10 Gallon Glofish Tank Looks Funky

Bruizer07
  • #1
I have a 10 gallon glofish tank, it has 6 glofish (Tetras), 2 ghost shrimp (but I haven’t seen 1 in a few days..), a cat fish (I’m not sure what kind), a zebra snail, two guppies, and a betta. They all do well together, and were doing great, but lately they all seem sluggish. My water level is going down, and there appears to be a visible film on my decor. Some of my plants (they’re plastic) have little brown spots on them. I do have three real leaves in the tank, originally for my betta to lay on, but the all came out of the gravel, so they just float around every now and then. I had it running around 6/2/18 and put fish in 6/29/18. I have not done a water change, filter change, nor cleaning, due to the fact it hasn’t been a month yet. I feed them glofish flake food, tropical fish flake food, and occasionally drop in betta pellets, bloodworms, and Algee wafers. Any idea what’s going on, any tips for my tank, or fish? I’m all ears for any input, ideas, suggestions, etc. Thank you!
 
EbiAqua
  • #2
Welcome to FishLore!

Ok, first off that is too many fish in a 10 gallon aquarium. The glofish kits are kind of cash grabs to be honest, and fully grown glofish tetras (whiteskirt tetras) are too big for a 10 gallon. Here it is recommended to put them in a 20 gallon or larger, as not only do they reach a considerable size (I have seen them at nearly 3 inches), they can be very aggressive and are known fin-biters.

You also have fish that aren't temperature compatible.

When setting the tank up, it sounds like it was not cycled properly. Cycling involves vigilant monitoring of water parameters ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate, as well as your pH. Without knowing these you can't really know how your fish are doing or how healthy your tank is. They are very important concepts to learn and I highly suggest getting your water tested or investing in the API Master Freshwater Kit as soon as you're able. If your fish are sluggish, it could be the water quality is making them feel sick.

If you're seeing brown spots it's most likely diatoms. These are caused by several things and are common in new tanks. Common causes are too much lighting, inadequate lighting, and overfeeding.

You should be doing water changes at least once a week, more if you're cycling with fish in the tank.

Pictures of the tank would be very helpful, and we can probably identify the catfish (more than likely it is a species of corydora).

If you'd like we can suggest a more appropriate stocking plan for the tank.
 
alliemac
  • #3
Wow. That’s a lot of fish for a small tank. A betta, a shrimp, and snail is really the limit for a 10.
 
Bruizer07
  • Thread Starter
  • #4

432FAAF2-5C45-4856-B7AA-FDC870926ED5.jpeg
C419C9AF-40B3-40FF-B996-52AE904813B0.jpeg
90641AC6-5F16-4590-9247-0B880E3F3692.jpeg
6ED4A709-D041-409E-92C0-E716C60FD1AE.jpeg
BB76CD44-7709-4ED8-BF07-0050B241BD7A.jpeg
E6149431-C93C-4BE9-B4A2-C02E82D2F0A7.jpeg
A7682A0A-B219-45D2-9939-100F6EDD576C.jpeg Here are some pictures of the tank, the brown puffy thing next to the snail is just a algee wafer
 
EbiAqua
  • #5
Oh goodness, that's a pictus catfish. They need a 75 gallon tank minimum and get quite large at over 5 inches... and can potentially eat your other fish.

This is why it's so important to do your homework before you buy fish.

When you said leaves I didn't think you mean't literal LEAVES. Green leaves will rot and pollute your tank, which while it superficially looks clean is long overdue for a water change at this point. Take the leaves out as they are not going to benefit the tank any.

Basically you need to take the catfish back to the store, and you have 3 options with your current fish:

1) Betta tank
2) Guppy tank
3) Tetras with the intention of upgrading eventually

Unfortunately, you cannot have all 3 fish together long term without issues arising,
 
Bruizer07
  • Thread Starter
  • #6
I got all of my fish from PetCo, and they said that they all would work great together, and the catfish shouldn’t get much bigger, if at all. It’s hard to see in the photos but he’s white with black spots (I’m not sure if this matters). He’s only about 2.5 inches long, but on a side note, could he be the reason to two neon tetras disappearing? (Not glofish, actual neon tetras)oh, and The leaves were part of a live plant that I had in my Bettas 1 gallon tank, but when I moved him over the plant fell apart, leaving the leaves separated.

Edit: I just went and read the Pictus Catfish info page, the picture sure does seem to match..my bad..
 
EbiAqua
  • #7
I got all of my fish from PetCo, and they said that they all would work great together, and the catfish shouldn’t get much bigger, if at all. It’s hard to see in the photos but he’s white with black spots (I’m not sure if this matters). He’s only about 2.5 inches long, but on a side note, could he be the reason to two neon tetras disappearing? (Not glofish, actual neon tetras)oh, and The leaves were part of a live plant that I had in my Bettas 1 gallon tank, but when I moved him over the plant fell apart, leaving the leaves separated.

