clear back when Little Richard was ill for parasites which is the same stuff as Prazi. Fiona & Lionel were both in the tank at the time. And we did a 50% water change this evening not 30% as I indicated on my previous post.

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Hello -

I was reading this post hoping that it would explain why my adult Oranda, Chubby, is hiding out in his corner so much this morning. He's not really bottom sitting, just lethargic. Which is why I'm drawing the conclusion that he might have flukes. I always keep a 0.1% salt mixture in the tank as it is one month old and is cycling at this time.

20 gallon tank with a Penguin Biowheel 150 - running with 2 filters, filters use Black Diamond Premium Activated Carbon. Chubby is the only fish in the tank, he is about 3 inches long in the body only. I change the water according to the parameters of my current cycle. Could be every day, or every other day...depends. Usually 20% wc. I'm using Cycle, Top Fin water conditioner, and salt. Thursday we fasted, Friday we ate peas, and today I fed Pro Gold. No unusual findings, marks or anything.

Ammonia - .25

Nitrites - 0

Nitrates - 5

ph - 8.2

Water temp - 68

Last night, I put my baby Oranda in the tank (I really feel I should have waited for the 20 g to complete it's cycle, which is why I removed him in the middle of the night when I saw he was having problems), they got along well. Like I said, I removed the baby. Could Chubby be lonely right now? Is he punishing me for taking his friend away? I think he might have flukes...I added another 0.1% of salt to the tank which brings me to 0.2%. I'll add another 0.1% in 12 hours?

Seeking opinions on if the fluke theory makes sense. If it is flukes, does this mean my other fishie might have them now too? Or perhaps, the baby gave the flukes to Chubby? I've had the baby for 2 months now.

Thanks! :rolleyes:

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My oranda responded very well to the salt treatments & now only occastionally sits on the bottom corner. :) Whatever ailed her is now no more...

Based on your situation with removing the baby & keeping Chubby by herself, I would say she is probably a bit sad to be alone. My first red top oranda sat on the bottom for almost a week before my husband brought home my second fish a Lionhead I named Lionel. From that moment on the two of them were constantly on the go.

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