HELP! Fish Death After Water Change

yukiyamallama
Member
HELP! Two of my ember tetras died just hours after I did an 80% water change. I tested the water but everything is fine. I checked some articles online and they say it may be due to stress...I am thinking it is because they always get spooked when I do even a 10% water changed. What went wrong?
 
StarGirl
Member
How often do you do water changes?
 
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yukiyamallama
Member
StarGirl said:
How often do you do water changes?
This week 3 times. Because Im having algae problems and everytime I look up how to fight it, they suggest making the water quality better by changing the water. But what's different is that I usually do 30%. I decided 80 percent today because I was gonna do a blackout on my tank for 3 days so I scrubbed of every algae I can including on the plants.
 
SanDiegoRedneck
Member
yukiyamallama said:
This week 3 times. Because Im having algae problems and everytime I look up how to fight it, they suggest making the water quality better by changing the water. But what's different is that I usually do 30%. I decided 80 percent today because I was gonna do a blackout on my tank for 3 days so I scrubbed of every algae I can including on the plants.
How bad was algae? Personally I don't mind a little algae. Helps the whole process of life if not out of control.

Did you maybe forget the declorinator?
Or with 80% change do you know the difference in ph of your tap and tank? Could be ph shock or temp shock. 80% is alot if not very close peremetirs

I feel like some people over clean tanks because they fear ANY algae is bad and in turn hurt beneficial bacteria.

Fyi my shrimp tanks I never clean algae it's all over

Yes 3 waterchanges in a week will ad stress but not kill them if done correctly.
 
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yukiyamallama
Member
SanDiegoRedneck said:
How bad was algae? Personally I don't mind a little algae. Helps the whole process of life if not out of control.

Did you maybe forget the declorinator?
Or with 80% change do you know the difference in ph of your tap and tank? Could be ph shock or temp shock. 80% is alot if not very close peremetirs

I feel like some people over clean tanks because they fear ANY algae is bad and in turn hurt beneficial bacteria.

Yes 3 waterchanges in a week will ad stress but not kill them if done correctly.
The algae was I would say 7/10 (10 being worst). It started growing on the plants and covering its leaves almost completely. I placed dechlorinator before adding the water. The water I use comes from the same tap I've been using for my other tanks and it has no heaters so the water that comes out is always the same temp at around 28 degrees Celsius. The tank doesn't have a heater also because my country is very hot and the tank will remain a 28-30 degrees celsius everyday.
 
Wrench
Member
yukiyamallama said:
The algae was I would say 7/10 (10 being worst). It started growing on the plants and covering its leaves almost completely. I placed dechlorinator before adding the water. The water I use comes from the same tap I've been using for my other tanks and it has no heaters so the water that comes out is always the same temp at around 28 degrees Celsius. The tank doesn't have a heater also because my country is very hot and the tank will remain a 28-30 degrees celsius everyday.
3 times a week is excessively stressful I feel and also over algae, why not buy a pleco or some snails instead and let it be a natural habitat that they can maintain as well as you.
My 135 gallon tank is outside...in direct sun for over 3.5 hours, which I like because it helps the tank hold temperature through the night and only fluctuates 3°, I have a bit of algae on the front part of the tank and the right side but the snails and 2 plecos are constantly fed and the algae is becoming less and less over time because of the stocking choices.
My 28 gallon has white hair algae as well and my snails and a.d.f.s nibble on that too.
Algae gets a bad rap in my opinion. I think it is a good thing and completes a true eco system.
 
AquEric
Member
Do you have any snails I keep nerites and they leave my plants alone I also keep black
 
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yukiyamallama
Member
Wrench said:
3 times a week is excessively stressful I feel and also over algae, why not buy a pleco or some snails instead and let it be a natural habitat that they can maintain as well as you.
My 135 gallon tank is outside...in direct sun for over 3.5 hours, which I like because it helps the tank hold temperature through the night and only fluctuates 3°, I have a bit of algae on the front part of the tank and the right side but the snails and 2 plecos are constantly fed and the algae is becoming less and less over time because of the stocking choices.
My 28 gallon has white hair algae as well and my snails and a.d.f.s nibble on that too.
Algae gets a bad rap in my opinion. I think it is a good thing and completes a true eco system.
MMm i see. I guess I stressed them out too much. I had 10 shrimps in the tank but the algae was just too much for them. I always tried to get rid of algae because in my last tank I let the algae be, only scraped the glass, and the algae hardened the leaves of the plants and I had to trim and replant them
 
AquEric
Member
AquEric said:
Do you have any snails I keep nerites and they leave my plants alone I also keep black
Sorry black mollys they love algae
 
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yukiyamallama
Member
AquEric said:
Do you have any snails I keep nerites and they leave my plants alone I also keep black
Yes, but they are pest snails. Not a lot though...the other algae eaters would be my 10 red cherry shrimps. The algae was just growing too fast. Despite me cutting the light hours to 5-6 hours a day.
 
