Help! New Aquarium Is A Mess

Discussion in 'Freshwater Beginners' started by Chikies, Jun 17, 2018.

  1. ChikiesNew MemberMember

    I've had my 10 gallon tank for about a month. I did upgrade the filter about 2 weeks ago as well. I've been adding Sea Chem Prime every other day or when doing water changes (about twice a week), as well as Stability on a daily basis for the last 2 weeks. Before that I was using a store brand conditioner and bacteria supplement. I've slowly added the fish starting with the Platy, then the Dwarf Gourami, then the school of Neon Tetras, and finally the pair of Mystery Snails.

    Today I spotted what I believe to be Ich on the school of Neon Tetras and the Platy. They appear as small white spots on the body and fins of the Neons and on the tail fin of the Platy as well.

    My water parameters are:
    pH 7.8
    Temp 74F
    Ammonia & Ammonium 4 ppm
    Nitrite 0 ppm
    Nitrate 0 ppm

    Based on my water conditions I know my tank hasn't cycled yet, it still has a long way to go. I believe the Ich could have been carried by the recently added mystery snails, and the stress from the un-cycled tank made the fish easily susceptible to it. That is, if it still stresses my fish even with the Prime converting the Ammonia to Ammonium.

    Where do I go from here? I've seen that Mystery Snails are sensitive to many medications. How do I get my tank to cycle? How do I treat the Ich? How do I keep everything happy and alive?

    -Any help is very much appreciated!

  2. GoldiemomWell Known MemberMember

    Just turning the heat up to 86F and keeping it there for 2 weeks should get rid of the ich. I believe it will also help the bacteria grow and may speed up your cycle. You should vac the gravel every couple of days too. Anyone else?

  3. KimAnnKitzValued MemberMember

    I'm by no means an expert but have been keeping small tanks -- 16 gallon and under for 5+/- years. You really should have let your tank cycle with just a couple of fish, the Prime and a bottled bacteria. That's the way I've always done it and never had problems with cycling - except for my first tank because I had no clue what I was doing. I didn't kill any fish, it just took forever. I have always been told not to do water changes while cycling, but I'm sure someone will contradict me. Since I have several tanks now I can always borrow some cycled media from another tank to speed up my cycle. Your tank may be too heavily stocked now to get a good cycle any time soon. I've never had Ich (knock wood) but I've heard raising temp of tank and ich meds help take care of it. I'll double check that info for you...

    I was told just recently that too much gravel cleaning and filter clean will slow down a cycle and/or cause mini cycles... but I think the ich spores may need to be cleaned up by vacuuming the gravel. I'm gonna double check my facts.

    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 18, 2018
  4. GoldiemomWell Known MemberMember

    No need for ich meds... Just the heat is the best thing you can do and you don’t want to add anything that could possibly kill the B.B. I normally would not suggest the vacuuming but with the ich it may be necessary. Most of your B.B. grows in the filter anyway, not the gravel so it shouldn’t really hurt. I agree on limiting the water changes.
  5. david1978Fishlore LegendMember

    Yes when treating ick weither your using heat or meds gravel vac every day to get the spores out. Cycle is secondary at this point. When i do fish ib cycles i try to keep ammonia under .5 as well as nitrites. So water changes are critical. Yes they will slow your cycle down but theres no point in having a cycled tank if the fish are dead.
  6. KimAnnKitzValued MemberMember

    I agree with Goldiemom and since you have snails you can't use the meds unless you can move them to another tank. Heat treat for 10 to 14 days. I saw some info that said gravel vac and water change every other day. I think the water change is important to get rid of floating spores. The heat can be harmful to some plants if you have them, but the fish are most important right now.
  7. KaitKatValued MemberMember

    I agree with the others, I'm unfortunately an Ich expert (kidding.. my old fish only got it 3 times, I don't think that qualifies me as an expert :) ).
    The first time I used meds and even though I completed the whole treatment and did a water change afterward, looking back, I'm not sure that it ever went away, which is my theory as to why they got it the 2nd and 3rd times so close together. The 2nd time (2 weeks later) I tried the meds again. The 3rd time (a month later) I gave in to the natural remedy suggestions (I wanted a quick fix but that clearly wasn't working) cranked up the heat and left it there for 2 weeks... they hadn't gotten it again as long as I had them. Looking back I'd trust the heat more than the meds, but in the moment I thought the meds were great because I saw the dots disappear in 1 day.
    Turning the heat up takes longer but it's worth the wait- you won't be giving them meds that they don't need, and you don't have to remember to give them the meds if its a "5 drops every day for 3 days" type thing. All you have to do is turn the heat up and forget about it.... until 2 weeks later :)
    Turning up the heat won't hurt your cycle either
  8. ChikiesNew MemberMember

