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Help! Noodles Doesn't Look Too Good :(


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[*]Ammonia Level? 0

[*]Nitrite Level? 0

[*]Nitrate level? 10

[*]Ph Level, Tank (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines)? 7.6

[*]Ph Level, Tap (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines)? 7.6

[*]Brand of test-kit used and whether strips or drops? API Freshwater Master Test Kit, drops

[*]Water temperature? 27.8 C

[*]Tank size (how many gals.) and how long has it been running? 29g, 3 months, cycled

[*]What is the name and size of the filter(s)? AquaClear 50, Eheim 2213

[*]How often do you change the water and how much? Biweekly, 40%

[*]How many fish in the tank and their size? 2 Orandas, 2" body length

[*]What kind of water additives or conditioners? Nutrafin AquaPlus

[*]What do you feed your fish and how often? Gel food, has a bit of metro and prazi in it, small amounts twice a day

[*]Any new fish added to the tank? None

[*]Any medications added to the tank? None

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

[*]Any unusual behavior like staying at the bottom, not eating, etc.? Noodles is gasping at surface, swimming frantically.

An hour ago, the house suffered a series of electricity trips attributed to a faulty air conditioner unit.

In total, the power went off 6 times, and each time I turned the mains back on at the circuit breaker until I found the source of the trip.

Initially I had suspected the wrong electrical device, hence the repeated trips.

The AquaClear filter unfortunately backwashed gunk out each time the power died. I netted out most of the gunk, and immediately vacuumed the rest, and did a 40% water change with the water I had left to age earlier (along with the Aqua Plus and a 95% rated chlorine removal tap filter, I let it sit for a few hours). I also cleaned out the AquaClear housing completely, but swirled the media and sponge in tank water to maintain the bacteria colony. I also used a new and cleaned algae magnet to clear a bit of brown algae off the front of the tank to make netting the biogunk easier. I did not touch the Eheim.

Noodles and Dumpling were both fine (apart from some surface gasping) before the power outage, but the lights going of repeatedly probably frightened them a bit. During the third outage, I saw Noodles zone in and eat a 3/4 inch long piece of floating biofilm that had come out of the filter, before I could net it. After the water change and when the power was regularised, I noticed Noodles gasp A LOT, as in his whole mouth was out of the water. He then slowed down and floated on his side, and I thought he died for a moment there. He then snapped out of it, and darted to the bottom very quickly. He swam around frantically then came to the top and started gasping again, and slowed down to do so. He's just hanging at the surface now gasping air, fins clamped, almost completely stationary, and occasionally makes a run down, opening his mouth very wide as he does so. He does flash on the bottom once in a while.

After the water change, I turned off the lights, turned on the fan and UV steriliser, did a water test, and have been watching them since. Dumpling seems perfectly fine, he's moving around at his normal pace and not showing signs of distress.

Could what Noodles ate have caused some gill irritation, or gotten stuck there? If he swam into the backwash as it happened, would that have harmed him? Would bacterial infection be a strong possibility? I've read a bit on hydrogen sulfide poisoning, and it appears to be caused by anaerobic bacterial action in the substrate getting loose, but could it also happen in an HOB filter (no smell detected, though)?

Note: I have Prazi enroute, it's been about a week of waiting so far. I have suspected gill flukes were causing the initial gasping, these guys have never been put through an anti-parasite course until I started feeding them the slightly medicated gel food last week. This gel food contains the GelTek andi-parasitic gel, but I'm not completely 100% sure of the dosage, I think it's 1 tablespoon to 11 tablespoons of other ingredients so it's probably not very strong.

Edited by j0shua
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Need to add that there's a 1" drop on the HOB giving surface action. The Eheim spray bar is facing the back wall pointed slightly up, causing some agitation also. I also have an Eheim 200 air pump feeding two 6" airstones, and there's a GEX aquarium fan blowing on the surface just above where one of the airstone bubbles hit the surface. There is a fair amount of surface action, and aeration is strong, so even at 27-28c I'm thinking it's okay.

Tap water goes through a separate filter and is forcefully jetted out into 5 litre bottles that are left out for at least 6 hours.