StarGirl
Member
I would say up your weekly water change to 50%. There may just be too many nutrients the algae like built up.
 
Wrench
Member
yukiyamallama said:
MMm i see. I guess I stressed them out too much. I had 10 shrimps in the tank but the algae was just too much for them. I always tried to get rid of algae because in my last tank I let the algae be, only scraped the glass, and the algae hardened the leaves of the plants and I had to trim and replant them
Get mystery snails or 1 apple snail, StarGirl schooled me about my "large" mystery snails and they are in fact apple snails,they are fast and clean and eat algae like a machine...at least mine do.
I think they also bred as well because I have seen 4 or 5 super super small snails recently and got very excited!
 
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yukiyamallama
Member
Ahh okok i see. Well honestly im not gonna be surprised if more ember tetras die, I guess I learned this the hard way...I can't do much at this point. Ill just check back tomorrow
 
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yukiyamallama
Member
Wrench said:
Get mystery snails or 1 apple snail, StarGirl schooled me about my "large" mystery snails and they are in fact apple snails,they are fast and clean and eat algae like a machine...at least mine do.
I think they also need as well because I have seen 4 or 5 super super small snails recently and got very excited!
Sadly they are not available in me part of the country...They mostly sell Nerites. I tried reaching out to sellers for Amano shrimps but none have replied back yet. Do those clean hair algae?
 
AquEric
Member
yukiyamallama said:
Yes, but they are pest snails. Not a lot though...the other algae eaters would be my 10 red cherry shrimps. The algae was just growing too fast. Despite me cutting the light hours to 5-6 hours a day.
Try a few black mollys I keep two in my 55s they do wonders for it maybe you would not have to change so much water 80% is a lot
 
Wrench
Member
yukiyamallama said:
Sadly they are not available in me part of the country...They mostly sell Nerites. I tried reaching out to sellers for Amano shrimps but none have replied back yet
Then get some nerites and a bristlenose pleco.
The algae will dwindle and you will have a few things in the tank you do not have to worry about catering too at feeding time.
 
Wrench
Member
AquEric said:
Try a few black mollys I keep two in my 55s they do wonders for it maybe you would not have to change so much water 80% is a lot
Really? Molly's eat algae????? I did not know this.
 
StarGirl
Member
Wrench said:
Get mystery snails or 1 apple snail, StarGirl schooled me about my "large" mystery snails and they are in fact apple snails,they are fast and clean and eat algae like a machine...at least mine do.
I think they also bred as well because I have seen 4 or 5 super super small snails recently and got very excited!
You forgot to add when the algae is gone apple snails will eat your plants too. Lol
 
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yukiyamallama
Member
AquEric said:
Try a few black mollys I keep two in my 55s they do wonders for it maybe you would not have to change so much water 80% is a lot
definitely taking that into account, thanks!
 
AquEric
Member
yukiyamallama said:
definitely taking that into account, thanks!
I have zebra nerites they don't touch my live plants
 
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yukiyamallama
Member
AquEric said:
I have zebra nerites they don't touch my live plants
they don't eat algae on plants?
 
Wrench
Member
StarGirl said:
You forgot to add when the algae is gone apple snails will eat your plants too. Lol
Yeah yeah hahahaha, sooooooo.....I just looked up their full size, 6in in diameter.....girl holding one in a pic with both hands. Why do I like all my creatures to be big????
I'm gonna have to sell my 2 smaller tanks and get a 400 gallon or something because I'm just being ridiculous at this point lol.
Tax return time I'll be hunting for a bigger set up
 
AquEric
Member
  • Thread Starter
yukiyamallama
Member
AquEric said:
Yes they eat the algae just not plants I keep bacopa,willow hygro and Java fern
ohhh okok noted
 
Kjeldsen
Member
Some fish can tolerate large water changes better than others, but Tetras aren't one of them.

Fish that that are relatively resistant to environmental fluctuations: (from Noga's Fish Disease..)

Goldfish, Koi
Guppies and mollies (Poecilia spp.)
Platies and swordtails (Xiphophorus spp.)
Zebrafish, Danios (Danio spp.)
Kissing gouramies, Bettas
Oscar, Jewel, Firemouth & similar SA cichlids.
Pacu
Ctenopoma

Note: no Tetras, African cichlids, Corydoras, Plecos, Barbs, Loaches, Rasboras, Rainbows, etc. made the list.
 
