I'm Worried About My Molly Please Help

PurpleRose

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I am really worried about my only fish in my tank, I stupidly bought her for my tank because my kids and I really wanted fish, so did I the stupid thing and bought our molly...so when I thought the tank was completely cycled, only to find out I am in the last few stages, my girl has been dealing with Nitrites spiking and everyday water changes, I went out and bought some aquurium salt but I really don't know how to dose the tank I have 20g l and not really sure if this will help her, she's been up near the top a lot so I went ahead and put more bubblers in her tank, I am really thinking should I just start my tank over?? or just give up. I am doing everything I have learnt from reading watching videos etc and talking to the many who are experienced and I feel like taking everything out like the gravel starting all over...I'm trying to ask friends to watch over her but only friend willing to is cycling his tank too, these Nitrite spikes make me worry so bad about her and watched some YouTube videos about the cycles the tanks go through, and read that doing so many water changes might be messing with the cycle and of course causing her stress, someone said when they delt with my issue with the Nitrites spiking that they changed their gravel out emptied the tank and left new gravel in a bucket with stability so it was soaking in the rocks, many tell me I am on the 2nd step where ammonia levels drop and Nitrites Spike, but still only Trace amounts of Nitrates that my test can't even pick up so not sure what to do to get it all set and normal, I worry I'm doing too many water changes,I almost feel no matter what I try there is nothing I can do to save my fish and get this set up so she can live happily and I'm scared of losing her.the kids and I really are attached to her. feeling maybe if I cannot fix these issues I should just stop the fish keeping hobby dreams of having happy fish, I am using prime Stability stress coat and recently bought the aquarium salt, I'm not really sure what to do anymore, I'm thankful to the few who have helped me to this point, but any additional advice to fix these issues and save her life I would be greatful thanks, sorry for the rant about all this..
 

Kasshan

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just one fish in a 20gal long? you shouldn't be having problems with a tank stock like that. you may be adding too much food and it is rotting perhaps. I feel if you get Malaysian trumpet snails this helps immensely with water quality and maintenance over the long run. for dosing of salt start out with one tsp per 10 gallons, then you do up to 3 total tsp per 10gal and youll still be considered freshwater. and ill give my personal DIY recommendation of getting the gravel vac or filter pads rinse leftovers from a healthy cycled aquarium and pouring that brown mulm in your tank, despite common sense saying this is discard material, I always find noncycled/cloudy white tanks clear up in a matter of hours to a day when I add it.
 
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PurpleRose

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Aaand breathe.

It really doesn't sound like you're in that much of a pickle.

What are your ammonia, nitrite, and nitrAte levels?

How long have you had the Molly in there?
Ammonia 0, Nitrites go anywhere from 50 ppm to 2.0,ph is 7.4 nitrates is only detectable on strip tests and is very small at that. barely registers is peach color, my master kit doesn't pick it up no matter how hard I can shake it slam it., we have some cherry shrimp and ghost shrimp that are being kept in one of those plastic breeder things is a big size inside the tank because I worry about them being eaten,she has been in there since my bday my son bought her as a bday gift March 30th, I have been using my python to clean the gravel, I really would love to get a snail but our tank has way too much openings where the filters go, our filter is also junk which is why I went and bought the foam bubble filter, really don't have anymore cutouts then in the back for the filter so a currently stuck using this because we live in a small apartment and all are way too bulky to hang on the back, moving it anywhere else would still have issues, the petstore said maybe pockets of waste I haven't cleaned up.. I was going to try and get an otto later today as they are saving the last one, they don't sell snails far as I know.. well before we bought her we had 4 neon tetras and they passed away few weeks before I was given her.. thank you for replying this is getting so fustrating to the point I am not sure if I a good fish owner
 

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Do a 50% water change to make sure that nitrite is below 1ppm. (If it's not already).

Dose prime for the full tank.

Tomorrow around the same time, test your nitrite again. If it's above 1ppm, do a water change to bring it back below 1pmm, then dose prime for the whole tank.

