Fish Keeps Dying

Discussion in 'Freshwater Beginners' started by Jaws original, Jun 18, 2019.

  1. Jaws originalValued MemberMember

    Hi there its been a while since being on here but i now need some help lol. I have a 190l tank with a large rock, tree lump and a few plants.

    I have a varied variety of fish in the tank and they are as follows:

    Wrestling halfbeak (had 4 now only 3)
    Long finned leopard danios (had 8 now 6
    Dwarf neon blue gouarmi x4
    Red dwarf gouarmi (had 5 now 4)
    Silver sharks x2
    Bumblebee gobi (had 4 now 3for now lol)
    Yoyo loach x2
    Angle fish x2
    Panda corydoras x4
    A strippy black and white catfish
    Kuhli loach had 6 ( dont know if there dead yet as they are buried under gravel since day 1)
    Upside down catfish
    German blue rams (had 4 now 1)

    Water parameters

    Ammonia 0.25 (seacham pure being used to detoxify the ammonia)
    Nitrites 0
    Nitrates 0
    Ph 7.4+ (x2 indian almond leaves to lower ph)
    Hardness ?


    Fluval 406 filter system
    Eden 501 gravel cleaner
    White and blue led lights
    Aps 300 air pump x2 air stones across the back


    Seacham prime
    Api leaf zone (to help with plant growth)
    Api masters water test kit

    Now the problem is that we have been having a few fishes die in the last few days but there is only 1 death a day. I cant see any obvious infections on any if the fish and the fish are not fighting so im not putting it down to stress. I dont know whats going on in my tank

    Oh and obviously a heater so water temp is between 24-28 d/c
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 18, 2019
  2. Magicpenny75Well Known MemberMember

    I am sorry you are having trouble. It seems like your tank is overstocked. Even by the totally outdated "inch per gallon" rule (which is complete garbage) and leaving out the potentially missing kuhli loaches, and being conservative assuming that your angels are only a couple of inches long and giving 2 inches per gourami, you're already over. (190L = ~50 US Gallons so no one else has to convert)
    What is your water change routine like? Your overstocking is probably the reason for the ammonia. How long has the tank been set up? If it is new, your filter may not have had time to catch up to your bioload. I would start with lots of water changes and monitor your parameters closely. I would also consider rehoming or relocating some of the fish. Ammonia should be zero, and that can definitely put a burden on your fish. Stress isn't always just from harassment.
    Your angels have the potential to grow up to 5-6" each. A pair of angels and half of the fish that you have listed would be full in a tank that size. I hope it doesn't sound like I'm attacking you - it's early here, and my mental filter hasn't had enough coffee yet. I am glad you came here for help. We want to help :)
  3. Guppygirl88Valued MemberMember

    How often and how much water do you change? That is alot of fish for 50 g - is there a reason you need to acidify the water ? I am not familiar with the Halfbeaks but most of what you have in there (except that last little ram) would probably do just fine in a regular ph. When you start messing with water acidity (i'm no chemist) your water quality can get all wonky because you have to adjust all the other parameters to accomodate the acidity.
    Do a water change- if it was me I'd do at least a 50 percent then,and this is good news, you might have to get another tank for some of the fish you need to move. The ammonia needs to zero out or you'll keep losing fish.
  4. Jaws originalValued MemberMember

    My water has a very ph from the tap so i use almond leaves to bring it down abit. The tank gets a water change about once a month and is about 2 month old. The filter system is built for a much larger tank so the tank isnt over filled. There is plenty of room in the tank.
  5. CichlidudeWell Known MemberMember

    I'm going to go out on a limb here and ask how you cycled your tank before putting any fish in. That process takes 3-8 weeks to complete before fish can be added. How long after you started your tank did you add fish? What is in the filter for media?
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2019
  6. Jaws originalValued MemberMember

    It was a already used filter so the bacteria was there already but i didnt put fish in the tank untill a week or 2 later once the water parameters were met. Just so you kniw this isnt my first tank so i am aware of the nts lol

    And it has a 4 stage filter system if you want to find it its called a fluval 406 filter
  7. mattgirlFishlore VIPMember

    I am sorry to be so blunt but I have to say this is the reason your fish keep dying. If you only do a water change once a month with that many fish in this 50 gallon tank these fish are living and suffering in their own filth. With that many fish a 50% or more water change needs to be done every week not once a month or so.

