Loss Of Shipped Fish

  1. AngelTheGypsy Fishlore VIP Member

    I ordered 18 Cochu's Blue tetra online. Paid for overnight shipping and I delayed shipment for a week due to the holiday. In 12 hours I've lost 9 of the 20 sent. 1 arrived DOA. My acclimation procedure:
    Pop and plop: because I have a ph of 8.4, using neutral bottled water, I remove fish from shipping bags asap. They received a 30 minute methylene blue bath to help recover from shipping. Bag water tested .5 ammonia. Then they are moved to a heated acclimation tub, which started with approximately 4 gallons of the spring water, where I add 4 cups of tank water every 15 minutes. Every hour I check the ph. Also monitor the temp, which was stable at 76F. After about 2.5 hours, the ph matched, so they were transferred to the main tank. (Cycled to 6ppm fishless). One died rather quickly, another I noticed had a cloudy eye, was removed to qt where it deteriorated quickly and was eventually euthanized. Overnight 6 more have died, 2-3 more still not doing well. Also received a bn pleco who is doing well. Tank parameters are 0,0,20 after removing dead fish.
    Is this a usual occurrence? Did I do anything wrong? I have received shipped fish before, with no casualties, but those were all from other members here. I've used the same procedure with all shipments.
    What would you do at this point?
  2. KinsKicks Fishlore VIP Member

    What a terrible ordeal! I'd definitely contact the company; that's 45% of your stock dead immediately AND overnight shipping...that's pretty bad

    Did you take pics of the dead fish in the bag? Cuz that'll be the only proof you'll have against them. It is most definelty not normal and you shouldn't have a death rate that high...I mean I've gotten discus shipped to me before from across the country and they all arrived very healthy, and your acclimation process is a lot more detailed than mine lol (literally just drop and plop) How was the box packed?

    Where did you get them btw?
  3. jmaldo Well Known Member Member

    That's gotta be tough. I have had fish shipped twice and plants about 3 times with 2 day shipping. I always document the unboxing and time received with photos. Just in case this happens. Fingers crossed so far so good. I would definitely contact the seller.
  4. Discusluv Well Known Member Member

    Your procedure for acclimation is even more thorough than my procedures for acclimating new discus. You did absolutely nothing wrong. Call vendor and you should have no problem getting replacements.
  5. AngelTheGypsy Fishlore VIP Member

    Thank you all. Before I contacted them I wanted to make sure I didn't make any mistakes. I did video the unboxing, and they were packed well and well insulated, however I was concerned with the packing of 20 tetra in 2 bags, so 10 fish per bag. It also appears they did not fast them, as pleco bag was full of poop, and he was pooping in the tank long before any food was offered. They had also placed loose purigen in the bags, I'm assuming in an attempt to remove ammonia. I also have photos of the acclimation procedure I used, and of all the dead fish.
    The package came with acclimation procedures I did not follow, ill post a photo.
  6. KeeperOfASilentWorld Well Known Member Member

    I drop and plopped all fish including my 12 Otocinclus Arnoldi's and had no losses. They all got comfortable in the tank almost instantly. I am very new to fish keeping but from what I have experienced that day and from what I hear from the professionals, I strongly advise the drop and plop method.
  7. stella1979 Well Known Member Member

    Wow, I'm so sorry Angel! It sounds like you did EVERYTHING right... I believe you dropped and plopped into the acclimation tub, right? The long acclimation was necessary because of a large difference in pH.
  8. AngelTheGypsy Fishlore VIP Member

    Yep. Took me over three hours to get them to the main tank.

    Lost another one, don't know when it will stop.
  9. Fashooga Well Known Member Member

    Did they start losing their slim coat during this whole process?
  10. AngelTheGypsy Fishlore VIP Member

    Honestly I don't know what that looks like so I'm not sure.
  11. KinsKicks Fishlore VIP Member

    This is going to sound weird, but can you get a pic of the ones that are still surviving and the one that just died (sorry to people who don't like dead bodies :( )? Kinda curious as to what might be their ailment...
  12. Fashooga Well Known Member Member

    When I added new fish into my tank and my PH was super low the fish started having white lines on their fins and started to gasp for air. When they all died I did more research on what was going on and found out that it was the PH. Mine was at 6.0 and their slim coat was basically melting off...I'm not sure if the same goes for a high PH though.
  13. AngelTheGypsy Fishlore VIP Member

    Due to lack of clove oil, I had to do a barbaric method. I could post it but not pretty. The ones left (10) look ok, the ones I'm concerned about just won't come out of hiding in the plants.
    Here's a pic of the ones I pulled, before the last death.
    Here's the best I could do
    I took about 100 with the burst function.

    I'm also just not used to this behavior. They don't school, they mostly hang out on their own. I'm used to rummynose schooling tightly though.
  14. AmazonPassion Moderator Moderator Member

    I'm sorry for your loss, it is extremely disheartening.

    Unfortunately, your acclimation process and seller's acclimation process are completely different. The seller can indicate that there is nothing wrong with their stock and it was the buyer's fault for not following their acclimation process. Not saying it is your fault but that is what the seller might say if they heard that you didn't follow their process.
  15. AngelTheGypsy Fishlore VIP Member

    True. Maybe I am overly freaked out by how everyone responds to my ph, and over think things. That's why I'm asking if I made a mistake. I would also be concerned that if I did follow their procedures they would say my ph was the culprit. They could refuse it either way.
    Their customer service will be what matters, I guess. Mess happens, so I just want to learn from this, if nothing else.