Continue every 24 hours, and every couple days test your nitrAte. Once your nitrite go down, and your nitrAte up, you're cycled, and you can stop the daily changes and dosing, drop to testing every three days, changing water once nitrAte hit 20ppm. You'll start to get a feel then for how often you need to test/change.
 
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PurpleRose

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Do a 50% water change to make sure that nitrite is below 1ppm. (If it's not already).

Dose prime for the full tank.

Tomorrow around the same time, test your nitrite again. If it's above 1ppm, do a water change to bring it back below 1pmm, then dose prime for the whole tank.

Continue every 24 hours, and every couple days test your nitrAte. Once your nitrite go down, and your nitrAte up, you're cycled, and you can stop the daily changes and dosing, drop to testing every three days, changing water once nitrAte hit 20ppm. You'll start to get a feel then for how often you need to test/change.
seems after water changes is when she will stay up near top, I mix in prime and api conditioner in a bucket beforehand to make sure the temperature is correct.. I'm pretty sure it's the water quility doing that but really not su think it's causing her stress, I have already been doing these water changes for about a week and despite doing these 50% water changes the levels staying the same, and the aqutic guy said doing this to much will cause a mini cycle and I just want my fish/shrimp to live during this stressful time, how much longer will the Nitrites stay like this, and just wondering why the test strips can see it but the master kit won't pick it up, the kit issues isn't new from what I've read about others having the same happen and the kits expire dates are nowhere new, thank you, I'm sorry if I sound like a cry baby during my rant, any tips or suggestions are greatly appreciated
 
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PurpleRose

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just one fish in a 20gal long? you shouldn't be having problems with a tank stock like that. you may be adding too much food and it is rotting perhaps. I feel if you get Malaysian trumpet snails this helps immensely with water quality and maintenance over the long run. for dosing of salt start out with one tsp per 10 gallons, then you do up to 3 total tsp per 10gal and youll still be considered freshwater. and ill give my personal DIY recommendation of getting the gravel vac or filter pads rinse leftovers from a healthy cycled aquarium and pouring that brown mulm in your tank, despite common sense saying this is discard material, I always find noncycled/cloudy white tanks clear up in a matter of hours to a day when I add it.
Thank you sounds good I a going to save the old filters plastic and try to make my own sometime down the road, mine is a marnia s 20 and it has 4 different slots for the filters, right now I a using all 4 it came with..
 
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PurpleRose

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with sad regards my sweet Hailey the Molly just passed away just now.. I wanted to thank you all for trying to help me out yesterday I feel so bad right now and feeling worse for my kids right now, they knew we were doing the best we knew how to try and get her better.. right now I'm not sure if I could possibly let the younger kids know about this without me crying .. I feel so sad and great sorrow as she had almost been with us for two months and the whole family has taken a liking to her as well...I guess I should of seen this coming.... the petstore has a return policy to get another in her place and I'm not sure what to do right now.. I'm not sure if another pet will ever replace her, I don't know if I should go replace her or start the tank over
 

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Do a 100% water change, and dose pure ammonia daily to keep your cycle alive.

Why not get a totally different fish now? So you're not "replacing" her? Or shrimp? Or frogs?
Something you can think about when you're ready.

Look at how much you've learned from this. Now you can be confident that next time around will be better.

I'm so sorry about your fish. It really sucks when you try so hard to help them.
At least you know you did everything you could to try and help her.
 

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I would wait until your cycle finishes before getting any new fish in your tank so you don't put anymore fish through the stress. I'm sorry that your fish died. I didn't even know what cycling a tank was when I started my ten gallon with a molly. Luckily, I was able to get through it with her living and then giving birth! I would have never even learned about cycling a tank if she hadn't been pregnant! After lots of research and a lot of daily water changes, we made it through the cycle and ended up with around 60 baby fry. Most either died or were eaten by momma, but I was able to save a few! Now I have 8 tanks and a boat load of fish. Don't give up! Fish keeping can be very rewarding if you can be patient and are willing to put in the time and effort to keep your fish happy! Good luck with your tank! I hope everything works out and you can get your tank cycled!
 

