Juvenile Discus Dying

Fishlady55

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A number of my 2-3 month old discus babies are dying,,, they are in a 100 gallon system. I do a twenty percent water change every day plus siphoning debris. There are no nitrites or nitrates, ph is a steady 6.5, hardness is 2 with a temperature of 83. I use r.o. Water and filtration consists of carbon and lots of biomedia. I feed presoaked golden pearl pellets every three hours for a total of five feedings a day.
I am losing a baby or two a day. They become lethargic, then die within a few hours. I have other babies in other tanks in this system and they are uneffected
 

Smalltownfishfriend

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Welcome to fishlore! I am sorry about your discus. I am going to tag a few keepers that might be able to help.. nikm128 Disc61 coralbandit (did you used to keep discus or am I confused)
 

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Are they eating and dying or do stop eating before becoming lethargic?
 

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HI & welcome, if you have 0 nitrites & 0 nitrates it suggests the tank is not cycled have you tested for ammonia? also if you are using RO water do you remineralize it with anything?
 
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Fishlady55

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Smalltownfishfriend said:
Welcome to fishlore! I am sorry about your discus. I am going to tag a few keepers that might be able to help.. nikm128 Disc61 coralbandit (did you used to keep discus or am I confused)
Thank you

nikm128 said:
HI, are there any symptoms besides lethargy? Injuries? Darkening body color?
Their color lightens, they lay on their sides but will swim up to eat. Seems that as my older babies reached this age I lost a few as well , this went on for a week , then I had no more problems . I have much younger babies in this system and they are doing great!
 

nikm128

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At 2-3 months they should be ~2", how big are yours?
When you change water, do you vacuum the bottom at all? How many fish exactly are in your tank?
What is the ammonia reading? I don't think that was mentioned
 
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Fishlady55

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nikm128 said:
At 2-3 months they should be ~2", how big are yours?
When you change water, do you vacuum the bottom at all? How many fish exactly are in your tank?
What is the ammonia reading? I don't think that was mentioned
There is no ammonia, mine are only about 1", I vacuum the bottoms of the tanksevery day,, they are bare bottomed.

There are approximately 40 in that particular tank and it is part of a hundred gallon system.
 

nikm128

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Ok, their small size is a bit of a red flag to me. I'd suggest both using a different food and/or mixing up their diet. (Frozen, pellets, flakes, freeze dried, etc.)
Top 3 foods I suggest: Cobalt discus flakes, frozen or freeze dried blackworms, and frozen bloodworms occasionally

Disc61 what do you think?
 
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Fishlady55

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Seasoldier said:
HI & welcome, if you have 0 nitrites & 0 nitrates it suggests the tank is not cycled have you tested for ammonia? also if you are using RO water do you remineralize it with anything?
The system has cycled-it has been up and running for 6 months, there was a tiny bit of ammonia, nitrites and nitrates within the first month but daily water changes remedied that I don't remineralize it with anything

nikm128 said:
Ok, their small size is a bit of a red flag to me. I'd suggest both using a different food and/or mixing up their diet. (Frozen, pellets, flakes, freeze dried, etc.)
Top 3 foods I suggest: Cobalt discus flakes, frozen or freeze dried blackworms, and frozen bloodworms occasionally
I will definitely give that a try
 

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Fishlady55 said:
daily water changes remedied that I don't remineralize it with anything
I don't quite follow that. How does replacing water that has no minerals, with more water tha has zero minerals, negate the effects of no minerals?
 
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Fishlady55

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coralbandit said:
Do you keep track of your water parameters like TDS or GH /KH ?
Straight RO the whole time only ?
I use straight ro water for this particular system with the once monthly addition of treated well water which has hardness of 8 and ph of 7, I check water parameters once a week.

nikm128 said:
I don't quite follow that. How does replacing water that has no minerals, with more water tha has zero minerals, negate the effects of no minerals?
I meant the water changes remedied the small amount of nitrites, nitrates and ammonia that was present early on
 

nikm128

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Fishlady55 said:
I meant the water changes remedied the small amount of nitrites, nitrates and ammonia that was present early on
Understood, thanks for the clarification. So is there nitrates in your tap then?
 
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Fishlady55

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Fishlady55 said:
I meant the water changes remedied the small amount of nitrites, nitrates and ammonia that was present early on
There are 0 nitrates in the well water, I cycled the system with a number of cheaper fish such as plecos and bettas, that is were the small amounts of ammonia, etc. Came from
 

nikm128

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Is there a reason you only use RO water still? I feel like your well water would be a better option
 
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Fishlady55

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nikm128 said:
Is there a reason you only use RO water still? I feel like your well water would be a better option
I use ro water because our well water quality although great for the most part tends to fluctuate. We live on a farm and run off can change the ph and hardness. I also understand that discus need soft low ph water produced by the ro system

I would love using more of our well water-it can take a few days to produce enough ro water to do a water change on the 350 gallon system lol
 

nikm128

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So what I'd do with that, is either mix your well water with RO water, or use equilibrium in your system
 

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