Lethargic & Antisocial Female Guppy (also breathing fast?)

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HI there!
So, I've got a 10 gallon planted guppy tank with 4 fancy females and 1 yellow male.
I've had the male for nearly 3 weeks and the females for about 3 days.
Plants are water sprite, ludwigia and water lettuce.

From day 1, the yellow male has been friendly with the females, he's probably only bugged them a few times? They swim together at times and in general he doesn't seem to be annoying them *too much*.

1 female seems to be..very antisocial? She's a bit smaller than two of the females but is approximately the same size as the other female--in the beginning she explored around the tank and such but she doesn't really socialize with the others. The male gave her attention the first day but today he's more or less ignored her and left her alone and focused on the two bigger females--she's been hiding in the thickly planted corner of my tank, at/near the surface, barely moving but breathing fast. Another thing I've noticed is that while the other fish all actively search for food around the tank/compete for food when I feed them (flakes), this female just hovers about and only eats what floats down to her (and sometimes not even that!). She was a scavenger the first night, eating random stuff she finds around the tank and nibbling my plants but today she's just kinda..floating lethargically and my other fish are giving her space.

As I'm typing this she also seems to have started shimmying a little, and jerks around to change direction--but she did come out of her hiding spot, and is now swimming around a bit, by herself.

...And now she's resting on the bottom of the tank with another female (one of the bigger ones), and they're both shimmying a little but the bigger one is doing more of a dramatic shake, and she's done it since day 1 but the male seems to like her anyway. She eats normally but is also a bit antisocial and is alone a lot.

Could these two ladies be sick or maybe still adjusting to the new tank? The other two females are doing just fine, lively as ever--getting more bold and lively each day. The male minds his own business and is also looking fine, bothering the females he seems to prefer whenever it suits him aha.
 
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el337 said:
Can you provide your water parameters - pH, temp, ammonia, nitrite, nitrate? Could you attach a photo as well?
So since I posted--I figured it was time to do a water change, I normally do 20% changes every other day, did something along the lines of a 40-50% change just now but, the last time I checked 3 days ago, here are my numbers (which are approximate, from a test strip, not the drip test, done at the pet store):
The test was done on day/night old water.

Ammonia: .25 (high, I know)
Nitrate: 0
Nitrite: .5
pH: 6.5
Alkalinity: 40 (I'm no entirely sure what this number is for?)
Hardness: between 75-150 (I have hard water)
Temperature: 79-80 degrees F with the heater off
(I have a preset to 78 degree heater for when the weather gets cold, temperature is constantly 79-80 without it these days)

I've attached photos of my tank, a photo of all of them together, and a photo that includes the two fish who worry me.
The yellow female with the blue fin is the one I'm really worried about, hanging about the plants and not socializing or active/eating.
The green cobra female is the one who is kind of a loner but still swims with the others and occasionally shakes her whole body. She hangs around the worrisome female sometimes, and they hover together.
There's also an orange/blue tailed female in the "group" photo who likes to glass surf--none of the others really do that, it's just her. The male (yellow) does it very occasionally but only for a moment before swimming elsewhere.
The red female seems the most normal, and is always swimming about, scavenging for more edibles.
image.jpg

image.jpg

image.jpg
 

el337

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While test strips are inaccurate, they may give a ballpark number of where your levels are and if they are any indication of actual numbers, your tank is not cycled and could be why your guppies are behaving unusually. You want 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite and some nitrates.

It will be worth getting your own test kit so you can check your levels at any time and know they are accurate. I would get the API Freshwater Master Test Kit as well as the API KH and GH Test Kit to check if those are your true numbers indicating how hard your water is. Usually the shimmying that your guppies are displaying may indicate that your water is softer than what the tests show. The pH may also be something to look into as it's pretty low.

What kind of water conditioner do you use? I'd pick up a bottle of Seachem Prime which detoxifies those ammonia and nitrites as well as a bottle of Seachem Stability to help cycle your tank faster.
 
