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filter preventing treatment


Pontosfan

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Thanks for the advice guys. I've considered it all, agreed with some and disagreed with some, and come up with this: tomorrow I'm going to buy a new Fluval Filter. Put it in the place of one of the Marina ones so that eventually it can take over for both of them (once it's had time for good bacteria to build up). I'm also going to do daily water changes which may go down to every two days depending on how my fish react (I find they get very stressed when I do water changes which is the last thing I want right now). I'm going to get an amonia test kit (although considering the filter I need is £50 alone, I might not be able to get it until next week) and look into this whole PH think you've mentioned. Again, thanks for the help; I'll keep you updated. :)

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Sounds like a good plan :)

I will add one last thing... the test strips come with guides telling you when certain water parameters are 'dangerous' or not, I would suggest not paying attention to these. Really, you ideally want ammonia and nitrite to read 0ppm, and definitely not above .25 ppm.... nitrate you want to be lower than 40 ppm (ideally, under 20 ppm, but fish can tolerate up to 40 ppm).

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Hi Pontosfan,

I think your plan to get a new filter and do big WCs while it establishes sounds like a really good one.

If you can try to get one that allows you to add or change the types of media in it (fluval usually do this alright) then all the better, because really you dont want or need to keep carbon or zeolite in there full time, and being able to take that stuff out and replace it with more bacteria-growing space is the best option.

I just wanted to add that I live in the U.K. too and I have to say that unfortunately Pets@Home do not always give sage advice when it comes to fish or even other-pet keeping. They are definitely out to sell you whatever they can and this is evident by the fact they sell tiny unfiltered bowls that are not suitable for keeping any kind of fish in at all.

They'll tell you those cartridges are good enough and that you have to change them every month just to get you to buy replacements from them, and also if your fish dies as a consequence they can sell you more fish too! Most of their employees dont have or require any prior knowledge or qualification in aquaculture and just give you scripted corporate answers.

I've actually had a Pets@Home employee advise me to give my Degu hamster food even though this is quite possibly the single worst food mix you could give a Degu... :[

The guys on this forum are much more knowledgable about goldfish and unlike P@H staff they dont have the ulterior motive of selling you endless things for profit.

Their advice is much, much more informed and reliable and id take it over a chainstore employee everytime!

Im not criticising you for trusting P@H advice, im just trying to give you a friendly warning :]

I think at one time or another most people have placed misguided trust in pet shop workers, because you would think they would be honest and reliable, but they are often not.

The way I think about it now is "if this guy was an expert on diagnosing and treating fish illnesses without even seeing the animal, why is he working entry level in a petshop for £15k (still more than I earn lol) instead of being a millionaire supervet somewhere?"

Anyway, Im just glad that you have worked out what is wrong and how to deal with it, and I really hope everything works out for you and your fish!

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Your plan sounds great, and you've gotten some excellent advice here. There is just one thing I want to suggest regarding the stressful water changes and pH.

The pH swings might actually be contributing to this stress you perceive while changing their water. Although the pH values from your tap and tank are not very different (6.4 tap, 6.8 tank), they are acidic.

It is understood that changes in pH are what causes stress to fish (low pH also causes stress for goldfish). When you change the water, you are replacing 6.8 with 6.4. So not only is the pH changing, but it is being lowered even further.

Using a buffer with your water change routine will help to solve this problem. It will benefit your fish by not only by raising the pH to a neutral state, but it will also help keep your pH stable. Currently, your water is very incapable of maintaining a stable pH due to its low kH.

Here is a link to seachem's gold buffer: http://www.seachem.com/Products/product_pages/GoldBuffer.html

I know this is a lot of information thrown at you all in one thread, and can be hard to handle. Typically everyone here includes straightforward reasons to support the advice they give, but if you ever feel the need to know more, ask away. I hope this helps!

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Thanks, guys. Things seem to be picking up. They seem to be doing better and swimming around more, etc. So that's a good sign. The new filter is in (Fluval U4) and doing well and as of today I completely phased both of the old filters out. The blood in their tails isn't as prominent too. (^_^) Funnily enough, when I told a guy at Pets at Home about my predicament, he turned round and said: "Yeah, they're terrible filters. They're no good." So I got pretty annoyed and started asking him why the hell they sell them! Grrr. Anyway, the new filter cost me £50 and then I bought some more nutarfin cycle for a tenner so I'm fresh outta cash so unfortunately, the Ph buffer will have to wait. Thanks again for the advice.

