50 Gallon Tank Need URGENT ADVICE!!!

tko187
  • #1
Hi, I set up a dechlorinated freshwater tank, 50 gallons, When I bought the tank I watched a setup video on the internet on videojug. I basically followed their setep advice which was to leave the filter and heater running for two days then add fish, this is what I went ahead and done.

I now have 10 neons, 2 corys, 2 clown loaches, 2 silver sharks, 5 zebra danios, 2 guppys, 1 pleco, 1 siamese fighter. 25 in total of which I have lost 1 guppy and a cory!!!! I am devastated.

I never did any ph or ammonia tests as the fish shop salesman never said to, I have just really noticed all this stuff now. You guys are probably gonna cuss me, I know I deserve it, I just want to know the best way to salvage this situation without having more fish die, I don't have a quarantine tank either!!

Please can someone help me, I can't give the fish back to the shop as they won't take them, What can I do???? There must be some sort of medication to fix this problem, I have seen something called bio spira which says it will cycle the tank in 24 hrs!! Can I use this with fish in the tank?? Also all the information on the net with regards to cycling has got me really confused, I'm not sure what to do at all?? I'm getting different signals from everywhere!! Ive talked to lots of different fish shops and they also tell me that 5-6 days is ok then u can add fish. Please someone break it down for me!!! Nobody seems to be helping me, I think they are all just interested in making money!!


Guys pls help me I'm desperate..........I wish I seen this site 1 week ago and everything would be cool...............there must be a way I can save these fish, I know now that there is too many fish added at once, pls take it easy on me, I'm really fragile just now. I will check this tread in the morning...hopefuly there is a angel out ther!!
 
lilsoccakid
  • #2
welcome to fishlore! glad u found us

if you can, try to bring the fish back for a refund, or just get them off your hands, because it looks as if you could be in trouble

well I would immedietly go try to find bio-spira, or at least a product called PRIME, which will do wonders for keeping ammonia and nitrites from killing your fish.

I would do an immediate 50% water change and do 50-60 percent water changes a day until you have cycled the tank. please read about the aquarium nitrogen cycle


somebody will chime in soon with more information

good luck, and keep up on those 50% water changes!
 
Alessa
  • #3
First of all welcome to fishlore!
Look. Were not here to blame anyone but to help as much as we can...
Most of us didnt even know about the nitrogen cycle before we got our first fish...

Many say biospira does work... unfortunately, it has to be kept cold (not frozen) for it to work. at this point the only thing you can do is order it out of ebay or this other website (which link I can't FIND ARGHHHHHHH!!!!!!)!, add it and hope for the best. your tank is filling up of ammonia which will kill your fish slowly that's what's going on. if you add the biospira (and its a good batch) its supposed to cycle it in less than 48 hours. Get it, and meanwhile do daily 50+ % water changes.

after you do todays water change and order biospira check this link, it will help you understand things better:
https://www.fishlore.com/NitrogenCycle.htm

and again, welcome!
 
Halibut
  • #4
Welcome to fishlore.....

Your aquarium info says you do not know about the nitrogen cycle please read this link it will help you to understand what is going on in your tank.

https://www.fishlore.com/NitrogenCycle.htm

Now for saving your fishies because I went through this myself recently. Start by ordering bio-spira I believe I got it from aquarium plants this will help speed up the cycle in your tank. Get yourself an API Master test kit from drfostersmith or petsmart or someplace like that, should be more than about 20 bucks unless you go into the store to buy it. Measure your water parameters start off with Ammonia/Nitrite, you won't yet see Nitrate and PH will be out of whack until the cycle is completed. Now since you have fish you need to keep these levels down so I would do 50% water changes daily until you can get some bio-spira in the tank. Once you get the bio-spira it will want you wait atleast 7 days before doing a water change but it will also help to keep the toxins down in your tank. After the 7 days do a 50% change wait 24hrs and test/change water daily again until your test kit reads 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, and 5-20 nitrate. That is about all you can do I did this same thing and no fish lost except 1 tiger barb 3 weeks after I cycled(I think it was just his time everyoneelse in the tank are doing great). Dont get to down on yourself you'd be surprised how many here have gone through the same thing just learn from the mistakes you have made move forward and ask lots of questions here.