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el337 said:
While test strips are inaccurate, they may give a ballpark number of where your levels are and if they are any indication of actual numbers, your tank is not cycled and could be why your guppies are behaving unusually. You want 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite and some nitrates.

It will be worth getting your own test kit so you can check your levels at any time and know they are accurate. I would get the API Freshwater Master Test Kit as well as the API KH and GH Test Kit to check if those are your true numbers indicating how hard your water is. Usually the shimmying that your guppies are displaying may indicate that your water is softer than what the tests show. The pH may also be something to look into as it's pretty low.

What kind of water conditioner do you use? I'd pick up a bottle of Seachem Prime which detoxifies those ammonia and nitrites as well as a bottle of Seachem Stability to help cycle your tank faster.

Oh, I see. Hmm.
When I set up my tank, I took some gravel from an established tank and put it in mine, in the hopes that it would jumpstart the healthy bacteria but I guess either I didn't put enough of it or it just didn't work? I'm not sure!!

I'll try to save up for that full test kit, it's just kind of expensive for me at the moment.
I'm using the AquaSafe Plus water conditioner by Tetra right now. I was looking at what petsmart has (closest pet store to me), and I can get the prime conditioner but I was wondering about the other stuff they had:
-marineland total care aquarium bacteria (claims to cycle the tank instantly?)
-Top Fin bacteria supplement aquarium cycling water conditioner (seems like the same thing as seachem stability? but it costs less--they also have seachem stability though)
-Top Fin bacteria supplement
Not sure if you've seen any of these other ones haha but I thought I'd ask!

After the water change, the yellow female seems to be feeling a bit better, and is swimming about again--but still not really interacting with the others. Could just be she's shy on top of feeling a tad stressed out?
The male also seems to be paying attention to her again, he's displaying with all his might but she's totally ignoring him ahah...
The cobra female is kinda hanging around the yellow female still, but they aren't really interacting.

Thanks for your help
 

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Established gravel would help as there is some beneficial bacteria in it but it would have been better to take some established filter media instead as that is where most of the BB lives.

AquaSafe water conditioner would remove the chlorine and chloramines but doesn't detox the ammonia and nitrite like Prime does. I don't know about the Marineland bacteria starter but the TopFin bacteria supplements don't contain the right nitrifying bacteria to cycle the tanks successfully. I would just get the Stability if you can.

All of the products recommended including the API Freshwater master Test Kit would be cheaper to buy online.

Hard to say what's exactly bothering the guppy but again we'll need to rule out water quality issues first.
 
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el337 said:
Established gravel would help as there is some beneficial bacteria in it but it would have been better to take some established filter media instead as that is where most of the BB lives.

AquaSafe water conditioner would remove the chlorine and chloramines but doesn't detox the ammonia and nitrite like Prime does. I don't know about the Marineland bacteria starter but the TopFin bacteria supplements don't contain the right nitrifying bacteria to cycle the tanks successfully. I would just get the Stability if you can.

All of the products recommended including the API Freshwater master Test Kit would be cheaper to buy online.

Hard to say what's exactly bothering the guppy but again we'll need to rule out water quality issues first.
Oh, I see--that does make sense! Ah oops. There's probably just not quite enough bacteria in there then, though I'm guessing my plants are helping a bit.

I'll get the conditioner and stability (maybe the marineland bacteria, it has good reviews) tomorrow, in the store so I can use it right away, I'll look for the test kit online!

It probably is the water, now that you bring it up, though it's possibly also partially personality? The two of them just seem a lot more "aloof" compared to the others.
The male does seem quite interested in the yellow female now all of a sudden so that's probably no indicator for whether or not she's actually feeling unwell. (she's ignoring him/sending him on his way though)

I'll get the recommended stuff and see how it goes!! Hopefully everything is just fine.
 

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Keep us posted.
 
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Brief update on things--I went and got Prime today, but had to order Seachem Stability online because the store was out of stock. It'll be here on Friday/Saturday hopefully!