    I wouldn't have been this blunt but you said yourself that this isn't your first tank leading me to believe you are not new to having an aquarium.
  8. Jaws originalValued MemberMember

    If the tank was that filthy then why are the reading fine (apart from ammonia which is a little high lol) and the advise i got was to do a water change once a month. And that was by a reputable source. Yes i had a fish tank before but this is a very unusual thing i am experiancing. I syphon the water out reguraly so no fish poo is visible and i keep a eye on the peramators very closely. I have been told that the amount of fish i have is fine and my filter could handle it easily
  9. loner556Valued MemberMember

    Was the used filter freshly used as in pulled from a running cycled tank or had it been setting for a while?
  10. mattgirlFishlore VIPMember

    There are things in the water that we don't test for that are remove with regular water changes.. If you trust what you were told by a reputable source then whatever we say won't be believed. Hopefully you have an open mind and can consider we that have been doing this for a very long time can be pretty reputable too.

    I guess I am confused. You say you do water change once a month or so and then you say you siphon the water out regularly. I am also wondering why you have no nitrates in this tank 'specially since you don't do regular water changes to remove them. I would love to know how you have accomplished this. Normally a fully cycled tank will have 0 ammonia, 0 nitrites and at least some nitrates.

    My tanks are crystal clear and look very clean but I still do no less than 30% water changes on my bigger tank each and every week and 50% once a month. The smaller tanks get no less than 50% water changes each week but often I change out 75% of the water in 10 gallon and under tanks each week. This is just me though. Everyone has to decide what is needed to keep their fish healthy. If fish are dying it is normally a water condition problem if there is no sign of disease.
  11. Magicpenny75Well Known MemberMember

    Ammonia would not be present in a cycled tank, and nitrates would. So your readings aren't really fine. Lots of fish stores and lots of people give bad advice. If your filter was properly seeded and able to manage the bioload in your tank, you would have no ammonia. Nitrates are the natural result of the biological process, and should be present at some level in a fully cycled tank, especially if it's only getting monthly water changes.
    How much water do you change monthly, as in a percentage of your tank?
    If you've had the tank cycled for one month and stocked it all at once, odds are that your filter hasn't caught up with it. It doesn't matter if you have a filter for 150 gallons, if there is no or not enough beneficial bacteria colony present, then you will still get ammonia. If you put all twenty-something fish into your tank within the last two months, there's your trouble.
    When you syphon off the fish poo, how often are you doing that? If you're pulling five gallons of water off each time you do it, that counts as a water change too.
    Whoever told you that amount of fish was fine in 50 gallons is really misinformed. I have a seventy five gallon tank (280L+) with 2 angels, seven rainbows, seven teras, and a bristlenose pleco, which by most measures is close to overstocked. There is more to stcking levels than filtration capacity, there is also oxygen and carbon dioxide exchange at the surface, which is limited by surface area. i.e you can't put the same number of fish in a 20 High as in a 20 long, just by virtue of surface area. Is that a possibility? Are any of your fish hanging out at the surface? We're trying to help you figure out what is wrong... please consider that the advice of experienced hobbyists is also a reliable source.
  12. VibsNew MemberMember

    Over stocking is one problem.. monthly water change is the other.. if you want those many fish in that tank then you need to do a minimum 50% water change every third day while siphoning the gravel each third time.. so that's 10 water changes a month.. if you have the python or are using the correct siphoning technique it's an effortless 15 minute job each time..
  13. jjohnwmWell Known MemberMember

    You have one "reliable" source telling you that your stocking and water-change regimen is fine. Does this source by any coincidence sell you fish and supplies?

