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Depressed Fish?

Guest inkslingeramok

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Guest inkslingeramok

[*]Test Results for the Following:

[0 ppm]Ammonia Level?

[0 ppm]Nitrite Level?

[20 ppm]Nitrate level?

[6.6]Ph Level, Tank (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines)?

[]Ph Level, Tap (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines)?

[API Freshwater Master Kit (drops)]Brand of test-kit used and whether strips or drops?

[78 degrees F]Water temperature?

[20 gallons/4 months or more]Tank size (how many gals.) and how long has it been running?

[Whisper 20-40]What is the name and size of the filter(s)?

[25% water change weekly]How often do you change the water and how much?

[2 fish, 2.5" fantail & 4" black moor]How many fish in the tank and their size?

[Wardley's ChlorOut; Stability; and Aqueon's Goldfish Water Renewal]What kind of water additives or conditioners?

[Pro-Gold; 1 x a day for 5 days, 2 days off]What do you feed your fish and how often?

[No]Any new fish added to the tank?

[No]Any medications added to the tank?

[No]Any unusual findings on the fish such as "grains of salt," bloody streaks, frayed fins or fungus?

[Yes, see below.]Any unusual behavior like staying at the bottom, not eating, etc.?

I am writing about my fantail, Circe. After pulling through a bout with the ick last month (thanks to all for the help with that one) she is now behaving strangely. Circe, usually an active and friendly fish, has begun to actually rest on the bottom of the tank. Artemis (the black moor) is still her usual self, but I am worried about Circe. I have inspected her and found no strange spots or scale problems.

Now, a little history from last week: Last week I began having pH issues as well as some ammonia level problems. I removed the fake plants and some of the river rock from the tank to try to help. I also vaccumed the rest of the rock and did an 80% water change to get the levels within safe perameters.

The pH has dropped again, and I am not sure why as it was at 7.2 last week after the water change and decoration removal and I don't know if that could be what is making Circe act strange.

If fish could be depressed, I'd say she's definitely suffering. The only time she shows activity is when I approach the tank and then she swims to the top and dances for food (they are always begging). She used to play in the bubbles but now she sits away from them and it just breaks my heart because I don't know what to do.

If anyone has suggestions, I'd love to hear them.

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  • Regular Member

Hi! I only have a few minutes, so I can't get into as much detail as I would like, but I have a few things to ask/write real quick, and then hopefully someone else will be along shortly to help with the extras.

1) The PH dropping could very well be a huge factor in this. I have very little experience with LOW ph, and ph crashes, (my PH is around 8.2!). But there are a few things you can do. First of all, I would order Buff It Up from Goldfish Connection.com.. Everyone who needs help stabilizing and upping their PH swears by it!!!! In the meantime you can try raising the PH temporarily with baking soda. I would play around a bit with a bucket and tap water to get an idea of how much you want to add. Hopefully another member can help you more in the PH crash department : )

2) Have you ever treated your fish for flukes with prazi? Flukes can cause bottom sitting, and once your PH is straightened out, you will want to treat them for the flukes if you haven't already. YOu can actually order than from Goldfish Connection as well if you'd like.

3) I think upping the amount of water changes will help you out here. I'd suggest doing a weekly 50% change. It helps rid the water of harmful bacteria, which can cause poor water quality, even if your readings don't show it.

For now you might want to do a large temp matched water change, treated with dechlorinator and work on getting that PH up some..

Sorry for such a short response! I normally dont like to be so straight to the point! : ) I'll check back as soon as I can, and I'm sure others will as well! Good luck with your fish : )

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Some small things I see are first, as mentioned, low ph. The Buff It Up will work, but to bring up the ph on a more permanent basis, you could try adding some crushed coral to the tank as well. Again, pay attention to the ph changes so it doesn't raise too high and/or too fast.

Your water is a little warm. Can you set up a fan to blow over the top of the water to bring it down to around 70? And/or, turn off your light. Lighting will almost always heat up the water considerably. Hot water can slow fish down.

Your filtration is a little low. A Whisper 20-40 runs about 170 gph. You need at least 200 gph. Adding another small filter that pushed about 30-40 would help.

Your water changes need to be at least 50% weekly, if not more, based on your test results. And a 100% water change once a month.

