Cycling With Tss+ Issue

Chris33
  • #1
Hello everyone, this is my first post but I have lurked on this forum for years gaining knowledge about fish keeping. Recently I have set up a 33 gallon long and decided to cycle with tetra safe start plus after reading a lot of success stories. I set the tank up and let it run for 48 hours... the 21st of this month I then added tetra safe start plus and headed to the store. At petco I purchased 5 sunset platy and a female koi betta I couldn't keep my eyes off of. I acclimated them for about 30 mins and put them all in. Everyone got along immediately and I even noticed a platy Gaving what looked like kisses to the betta. They all swam around and ate no problems. 2 out of 5 platy seemed a little shy. Next day I came home from work and found one of the shy platy dead. I immediately removed him from the tank. After 48 hours of tss+ cycling I decided to test the water with an apI master test kit. I had .25ppm ammonia 7.4 ph 0 nitrites and 0 nitrates. After the first week I experienced another death. So now I'm down to 3 platy and betta. Again tested water nothing changed. For the passed two days I noticed betta acting lethargic and not eating. Tested water and still the same. Woke up this morning to a dead betta. I'm now questioning whether I did something wrong or the fish I purchased were not healthy even though they appeared to be. Could it be my apI kit is no good or the bottle of tss+ failed? Has anyone had this happen to them? I'm pretty bummed about the death of 3 fish in less than 2 weeks.
My setup is:
•Aqueon 33 gallon long
•Fuval 306 canister filter
•Aqueon pro heater set to 79 °F
•Current usa satellite freshwater plus
I apologize for the long and most likely boring story. Wanted to give as much info as I could. Also I have read numerous posts about tss+ including the Q&A.
 
Zigi Zig
  • #2
There is possibilities that something could be wrong with fish in the first place, for now I would keep eye on water parameters and fish, also Koi fish is carp species and grow very huge they do prefer large ponds minimum 1000.gal soon or later koi won't be happy in 33.gal tank ..
 
Chris33
  • Thread Starter
  • #3
I have been testing my water and keep getting the same readings. It has been 9 days with tss+ and 3 fish died with only a .25ppm ammonia reading. Nitrites and nitrates are zero... Sorry you may have mis read I had purchased a female betta which was labeled as a female koi betta because of the coloring similar to a koi fish... thanks for the reply.
 
Chris33
  • Thread Starter
  • #4
Thanks. I have been keeping an eye on the water. I am starting to doubt the apI kit at this point. Should I buy another kit and another bottle of tss+? I have kept fish before and haven't had any deaths this soon. I'm still a novice so maybe I got lucky the first time? This is my second tank set up after the first died off after 4 yrs. Sorry you may have misread my post. I purchased a female betta labeled as a female koi betta due to the similarities in color not size.
 
Zigi Zig
  • #5
I have been testing my water and keep getting the same readings. It has been 9 days with tss+ and 3 fish died with only a .25ppm ammonia reading. Nitrites and nitrates are zero... Sorry you may have mis read I had purchased a female betta which was labeled as a female koi betta because of the coloring similar to a koi fish... thanks for the reply.
.25ppm ammonia reading is consider as stress for fish. There is possibilities fish that you purchased were in high quality water over time, the only safe level of ammonia is 0 parts per million(ppm). Even concentrations of just 2 ppm can cause fish to die in your tank.
 
Chris33
  • Thread Starter
  • #6
Thanks. I have been keeping an eye on the water. I am starting to doubt the apI kit at this point. Should I buy another kit and another bottle of tss+? I have kept fish before and haven't had any deaths this soon. I'm still a novice so maybe I got lucky the first time? This is my second tank set up after the first died off after 4 yrs. Sorry you may have misread my post. I purchased a female betta labeled as a female koi betta due to the similarities in color not size.
 
Zigi Zig
  • #7
Thanks. I have been keeping an eye on the water. I am starting to doubt the apI kit at this point. Should I buy another kit and another bottle of tss+? I have kept fish before and haven't had any deaths this soon. I'm still a novice so maybe I got lucky the first time? This is my second tank set up after the first died off after 4 yrs. Sorry you may have misread my post. I purchased a female betta labeled as a female koi betta due to the similarities in color not size.
You can try purchase another kit..
 