    Here on Fishlore you have a half-dozen absolutely reliable sources, showing 10+ years of experience each, all telling you the same thing, i.e. you have too many fish and are changing too little water too infrequently. None of those people stand to gain in a financial sense from your predicament. They are simply trying to help.

    Do the math.
  14. DechiValued MemberMember

    I have the same size tank as you, and mine is still cycling also. It’s 22 days old. It has 3 amano shrimps, 4 neon tetras, 4 rosey tetras, 2 otocinclus, 1 siamese algae eater and 1 nerite snail that have been slowly added. I’m doing a fish-in cycle and ideally I wouldn’t have added that many fish, but I had algeas and needed a cleaning crew (otos, nerite snail, siamensis, shrimps).

    Like you, I have a little bit of ammonia sometimes (0,25ppm), and sometimes nitrites (0,25ppm). My nitrates are between 5-10 ppm.

    My regular water change schedule is 50% every 4 days, but when there is presence of ammonia and/or nitrites, the change is immediate, no matter when I did the last one. Because of that the last two weeks I’ve done my water change every 3 days. I will keep doing this until stability is achieved, hopefully within the next 4 weeks.

    Like everyone else said, I think you have way too many fish and you don’t do water changes nearly enough. This is basic stuff, if anyone else is saying otherwise, stay clear...
  15. VibsNew MemberMember

    I think.. a lot of people like to keep all the fishes they can lay their hands on in one tank.. at least for the first couple of years .. it is only after learning from such forums and losing out on fish that some of us learn the right way to go about it.. so while some learn the art of stocking the right number of fish in that one tank, others go ahead and fall prey to the multiple tank syndrome.. but eventually everyone learns..
  16. RHONDA PIMENTELValued MemberMember

    If your tank has been up for 2mnths? And you did a water change this month?? You have only changed the water once??? And your actually only in the middle of the cycling process, with wayyyy too many creatures. Just imo.
  17. Jaws originalValued MemberMember

    Ok thank you to everyone that has given advice. I am not arguing against any of it and i am taking it in. I am doing more regular water changes now once a week with a 25% water change. I also regularly do a gravel clean using my pump gravel cleaner which puts the water back into the tank (cycled through another sponge. In one pipe and out of another back into the tank hoping to save on water lol) the fish have stopped dying since the angels got taken back to the shop as they both harshly attacked a half beak almost eating him hole (the poor bugger died the next day ) but no more fish have died.

    As for where i get my info from yes it is from where i by the fish from but he also has aquariums at his house. I do appreciate all advice given and not just from 1 source. That is why i come on here aswell as i know alot of you are very experianced.

    Now as an update i now have less fish in the tank due to the angels being bullies lol but my readings as from this morning are as follows.

    Ammonia : 0.5
    Nitrite : 0
    Nitrate 0

    Tap water test shows 0 for all 3 tests so im not sure whats happening and i would like to understand why i am only getting ammonia and nothing else. Surely after 2 months there would be signs of both nitrite and nitrate in my tank but i am reading 0 for both tests. Could it be that my fluval 406 filter is converting both nitrites and nitrates quicker then the ammonia.

    All my fishes look healthy with no signs of ammonia poisining around there gills.
    This is why im so confused lol if i had that much ammonia in the tank surely the fishes would show signs of the ammonia effecting them.

    If you have any ideas please i would like to hear them


    As you can see from the pictures the all fishes that you can see ( which is most of them ) are happy and healthy. They get fed every other day with no food left over.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 28, 2019
  18. DechiValued MemberMember

    With such ammonia, I would do a 50% change right away.

    Have you ever had nitrites and nitrates ? If not, then your cycle is just starting.

    I just finished my cycle, it took 30 days and 8x 50% water changes, besides all the other precautions.

    Do your WC as soon as you can.
  19. Jaws originalValued MemberMember

    No never had them but isnt that unusual for a 2 month old tank for the cycle to just get started with fish in it?
  20. DechiValued MemberMember

    It does sound a little odd. What test kit are you using ?