PetCo employees usually don't know Jack about fish, and use the "one inch per gallon" rule to sell you a bunch of fish. They always try to upsell without considering the actual requirements of the fish. That's why every new fishkeeper thinks they "need" a common pleco in their new, uncycled 10 gallon aquarium.

The pictus is a juvenile and will double in size and appetite. They also prefer meaty foods.

It is hard to tell what the plant is, but just looking at it the leaves are deteriorating, so it would be wise to cut your losses on it and remove it.
 
Bruizer07
  • Thread Starter
  • #8
That makes sense, I’ll do a water change in the morning, clean my decor, and remove the leaves. Do you think I should go ahead and change the filter?
 
EbiAqua
  • #9
That makes sense, I’ll do a water change in the morning, clean my decor, and remove the leaves. Do you think I should go ahead and change the filter?

Leave the filter alone, as the tank may still be cycling and you don't want to disrupt that. Take a water sample to PetCo and have them test it; don't take "your water is fine" as an answer, ask for specifics and share them with us.
 
midna
  • #10
pleaaaase do a water change lol. with a tank like that, i'd do 25% daily water changes until you can hopefully get your stocking issues fixed. i'm not sure why you aren't doing them until a month is up (someone told you that you only need to do them once a month? idk. this might work for much larger tanks that are established, meaning they've already been cycled) or why you aren't topping off your water (it's lowering because of evaporation), but I understand that you are a beginner and were fed the wrong information. that's unfortunately normal for most beginners. I went through the same stuff for 10+ years before I decided to really research and found this forum.

we're here to help! really. I hope this mistake doesn't scare you off, because it's a lot to digest. as Fahn said, you can either keep just the betta and the snails and shrimp (you might be able to keep the guppies too, but there's a chance the betta might attack them); keep just the guppies, snail and shrimp; or keep just the tetras with the invertebrates but hopefully get a bigger tank for them in the future. unfortunately the catfish is out. (I saw them at walmart the other day and thought they were really cute but figured they got big. went home to research and Yup lol.)

you don't need to do a 100% water change or anything, maybe do 50-75% if you really want to. cleaning the deco should be fine. just remember to use dechlorinator for the new water!
 
Bruizer07
  • Thread Starter
  • #11
Leave the filter alone, as the tank may still be cycling and you don't want to disrupt that. Take a water sample to PetCo and have them test it; don't take "your water is fine" as an answer, ask for specifics and share them with us.
Will do! Thank you so much!

pleaaaase do a water change lol. with a tank like that, i'd do 25% daily water changes until you can hopefully get your stocking issues fixed. i'm not sure why you aren't doing them until a month is up (someone told you that you only need to do them once a month? idk. this might work for much larger tanks that are established, meaning they've already been cycled) or why you aren't topping off your water (it's lowering because of evaporation), but I understand that you are a beginner and were fed the wrong information. that's unfortunately normal for most beginners. I went through the same stuff for 10+ years before I decided to really research and found this forum.

we're here to help! really. I hope this mistake doesn't scare you off, because it's a lot to digest. as Fahn said, you can either keep just the betta and the snails and shrimp (you might be able to keep the guppies too, but there's a chance the betta might attack them); keep just the guppies, snail and shrimp; or keep just the tetras with the invertebrates but hopefully get a bigger tank for them in the future. unfortunately the catfish is out. (I saw them at walmart the other day and thought they were really cute but figured they got big. went home to research and Yup lol.)

you don't need to do a 100% water change or anything, maybe do 50-75% if you really want to. cleaning the deco should be fine. just remember to use dechlorinator for the new water!
Thank you very much! And yes I was told to do water and filter changes one a month, so I’ve been holding off on it. I figured/knew the evaporation would be the cause of the water losing, but wanted to be sure there wasn’t anything else that could cause it.
 
IHaveADogToo
  • #12
Before you do your water change, do you have a dechlorinator? What kind of water conditioner do you have? What products did you purchase to add to the water? Since you were fed some bad information at the pet store, I fear you might have been sold some bad information or products in this area as well.
 
Bruizer07
  • Thread Starter
  • #13
Before you do your water change, do you have a dechlorinator? What kind of water conditioner do you have? What products did you purchase to add to the water? Since you were fed some bad information at the pet store, I fear you might have been sold some bad information or products in this area as well.
I’m not sure right now, I can check in a few hours and get back to you.
 
IHaveADogToo
  • #14
Okay I'll just say this, because I'll be in bed.

