My fish are dying - please help........

Discussion in 'Aquarium Nitrogen Cycle' started by Rustymayes, Feb 26, 2006.

  1. RustymayesNew MemberMember

    I have a 30x30x60 tank that has been set up for approx 18 months with clown loaches, neons, zebra danios, gouramis and catfish, but just recently have had a spate of sudden and unexplained funerals down the toilet!!  I think it started a couple of months ago when one of our pair of Gouramis died, and we replaced it with a couple of others, but unfortunately they were bullied to death.  We took the "bully" back to the shop and tried with another pair, but they also took to bullying, and so did their replacements, and after another spate of murders we took those back too.  We have during this time also tried adding other new fish such as angels, platties and mollies - just a couple at a time - but these died without any visible signs of disease just days after being introduced to the tank. The only symptoms I noticed were that they become lethargic or swam awkwardly and seemed to gasp for air. We also lost one of the clown loaches, a couple of neons and a zebra.  One day they are fine and the next I'm scooping them off the bottom.  I change the water weekly, and have checked that the chemicals are all OK, with the exception of the phosphates being a little high. To combat this I have added new live plants and 2 anti-phosphate "t-bags", and also change the water every other day by 10%.  The deceased danio zebra looked as though he may have had red gills so we tried a course of anti-biotics, but the deaths continue........please help.
  2. GunnieWell Known MemberMember

    Welcome to FishLore! Could you please post your ammonia, nitrite and nitrate levels? It would also be great if you could tell us what type of tests you are using (strips, drops, etc.) Some tests are more reliable than others. Once you post these readings, we can go from there. I wouldn't add any more fish until you find the problem. ;)
  3. RustymayesNew MemberMember

    Ammonia 0, no trace
    Nitrate less than 5
    Nitrite less than 0.1

    I have been using a Laguna test kit, with liquid drops of regent

    Thanks in advance.
  4. GunnieWell Known MemberMember

    It looks like your tank is almost cycled. Your ammonia and nitrites need to be at zero for your tank to be completely cycled, and you should be showing nitrates, which you do.
  5. ButterflyModeratorModerator Member

    If your tank has been set up for 18 months it should be cycled already. Could you tell us how many of each fish you have? And how big your clowns are?
    I would discontinue using any chemicals except dechlor until we get this figured out. Some chemicals and meds will give a false reading in some water testing kits.
    What kind of antibiotics were you using? Some times they can kill a big part of your beneficial bacteria off and may be why your going through a mini-cycle at this time.
    Sorry for all the questions ;)
  6. jim55379Valued MemberMember

    Sorry Rustymayes to hear of your losses. Angels are beautiful fish but I also had a 100% mortality rate. You might want to buy one of those sticks with suction cups and an airpump. It sounds like you may need more oxygen in the tank. Also check for signs of white spot. And if there is one very important thing I have learned from this site is NEVER PUT IN NEW FISH WITH A GOOD TANK Always use a quarantine tank. I never knew bacteria was beneficial and used to clean my tank WAY too often with 100 percent water changes with my goldfish before I learned from this site. Good luck and maybe try a partial change with only Clorine chemicals. I am beginning to think all those chemicals do more harm than good.
  7. RustymayesNew MemberMember

    Sorry for late reply

    I have 4 Clown Loach
    The largest is 4 inches
    2 Danio
    1 mollie
    2 cat fish
    2 Rainbows
    4 Neons

    The antibiotics we used were Myxazin.
    Things seem to have settled down now no deathes for 2 weeks. Could it have been adding new fish to quickly?
  8. 0morrokhFishlore VIPMember

    It probably was adding fish too quickly.
    Please figure out how many inches of fish your tank can hold by finding the surface area in inches and dividing by 12. (Some people use the gallon-per-inch rule) If you still have room in your tank (make sure you use your fish's adult sizes), and AFTER SETTING UP A QUARINTINE TANK, I would consider buying more Danios, Neons, Rainbowfish, and Mollies. The first 3 (I'm not positive about the Rainbows) are shoaling fish, who like to swim in groups of 6 or more. And Mollies like a couple friends. Make sure that a) you have enough room, b) they are quarintined, and c) you add them very slowly, before adding any fish.
    A Golden Rule of Fishkeeping: don't add chemicals to the water unless you are positive you need to, and are positive in your diagnosis. Medications are stressful, and if not necesary they will probably do the fish more harm than good, not to mention they can disrupt your biological filtration.
    Oh, and what are your species of Danio, Rainbow, and Catfish?