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When people like you come on here, and so obviously care about your fish, and want to do what's best, anyone here will be more than happy to help you in whatever way possible.

I'm so sorry she didn't make it, I can tell it's upset you.

Luckily my not-quite-two year old, as obsessed with the animals as she is, doesn't really notice deaths yet, and my four year old, well, he's all "wow! Fish! Wow! Crisp packet", so although he grasps the basic death concept of not coming back, he doesn't have the attention span to worry.


If I remember correctly without looking back, your problem is nitrite, and you're cycle is on the way to completion...
As long as you have prime and can do multiple water changes, there's no reason you couldn't keep a fish safe.

As I said above, just keep the nitrite below 1ppm and dose your prime to keep the fish safe until tomorrow, and repeat. If nitrite are over 1ppm, change enough to cover it. So for 6ppm, do a 50% change, wait an hour, do another 50% change, wait an hour, test again, see where you're at.

The reason I said ammonia (yes the cleaner, but must be pure ammonia, not a mix) is because you need to keep feeding your bacteria while there is no fish waste, else they'll die off and you'll have to start again.
Ammonia is what is in your fish waste, so you wouldn't be adding anything in that isn't already there.
This is only if you're not putting another fish in straight away.

Danio are pretty hardy... give them a go if you'd like.

I do understand the chemical thing. I've only ever done a course of M. Green to medicate for Ich once. No other chemical has been in my tanks.

I also understand the desire to get something else in there. I'm a see-something-get-it kind of person.
I do not wait well
 

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Sorry for your loss. It's always sad when our fish die.

I just wanted to comment, that while technically adding ammonia is adding a chemical, if you don't add ammonia, the fish you get to complete the cycle will. (Ammonia is ammonia whether it comes from fish or a bottle).

While cycling with fish (and without a bacteria additive such as Tetra SafeStart) can be done, it is not ideal.

If it were me, I would get a new fish and a bottle of Tetra SafeStart and add both to the tank and complete the cycle that way.

If I were a more patient me, I would get some pure ammonia solution (i.e. ammonia and water only, no dyes, surfacants, prefumes etc) and finish the cycle that way.

If I loved doing daily partial water changes, I would consider getting a fish and doing daily partial water changes with Prime.

Best of luck going forward!
 
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PurpleRose

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When people like you come on here, and so obviously care about your fish, and want to do what's best, anyone here will be more than happy to help you in whatever way possible.

I'm so sorry she didn't make it, I can tell it's upset you.

Luckily my not-quite-two year old, as obsessed with the animals as she is, doesn't really notice deaths yet, and my four year old, well, he's all "wow! Fish! Wow! Crisp packet", so although he grasps the basic death concept of not coming back, he doesn't have the attention span to worry.


If I remember correctly without looking back, your problem is nitrite, and you're cycle is on the way to completion...
As long as you have prime and can do multiple water changes, there's no reason you couldn't keep a fish safe.

As I said above, just keep the nitrite below 1ppm and dose your prime to keep the fish safe until tomorrow, and repeat. If nitrite are over 1ppm, change enough to cover it. So for 6ppm, do a 50% change, wait an hour, do another 50% change, wait an hour, test again, see where you're at.

The reason I said ammonia (yes the cleaner, but must be pure ammonia, not a mix) is because you need to keep feeding your bacteria while there is no fish waste, else they'll die off and you'll have to start again.
Ammonia is what is in your fish waste, so you wouldn't be adding anything in that isn't already there.
This is only if you're not putting another fish in straight away.

Danio are pretty hardy... give them a go if you'd like.

I do understand the chemical thing. I've only ever done a course of M. Green to medicate for Ich once. No other chemical has been in my tanks.