HTH Mike
 
Alessa
  • #5
here is the link for the BioSpira

good luck, let us know how it goes.

and yes... all the stores tell you is "ok" to add fish after a couple of days... so that they all die and you have to go and get more from them!
 
Butterfly
  • #6
Do you have a testing kit? If not you need one asap, The best one I've found is aquarium pharmaceuticals fresh water kit. Testing will tell you when to do water changes and when your cycle is over.
Do you know about the nitrogen cycle?
carol
 
tko187
  • Thread Starter
  • #7
Thank you

thanks for the replies guys, I really apreciate this. To everyone who replied. I thought I was buggered, pardon my french!!

Firstly I can't order from the net because it will take over 7 days to reach me, ill have to find it tomorrow in the shops. Until then should I change my water 50%?? and do I need to dechorinate it before I put in tank? The tap water I add will be cold does this affect the fish or should I maybe use warmish water??

I'm sorry so many questions, regarding the cycling, what do I do, ive read so many different methods and I am overwhelmed by it all, I know I have to change the water, I will do it first thing tomorrow, what about feeding?? should I stop or reduce, I notice my guppy and betta are going to the top to gasp for air, I hope its not too late!!!! Also my clown loaches are always hiding is this normal??

Please if anyone can breakdown the method I need to use in easysteps it would be a lifesaver, ive checked the links and I'm just getting even more confused I need quick action,,Faaaast!!

The testing kit I don't have, I shall buy one tomorrow also, which kind do you recommend and should I check my tap water first?

Thanks agaiin!! Everyone you are great, god bless you!!
 
Alessa
  • #8
The method you should use is daily 50% (to make sure you lose the least fish possible) water changes with dechlorinated water until you get the biospira, test the aquarium water for parameters (ammonia, nitrite and nitrate), when you get it make sure it was kept cold, wait 24 hours after you add it and (if its a good batch) that's about it.


DECHLORHINATE IT!!!!!! add some water conditioner before you put the water in the tank and also try it to be around the same temperature of the tanks water... you should do it today and daily until you get the Biospira... if you do not do the water changes daily with conditioned (dechlorinated water) they will keep diying so do it now!

checking tap water does not really serve any purpose if you use a water conditioner. Prime is the best since it alleviates ammonia toxicity for 24 hours(for now.... when you use biospira you can't use prime, instead use aquaplus...).

also reduce feeding to minimum since this limits the amount of ammonia entering the water.

let us know how its going. The best of lucks!
 
Lucy
  • #9
HI tko187 Welcome to Fish Lore

I know it's all confusing, but I'm glad you found us, the forum is full of wonderful helpful people with a wide variety of experience.

Don't worry about asking too many questions.

Yes, continue the daily water changes and always use a conditioner to dechlorinate the water. Conditioners also remove chloramine and detoxifies heavy metals.

Try to match the water from the tap to the temp of the tank water. Too warm or too cold will shock your fish.

The guppys and betta are probably feeling the effects of the ammonia, it is extremely toxic to your fish. If you can, you really should do a water change tonight and continue that daily unless you get bio spira.

Your betta really should be moved to a tank of it's own, it's not really compatible with your other fish. It's a good possibility someone will get hurt or killed. 2.5g minimum, heated and filtered.

Bio-spira as already recommended is your best bet, other wise you must keep up with the daily water changes.

Good luck and don't be afraid to ask questions.
 
Halibut
  • #10
thanks for the replies guys, I really apreciate this. To everyone who replied. I thought I was buggered, pardon my french!!