    Thank you all so much for the information! I set my heater to 86F, and I'm planning on daily water changes & gravel vacuuming daily for the next week. Should that be sufficient or should I plan on continuing the daily vacuuming beyond a week?
    Also, should I increase their feeding to compensate for the increase in their metabolism? Normally I feed at morning and at night.
  9. david1978Fishlore LegendMember

    Twice a day shoukd be fine. The only down side to heat is the water holds less oxygen so either an air stone or lowering the water level a little to get more surface agitation is the only little caution in it.
  10. Fishlover832Valued MemberMember

    I would personally continue doing daily water changes with gravel vacs until I was sure the ich was gone. Maybe after a week you could go to every other day. When I had ich, I turned my heater up to 90 degrees. I didn't feed anymore than normal. Just remember, your tank can get pretty hot without killing any or many fish. I once turned my heater up to 110 for 5 days on accident and I only lost 5 of my 50 fish (even after each fish died I didn't think to simply check the temp.). I guess we all make mistakes.
  11. KimAnnKitzValued MemberMember

    Good point!
  12. ChikiesNew MemberMember

    Hi everyone I just wanted to keep you updated! Unfortunately the 2 mystery snails didn't make it, presumably due to nitrite levels. On the other hand, I am seeing the Ich spots fall off of the neon tetras and the platy. There is a little bit of damaged brown tissue where the Ich was, hopefully it will heal with time. Oh, and I now have nitrite in the water, so the cycle is moving along nicely. Everything seems to be going fairly smoothly, and I'm a lot more optimistic about this tank now! Thank you once again for the help, I really appreciate it!

    My water parameters are:
    pH 7.8
    Temp 86F
    Ammonia & Ammonium 2 ppm
    Nitrite 5+ ppm
    Nitrate 0 ppm
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2018
  13. ChikiesNew MemberMember

    Hi everyone! 2 weeks later everything seems to have repaired itself.
    To recap, I had Ich and heat treated the aquarium along with daily gravel vacuuming for the first week, and then every other day the second week.
    There are no more Ich spots on any of the fish. However, there have been a few casualties including both of the Mystery Snails and one Neon Tetra. Most likely due to the high levels of ammonia and nitrite as the tank cycled.
    All in all, everything looks good now. The tank seems to be cycled and the fish seem happy.

    Thank you everyone for your assistance!

    My water parameters are:
    pH 7.8
    Temp 76F
    Ammonia & Ammonium 0 ppm
    Nitrite 0 ppm
    Nitrate 10 ppm

    Would anyone have suggestions as to where to purchase Mystery Snails online, preferably blue and ivory?
  14. KimAnnKitzValued MemberMember

    I like Aquatic Arts. They are on Amazon. I got three blues in February and just ordered 3 ivory. They are always very well packaged and they are careful not to ship when it's not too hot or too cold. They usually send an extra snail or two and I've always had 100% survival. One of my blues just escaped the tank and cracked itself beyond repair. If the lid is light on your tank they can and will be able to make it out once the get bigger. The snails they ship are young. Around pea size up yo 1/2 inch, sometimes a little bigger. I prefer the younger ones as they seem to adapt better and in warm water they can double or triple in size in a week or so. The one that just crashed grew really, really fast the first couple of weeks. It was crazy.
  15. TheWalkmanValued MemberMember

    Just ordered snails from aquarium co-op. Heard awesome things. Guess I'll see how it goes in a few days.
  16. ChikiesNew MemberMember

    Okay, I see their assorted 5 pack of Mystery Snails. Is that what you're getting? Please let me know how they arrive

    Wonderful! Thank you for the tip. I checked their website out and it looks pretty good.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 3, 2018
  17. SegiDreamWell Known MemberMember

    There's a seller on here mcasella I recommend, you need 50posts to use the buy sell trade thread but perhaps you can go through aquabid for the blue and ivory mystery snails I don't know. But I would check with her first.

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