Tap water contains chlorine, chloramine, and other chemicals that are harmful to aquatic life, fish and plants alike. Chlorine is used to kill off all the bacteria and whatnot in tap water to make it safe for human consumption, but it's poisonous to fish. So you definitely need to use a water conditioner that is a dechlorinator. I've seen pet stores sell people stress zyme as a water conditioner before, which is highly inappropriate, so make sure the bottle says removes chlorine and chloramine. If I may suggest a brand, I like Seachem Prime, because in addition to removing chlorine and chloramine, it also temporarily (for 24-48 hours) converts ammonia into a non-toxic form. Ammonia is the byproduct of fish poop, for lack of better description, and it's toxic to fish. Keep in mind, Prime does not remove ammonia from he water, it just neuters it temporarily so your fish aren't dying of ammonia poisoning. With all the fish you have in that tank, I'm sure there is a lot of waste being produced. Especially after weeks with no water changes. If you test the tank water for ammonia (which someone above suggested you do), I'm sure the ammonia reading will be pretty high. So even with a water change, there will still be a lot of ammonia, so I strongly advise you to use Prime as your water conditioner. I don't know of any other brand of water conditioner that has that effect on ammonia. I think it's something they've patented.
 
Bruizer07
  • Thread Starter
  • #15
Okay I'll just say this, because I'll be in bed.

Tap water contains chlorine, chloramine, and other chemicals that are harmful to aquatic life, fish and plants alike. Chlorine is used to kill off all the bacteria and whatnot in tap water to make it safe for human consumption, but it's poisonous to fish. So you definitely need to use a water conditioner that is a dechlorinator. I've seen pet stores sell people stress zyme as a water conditioner before, so make sure the bottle says removes chlorine and chloramine. If I may suggest a brand, I like Seachem Prime, because in addition to removing chlorine and chloramine, it also temporarily (for 24-48 hours) converts ammonia into a non-toxic form. Ammonia is the byproduct of fish poop, for lack of better description, and it's toxic to fish. Keep in mind, Prime does not remove ammonia from he water, it just neuters it temporarily so your fish aren't dying of ammonia poisoning. With all the fish you have in that tank, I'm sure there is a lot of waste being produced. Especially after weeks with no water changes. If you test the tank water for ammonia (which someone above suggested you do), I'm sure the ammonia reading will be pretty high. So even with a water change, there will still be a lot of ammonia, so I strongly advise you to use Prime as your water conditioner. I don't know of any other brand of water conditioner that has that effect on ammonia. I think it's something they've patented.
Gotcha! Thank you so much, I will definitely keep that in mind. Sorry I couldn’t answer your question right now, it’s 3AM where I live, and I am currently unable to get to my fish supplies.
 
Mangonobox
  • #16
also when taking the pictus catfish back be mindful of its mildly venous dorsal/top fin (it's only in the top fin). it can get stuck in netting rather easily too, so just general caution advised there.
 
BReefer97
  • #17
Thank you very much! And yes I was told to do water and filter changes one a month, so I’ve been holding off on it. I figured/knew the evaporation would be the cause of the water losing, but wanted to be sure there wasn’t anything else that could cause it.

Water changes on a 10 gallon should be done weekly, not monthly. And you should also have no reason to change your filter media unless it’s literally falling apart (which takes a very long time). Your filter is where all of your beneficial bacteria lives that keeps your cycle, if you were to replace your filter media it would end your cycle and you would have to start over. All you have to do with your filter media is take it out and squeeze it out a few times in old tank water (NEVER tap water, that will kill the beneficial bacteria as well), and put it back in.
 
Bruizer07
  • Thread Starter
  • #18
also when taking the pictus catfish back be mindful of its mildly venous dorsal/top fin (it's only in the top fin). it can get stuck in netting rather easily too, so just general caution advised there.
Instead of taking it back, (because it’s too late to do so) is going to move it to my grandfathers thank, he has a 55gallon
 
alliemac
  • #19
Instead of taking it back, (because it’s too late to do so) is going to move it to my grandfathers thank, he has a 55gallon
The pictus will be so happy in the 55. They are very active swimmers and they really do get quite big. If you click on the name pictus catfish in this post it should take you to an article. It has a video of a school of them swimming and they’re quite large. Really amazing to watch.
 
Solaire
  • #20
Was the chlorine situation sorted out?
 
Bruizer07
  • Thread Starter
  • #21
Was the chlorine situation sorted out?
I have water conditioner, I’m not sure that’s the same thing though
 
jdhef
  • #22
Yes, a water conditioner removes chlorine and chloramines as well as heavy metals
 
tocandesu
  • #23
I have water conditioner, I’m not sure that’s the same thing though
Ok, that's good. Go ahead and do water changes daily, like what midnasaid.
 
Blaze
  • #24
I'd save up for something a little bigger like a 20gal or maybe a 30gal just because you'll have more room for some appropriate fish lol.
Welcome to the club
 

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