My Loaches Are Dying :( Question

  1. s

    shannon767 Valued Member Member

    I set up a 40g black water tank and added 25 Khuli loaches. I’ve had them in there for about three weeks and 10 of the loaches have died, and I have no idea why. The parameters are exactly where they should be, I feed them, I see them playing, then one turns up dead. I also have 14 espei rasboras in the same tank, and they’re fine.

    This is my first time keeping these fish. Is there something special I need to know? I thought I did enough research before buying them, but maybe I missed something.

    2901293a2929d850acbaf30c4b413489.jpg
     
  2. wodesorel

    wodesorel Valued Member Member

    It looks like you have the striped kuhlis? In my experience they are extremely sensitive and the few I have found for sale over the years did not live long. My black kuhlis are almost indestructible by comparison. I know that doesn't help your situation, but it may have something to do with the discrepancy in what you've read.

    What are your test readings? Have you checked GH and KH? What are you using for tannins?
     
  3. OP
    OP
    s

    shannon767 Valued Member Member

    I haven’t checked my gh and kh, but I’ll do that tomorrow. The others are all where they should be, but I’ll double check that tomorrow, too. I use the Indian almond leaves for tannins.

    I’m so bummed that they’re dying. I take really good care of my tanks and have never had this problem before. I had no idea they were so sensitive. I’ll test everything tomorrow and reply again with the details.

    Thanks for helping!
     


  4. OP
    OP
    s

    shannon767 Valued Member Member

    Test results:
    Ammonia: 0
    Nitrites: 0
    Nitrates: 5
    ph: 7.6
    GH: 13
    KH: 6

    What do you think? Looks pretty normal to me. The ph and gh may be a little high for them, but it’s consistent, which is important.
     
  5. Ravynn

    Ravynn Valued Member Member

    How did you acclimate them? Did they have any signs of illness on their bodies when you took them out? Were they new arrivals at the store you got them from?

    Your parameters are totally fine and your tank setup is perfect for them.
     
  6. ap4lmtree

    ap4lmtree Well Known Member Member

    loaches and other fish require acclimation over about an hour or more when introduced to new water source.
     
  7. OP
    OP
    s

    shannon767 Valued Member Member

    They were new arrivals. I took them in the bag they came in before they’d even been put in the tank. Do you think they were stressed out?
     
  8. sleow

    sleow Valued Member Member

    Sounds like they may have been sick before you got them. So sorry this is happening! I have 12 kuhlis of my own and know how fun they are. :(
     
  9. OP
    OP
    s

    shannon767 Valued Member Member

    I floated these guys for about half an hour and then added 1/4 cup water every 10 minutes or so for 50 minutes. Do you think that was enough time?
     
  10. OP
    OP
    s

    shannon767 Valued Member Member

    Thank you. It’s sucks for sure. I had no idea how fun they would be! They are so cute and playful. I definitely want to replace those I lost, but I want to make sure all of the deaths have stopped before introducing any new fish. I haven’t lost any since my original post, so maybe things are getting better. :)
     
  11. sleow

    sleow Valued Member Member

    Did you happen to test the water they were in when you got them? If the water parameters were significantly different, they may have needed more time since even 1/4 cup at one time a lot to add to a small shipment bag. Luckily for me, my kuhlis were in very similar water when I got them, so they were used to the hard, alkaline water in my area. I would imagine going from hard to soft, or vice versa, would be more stressful for them. Maybe check out drip acclimation for your next batch and see if it helps!
     
  12. OP
    OP
    s

    shannon767 Valued Member Member

    It never even occurred to me to check the water they came in. Next time it will. I’ve never had this issue, either, so I guess I’ll go with the idea that it was a bad batch.
     
  13. Ravynn

    Ravynn Valued Member Member

    If they had no physical symptoms, it very well could of been because of different parameters. I've always acclimated my loaches by floating for 30 minutes then adding some water to the bag every 10 minutes for an hour. These loaches have been at my LPS for a while though so they were used to the parameters.

    I've also heard that after fish being in shipping bags for a while, when you open the bags and expose them to oxygen the ph rises and ammonia in the bag becomes more toxic, so you would have to dump them into a net immediately and transfer to the tank.
     
  14. Thunder_o_b

    Thunder_o_b Fishlore VIP Member

    These little ones can be delicate. Next time drip acclamate them over several hours.

    Your aquarium should be great for them.
     
  15. ap4lmtree

    ap4lmtree Well Known Member Member

    drip acclimation isn't necessary. the way she did it for about an hour is sufficient. they died because like you said, they are delicate and thus "only the strong will survive"

    she probably had so many die, 10, because she got a bad batch. in my opinion
     
  16. Thunder_o_b

    Thunder_o_b Fishlore VIP Member

    With respect I disagree. If there is a large diffrence between each waters chemistry it can be very harmful to delicate fish. As an example I rarely loose them. We have 9 stripped in the 150 and 11 in the 55. But they did come from local shops and did not suffer the stress of shippment. Just 4 weeks in qt.
     
  17. Ravynn

    Ravynn Valued Member Member

    I just want to chime in again. Shrimp keepers tend to drip acclimate because shrimp are very sensitive to TDS (total dissolved solids) differences. This is another factor to consider when acclimating fish. If they are very sensitive fish and the TDS is drastically different (which you would only know with a TDS meter) it could impact the fish quite a bit.

    Especially with lots of leaf litter and driftwood, your TDS could of been much higher than some were able to handle at the beginning.