Seems you're kind of overdoing it on the additives/conditioners. In a cycled tank, you don't really need the Stability. Continuing to add that won't allow your water to learn to do it for itself and may invite bumps.

Is Pro-Gold all you feed? I would suggest a more varied diet of pellets, spirulina, bloodworms and other proteins, gel foods, and veggies and fruits. Be adventurous with their diet. Also, one day of fasting is all that's needed. Smaller fish need more food, especially proteins and often do better getting two small meals a day.

These things may help rejuvenate your fish. Also, the prazi treatment is pretty much standard treatment for all new fish, so definitely do that as well. Hikari Prazi Pro

You don't mention any external physical signs of illness, but, in the event that Circe may have contracted an internal bacterial infection from her bout with ich, you may also wish to buy from Goldfish Connection some MediGold, which is a medicated food. I wouldn't suggest starting her on the med food now, but you'll want to have it on hand in case she doesn't improve after implementing some of the above-mentioned changes.

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My Starbuck had very similar symptoms to your Circe. I had some low pH issues, high water temps, and a sad-looking bottom-sitting fish.

I got a fan blowing on the tank to bring the temp down (it's now a steady 76 in the day, 74 at night). I'm using Buff-it-Up from goldfishconnection to stabilize my pH. And, while making all of these changes, Starbuck dropped a massive amount of eggs over a 2-day period. I did a bunch of water changes and scrubbing, and since then she's been fine.

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Guest inkslingeramok

Thanks so much for the info! I've done more water changes and ordered the Buff It Up (and the Prazi) for the future, but amazingly enough, it was when I fed her a different food that she really perked back up! I don't know what exactly caused her issue (or what ultimately helped with it), but I am grateful for all the suggestions and have already implemented as many as I can.

As for water temp...I'm in Florida and it's hard to keep it cool. *lol* The tank is in my office at work and I care for it as much as possible, but water temp always runs on the warm side regardless. I even closed the blinds on the window nearby so the tank wouldn't get any sunlight. We keep the office at 76 degrees but for some reason the water still runs warm in the tank.

Would dropping some ice in the tank help or other than fans, is there anything else that could keep the temperature cooler? The location of the tank makes it hard to add a fan and I have people walking near it and I would be afraid if I took off the lid and had something electrical near water.

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If you don't have control over the thermastat, you can only do so much to keep the temperature down.

1) Keep it away from windows (you mentioned that)

2) If you use a light on the tank, switch any standard bulbs (make a lot of heat) to mini florescent bulbs (can be found at fish stores or nnnnnn pet isle etc)

3) Make sure there's nothing generating heat near the tank (computer monitors, vents etc)

Other than that, it should be equal to room temp. I'm assuming there's no heater, so a fan won't do a whole lot.

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Guest inkslingeramok

After thinking about it, I decided to take a closer look at the temperature gauge on the tank and had a "Moment of Brillance." In that moment I realized, "you got the tank used, with this thing on it...what if it is not working anymore?" So I removed it and decided to test it registering the temperature in my office. The gauge never changed. So, more than likely my water is much cooler than I thought. *lol*

I'll be buying a new gauge as soon as I get paid. :)

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I use those in all of my tanks! I have one on each, and I have some spares because I have been known to get clumsy and drop them and break them. lol

I am glad your fish is doing better! The wrong food can in some cases cause a problem, and fixing it with the right foods can be very helpful. Certain foods will cause certain fish to become floaty, bloated.

The best thing you can do is feed a variety of foods to your fish. (pro gold, krill, bloodworms, peas, oranges, brine shrimp, things like that). Sometime the pro gold pellets, as wonderful as they are (I use them) can make a fish constipated if that's the only thing they are eating. Adding in some variety of veggies, fruits can help with this.. I also ordered spirulina flakes, They are supposed to be great.

Let us know if you see any other strange behavior. Since youve never treated with prazi, I would still go ahead and treat them. It is very safe.. When I use prazi, I give it on and off for a total of 30 days.. I dose for three days with a 50% water change before each dose, then give them a 100% water change then allow them 2 days with no meds in the water. Repeated about for the duration of the 30 days. Did you use the salt method to treat the Ich (it may say so somewhere in your thread). If so, between that and the prazi, you will have elimated a large number of possible problems. Combined with the Buff It Up, hopefully things will be all sorted out. But if not, let us know and we can look into other options.

Good luck! Again, so glad your fish is doing better :)

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