Flowerhorn won't eat, won't poop, lethargic, stays to bottom of tank. Please help!!

Sophiah1234

Hi, my flowerhorn which I've had for almost two years (about 5-6 inches in a 70 gallon tank) suddenly stopped eating about 4 days ago. He won't leave the bottom of the tank, and just sits there. He hasn't pooped during this time. His coloring, which has always been vibrant red/orange, is now dulled (the two photos were taken one day apart).

I tested the water and added StressZyme+ (to populate with beneficial bacteria) and PraziPro. I even bought live fish for feed, but he won't touch it. I'm so concerned! Please advise if you've seen this before. Thank you!
 

Attachments

  • Screen Shot 2021-04-05 at 9.50.41 PM.png
    Screen Shot 2021-04-05 at 9.50.41 PM.png
    1,000.5 KB · Views: 35
  • IMG_1445.jpg
    IMG_1445.jpg
    160.2 KB · Views: 37

Kribensis27

Welcome to FishLore. AggressiveAquatics knows plenty about flowerhorns; maybe he can help. What are your water parameters?

I've heard that flowerhorns can be prone to constipation, but I don't have experience with them. I'll let someone more knowledgeable about these fish comment on that. I hope you can solve the issue!
 
Upvote 0

Sophiah1234

Thanks for the response! The temp is at 84*F, pH is 8.0. The nitrate is at 40, which I just realized upon retesting the water (was not this high two days ago when I tested at the store), so trying to fix that now. I read about potential constipation and how peas might help, but the poor thing refuses to eat anything, let alone peas.
 
Upvote 0

Sophiah1234

Yeah, I've removed the feeder fish because I didn't want them to bother my flower horn. I don't really ever feed him live fish.
 
Upvote 0

Kribensis27

Nitrate isn't harmful unless it reaches extremely high levels, so 40 is fine. Another thing that works well for constipation is frozen daphnia. It does mostly the same thing as a pea, but fish like flowerhorns generally like the taste better.

Completely missed the part about live feeder fish! Feeder fish can carry a huge array of parasites and diseases, and should generally be avoided unless heavily monitored and quarantined for at least a few weeks beforehand.
 
Upvote 0

Sophiah1234

I don't currently have daphnia, but will try to get my hands on it tomorrow. And noted about the feeder fish--I had no idea, and a friend who also loves raising fish suggested that as a way to spur my FH's appetite.

If it's not the nitrate, any thoughts what it might be? Maybe constipation as you suggested?
Also, thanks to everyone who has responded so far. I really appreciate it.
 
Upvote 0

Broggy

give it an epsom salt bath. not eating is a sign of internal parasites, but I can't be sure
 
Upvote 0

AggressiveAquatics

What are your ammonia and nitrite levels? Has he eaten any of the goldfish? Flowerhorns are very prone to digestion issues and live fish are really not recommended for them. The only live food I recommend feeding them is shrimp. He has some stress bars so that makes me think somethings off with your water when was your last water change and did you match the temperature? What I’d do for now until we can figure out what’s going on is turn the lights off in the tank to help him chill out a bit
A spreaded disease from the feeder goldfish is also very possible.
Here’s another theory though I doubt it. If your flowerhorn is only 5-6 inches in 2 years then he’s most likely a short bodied flowerhorn and those have a reduced lifespan by a lot. So while I doubt this is the case it might just be his short bodied genetics and there’s not really much you can do. That’s why I don’t recommend getting e short bodied type
 
Upvote 0

Sophiah1234

I don't have a way to test ammonia at home, but nitrite as of last night was 1. I last changed the water on Saturday (25%) and matched the temperature. I turned off the lights. I'm at work right now, but will try to change the water again today (25%) and add more PraziPro. I wish I could change the water now.

Will keep you all updated.
 
Upvote 0

Sophiah1234

Hi, so my flowerhorn is doing better now. He's swimming around again, but still won't eat for some reason. I've attached updated pictures--one is a super close up of the kok because it looks like the scales are "shedding"?? Is this normal/is this what's happening?

Happy that he's swimming, but still worried because he's not eating (it's been almost a week!), and the state of his kok. Any advice/insights?
 

Attachments

  • Screen Shot 2021-04-07 at 9.43.34 PM.png
    Screen Shot 2021-04-07 at 9.43.34 PM.png
    848.5 KB · Views: 16
  • Screen Shot 2021-04-07 at 9.42.58 PM.png
    Screen Shot 2021-04-07 at 9.42.58 PM.png
    1.2 MB · Views: 16
Upvote 0

Similar Aquarium Threads

Replies
7
Views
114
BigManAquatics
  • Question
60 Gallon Tank Help with my flowerhorn
Replies
2
Views
125
SDCAOFK
  • Question
Replies
4
Views
122
fernan1001
Replies
2
Views
2K
Kowko94
  • Question
Replies
7
Views
192
Alejandro
Top Bottom