Help. I Think My Mollies Are Dying:(

Mommabeanz

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I woke up this morning to all 3 of my mollies on the bottom of the tank with bulging eyes and heavy breathing. I just did a 25% water change on Saturday. From what I've been reading I'm assuming it's due to water quality but I haven't been able to get the proper kit I need to test the water (busy with sick twins) . Are they going to die? Should I do a 50% water change again? Apparently this aquarium isn't as easy as I thought. I really don't want to kill my kids first pet LOL

Help!
 

wapooshe

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How big is your tank?
Is your tank cycled?
Do you have proper filtration?
Do you change water weekly?

Send pictures, it makes it easier to identify what's wrong with your fish.
 

bNissan

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While you are getting wapooshe the requested information, it would probably be best for you to change as much water as possible. More than 50% if you have the ability to do so.
 
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Mommabeanz

Mommabeanz

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I have a 10 gallon tank for now. Am looking to upgrade as soon as I can. I did start the cycle but I'm wondering if I added them too soon. I currently have a topfin power filter 10. And a marina 75 air pump. I've only had the molies for aweek and a half..I've done a 50% water change last Wednesday. Than a 25% change again on Saturday. They were all so happy when I did the 50% change. It's really strange.
Also I'm using tap water when I'm changing is this bad? Am I harming thesee poor lil guys I'll post a pic
 

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Over It

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I agree with a 50% water change immediately. I wouldn't do more than that at one time. See if they start improving after the 50% change and if not then in about an hr. or 2 do another 25% water change.
You're gonna need a testing kit as it does sound like a water quality problem.
Did you use a water conditioner when doing the water change and did match the new waters temp with the tank?
Does the tank have a heater?

Also that filter is not strong enough and Mollies need a minimum of 20 gals, but 30 is really the smallest tank they should be kept in.
 

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Mommabeanz said:
Also I'm using tap water when I'm changing is this bad?
Are you treating the tap water before adding it to the tank?

How long did you cycle the tank for before adding the fish?
 

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I am pretty new and have never kept mollies before, but I have seen many seasoned members preach about how clean water is the best medicine.

Do you add water conditioner to the water before adding it to the tank? Many different water conditioners are out there and work great, Seachem Prime is one of the most popular.

This is how you should be changing water.
1. Pour as much cold tap water as you need into a 5 gallon bucket that has NEVER been cleaned with dish soap. (Dish soap will poison fish and is nearly impossible to get rid of.)
2. Add in the appropriate amount of water conditioner
3. Make sure the water is the same-ish temperature as your tank.
4. Remove water from your fish tank, preferably using a . (This allows you to remove uneaten food and fish waste so it won't rot in the gravel and poison your fish.)
5. Carefully add the contents of your bucket to the tank. If you pour too fast it will stir up the gravel on the bottom and stress your fish.

Also, it would be good to invest in a if you don't already have one. Using this helps give peace of mind as it very accurately shows you the parameters of your water.

Hope this helps.

EDIT: Edited out letting water sit as it depends on the temp of your tank
 
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Mommabeanz

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Yes! I've been putting the conditioner in the water before adding it to the tank. Also I cycled the tank for 2 1/2 weeks prior to putting the molies in.

So I'm assumming this is due to my small tank and not enought power on my filter to keep their tank clean. Is it because they produce too much waste?
 

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I think this is due to the tank not being cycled (a fishless cycle usually takes 6 weeks+ while fish in often takes longer) and an overstocked tank which is too small.

For now I would do 4 things
1. Dose prime to detoxify ammonia and nitrite
2. Add a bottled bacteria to speed up cycling
3. Do frequent large water changes
4. Try to get the water tested. Often your LFS will do it for you for free if you take a sample of water in. Don't let them tell you it's fine, get the actual numbers.

Get a suitable sized tan (30 gallons+) when you can
bNissan said:
Let the water sit for at least an hour. A lot of the old timers recommend to let it sit for 24 hours. In your case I would change the water ASAP. (Letting water sit allows it to get room temperature so your fish aren't shocked, as well as letting the water conditioner mix do it's job)
But if your using a heater in the tank then the new water will be much cooler.

I use a mix of warm and cool water out the ta so it is the same temp as the tank.
 

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I agree with everything bNissan said, except for letting the water sit. If your tanks water is warmer than the water in the bucket, that will shock your fish. You want the new water as close to the tanks water as possible.
It sounds like your tank isn't cycled and it's ammonia and or nitrites that are causing a problem. It could nitrates, but without being able to get the results of a water test I can't really say.
The best thing to do right now is the water change/s and then try to get a test kit or have a pet store test your water for you.
 
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Mommabeanz

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Okay! Thank you. I will do a water change asap. and try to get out to get that test kit today! To figure this all out. I'll be getting a heater aswell, we don't currently have one but the water has maintained about 28 degrees.

This forum has been a life saver! Thanks so much for all your help so far!
 

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Happy to help

From what I am reading 28°C is on the hot end for your fish, it looks like you want to stay around 26°C.
 

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Mommabeanz said:
Okay! Thank you. I will do a water change asap. and try to get out to get that test kit today! To figure this all out. I'll be getting a heater aswell, we don't currently have one but the water has maintained about 28 degrees.
Only get test strips as a last resort if you can't get anything else, they are very inaccurate. I recommend the API freshwater master test kit. It is accurate, lasts for ages and tests Ph, ammonia, nitrite and nitrate.

28c Is pretty warm, 23-25c would b best.

A heater is good anyway to maintain a steady temperature.
 

bNissan

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BottomDweller said:
Only get test strips as a last resort if you can't get anything else, they are very inaccurate. I recommend the API freshwater master test kit. It is accurate, lasts for ages and tests Ph, ammonia, nitrite and nitrate.

28c Is pretty warm, 23-25c would b best.

A heater is good anyway to maintain a steady temperature.
Something I have never seen an answer to is how to get your temperature down. Are there any good ways for this?
 

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bNissan said:
Something I have never seen an answer to is how to get your temperature down. Are there any good ways for this?
Chillers work well but are expensive. People often setup a fan to blow across the surface of the water instead.
 
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Mommabeanz

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So I guess ice cubes would be a bad idea. Oh boy I have a lot of work to do lol.

I don't even have a vacuum for the gravel. I bought a new jug and scooped water out and also purchased a huge bucket to mix my conditioner and tap water in before adding to the tank. So now I'm wondering...is my gravel not clean and poisoning the fish like b Nissan had stated. Will this keep happening if I don't have a vacuum

I guess I'll be investing in one of those aswell.
 

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I have seen people cut the bottom off a water bottle and screw it into a garden hose to make a DIY gravel vac. All you are doing is making a siphon in order to suck waste and water out of the tank into a container. If you do that it would be a good idea to make sure the hose and bottle make a good seal.
 

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Mommabeanz said:
So I guess ice cubes would be a bad idea. Oh boy I have a lot of work to do lol.

I don't even have a vacuum for the gravel. I bought a new jug and scooped water out and also purchased a huge bucket to mix my conditioner and tap water in before adding to the tank. So now I'm wondering...is my gravel not clean and poisoning the fish like b Nissan had stated. Will this keep happening if I don't have a vacuum

I guess I'll be investing in one of those aswell.
Yes ice cubes are a bad idea. The water temperature will be very unstable and the ice cubes will contain chlorine.

If you don't have a gravel vac then stir up the gravel really well while changing water until you can get one, better yet you could take the gravel out.
 

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