Help Fish Dying In Tank constantly

Ethanol95

Hi All, need some advice here.

I've got a 5 gallon tank that's just finished cycling and my guppies are still dropping like flies everyday. I can't pinpoint what it might be. Regular testing has been fine, and after another died overnight, this morning i measure water parameters and results are PH - 7.2, Ammonia - 0ppm, Nitrite - 0ppm, Nitrate - 0ppm. I don't usually test PH, but cause all other parameters was okay, i wanted to check that PH did not drastically change.

I've lost 1 pleco and 2 guppy fry recently. All one day apart. I'm not sure what is happening to my tank. These fish that died, have been in here for weeks, so i'm scratching my head wondering what is off.

245078766_2802274756732023_5686116251516966272_n.jpg
 

Ethanol95

Go ahead and fill out the template to give us a bit more information so we can get a better feel of what's happening.
Aquatic Emergency Template | Freshwater Fish Disease and Fish Health Forum | 376562
Tank
What is the water volume of the tank? roughly 5 gallons
How long has the tank been running? since 09th Sept
Does it have a filter? Yes, sponge filter
Does it have a heater? no, living in tropical climate year round
What is the water temperature? room temperature
What is the entire stocking of this tank? (Please list all fish and inverts.)
Used to be 3 plecos, and probably about 15 guppies and 10 fry

Maintenance
How often do you change the water? every 3-5 days
How much of the water do you change? 30%
What do you use to treat your water? Ocean Free New Water guard
Do you vacuum the substrate or just the water? Bare Bottom tank, only vacuuming water and debris.

*Parameters - Very Important
Did you cycle your tank before adding fish? No, by mistake. Tried jump starting the cycle but ended up not working so waited out for it to cycle.
What do you use to test the water? API test kit.
What are your parameters? We need to know the exact numbers, not just “fine” or “safe”.
Ammonia: 0ppm
Nitrite: 0ppm
Nitrate: 0ppm
pH: 7.0-7.2 (color compared to index is hard to make out)

Feeding
How often do you feed your fish? twice a day
How much do you feed your fish? 3 pinches
What brand of food do you feed your fish? Hikari, ocean free
Do you feed frozen? No
Do you feed freeze-dried foods? Yes, BBS.

Illness & Symptoms
How long have you had this fish? They look well, just suddenly die by the next morning.
How long ago did you first notice these symptoms? since cycling was ongoing, (cycling with fish), but then cycling has ended and they are still dying
In a few words, can you explain the symptoms? No symptoms observable
Have you started any treatment for the illness? No
Was your fish physically ill or injured upon purchase? No
How has its behavior and appearance changed, if at all? None.
 

MasterPython

That sounds like a lot of food. Are you following the nitrate test directions exactly because you should have nitrates unless there are a lot of plants.
 

Ethanol95

That sounds like a lot of food. Are you following the nitrate test directions exactly because you should have nitrates unless there are a lot of plants.
Yes i did. I've been having a growing algae problem, so that might be taking up the nitrates instead.
 

MasterPython

Did you do a fish in cycle with those fish? That will definately shorten thier life.

6 pinches of food sounds like 4 or 5 too many for a little tank like that.
 

Bwood22

PH is also a bit low for guppies. Honestly, with all of the water changing I don't think this is happening because of the cycle or no cycle.

I think the low PH is killing the fish.
Side effects of the fishless cycle could possibly also be a factor
 

crowningSapphire

PH is also a bit low for guppies. Honestly, with all of the water changing I don't think this is happening because of the cycle or no cycle.

I think the low PH is killing the fish.
Side effects of the fishless cycle could possibly also be a factor
I have guppies and their pH was down in the 6s for a while because I put in Indian almond leaves. (It's back up to 7.4-7.8 now thanks to crushed coral.) Since my guppies survived 6s, I don't think 7.2 would make them die unless pH is fluctuating?
 

Bwood22

I have guppies and their pH was down in the 6s for a while because I put in Indian almond leaves. (It's back up to 7.4-7.8 now thanks to crushed coral.) Since my guppies survived 6s, I don't think 7.2 would make them die unless pH is fluctuating?
Depends on the acclimation.
 

awilkinson871

There are so many possible reasons that you may never know. It could be stress from fish-in cycle, bad genetics, stress, etc. I will say 5 gallons is way too small for any pleco and should not have more than a couple fish at a time. If your tank is truly cycled you should have some nitrates especially with no substrate or plants.
 

