guppies... just can't seem to keep them

Discussion in 'Guppy' started by guppygrl, Nov 28, 2012.

  1. guppygrlValued MemberMember

    my tank has been stable for week or so, and i decided to add some guppies.

    added five females from two different fish stores. i tested the water and it was still good after that. no ammonia.. no nitrites... nitrates good. now the females are dying. there are two that are doing ok.. two have died... one dropped some fry before she did... and one isn't looking good.

    the temp is at 78 ... is there anything special guppies need? i remember guppies being hearty fish but they don't seem to handle the move from the LFS to my tank. i acclimate them properly.

    any suggestions?

  2. Matt BWell Known MemberMember

    I'm not a guppy keeper myself but, how do you acclimate? Also, maybe ask the pet store what their ph is to see how far off yours is. Its generally easier for a fish to go from low to high ph.

  3. guppygrlValued MemberMember

    i put the bag into the tank for twenty minutes and then release them. the water never mixes.

    my area has very hard water and the LFS don't try to change that. my ph levels have always been on the high side.

    the swordtails and Molly's have had no issues and are doing great. just the guppies are having issues.

  4. aquaticValued MemberMember

    How long after you added the guppies did they die?
  5. guppygrlValued MemberMember

    one died the day after... the other two days after. i actually lost another one as well but her death was not mysterious. she had her tail almost completely nibbled off. she was found alive but with barely any tail left. she died later that day.

    maybe my other fish are just too aggressive. that's the only guppy tho with a death due to tail being nibbled off.. . perhaps she was sick and that's why she was picked on.

    it makes me sad when i lose fish... i just want to provide them a good home.
  6. aquaticValued MemberMember

    Your saying one had her tail eaten makes me wonder if the others may have been stressed to death by the other tank members.
  7. AlanGreeneWell Known MemberMember

    Put the bag in the water for 15 minutes, then add a small cup full of water from your tank water, into the LFS water bag with the fish in it every 5 minutes for 20 minutes (4 cups of water with a 5 minute gap between each) see if this helps acclimate them, good luck
  8. guppygrlValued MemberMember

    i am planning on a guppy only tank in February... it's too bad the Molly fish don't get along with the guppies. the swordtails keep to themselves too.

    i asked the LFS if the guppies and other fish would be okay together and they said they would be. :(

    thanks Alan.. . I'll try that next time. perhaps that is an issue.
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 28, 2012
  9. JessiNoel21Well Known MemberMember

    Unfortunately most LFS sell fish just to make a buck and do not know at all what well work with what it is a hard sad truth.
  10. jetajockeyFishlore VIPMember

    Guppies, mollies, and swordtails do generally get along. Guppies and mollies can even interbreed, although it is a rare event.

    That doesn't mean that every situation will work out the same, I've had some guppies that were insufferable, and some that are compatible with anything that won't eat them.

    The fish dying off sounds like some other issue. One of the first things to check is water quality, if you don't have elevated ammonia or nitrite readings then that may not be the issue, although it is usually the most common when this situation arises.

    Other possibilities, some sort of aerosol spray or cleaning agent got into the tank and is wiping the fish out. The tank may have a decoration or something that was dropped into it (I know my kids have done this) that could be leaching something toxic. The acclimation thing is a good point also.

    It can be hard to narrow down the cause of an issue, but just start with the basics and go from there.
  11. guppygrlValued MemberMember

    what other fish are good to have with guppies?
  12. kinezumi89Fishlore VIPMember

    You'll unfortunately learn that LFS employees are not trustworthy sources of information. But members here donate their time to answer people's questions, and are active because they like fish, not because they want to make money. :)

    I agree that you need to acclimate more gradually. Firstly, that may not even be enough time for the water to equalize. But more importantly, the parameters of your water and the store's water surely differ greatly, and the shock is probably too much for them. I drip acclimate, but if you don't want to go that route, I would definitely let them float for longer, and add small aliquots of tank water to the bag every 15-20 minutes or so. I usually don't drip acclimate snails; I float them for about half an hour, then add about 50mLs of tank water to the bag every so often. I'm sure you know, but be sure to not get any bag water into the tank, as it's surely laden with ammonia.

    As an aside, you may want to consider getting a few more cories once your tank is stable; they're social fish and would enjoy a few more friends. :)

    Edit: Most fish that are not aggresive, aren't too large, and share similar water requirements as guppies will get along fine. Small schooling fish like tetras or rasboras and other livebearers like platies and endlers should work. Also, fish like cories that don't interact with the guppies wouldn't be a problem.
  13. guppygrlValued MemberMember

    ok... really stupid newbie question... when i bring a bag home.. normally when I'm ready to get the fish out i cut off the knot they put at the top of the bag. how do you untie it to add water and then knot it back or is there a trick to doing this?

    i planned on more Cory fish on the weekend. i tried the guppies first. and wanted to wait a week before adding anything else. love my Cory fish!
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 28, 2012
  14. Matt BWell Known MemberMember

  15. oscarsbudWell Known MemberMember

    When I do it, I cut a small slit in the top of the bag by the knot (just big enough so I can easily add tank water to the bag), set the bag in the tank and use duct tape to tape the bag above the knot to the outside of the tank. Then I acclimate them for about 1/2 hr - 45 minutes, adding a little tank water every 5 minutes or so. I also put a couple drops of Prime in the bag. That's how I do it, but I'm sure there are better ways - it just works best for me.
  16. kinezumi89Fishlore VIPMember

    I untie the knot/remove the rubber band, and use a little bulldog clip (those black and silver ones, usually used for papers) to clip it to the side of the tank. Clothespins would do the same thing. No need to tie it back up if you make sure it's attached to the tank. :)

    Also, I would wait to add more cories until your tank settles down a bit.
  17. Moneypenny1967Valued MemberMember

    You can just undo the knot and put bag in tank,hanging the excess bag plastic over the edge.Close the tank lid over the plastic so it doesnt sink or move around tank.I'm assuming your tank has feeding lid,but if doesnt just use tape method as above.I usually add water to bag method after first 20 minutes.I add tank water every 15minutes for at least an hour.A big difference in PH could be harming them.I have never lost any fish this way.(so far,fingers crossed,knock on wood)
  18. guppygrlValued MemberMember

    thanks... very good ideas! i have duct tape.. a single moms best friend to fix stuff lol. i have lots of those clips too. i never would have thought of that before

    I'll keep that in mind and will wait to add more corys til things settle down. I'm trying so hard and appreciate all the advice. :)

    and yes my tank has a feeding lid so that would work as well.
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 28, 2012
  19. oscarsbudWell Known MemberMember

    Untying the knot is a much better idea. The reason I don't is because at both places I buy fish from, they tie them so tight, I usually can't untie them.
  20. TerraWell Known MemberMember

    I've never been able to undo the rubber bands my lfs uses lol. I cut the top off and drape the excess over the side and hold it with the lid. I use my medicine dropper I dose prime and ferts with to add 5mL (full dropper) of tank water to the bag immediately, and again every 5-10 mins until the bag is full, then scoop em out and put em in the tank.

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