Lost 3 Fish This Week, Why?!

  1. LuniqueKero

    LuniqueKero Valued Member Member

    I - Don't- Get -IT!

    My cloud mountain minnows keep dying!

    -Found a tailess fish 2 days ago that died
    -yesterday I found another dead fish
    -today evening, one died suddenly, I noticed that one of them stayed rather low in the tank earlier, and would occasionally twitch it's fin to stay at the exact same spot for a while, seemed to be breathing rapidly to me, it didnt come up for feeding, I don't know if its the one that died.

    Aquarium is currently cycling, water was added last week on tuesday, fish added on last thursday, I did a 25% waterchange this tuesday and wiped the glasses with a sponge brush I had never used before.

    Water Test Results
    Temperature: 76F
    Ammonia: at most 0.25
    Nitrite: below 0.25
    Nitrate: 5.0 ppm

    These results have been the same all week to the point I wonder if my testkit isnt defective.

    Theres some algae on my wood and fungus, I was told it was normal and would go away on its own, here are some picture because at this point I'm trying to diagnose anything.


  2. BeanFish

    BeanFish Well Known Member Member

    Tail-less as in finrot? If thats the case I would say the parameters killed them.
  3. OP

    LuniqueKero Valued Member Member

    That was my assumption although I did notice that some of them swim after oneanother so maybe he got attacked, but again, I had done the water tests and the results were the same as this post, none of the other deaths missed their tail or seemed to have any damage to it
  4. BeanFish

    BeanFish Well Known Member Member

    What about the gills on the fish? Do you have other fish in the tank that are alive?
  5. OP

    LuniqueKero Valued Member Member

    I have 9 left, and I don't see anything unusual around the gills
  6. JenC

    JenC Well Known Member Member

    I'm sorry about your fish.

    If you want to double check your test kit you could bring a water sample to your LFS to compare results.

    Did you sanitize your driftwood in any way/where did you get it? Are you using Prime or another dechlorinator to treat your source water? What kind of filter are you running?

    Filling out your profile might help folks get a better understanding of your set up.
  7. OP

    LuniqueKero Valued Member Member

    Everything I got was purchased at a specialised fishstore. I was told the driftwood was ready to go already and didnt require anything.

    The filter is an Eheim External filter 350 and no I did not use a Dechlorinator to treat my source water.

    Are there any precaution I need to take if I dip my arm or hand in my aquarium? I had to for the past few days since I picked up some dead plants and my dead fishes
  8. JenC

    JenC Well Known Member Member

    I'm not sure where you're located but in the US public water supplies are treated with chlorine and/or chloramine, sometimes alternating during the year. It's toxic to fish, which is why a dechlorinator like Prime is used. (Not always, like with well water or if you let it sit out for 1-2 days, but usually.) Is your not using it intentional because you know there's none in your water or is this potentiality the issue?
  9. OP

    LuniqueKero Valued Member Member

    I live in montreal. My not using it is because it was not mentioned ever! Could it be the problem? I have nothing to test the amount of chlorine or cholarmine in my water.

    Also I lost my first fish after I did my first water change, before that when I added the fish the tank had been sitting for 2-3 days with water while I was adding plants, maybe enough for the chlorine to evaporate, that *could* be the culprit..
  10. JenC

    JenC Well Known Member Member

    If you're using municipal tap water I'd assume it has chlorine. Most folks don't test for it, they just automatically add 2 drops of Seachem Prime per gallon (or equivalent amount of other brand dechlorinator) to any tap water before it goes in the tank.

    It may not be your only problem but I think it's potentially a big one depending upon how your city's treating its water right now. I'd get some dechlorinator in there ASAP, dosing for the whole tank, and always use it on any tap water going forward.
  11. OP

    LuniqueKero Valued Member Member

    I'll give this a try! Because so far all the other parameters seem to be fine
  12. vikingkirken

    vikingkirken Well Known Member Member

    @JenC 's suggestion is a good one, it's also possible you just got some bad stock.

    The fungus on the driftwood is nothing to worry about, it'll clear up on its own.

    Don't add more minnows til your tank is cycled... What size tank?
  13. JenC

    JenC Well Known Member Member

    Good luck! I hope the remainder survive. I'd keep a close eye on them for diseases as stress can trigger some serious issues.

