Can't figure out what's going on in tank

  1. peregrine Member Member

    OK. Kinda new to the whole aquarium thing. Got into it because my 3 year old wanted "fishies" which means I take care of them. Did a lot of research and thought I had a good base until the last week. Have had 2 glofish die in a week. And here is a bit of information about the tank.

    10 Gal Tank
    Been up and running 2 months
    1 month ago added 5 neon tetras and 3 ghost shrimp ((down to 2 ghost shrimp))

    When I added the new fish ((with much advise I made sure to test water (API frewshwater master) before adding anything new))
    PH: ~7
    Amonia: 0
    Nitrite: 0
    Nitrate ~30

    Neons are just fine.
    About a week ago I added 5 glofish (standard Zebra danio type) But have had 2 glofish die for no apparent reason. Now have one I can't tell if it's fin rot or another fish nipping at it's fin. The fish in the image did not have this frayed fin this morning when we fed them about 7 hours ago. Only noticed because since the 2 fish died I have been doing daily water tests just to make sure I'm not misreading any one day, and last few days have been using both the master kit and the API test strips and have the SeaChem Ammonia Alert since I like having verification that the test is correct.

    Current Paramters:
    PH: ~7
    Amonia: 0
    Nitrite: ~0.25
    Nitrate ~20

    Any ideas on possible death reasons or if this is fin rot or nipping ((I have already started melafix just in case it's fin rot))


    Any help or thoughts would be appreciated.
  2. Plecomaker Well Known Member Member

    Well youre over stocked for one, nitrates and ammonia are an issue many times because of this, but dont foget behavior.
    zebras rarely do well in smaller tanks, because they are so active. Often this does end with them nipping more.

    what temperature is the tank?
  3. GoldieBubbles Member Member

    Welcome to fishlore! The neon tetras and danios are not suitable for your tank size, also your schools are very small so they probably were nipping each other and now that you are down 2 you definitely need to return/ rehome there is a list on this forum for fish that are appropriate for a ten gallon, regarding the deaths it could be that they were already weak from being transported and your tank is over stocked. Hope I helped!
  4. peregrine Member Member

    Temp of the tank sits between 78-80F last few days as it's been hot here during the day and have forgotten the last few days to turn the fan on to help do evap cooling...

    As for over stocked, according to ((which so many people here have advised using for figuring out stocking levels)) I'm not over stocked, I'm sitting at about 98% when I had the 5 neons and 5 glofish.. and have a Quietflow 10, which makes it plenty of filtration.

    As for the list. Even that list says I'm not over stocked, says up to 12 Neon tetras along with it says up to 12 of the danios.

    So if this is overstocked due to the number of fish ((which could be correct)) it means everything I've read is incorrect. If it is please let me know because really don't want to have any fish die which means I'm 2 beyond what I want..

    Pleco thank you for the information about the smaller tank. hadn't read about smaller tank causing more nipping. I had heard about less than 5 causing nipping which is why I thought this might be nipping, but still not sure.

  5. peregrine Member Member

    As for re-homing. It's the only tank I have. Would get another tank, but obviously putting the fish in an uncycled tank is as bad if not worse than they are currently in.
  6. hampalong Fishlore VIP Member

    You have a nitrite reading (0.25) which means your filter isn't adequate for the number of fish. Zebra danios need a much bigger tank than a 10 gallon. They're very active fish, and will be stressed in a 10g, and also stressed by the bad water quality.

    Bigger tanks are much easier to look after.


    If you upgrade you don't need to cycle the new tank. You could get a bigger tank and transfer everything into it. Put your current media into the new filter.... With more media the bacteria would soon increase and spread over it...
  7. peregrine Member Member

    I had assumed the small increase in nitrite was due to me having added the extra fish and the bacteria having to reproduce a little more to support the extra bio load. Am I incorrect in that thought?

    Watching the Zebras I can definitely see how they would probably like something more along the lines of a 20 long or 29 since they do like to dart around.

    Now followup question. Would it be worth getting a new larger tank ((full setup: EG heater, filter, etc)) and move them right away or better to wait till the new one fully cycles. Since the Quietflow is using cartridges ((have been looking at changing that after yet even more research and discovering pretty much individual media is a LOT better)) I don't have any bio media already seeded and ready to move..
  8. peregrine Member Member

    On a side note. I swear my whole "oh raising freshwater fish can't be that hard for my 3 year old" hasn't been hard. Just more expensive than my original research indicated, but then again we spoil all our pets.
  9. hampalong Fishlore VIP Member

    With excess food (ammonia or nitrite) filter bacteria will double their population within a day. You still have nitrites after a week so it's not a temporary spike, it's because you don't have enough media for bacteria to colonise.

    Just run both filters in the new tank for a couple of months.

  10. peregrine Member Member

    We had added the new fish this past Sunday, so it hasn't quite been a week and the nitrites have gone down, just not quite to zero yet.

    OK. Will order the new stuff to be here early next week ((Amazon is really starting to love me. need to research a little more before ordering whether I want to go HOB or Canister and which one.. blah blah.))....

    Which brings me full circle to part of my original post. I can't tell if the fish is just being nipped at, or fin rot.. Don't want to stress out the poor thing anymore than he already is and cause it to be worse...
  11. hampalong Fishlore VIP Member

    Oh, fair enough.

    If the damage looks like nipped fins it's not finrot. Finrot turns the edges of the fins grey. Fins are a very common fish-food in nature. In a small tank where fish are in close confinement even otherwise peaceful fish are tempted to the odd nip.
  12. peregrine Member Member

    I put a picture of the fish in my first post. it's weird because it's only the bottom half, but what makes me not sure is, it's not really ragged like the images I've seen, it looks like nips ((very defined and clean sections))... but the bottom half there the missing portion has gone opaque like it does with fin rot. I'm just not sure exactly what "nipped" fins look like as compared to fin rot to make a determination with even a small amount of certainty no matter how may pictures I look at.

    And thank you everyone very much for all the info
  13. hampalong Fishlore VIP Member

    Can't really tell from that picture. Finrot turns the edges of the fins a pale greyish colour, then as it develops the edges begin to fray. There also might be red streaks in the fins. Nipping just looks like tears, or pieces missing, without discolouration.
  14. peregrine Member Member

    Thank you.

    I will keep an eye on it over the next couple of days and keep going with the melafix just in case. Everything I've read sounds like it won't hurt anything... and will re-home when the new stuff comes in.
  15. Plecomaker Well Known Member Member

    soundslike a plan. danios can be kinds nippy any way sometimes, so i still blame them a bit.
  16. peregrine Member Member

    @hampalong wanted to say thank you about the information about the gray area. Looks like it might be a combination. Was looking lat night at all the fish and noticed that one of the other glow fish has a gray spot on each tip of his tail and they aren't pointed, they are kind of rounded. So definitely keeping up the melafix. And looks like the others fin looks like it's already started repairing itself/, I think, I can't get it to stay still long enough to verify this morning. Was going to send this in a message, but understandably someone as new as me to the forums can't send private messages.

    Again thanks to everyone.
  17. hampalong Fishlore VIP Member

    You're welcome. Keep an eye on the water aswell (eg nitrites). Bad water makes fish much more susceptible to disease, and a water change is never a bad thing.