Firstly I can't order from the net because it will take over 7 days to reach me, ill have to find it tomorrow in the shops. Until then should I change my water 50%?? and do I need to dechorinate it before I put in tank? The tap water I add will be cold does this affect the fish or should I maybe use warmish water??

I'm sorry so many questions, regarding the cycling, what do I do, ive read so many different methods and I am overwhelmed by it all, I know I have to change the water, I will do it first thing tomorrow, what about feeding?? should I stop or reduce, I notice my guppy and betta are going to the top to gasp for air, I hope its not too late!!!! Also my clown loaches are always hiding is this normal??

Please if anyone can breakdown the method I need to use in easysteps it would be a lifesaver, ive checked the links and I'm just getting even more confused I need quick action,,Faaaast!!

The testing kit I don't have, I shall buy one tomorrow also, which kind do you recommend and should I check my tap water first?

Thanks agaiin!! Everyone you are great, god bless you!!

Yes you should do a change today and every day basically until your cycle is completed. Might have to have the bio-spira shipped but not sure I know I had too. Yes use a conditioner on the water to decloronate. When refilling use a thermometer and put it under the running water in your tap and adjust water temp to within a coupe degrees of what you tank is. This will reduce the stress put on your fish during water change and can be especially important when they are already stressed.
 
goggles
  • #11
yes you really should move your betta as soon as possible. I had mine in the community tank because I didn't know any betta. his fins got nipped at by the tetras. he is now in a 10 gallon by himself and is as happy as can be. I hope you manage to sort it all out please keep us posted on how it goes.
 
Shawnie
  • #12
If you use bio-spira, DO NOT use prime...they will not work together...you got a lot of great advice..if you can get it, they ship over night as its live bacteria..its expensive but well worth it..if you cant, treat tap water with prime, daily 50% water changes with tap water the same temp as your tank, and sticking to that until the cycle completes, should keep your fish alive...getting the apI test kit as others have mentioned, will be your best friend for the tanks life cycle goodluck
 
angelfish220
  • #13
If you know someone else with a fishtank, you can go and grab a handful of gravel or a plastic plant, or even the filter media, and stash it in your filter, then you have added the correct bacteria to your tank, so it cycles faster. Using that method you can cycle in about a week.

TEST YOUR WATER!!! it is vital to test your water during the cycle, you NEED to, to know where your tank is in the cycle. Once your tank is stable, then you can test about biweekly and it will be fine, but during the cycle you need to test everyday.

Dont feel bad. When I first started I put 3 platies, 3 mollies, 4 guppies, and 6 danios in a ten gallon tank Now you know how to keep a fish tank, and you can restart right.
 
Annabelle
  • #14
Well, the others have pretty much covered the important parts so here is my bit of advice. Dont worry and don't beat yourself up, its not your fault that you got bad advice because at least you sought advice, I know heaps of people who get animals without looking for ne info at all and then they wonder why they die. Just remember that as long as you are doing your water changes the way the others have suggested then you are doing your best and your fish have the best possible chance of making it through.

I ask tons of questions on here and everyone has been great because we just all want to help the fish and their owners get the best out of this wonderful hobby. Deep breaths! And Welcome! I'm glad you found this forum.
 
Evelyn1919
  • #15
Welcome to fishlore!!!
everybody here has a lot of information and all they told you so far is what you need to know. the only thing I would add is if you get bio-spira and you are using prime (water conditioner) you should not use them together. once you get biospira you should wait a couple of days before you add it to your tank and do 2 big water changes (50%) so that most of the prime will be out of your tank cuz otherwise the beneficial bacteria will dye and there would've been no point on using biospira. DON'T test your water right after adding biospira (which is what I did) because you will be shocked and want to do a water change or like I did add ammolock with totally killed the beneficial bacteria from the biospira. if you can't find prime you can also get stress coat which I prefer using and my fish seem to like it better.

hope this works out for you and wish you lots of luck.