I also understand the desire to get something else in there. I'm a see-something-get-it kind of person.
I do not wait well
thank you, I know some people will hate on me for this and think I'm selfish or cruel but my youngest children are about the same age too and I'm nevous to hear what they say about her missing I did 2 water changes yesterday... and honestly think the danios are beautiful fish, but I would want to keep more then one since they are schooling fish. and I really don't mind the water changes I really wanted to see Nitrates badly but I think it might need some extra time. we were planning to do a community tank and the kids would always love helping the simple things getting alge of the tank with the little magnet brush thing and my eldest daughter loves to decorate their tank to look as close as possible to their natural habitat.. so honestly the whole family really enjoyed doing this together, doing my water changes and other things before I decide if I a really ready for this.. only chemicals I felt safe using was stability and prime and the API water conditioner with alevra to help heal and help stress,
 
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PurpleRose

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Sorry for your loss. It's always sad when our fish die.

I just wanted to comment, that while technically adding ammonia is adding a chemical, if you don't add ammonia, the fish you get to complete the cycle will. (Ammonia is ammonia whether it comes from fish or a bottle).

While cycling with fish (and without a bacteria additive such as Tetra SafeStart) can be done, it is not ideal.

If it were me, I would get a new fish and a bottle of Tetra SafeStart and add both to the tank and complete the cycle that way.

If I were a more patient me, I would get some pure ammonia solution (i.e. ammonia and water only, no dyes, surfacants, prefumes etc) and finish the cycle that way.

If I loved doing daily partial water changes, I would consider getting a fish and doing daily partial water changes with Prime.

Best of luck going forward!
I'm guessing with prime and tetra safe start I wouldn't be needing to use the API water conditioner? Thank you.. I am an animal lover and seeing any pet pass away will make me sad my kids following in my path of loving all of God's creations
 

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Okay...hopefully I didn't confuse you, so I'll try to elaborate. So forgive me if you already knew this...

If you use SafeStart, you really don't need to use Prime. Your API Water Conditioner will be fine. SafeStart is a bottle of the bacteria that will develop naturally in your filter media over time. When using SafeStart after fish have been in the tank here is the proceedure:
1) Do a large water change with what ever water conditioner you use to get ammonia and/or nitrites low (say .25ppm max).
2) Wait 24 hours. This is very important. There must be 24 hours between your last addition of a water conditioner and the addition of SafeStart. If not, the SafeStart can fail.
3) After 24 hours add the entire, well shaken, appropriate sized bottle of SafeStart (and in your case, your new fish)
4) Then do nothing for the next 14 days but lightly feed your fish.
5) On day 14 test your water and if all worked correctly, you've got a cycled tank.

But one thing specific to your situation, you may not need 14 days to cycle. Since you appear to have the ammonia converting bacteria colony in place already, you only need for the nitrite converting bacteria to gain a foothold. This could happen much faster than 14 days.

Now if you are going to just do daily water changes until the cycle finishes, you would want to use Prime instead of the API water conditioner. The reason being is that a standard dose of Prime will detox up to 1ppm ammonia and nitrites for 24 hours. So as long as your water changes are large enough to keep ammonia and/or nitrites under 1ppm, your fish will be safe from exposure.

Once cycled (i.e. no longer have elevated ammonia or nitrites) you can go back to using the API water conditioner. Prime is really only needed when ammonia or nitrites are elevated. But many people (myself included) just use Prime all the time. That way if anything goes wrong and you lose your cycle, you already have Prime on hand.

Once again, sorry for your loss. I can see how much this bothers you. Sometimes being a good person makes you suffer. And that just doesn't seem fair, does it?
 

EternalDancer

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There are different ways of cycling, most of which I don't fully understand.

I happened across a scummy, forgotten tank containing two pleco and a turtle, got them fully cleaned out, and a week later when I figured they were gonna survive, I bought a whole new set-up, got the critters moved over, and somehow they survived.
Since then, I wised up. And each new tank has been insta-cycled with existing media.

We also don't have a lot of the chemicals over here (or, I've never seen them) that the states has (prime, tss+ etc), so with those I can only go off what others here say.
 
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