  • Thread Starter
yukiyamallama
Member
Kjeldsen said:
Some fish can tolerate large water changes better than others, but Tetras aren't one of them.

Fish that that are relatively resistant to environmental fluctuations: (from Noga's Fish Disease..)

Goldfish, Koi
Guppies and mollies (Poecilia spp.)
Platies and swordtails (Xiphophorus spp.)
Zebrafish, Danios (Danio spp.)
Kissing gouramies, Bettas
Oscar, Jewel, Firemouth & similar SA cichlids.
Pacu
Ctenopoma

Note: no Tetras, African cichlids, Corydoras, Plecos, Barbs, Loaches, Rasboras, Rainbows, etc. made the list.
Oh no...No wonder my gourami and danios survived on the other tank I did 50% water change. Thank you for this, noted.
 
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yukiyamallama
Member
Just wondering also will my shrimps survive?? Red cherries...They were in the 80% water changed tank, and I read some shrimps to be quite sensitive, but neocardinia to be hardier compared to others
 
SanDiegoRedneck
Member
yukiyamallama said:
Sadly they are not available in me part of the country...They mostly sell Nerites. I tried reaching out to sellers for Amano shrimps but none have replied back yet. Do those clean hair algae?
My tanks all have "pest" snails. They seem to live better than mystery or nerite for me although I do have all 3.

I don't consider them a pest I quite enjoy them. And I know if they get a baby boom I have something off in my tank. Ie. too much food.
 
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yukiyamallama
Member
SanDiegoRedneck said:
My tanks all have "pest" snails. They seem to live better than mystery or nerite for me although I do have all 3.

I don't consider them a pest I quite enjoy them. And I know if they get a baby boom I have something off in my tank. Ie. too much food.
I used to get rid of all of them but I let them be now...They breed like crazy I think I found new eggs again
 
SanDiegoRedneck
Member
yukiyamallama said:
I used to get rid of all of them but I let them be now...They breed like crazy I think I found new eggs again
Breed like crazy depends on your opinion of crazy. All my tanks have some eggs in them. But none have 100's of snails. Like 10 to 30 depending on tank size. To me this is perfect. If I see like 50 in a 10gal I know something is off.
 
SanDiegoRedneck
Member
yukiyamallama said:
I used to get rid of all of them but I let them be now...They breed like crazy I think I found new eggs again
Ps here is a cluster of eggs in my tangerine tiger shrimp tank. I love these new shrimp but I'm not going to touch their tank. Because to me snails in non excessive amount are very helpful
 
AvalancheDave
Member
How fast did you refill?

Speed kills.

I drain the water down until their dorsal fins are in the air then start refilling. But I refill slowly especially at first because the low volume of water in the tank at the start means parameters are more unstable. As the tank gets fuller I increase the refilling rate. It can take several hours but it's almost completely automated.
 
  • Thread Starter
yukiyamallama
Member
AvalancheDave said:
How fast did you refill?

Speed kills.

I drain the water down until their dorsal fins are in the air then start refilling. But I refill slowly especially at first because the low volume of water in the tank at the start means parameters are more unstable. As the tank gets fuller I increase the refilling rate. It can take several hours but it's almost completely automated.
I slowly poured around 3 cups every 2-3 minutes....sounds bad. This was at a consistent rate too
 
bsimon615
Member
In a tank with tetras I believe 3 times a week is excessive. With your last water change being 80% you pushed your delicate fish over the edge.

When I started back in the hobby about 18 months ago after being away from it for about 13 years (I had kept and bred fish for 33 years before the break) I became more concerned about water chemistry and water changes. My first tank back into the hobby was my 16 gallon Aqueon. It is basically has a front surface like a 29 gallon but 2 inches shorter and only 8 inches wide, hence 16 gallons. This tank is my small fish tank - neons, black neons, rummy nose, otocinclus, pygmy gouramis and some rams. My goal was to have soft water and a pH in the low 6 range with a temperature between 78 Fahrenheit and 80. Our tap water is at a pH of about 8 and the water is relatively hard so it needs to be treated. I used Seachem Prime to pretreat any tap water before it goes into the tank. I would adjust the tap to get the water to the temperature I wanted before I would fill buckets and treat the water. I started using API Water Softener Pillows to lower the hardness of the water.