Evelyn
 
lalynya
  • #16
Hey don't feel bad I've been working on my tank for months now and just killed like half of my fish yesterday..You'll get the basics it just takes time to figure out..when I fist started this tank set up I killed all my fish too...I had been keeping tanks for a while but never knew about the nitro cycle..don't feel bad..you learn from your mistakes and you will do better next time

Yes you should do a change today and every day basically until your cycle is completed. Might have to have the bio-spira shipped but not sure I know I had too. Yes use a conditioner on the water to decloronate. When refilling use a thermometer and put it under the running water in your tap and adjust water temp to within a coupe degrees of what you tank is. This will reduce the stress put on your fish during water change and can be especially important when they are already stressed.

I recommend a master test kit and yes it is normal for your fish to hide..I've found guppy's to be pretty hardy so you may be in luck with them
 
Calab
  • #17
tko187
  • Thread Starter
  • #18
Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!!! I don't know what to say, I didnt think I would get a response like this!!!!

I had a water test done today, from my local pet store, the ph levels were absolutely fine sitting at 7, and so were the nitrate and nitrite, Ammonia was slighty higher than it should be but the store owner said it was nothing to worry about..

I'm so relieved, last night I did'nt get no sleep with worry!! This morning I checked the fish and they look super, swimming all over the place, even the neons have come out.

I shall be going to the store to get my test done regularly as it is free and just round the corner from my house.

Should I still do a water change or should I wait till Thursday??

Once again I can't thank you guys enough. Calab, Lalynya, Evelyn1919, Anabelle, Angelfish220 all you guys that replied .......sorry if I missed any names.

God Bless!!
 
Lucy
  • #19
I'm happy to hear everyone is doing well this morning.

Usually the stores use test strips, which aren't very accurate.
Any amount of ammonia or nitrites are harmful to your fish, the people at the fish store should have told you this.

Is this the same fish store who sold you fish before your tank was cycled?

I would urge you to get the API master kit and test the water yourself, keeping a log of the numbers.

Yes, for the sake of your fish, keep doing daily water changes until your readings are 0 for both ammonia and nitrites with some nitrates showing. At that point, you can relax and enjoy your aquarium with regular weekly maintenance.

Good luck, keep us up to date and post pics when you can.
 
lalynya
  • #20
yeah teh ammonia being high could be the start of a cycle meaning its high then the nitrites go high then the they get turned to nitrates..It might be the start of another spike..YOu could keep it under control as much as possible with teh water changes..as lucy said..YES KEEP DOING THEM...everyday..water changes as I have leared can even save a fish that looks like it is on deaths door step
 
angelfish220
  • #21
what ever you do keep doing your 50% daily waterchanges! They are essential when trying to cycle with fish. Dont worry, once the cycle is over you don't have to carry 50gals of water daily
 
Evelyn1919
  • #22
always before getting it shipped try petstores around you. I once ordered it and got it shipped and everything because I read that not a lot of places have it but I found out that most of my LFS sell the biospira.

good luck

oh I gotta tell you guys that I recently purchased removed and it is just great!!!

I love it! I have a 75gal tank and when doing 50% water changes I was using 20gal buckets pulling them up and down my apt and it was killing my back.

good luck!!!
 
JRunyon21
  • #23
If you havn't read the articles on the nitrogen cycle here is my crash course.

Fish are added.
Fish poop and do other things - CREATE AMMONIA
Tank/filter react and bacteria grows - REMOVES AMMONIA, by product = NITRITES
Tank/filter reacts again - REMOVES NITRITES, by product = NITRATES
NITRATES rise over time b/c tank cannot remove them on its own.

The probelm with your case is that all of these steps happen too slow leaving your fish exposed to high amounts of ammonia and soon nitrites. As Angelfish202 said, water changes are crucial. You do not want your fish exposed to high ammonia and/or nitrites. When the tank is cycled you will still have to do water changes to remove the Nitrates. Hang in there, the bad still might not be over. That is a lot of fish to put in a tank at once.

