Mysterious Swordtail Death

  1. N

    Nocturna Initiate Member

    Over the past week I purchased a male Swordtail and he seemed perfectly okay until last night. He'd been eating well, acting normal and hyperactive and seemed overall happy to me. Last night I woke up (I'm a 3rd shift worker) and he was swimming around the bottom of the tank - or just floating rather. My Mom just texted me (I'm still at work) and informed me that he's dead. There were no signs of my illness (and no oddities about his physical appearance) so I'm not understanding what happened!? Can anyone offer any insight?! I'm upset and afraid to try again with another Swordtail if they're just going to die within a week. He'd been well and lovely for 4 whole days and I'd done a 25% water change on day 1 so ...I'm at a loss.
  2. Dragones5150918

    Dragones5150918 Well Known Member Member

    Anything could be it, especially in the first 10 days of introduction. From your tank not being cycled to osmotic shock including bacterial, fungal, and parasitic infections. To really nail it down we have to rule out a bunch of things.

    So let's start with the easiest. Is your tank cycled? If it is, how long has it been cycled? Is there any tank mates? If it was not cycled, do you know about the nitrogen cycle? Have you tested the water recently to check ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate? What is your current ph and temperature of your tank?

    Next let's look at infections. Did you notice any thing on him? White patches on him or the fins? His mouth or fins looking like they are erroding away? Did you notice him scratching against things? How was his poop? Normal color or white and stringy?

    After we rule out these two things, we can look at harder to find things.
  3. R

    Racing1113 Well Known Member Member

    What are your current water parameters (ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, ph)? Is he the only fish in the tank? What size tank and how long has it been up and running? What were you feeding him? What do you have in the tank as far as substrate, decor, heater, filter?