Chris33
  • Thread Starter
  • #8
I understand any ammonia and/or nitrites is harmful to fish. I suppose maybe the fish I purchased were not 100 percent. According to tetra the tss+ brings ammonia and nitrites to stress levels not death levels. I have 3 platy left and they are active and eating. I will continue to monitor the water.
 
Chris33
  • Thread Starter
  • #9
Thanks for your help
 
Zigi Zig
  • #10
I understand any ammonia and/or nitrites is harmful to fish. I suppose maybe the fish I purchased were not 100 percent. According to tetra the tss+ brings ammonia and nitrites to stress levels not death levels. I have 3 platy left and they are active and eating. I will continue to monitor the water.
What you need to is find out is when your LPS gets live stock I have learn is best to buy after two days when live fish arrive to store. for example my store gets new fish every Thursday and I won't buy any fish until Saturday..
 
Chris33
  • Thread Starter
  • #11
That makes a lot of sense. Unfortunately for me lfs is petco or petsmart... well I need to get this tank cycled and not lose anymore fish. I' not going to purchase anymore until I figure this problem out.
 
Chris33
  • Thread Starter
  • #12
Have you any suggestions on cycling with the 3 platy I have? Should I buy another bottle of tss+ or should I stick to prime and water changes and hope for the best?
 
AngelTheGypsy
  • #13
First off, the fish may or may not have been healthy. There also may have been a large difference in your water and the stores water, that may not have been noticed with a test kit (Mineral content, ph, etc.). So don't beat yourself up or blame yourself unnecessarily. Many fish that look healthy in the store don't always last when brought home, even by experienced fishkeepers. Many times they are stressed from being shipped, then caught and bagged, then added to your tank.
Second, there is probably nothing wrong with your test kit. Have you checked the expiration date? If it's close to expiring, try another one. If not, its probably not the kit.
Finally, when using TSS+, it is common to see it mess with your test readings. The bacteria is housed in an ammonium solution to keep it alive in the bottle. This of course will show as ammonia in your tests. That is to be expected. TSS+ works well when used as directed. The most effective way to use it (for a fish-in cycle) is to add the fish and the TSS+ at approximately the same time (within the same day is good). Stock your tank minimally (just a few fish, you may have added a few too many, but should be ok) and feed sparingly for 12-14 days. Don't do any water changes or test your water during this time, as water changes will remove the TSS+, and the test results will show ammonia (and possibly nitrite) and make you worry. At the 14 day mark, do a 50% water change and test your water; you should be cycled. I have tested the product in a 5 gal tank with a single betta, and I was cycled at 10 days. Others have claimed they weren't successful.
If you worry about your fish and need to test water, I suggest a different method. You could use water changes and time, or other bacterial supplement products. You could also do a fishless cycle (though not if you have fish...) or obtain cycled filter media if you know anyone who keeps fish.
I honestly think it may have simply been stress that killed your fish. Not only from the move, but also from the stcoking. Platys are also a somewhat messy fish, and may have had too big of a bioload starting out (though honestly I don't think that is the case). I would also be more careful when trying to mix bettas, even females, with other fish. They can be very territorial and harass interlopers to death. On the flip side, having the very active platys with the betta may have caused her distress.
Again, don't beat yourself up. I personally have done worse in my early days, and have since learned to do better, and am still learning.
And sorry for the novel!
 
AngelTheGypsy
  • #14
Have you any suggestions on cycling with the 3 platy I have? Should I buy another bottle of tss+ or should I stick to prime and water changes and hope for the best?

Just saw this post. Did you use Prime at the same time as the TSS+?
 
Chris33
  • Thread Starter
  • #15
Just saw this post. Did you use Prime at the same time as the TSS+?
Sorry I was replying to zigI zig... no I have not used prime. I used tetra aquasafe plus then waited 48 hrs to add tss+ then had the 5 platy and betta in the tank within 2 hrs. I was asking about using prime and water changes instead of relying on tss+. I had 2 platy and the betta die and didn' want to lose anymore.
 
Chris33
  • Thread Starter
  • #16
I just realized I made an error. I started on the 21st not the 14th. Will edit my original post. Sorry if I confused anyone.
 

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