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High Ph With Sick Goldfish


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  • Regular Member

Hi all,

I'm realizing that when I inherited my tank two weeks ago (I originally left the gravel, the filter in for a week before changing the carbon, and one quarter of the water and it was housing tropicals with goldfish, now it is housing two goldfish) that it probably wasn't cycled properly. I've done three rather large water changes and removed most of the gravel and aquarium salt and have added Epsom salts instead because the Pearlscale is showing signs of dropsy.

I just had my water tested today (after a 75% water change and the gravel removal yeserday) and I was at zero nitrites and ammonia because of the water change. But my PH is high 7.8. The guy at the store sold me PH down. My question is with the health of my fish in question and my tank possibly cycling should I just leave well enough alone and return this or just add driftwood?

Also, the pet store told me to put the gravel back in (it has been washed and siting in a bucket) and to not touch the tank for a month. Obviously, that is crazy. My plan was to get river rock and test the water daily watching for the tank to cycle and make very small water changes when needed. Does that sound right?

Also, I got talked into Jungle Antibacterial Food (Rick at Goldfish Connection didn't think she could wait for the Metro Meds to arrive on Monday). Is this safe to feed both fish while the tank is cycling? Thanks!

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  • Regular Member
if your steady at a ph of 7.8...don't touch it!!!!!!..I'm at 8.3 with very happy goldies!!...7.8 is good ..as for the dropsy ..do you have pics for the mods to see and how much epsom salt did you put in the tank???

I second what Heidi says. The last thing that you want to do is go monkeying around with your pH (either with pH down or with driftwood) with a sick fish. 7.8 is actually at the low end of optimal for goldfish. My pH is 8.4 and my fish are fine. Your tank will cycle faster at a higher pH.

Now, go write one hundred times "I will not listen to what pet store employees tell me. I will not listen to what pet store employees tell me. I will not listen to what pet store employees tell me..." ;)

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  • Regular Member

The ideal pH for Goldies is 7.4 which is the pH of their blood. The thing is, going higher than that isn't really bad at all but going lower is. Goldies can be perfectly fine in pH of 8 and higher. If anything 7.6-7.8 may be ideal because it gives that cushion of safety in case the pH goes down. Like others said, don't even bother trying to lower pH that are in the high 7s and low 8s.

That being said, if you are cycling, the higher the pH, the more toxic the ammonia. Also higher the temp, more toxic the ammonia as well. Just keep the ammo under control and you will be ok.

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Hi everyone,

I posted photos below. Probably more photos than anyone needs, but I didn't want to pick her up and stress her and she was darting around to the best of her ability thinking she was going to get food. You can see her head standing in one of them. In the others you can see that she seems more swollen than usual for a Pearlscale (at least I think so...I'm still so new). It is really hard to tell what her scales are doing in real life and the photos. Darn Pearlscales!

I trusted my instinct before even reading these replies and did not add the PH reducer. That just seems like extra stress and really unnecessary. Last night I added 1/4 tsp. Epsom salt.

Should I put the gravel back in to help with the cycling? Should I feed the medicated food?

By the way, I think I should write "I won't listen to pet store employees" on my forehead. That is why I have two goldfish in a ten gallon! Oh, and they said I could easily fit 8 at a different store! And now I know I need to upgrade if I can get little Tangerine back to health and get this tank cycled.

What do you guys think is going on with her? Thanks!

http://i310.photobucket.com/albums/kk401/a...cktangerine.jpg

http://i310.photobucket.com/albums/kk401/a...l/sicktang5.jpg

http://i310.photobucket.com/albums/kk401/a...l/sicktang4.jpg

http://i310.photobucket.com/albums/kk401/amynmitchell/sicktang3.jpg

http://i310.photobucket.com/albums/kk401/a...l/sicktang2.jpg

http://i310.photobucket.com/albums/kk401/a...ll/sicktang.jpg

://http://i310.photobucket.com/albums/...cktang.jpg

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YIKES!! That was a close one, and good for you amy! I also used PH Down once during cycling and my PH dropped off the charts! Once again we hear some "great" advice from the lfs people. Sheesh!My ph stays around 7.8 and the fish do fine.

Anything that Rick tells you at GF Connection is good info. Most of us here trust him literally with our fishes lives at times. He's very knowledgeable and truly cares about goldfish and their owners.

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Sorry, I missed this. I have a new post under "From Bad to Worse." Unfortunately, they both passed away on Monday night. They became very sick very quickly. From what I can deduce they either had something that hit them hard or there was some sort of poisoning.

To be safe I am going to completely disinfect the tank tonight and do a fishless cycle. I'm still debating between vinegar and salt or bleach. Something about bleach makes me so nervous.

Thanks for your support.

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