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So this is a bit odd. I woke up in the middle of last night to find Dizzy (the poorly ranchu) chasing Pontos (the poorly pearlscale) around the tank in that way like he wants to mate with her. This is a good sign right? He must be feeling a little better if he wants to do... that.

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I woke up this morning to find, in the tank, the longest poo I've ever seen. It was huge! Part of it was 'solid' brown, part was brown and seemed tightly helixed, part was clear, part was clear with bubbles and part was light brown with a transparent film. Honestly, it must have been atleast 4 or 5 times the length of even my biggest fish. There was also another very long poo that was tightly helixical hanging on the plant. There was nothing I could do at the time (I had to get to work) but i did notice that the blood/prominent red vains in Dizzy's tail seemed much less so (to the point that I struggled to see them whilst he was moving about). What do you think? This suggests, to my untrained eye, that they may have some digestive problems; and that could be the cause of the stress that lead to bloody fins? I was thinking of doing another 50% water change tonight when I get home and then plop in a few peas which I believe are good at "clearing out" goldfish.

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Blood streaks seem to be egtting better, slowly, and they are swimming around more. But worringly I found a small hole in Pontos' tail this morning. It's tiny, as if someone had stuck a pin through her tail. Any ideas what it could be? I'm getting worried again. :(

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I've been doing regular water changes (once every two or three days) of 50%. I've bought something that stabilizes the pH and reduces nitrate/nitrite, and I've been using Nutrafin Cycle every time I change the water (as well as Stress Coat + which de-stresses the fish and gets rid of chlorine) and yet they still have blood in their fins and I'm still getting a reading of 1mg/l of Nitrite and about 6.6 pH. Admitedly they're swimming around more (but only when the filter current is super low). I just don;t know what else to do!

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My :twocents:

You Ph is drastically low, this can cause allot of problems. Cycle crashing, redness and white slim coat all over them... Do you have a buffer?

I think so. I got Tetra Easy Balance which I was told would do the job. :\

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My :twocents:

You Ph is drastically low, this can cause allot of problems. Cycle crashing, redness and white slim coat all over them... Do you have a buffer?

I think so. I got Tetra Easy Balance which I was told would do the job. :\

The tetra easy balance is unfortunately not a buffer and will not work the way you need it to (my understanding of this product is that it just add calcium carbonate, whereas a true buffer such as the seachem gold buffer contains other minerals as well) . You need a buffer that will raise your kh and keep your Ph stable over time, I believe that the Tetra easy balance is similar to products like API Ph up in that it will work temporarily but is not as stable as a true buffer and has the tendency to 'wear out' allowing your Ph to drop again. Here are some typically recommended buffers: buff it up (www.goldfishconnection.com), seachem gold buffer, and seachem alkaline buffer, either of the seachem ones you should be able to find locally (I would personally go for the gold over the alkaline, but either one will work). EDIT: You could alternatively get some crushed coral to add to the filter or tank, this would have the same effect.

Edited by tithra
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Wen to one of my LFSs with all this in mind. Was told to decrease the amount of water changes and came back with a rock and a test kit. He also reccomended some "Proper pH 7.5", but I'll have to pick that up next week.

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Not sure the API Proper pH is actually a buffer, like has been advised? :/

Great that you've now got the test kit, was it the API drops Mater Kit? :D

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It's being referred to as a buffer on some instructions but not others, hmm. It does say that you need to keep monitoring and add more if it drops more than 0.2? Tithra will be able to tell you for sure :) Seems quite expensive though :o

I've just got crushed oyster shell for keeping mine stable, but mine comes out the tap at 7.5 anyway so dont have the issues of having to match it at each water change. Low tap pH sounds a right pain :( Hope you get something which works for you soon :)

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You're all good :D the API fact sheets confirms it as a buffer:

" Proper pH 7.5 is formulated to lock the pH at 7.5. Buffers compensate for fluctuations in pH, automatically adjusting the pH to the predetermined level. Proper pH 7.5 will lower or raise the pH until 7.5 is reached. pH will not rebound to the original level. It may require more than one dose to adjust the pH. This is because carbonates (KH) in the water work against pH adjustment. "

Is that the 260gram bottle, which does 200gals of water? It's not awfully expensive but it will need purchased every few months which is what would make it expensive to me in the long run. At least you'll know in advance when you are nearing the end of the bottle though :)

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