    To answer your other question, just try to ensure that your hand and arm are free from chemicals, soap, etc., before reaching in the tank. I do my morning feed before I get ready so there's no lotion or perfume. I rinse my hand well with plain water before reaching in. It's also suggested that you wash well afterward as there are actually some fish diseases that are communicable to humans. o_O
  14. OP

    LuniqueKero Valued Member Member

    55 Gal

    How frail are fishes? I do my feeding after my morning shower, so I probably have some shampoo and hair gel thing left on my hand when I feed the fish. Could that be a factor too? I'm trying to understand all the variables heree
  15. JenC

    JenC Well Known Member Member

    Gel on your hand (after styling your hair) wouldn't be great for the tank. I won't even put my hand in if it's just had soap on it. Rinse really well with plain water beforehand.

    9 minnows might take a long while to cycle a 55 gallon. I've read suggestions of 2-4 hardy fish for every 10 gallons though I can't confirm as I haven't done a fish-in cycle. I think you'll want to add some TSS+ or other bacteria starter but someone else with experience in this area will need to advise you. I think it interacts with Prime too, so prioritize dechlorinating before bacteria boosting as that's the bigger issue right now.
  16. Savanna

    Savanna Valued Member Member

    I rinse my hands/arms in peroxide and then lots of water.
    If you're using tap water it's very possible that chlorine is the biggest issue here or one of the biggest, as chlorine and chloramines are toxic to fish.
    Seachem Prime and Stress coat will both dechlorinatw your water for you. Many prefer prime and some use Stress Guard by Seachem with it. Both stress guard and stress coat help the slime coat on your fish, but stress coat is a combination dechlorinator/water conditioner and slime coat supplement. It's up to you which you use, most of it is personal preference, as long as you use a water conditioner/dechlorinator. If you're using tap water it most likely has chlorine.
    It sitting for a few days will evaporate a lot of it, so that is probably why you didn't notice symptoms until the water change. This of course is all speculation, but you LFS should be able to test for chlorine for you. Though strips only give an approximation of your water parameters versus liquid test kits, it's still leaps and bounds better than no testing. At petsmart we test pH, Ammonia, Chlorine, Nitrites, Nitrates and... oh goodness what is the other thing...I can't recall just now I've been at work for hours after a sleepless night lol. The point being they can check your tap and tank water for chlorine.
    Definitely should purchase some water conditioner regardless, as they usually also take care of heavy metals and other things.
    Good luck!
  17. JenC

    JenC Well Known Member Member

    Also, I'm pretty sure white cloud mountain minnows prefer colder water, maybe <72 F. I excluded them when stocking my tank because of temp incompatibilities with other fish I wanted. You should confirm and adjust your heater if needed. You'll want to think about that if your house gets warmer than that in the summer.
  18. MattS99

    MattS99 Well Known Member Member

    Those white clouds like the water a lot cooler than 76. Pretty sure 64-72 is the preferred temp. range for them.
  19. Susiefoo

    Susiefoo Well Known Member Member

    I have white clouds. They are generally hardy fish and don't die easily, so once you get things sorted you should be fine.

    Water with chlorine kills fish. If you are using tap water that hasn't been dechlorinated, I would say that is 99% likely the reason for the deaths. But this is easily resolved with some dechlorinator. I use Prime which lasts for ages as you only need a tiny amount.

    WCMM are temperate fish which means they should be kept without a heater, if they are kept indoors in a house that is a comfortable temperature for human habitation. The range above (64-72) is correct. They can tolerate lower than this. Higher temperatures will shorten their lifespan and make them more prone to disease. It shouldn't kill them outright in a short space of time though. You will have to keep fish in a similar temperature range so if this affects your plans for the rest of your 55G you may want to move them to their own tank.

    Consider using a bacterial supplement if cycling fish in; it speeds things up significantly. I have used Tetra Safe Start but there is also Seachem Stability that has good reviews. There are good instructions for how to use these on Fishlore. I can link you if you're interested.

    Good luck. They are great little fish.
  20. OP

    LuniqueKero Valued Member Member

    As for the tailless fish, the employee at the place said that when fish are sick and dying, other fish can tell and so they may start "feasting" on the fish even if it's still alive. That makes sense to me since none of the other deaths had any sign of infection or deterioration of the fins. Dang nature you scary.