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Hi Joshua,You did good w/ the w/c,and my other thought was to increase D/O-but it sounds like you've got lots of aeration in the tank. if there is a way to increase it w/ another air stone or something-I would go ahead and do it-you can never have too much oxygen. I can't say for sure if the filter debris would make him sick,just that it has never affected my fish,when restarting a filter. Hopefully,someone will chime in who knows more about that kind of thing. The other thing I would think about would be another w/c.

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I noticed that there is metro and prazi in the gel food. Why are you feeding this to your fish? Are they sick? And what food did you use to put in the gel food?

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I have water sitting out for another WC soon.

They were gasping at the surface prior to this. As they never went through an anti-parasitic course before, I figured I'd feed them some gel food with the Gel Tek Anti-Parasitic gel in it. With the aeration, I suspected gill flukes, as both were doing this. The original LFS tank they came from also had other fish gasping, and shortly after I got them, I saw that tank explode in ich. Soon after, my guys got ich too. Not too clean, that LFS.

The gel food contains mashed peas and carrots, some pellets, garlic, spirulina tabs and the Gel Tek.

Anyways, I have Prazi on the way, so once it arrives I'll put them through a full course as Tay has specified in the other thread about getting rid of flukes.

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I have stubborn filters that require lots of jiggling and fiddling to start. Jiggling the intake tube or removing the filter pads to get water flowing often dislodges filter gunk.

As far as I've seen, the gunk is a harmless collection of poop, plant waste if you've got live ones, and maybe left over food if you have a heavy hand.

T.F. tries to eat it, and very often decides to spit it out. Sometimes he consumes it. I've not noticed any issue either way. I typically don't even bother with netting the gunk out. It all finds it's way back into the filter after say, 15 minutes?

The only problem I could foresee is that there be SO MUCH gunk that it makes it difficult to breathe in the tank. But you'd have to have VERY dirty filters.

In general, fish spit out inedible things. I'm not sure about the other problems. Good luck!

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Moderators, can you please remove this topic or move it somewhere else, as Noodles has seemed to return to normal, although he's still gasping at the top. I panicked a bit last night when I saw him float up on his side and not breathe, I really thought he'd died. He didn't spit out what he ate, but if you say it's harmless then I guess he's ok. I think he was majorly spooked by the power outages, it was bright then dark then bright again and so on. The filter was dirty, but not overly dirty, which I guess is the benefit of running twin filters.

I also do really suspect they both harbor some gill flukes and/or other parasites, they've never been through a proper prazi treatment, so given that it's been said that it's relatively harmless to do so, I'll put them through the regimen Tay has recommended. I'll do another WC tonight, but parameters seem to be very good at the moment.

Thanks for your help, Koko folks, you guys are a constant source of reassurance and a wealth of knowledge.

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is it possible that with all the gulping at the surface that your fish is 1. stressed, 2. a mild case of swim bladder?

if you think this may be the case, i recommend 1 day fasting, next day peas.. JMO..


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Hi stakos,

Yes, Noodles is fine, although he is still gasping (and so is Dumpling).

They are 6 days into their PraziPro treatment (third dose this morning), and I'm alternating between peas, NLS There A 2mm pellets and homemade gel food (fresh salmon, fresh shrimp, broccoli, peas, carrots, bell pepper, paprika, nori flakes, a Sera spirulina tab, crushed garlic/garlic capsule and an acidophilus capsule) and a 1 day fast/week. They're also in a 12 gallon QT tank at the moment, with the full 29g tank filtration (although the HOB is turned down) as I'm redoing the 29g's stand (and the 12g uses less prazi). Parameters are excellent, 0 Ammonia, 0 Nitrite and 5 Nitrate.

They mainly gasp immediately after eating, for about 1/2 hr to an hour before settling down. I'm seeing floating poo from Dumpling, it's got air bubbles in it and there's not much material in there. Noodle's poo is regular, sinks, the colour of his food and with an occasional air bubble.

About the gasping, I did some reading up on this site about the exact same thing: http://thegab.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=7300&start=0

They've been scratching their heads over this too. I'll keep them on the gel food for a week and see what happens.

Thanks for checking up on them! :)

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