Don't worry I was blessed by fire as well. There are a few fish in fishy heaven due to my lack of aquarium keeping knowledge. Next thing you know it will be a huge part of your life and your checkbook.
 
eric_m
  • #24
i'm just learning about the whole cycling method and understand the theory.. the fun part is putting it to use.. anyways.. couldn't you get some water from the store you got your fish? that water will have the bacteria needed to speed up the cycling..
Somebody correct me if I'm wrong.. i've only had my tank for a couple of days.. still no fish.. i'd hate to be wrong on this.. especially during a crisis.. its the blind leading the blind..

good luck!!
 
lalynya
  • #25
Actually yes some LFS do sell already cycled water and It's not that expensive
 
JRunyon21
  • #26
Never thought of cycled water. Can someone that knows a lot about cycling please inform us on whether or not cycled water is helpful. I thought the bacteria grew on objects(plants, filters, bioballs, gravel, decorations), not in water. No clue though.
 
tko187
  • Thread Starter
  • #27
thanks guys, ill post pics soon hopefully tonight!! So I still need to change the water.....ok ill do it, I just never did it because the guy at the store said don't do it for another week, and it isn't the same guy who sold me the fish.
So it will probably spike again, I never bought a test kit cos the shop can do it free and they use he same test kit that they were gonna sell me for 21.99, the chap actually didnt want me to buy which was odd for a change!!

Ok ill update soon, shall I post the pics in this bit or on another separate thread?

Which forum also???
 
ThisGuy
  • #28
Ouch!!! $96 for shipping!


"Equipment orders will be shipped from our Canadian distribution center on the 1st Tuesday of each month along with live plants... This schedule allows for ALL orders to enter Canada via the same truck which saves on transportation costs.

(eventually, we will change to shipments 2 times per month and eventually we will ship every week"

wow a $18 bottle becomes $110 still getting hosed in Canada can't even get equipment until the first Tuesday of the month.
 
tko187
  • Thread Starter
  • #29
can I buy recycled water, if so maybe this can be he easiest option!!!!
 
Lucy
  • #30
If you havn't read the articles on the nitrogen cycle here is my crash course.

Fish are added.
Fish poop and do other things - CREATE AMMONIA
Tank/filter react and bacteria grows - REMOVES AMMONIA, by product = NITRITES
Tank/filter reacts again - REMOVES NITRITES, by product = NITRATES
NITRATES rise over time b/c tank cannot remove them on its own.

This is also the inhumane way to cycle. Unfortunatly, fish stores don't tell people that.
There are other sources of ammonia you can use to cycle a tank without fish.......fish food, pure ammonia, used filter media or bio spira.

TJRunyon21, you're right tank water doesn't have enough bacteria to cycle a tank. The bacteria is growing on the decorations, gravel and in the filter.

Really don't waste your money buying 'cycled' water.
Just keep changing your water daily until your levels are 0 for ammonia, nitrites with some nitrates showing.

What kind of test does the guy at the fish store use?
 
angelfish220
  • #31
if you want, go into your fishstore and see if you can buy a handfull of gravel from the show tank, that might help.
 
Lucy
  • #32
if you want, go into your fishstore and see if you can buy a handfull of gravel from the show tank, that might help.

You'd really have to be careful doing this, you never know what you could bring home and contaminate your aqaurium.
A trusted friend with an established tank is a better option.
 
Alessa
  • #33
Ouch!!! $96 for shipping!

yeah, I know but its worth it. you can get it WAYYYYY cheaper at ebay like I first did, but it most likely will be a bad batch... like the one I got
 
lalynya
  • #34
Never thought of cycled water. Can someone that knows a lot about cycling please inform us on whether or not cycled water is helpful. I thought the bacteria grew on objects(plants, filters, bioballs, gravel, decorations), not in water. No clue though.