Eventually I switched to bottled artesian well water for this particular tank which is soft and has low pH just above 6.0. I have this tank on a weekly water change cycle and I use a vacuum siphon to really pull the dirt out of the pea gravel substrate. I siphon off 3 gallons and replace it with the artesian well water. You would think that this is about a 19% water change in a 16 gallon tank, but an average gravel depth of fairly small gravel takes up tank volume and a fairly massive piece of driftwood also gobbles up volume so I calculate that the tank given that the tank bottom is lifted above the absolute bottom of the frame and the water surface is below the absolute top of the tank, there is only about 13.5 gallons of water in this tank when full. Accordingly my water change is 3/13.5 or about 22%. This has kept the pH, gH, kH, ammonia and nitrate levels pretty steady.

Regarding the algae problem - softer water and less light will help. Floating surface plants will help. Otocinclus will help, bristlenose plecostomus will do a great job if they are compatible with what you have in the tank. If hair algae is or becomes a problem, siamese algae eaters, particularly when small, like that. As others have said, snails work too. Certain fish will eat the baby snails so your tank will not become overrun with snails. There is a lot you can do. Personally I would stay away from the massive water changes and I would pretreat fresh water before it goes into the tank if it is chlorinated and I would adjust it's temperature and pH if necessary. A large temperature difference with a big water change almost guarantees that you will have an ich issue with your fish.

Best of luck, keep notes and stay away from huge water changes with delicate fish.

Barry Simon
 
  • Thread Starter
yukiyamallama
Member
bsimon615 said:
In a tank with tetras I believe 3 times a week is excessive. With your last water change being 80% you pushed your delicate fish over the edge.

When I started back in the hobby about 18 months ago after being away from it for about 13 years (I had kept and bred fish for 33 years before the break) I became more concerned about water chemistry and water changes. My first tank back into the hobby was my 16 gallon Aqueon. It is basically has a front surface like a 29 gallon but 2 inches shorter and only 8 inches wide, hence 16 gallons. This tank is my small fish tank - neons, black neons, rummy nose, otocinclus, pygmy gouramis and some rams. My goal was to have soft water and a pH in the low 6 range with a temperature between 78 Fahrenheit and 80. Our tap water is at a pH of about 8 and the water is relatively hard so it needs to be treated. I used Seachem Prime to pretreat any tap water before it goes into the tank. I would adjust the tap to get the water to the temperature I wanted before I would fill buckets and treat the water. I started using API Water Softener Pillows to lower the hardness of the water.

Eventually I switched to bottled artesian well water for this particular tank which is soft and has low pH just above 6.0. I have this tank on a weekly water change cycle and I use a vacuum siphon to really pull the dirt out of the pea gravel substrate. I siphon off 3 gallons and replace it with the artesian well water. You would think that this is about a 19% water change in a 16 gallon tank, but an average gravel depth of fairly small gravel takes up tank volume and a fairly massive piece of driftwood also gobbles up volume so I calculate that the tank given that the tank bottom is lifted above the absolute bottom of the frame and the water surface is below the absolute top of the tank, there is only about 13.5 gallons of water in this tank when full. Accordingly my water change is 3/13.5 or about 22%. This has kept the pH, gH, kH, ammonia and nitrate levels pretty steady.

Regarding the algae problem - softer water and less light will help. Floating surface plants will help. Otocinclus will help, bristlenose plecostomus will do a great job if they are compatible with what you have in the tank. If hair algae is or becomes a problem, siamese algae eaters, particularly when small, like that. As others have said, snails work too. Certain fish will eat the baby snails so your tank will not become overrun with snails. There is a lot you can do. Personally I would stay away from the massive water changes and I would pretreat fresh water before it goes into the tank if it is chlorinated and I would adjust it's temperature and pH if necessary. A large temperature difference with a big water change almost guarantees that you will have an ich issue with your fish.

Best of luck, keep notes and stay away from huge water changes with delicate fish.

Barry Simon
Thank you very much sir! Noted.
 
  • Thread Starter
yukiyamallama
Member
Does anybody suggest I continue my plan to blackout my tank for three days (Turn off light for 3 days, I won't cover the tank because its already in a dark pot in the room)? Or should I just do 5-6 hours light for now?
 
StarGirl
Member
yukiyamallama said:
Does anybody suggest I continue my plan to blackout my tank for three days (Turn off light for 3 days, I won't cover the tank because its already in a dark pot in the room)? Or should I just do 5-6 hours light for now?
I would just do the reduced hours.
 
SanDiegoRedneck
Member
yukiyamallama said:
Does anybody suggest I continue my plan to blackout my tank for three days (Turn off light for 3 days, I won't cover the tank because its already in a dark pot in the room)? Or should I just do 5-6 hours light for now?
If worried about algae and your running 6hrs already. And it is as bad as you say.
Pic?
Then blackout will only help for a day or two and as soon as you go back to your regular schedule your algae will come back.