Ethanol95

There are so many possible reasons that you may never know. It could be stress from fish-in cycle, bad genetics, stress, etc. I will say 5 gallons is way too small for any pleco and should not have more than a couple fish at a time. If your tank is truly cycled you should have some nitrates especially with no substrate
Cycling has stopped for a week+ already, so the fish should not be as stressed right? I will feed less.

Anyways how i can increase PH to around 8? PH has not been fluctuating, I think it was a rather gradual decline from 8/8.2 when i first started the tank. But that has been over 4 weeks, so i thought it wasn't much of an issue.

Also the pleco i had in the tank was really tiny like maybe 3-4 inches,
 

Bwood22

Cycling has stopped for a week+ already, so the fish should not be as stressed right? I will feed less.

Anyways how i can increase PH to around 8? PH has not been fluctuating, I think it was a rather gradual decline from 8/8.2 when i first started the tank. But that has been over 4 weeks, so i thought it wasn't much of an issue.

Also the pleco i had in the tank was really tiny like maybe 3-4 inches,
How do you know that the cycling has stopped?
What is "room temperature"?
How did you "jump start" the cycle with 25 guppies and 3 plecos in the tank?
 

awilkinson871

Cycling has stopped for a week+ already, so the fish should not be as stressed right? I will feed less.

Anyways how i can increase PH to around 8? PH has not been fluctuating, I think it was a rather gradual decline from 8/8.2 when i first started the tank. But that has been over 4 weeks, so i thought it wasn't much of an issue.

Also the pleco i had in the tank was really tiny like maybe 3-4 inches,
Lots of things can cause stress, bot just cycling. They can be stressed from overcrowding, no hiding places, water parameters, etc. I would never change Ph intentionally unless I was keeping something like African cichlids. Chasing a number leads to swings and death. If your tap water has a higher Ph than regular water changes should keep it stable at a slightly higher Ph.
A 3-4 inch Pleco is a poop machine so it not fit for a tank smaller than 30 gallons IMO. I believe you have overcrowded this tank which can cause water quality issues and/or stress to the fish. The only way to keep an overcrowded tank stable is to have excess filtration and loads of plants so that there is enough areas for beneficial bacteria to grow to control all the ammonia output. That is really hard to do in a very small tank.
 

MasterPython

If you don't do a fish in cycle perfectly your fish are harmed by exposure to ammonia and nitrite. They might not die right away but they will not live full lives. The safer way to do a fish in cycle uses only one fish and little food so the ammonia is released in controlled fashion and you have plenty of time to change the water.

The good news is that if your cycle is actually complete you never need to do it again as long as you keep one tank. Get another filter, some gravel or sande and some kind of moss and or floating plants and you will set for MTS.
 

Eggzacktly5

Hi All, need some advice here.

I've got a 5 gallon tank that's just finished cycling and my guppies are still dropping like flies everyday. I can't pinpoint what it might be. Regular testing has been fine, and after another died overnight, this morning i measure water parameters and results are PH - 7.2, Ammonia - 0ppm, Nitrite - 0ppm, Nitrate - 0ppm. I don't usually test PH, but cause all other parameters was okay, i wanted to check that PH did not drastically change.

I've lost 1 pleco and 2 guppy fry recently. All one day apart. I'm not sure what is happening to my tank. These fish that died, have been in here for weeks, so i'm scratching my head wondering what is off.

245078766_2802274756732023_5686116251516966272_n.jpg
I had the same thing happen to me! I put my 4 adult guppies into a new tank -- they were fine for a couple weeks and then they died off one-by-one. I put a couple new shrimp in the tank, too. They died. (I also put some of this same batch of shrimp in my older tank and they are still alive and thriving.) The water parameters were good. I putter in my tanks quite a bit, and I might have contaminated it with something off my hands. I ended up throwing out the moss, draining the tank, and putting it and the bottom rocks out in a shed where it will (hopefully) freeze any parasites, etc. I will try again later. I also have a pothos plant on the wall above where that tank was at. Perhaps it dripped some liquid into the tank ?? Also, this tank was in the sun a good part of the day. Maybe the "experts" can help us!
 

Cherryshrimp420

Tank is too small and need to add some sand. Otherwise not enough surface area for bacteria to grow. Unfortunately a sponge filter alone is not enough for 15 guppies and plecos.

With your setup you probably need to do a full water change every 2 days if you wanted to sustain the original stocking
 

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