The bacteria does harvest on things in the tankbut it can still be found in the water (Now I'm having microbiology flashbacks) HOWEVER the amount of free floating bacteria isn't going to be all that high...while it might help a lil it won't be much...all that really happens is it will settle on what you have in the tank..what LUcy said is right you might as well just do what you are doing and keep changing the water..and I have heard that it is hard to get it in the UK..P.S. you siad chap...that's cool
 
Alessa
  • #35
btw... you really need to read about the cycle and GET THE TESTING KIT like the others said (unless you're able to walk to the fish store every single day until your cycle is over. IF you don't understand how the cycle works and cycle the tank according to the methods suggested (BioSpira or Water changes+prime...), your fishes will inevitably keep dying.
and also like someone else said, DONT PAY ATTENTION TO THE STORE PEOPLE. the most likely will not give you a correct advice, also don't rely on them for your water testing.

right now you're starting your ammonia spike... which is only the BEGINING of the cycle and unless you use (a good batch of) Biospira you will have to stick to the every day testing and 50%+ water changes and Prime until you go trough the ammonia and Nitrite spike. When they go down and nitrates go up and stay under 20 you will be finally cycled, proccess which can take SEVERAL WEEKS without biospira. Only THEN you will finally be able to relax.

let us know how it goes and good luck
 
withtim
  • #36
Hey, I wouldnt recommend silver sharks with tetras. I have two 5 inch silver sharks and they ate all 5 of my tetras.
 
Fish Addict
  • #37
Is it just me, or has anyone else noticed that one of the main problems with this tank is its stocking amount... 2.01 inches of fish per gallon! I would work just as hard on returning as many fish as you can as getting bio-spira. I do not think the betta will be nipped, since the neons are in a big school, but it is the only aggressive fish...

So all I'm saying is, once you get rid of fish, it will not only be easier now, but it will affect the tank for its life.
 
Evelyn1919
  • #38
1: don't buy water from any fish store. it doesn't have much bacteria in it so there is no point on wasting your money that way.

2: yes, like FishAddict said your tank is overstock so maybe you should try to return as many fish as you can.

3: you NEED to keep doing 50% water changes (everyday) using a good water conditioner like other people said here there is prime and also I use the stress coat from API which is just as good.

4: you MUST get a liquid testing kit because you will need to test your water everyday. i've had my tank for now 3 months and didn't know about the cycle before I got to this forum and i'm still going through the nitrogen cycle.

5: DO NOT trust the people at you LFS. they might not be telling you the truth about anything. most of them don't know about the keeping of fish.

GOOD LUCK AND HOPE THIS HELPS.
 
tko187
  • Thread Starter
  • #39
ok guys heres an update, Yesterday my fish were fine all day till about 10pm when ichecked and the neons were a really pale colour and all huddled together at the bottom of the tank, I staright away dis a 25% water change, I conditioned water before I put it in the tank. This morning checked the fish they all seem fine again and their colour is back to normal.

This morning I went to another store who used an apI master test kit, and told me as follows:

1. Ammonia 0.5ppm
2. Nitrite 0ppm
3. Nitrate 0ppm
4. Ph 7.6

The chap there Gary who has fish of his own and was very helpful indeed, he advised me to buy a product called Nutrafin waste control which I have added 6 capfuls to my tank and also a product for ammonia which is called ammo chips, I have place 18tbsn of this in a stocking for 2 days max to reduce ammonia. I also bought an apI master test kit.

This is hard work man, I will test water tomorrow, he advised me not to change water till next week which confused me again????? Maybe because I have added medication and the ammo chips!!

So guys that's it for now I will keep posting daily upates to let you know how its goin, in the meantime if anyone can advise further id appreciate it!!

Thanks in advance
 
Lucy
  • #40
I'm glad you got your own test kits. I'm not sure how the ammo chips will effect your testing or cycle....whether you'll get a true reading or not.

I don't know about Nutrafin either.

I do know that Gary has now made a sale on chemicals for your tank that can be kept in check through diligent water changes. Personally, the less chemicals I can add to my water, the better.
 

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