For reference here are some of my plants w algae.

My personal opinion not an issue at this level.

Does your tank get light from window?
 
AvalancheDave
Member
yukiyamallama said:
I slowly poured around 3 cups every 2-3 minutes....sounds bad. This was at a consistent rate too
How big is your tank? If there was a large parameter difference and your tank is small then that may still be too fast.
 
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yukiyamallama
Member
SanDiegoRedneck said:
If worried about algae and your running 6hrs already. And it is as bad as you say.
Pic?
Then blackout will only help for a day or two and as soon as you go back to your regular schedule your algae will come back.

For reference here are some of my plants w algae.

My personal opinion not an issue at this level.

Does your tank get light from window?
It looks like the first pic (but the hair algae is darker green) + another kind of algae not sure the name but its quite dark in color and it gets hard...And no it doesn't get any sunlight I made sure to place my tanks nowhere near the sun can reach because that's just what I've been seeing online...(Ill send a pic tomorrow if I can because rn its night time so lights r off I don't want to spook my tetras
 
Wrench
Member
AvalancheDave said:
How fast did you refill?

Speed kills.

I drain the water down until their dorsal fins are in the air then start refilling. But I refill slowly especially at first because the low volume of water in the tank at the start means parameters are more unstable. As the tank gets fuller I increase the refilling rate. It can take several hours but it's almost completely automated.
I siphon pump all my tanks, I'm about to drain the 135 gallon, gonna pull 50 % , I live in a warm climate so I am able to get away with running the garden hose into the tank(tank is also outside) and I fill it back up very slowly and add my prime right underneath the hose flow to break it up.
I also have been cheating and filling the tank while siphoning from the bottom and was wondering in your opinion if this is acceptable?
Draw from the bottom while the top fills I have the draw rate much faster then the fill rate but am not sure if I should do it this way again?

StarGirl said:
Planted tanks are never going to look pristine like a fake plant tank.
Can you double agree on comments or is that not a thing yet?
 
  • Thread Starter
yukiyamallama
Member
AvalancheDave said:
How big is your tank? If there was a large parameter difference and your tank is small then that may still be too fast.
its an 8 gallon...probably too fast?
 
SanDiegoRedneck
Member
AvalancheDave said:
How big is your tank? If there was a large parameter difference and your tank is small then that may still be too fast.
yukiyamallama said:
It looks like the first pic (but the hair algae is darker green) + another kind of algae not sure the name but its quite dark in color and it gets hard...And no it doesn't get any sunlight I made sure to place my tanks nowhere near the sun can reach because that's just what I've been seeing online...(Ill send a pic tomorrow if I can because rn its night time so lights r off I don't want to spook my tetras
For me if your tank is big enough get a bristlenose. I love them.

Or just snails. I think you were so worried about a little algae not realizing that in ok amounts its actually part of the Benificial bacteria.

I also like how it looks natural like in a lake or river there would be a little algae around on plants
 
AvalancheDave
Member
yukiyamallama said:
its an 8 gallon...probably too fast?
It could be, especially if the water wasn't the same temperature. It can take quite a while for water to cool down or warm up.
 
bsimon615
Member
I siphon pump all my tanks, I'm about to drain the 135 gallon, gonna pull 50 % , I live in a warm climate so I am able to get away with running the garden hose into the tank(tank is also outside) and I fill it back up very slowly and add my prime right underneath the hose flow to break it up.
I also have been cheating and filling the tank while siphoning from the bottom and was wondering in your opinion if this is acceptable?
Draw from the bottom while the top fills I have the draw rate much faster then the fill rate but am not sure if I should do it this way again?

My question here with siphoning and filling at the same time - how do you calculate how much is going in and how much is coming out? Certainly if you have containers of known capacity you will know how much is removed from your tank but some coming out while new water is going in is also removing some of the new water. At one time back in the late 70's to early 80's I had what I believe was called an Automatic Water Changer. It fastened on the top frame of the aquarium much like the none submersible heaters of the day were attached. The device had a small built in jet that shot water into the tank via a small diameter tube that was connected to the water source. Under the jet was a siphon that would pull water from the surface. The siphon was completely under water but close to the top of the tank. It had a screen on it to prevent small fish from being sucked in. It was built in such a way to (theoretically) take out just as much as it put in. You could calculate how much it put in by diverting the input jet into a bucket of known volume to calculate the fill rate.

In practice I found that it did not always work correctly and I overfilled a tank at least a few times. Additionally it had no way to pretreat the water. Good in theory but poor in practice.

Barry Simon
 

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