In the meantime, I've added in prime, as well as wrapped a sponge around my filter intake (both in prep for a month later's possible baby guppies and also to see if maybe the current caused Ms. Yellow Guppy to stay in her isolated corner).
As of now, nothing seems to have changed, except that maybe she's staying in her isolated spot even more than ever, and is still breathing super fast compared to everyone else.

I'm starting to wonder if my green cobra female swims with a bit of a wiggle because of her bigger tail? But she occasionally does a sort of spasm (left/right really fast). Almost like a really big shiver, but it only lasts half a second.
 

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I'd do a water change and add Prime to the new water to see if that helps your guppy. Could she also possibly be pregnant?
 
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el337 said:
I'd do a water change and add Prime to the new water to see if that helps your guppy. Could she also possibly be pregnant?
As of this morning she looks like she's feeling so much better! She's swimming around actively, exploring, and ate well (fed them peas this morning, super popular among the female guppies haha).

I think it really was the water, and the Prime seems to have really had an effect--though I hadn't done a water chance since a day ago (tonight is water change day though). She may be pregnant but only barely? She definitely wasn't when I brought her home.

She does seem to have a dent in her left gill though--I can't tell if it's an injury or she was born with a slightly malformed gill? I noticed it a couple days ago but couldn't really tell what it was.

As of this moment though, the problem seems to be resolved!
 
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And I'm back.
I wonder if my yellow female is just super sensitive to water quality or something? She's back to her "favorite" corner, just hovering there, but she did eat (though less than normal). I've been using Prime & Stability, and doing 20% water changes every other day.

All of my other fish seem to be doing fine except that 2 of the females are doing (what I think) is called flashing?
They swim close to a leaf and flick themselves off of it, rubbing one of their gills against the leaf in the process. It's only occasional and one does it more than the other. They're both eating just fine.

I recently did a round of ich treatment since the yellow female showed a couple spots (only very few) and it seems to have been resolved, so I'm honestly at a loss for what to do about them now, or if I should even be worried anymore?
 

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What are your current water parameters?
 
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To be honest, I couldn't tell you now. I still haven't gotten a test kit *guilty*

I can bring a water sample to the pet store either tonight or tomorrow though, and probably will.

I've decided to do a >50% water change though, I'm wondering if perhaps 20% every other day isn't enough? The water is currently heating up to tank temperature.

Do you have any suggestions for what else I could do to help them?
I'm nervous the gill-rubbing/leaf-bouncing is a sign of parasites but their poo looks normal and isn't white/stringy like my researching tells me it would be.

*edit* the guilt has overcome me. Adding the API freshwater master test kit to my amazon cart literally right now. But I'm wondering if there's other stuff I ought to purchase as well
 

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If they use a liquid test kit, then it'd be worth bringing a water sample for them to test. Make sure to ask them to write down the pH, ammonia, nitrite, nitrate. If they have a KH and GH test kit, I'd ask for those too.

We'll need to rule out water quality issues before we can assume anything about what may be wrong with your guppies. Flashing can mean anything at this point.
 
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Mmm no they just have the strips but it'll at least give an approximate idea right?

Also I just got some filter media from an established tank so that'll be going in my filter, so that in case it was a water quality issue, this should help right?
 

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It would give a ballpark idea of what the parameters are but still extremely inaccurate. I'd just get the API Master Kit so you can just test it yourself and know you have the most accurate readings of your water.

Established media would definitely help but again, depends on how much BB is on there and how long it was cycled for. And we wouldn't know if it helped at all until we get accurate numbers out of your tank.
 
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Yep I know--I am getting the kit, I'm ordering it off amazon. It should be here in 2 days (lfs doesn't have it)

I'll put the media in there (It's been cycled for a very long time, we got this tank from someone else, already fully established and it has a pretty heavy bioload), so I'm thinking it should help my newer tank.

Thanks for being helpful!
 

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I'd test the water parameters on that established tank to make sure it's cycled as well.
 

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My pregnant guppys do that when they are about to give birth any chance she could be pregnant??
 

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