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Jacob54

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Tank
20 gallons

Running 6 months
Filtered
Heated
78 degrees Fahrenheit
Albino Bristle Nosed Pleco
2 Dwarf Gourami
1 Baby Molly

Maintenance
Bi-weekly water change

30% change
Water treated with API Stress Coat +
Vacuum substrate and water

*Parameters - Very Important
Take was already established from previous owner
API Freshwater Master Test Kit used to test water

Ammonia: 0 ppm
Nitrite: .25 ppm
Nitrate: 5.0 ppm
pH: 7.6

Feeding
Pleco - fed every 3 days 1 crushed Pleco wafer
Others - fed daily small pinch of new life spectrum optimum flake, occasional frozen blood worms

Illness & Symptoms
Sick fish - had for 1-2 months
How long ago did you first notice these symptoms? A week ago, attempted to treat with API PimaFix and API MelaFix
Dwarf GouramI started with tattered fins, I thought it was being bullied by the slightly larger dwarf gourami. The torn fin fish was added to the tank second then the fins slowly started to degenerate more until today when I noticed the bottom fin was down to the body and redness or pinkness appeared
Fish was not I’ll or injured upon purchase
The fish’s behavior is oddly totally normal. The larger gouramI is hiding a bit more often if anything.

I read online this may be a bacterial infection so I was possibly going to attempt to treat with API antibiotics ASAP.

Please help
 

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JamieLu

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Well the nitrites reading isn't great, u want it to b 0 so ur prob going thro a minI cycle. U def need to b doing more than 30% water change every 2 weeks especially cuz theyre sick. Plecos alone produce a lot of waste. Most people here, myself included do 50% every week. I don't know that id treat with meds right now since u have nitrites in the tank cuz that alone tanks a toll on fish, then ur adding meds which also can cause more harm then good. Try to start with frequent water changes, if u can get seachem prime its the best dechlorinator out there and helps detox ammonia and nitrites til u get thro that.
 

Dechi

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Your tank isn’t fully cycled ot else your nitrites would be 0. Gouramis are sensitive fish. They might not survive.

Do you do WC twice per week or once per two weeks ? You should do a WC every time your nitrites are above 0, to protect your fish. Do 50%. Everyday if you have to. Until you have no more nitrites.

The fact that your tank is six months old and not cycled makes me wonder what kind of maintenance you do on your tank and filter ? Can you describe it ?
 
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Jacob54

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Dechi said:
Your tank isn’t fully cycled ot else your nitrites would be 0. Gouramis are sensitive fish. They might not survive.

Do you do WC twice per week or once per two weeks ? You should do a WC every time your nitrites are above 0, to protect your fish. Do 50%. Everyday if you have to. Until you have no more nitrites.

The fact that your tank is six months old and not cycled makes me wonder what kind of maintenance you do on your tank and filter ? Can you describe it ?
The water of the tank is crystal clear. I get a little bit of green algae spots on the back of the tank near the heater. I have a bubbler on the left side of the tank and bought a newer higher grade filter which is on the right side of the tank. The filter isn’t a cartridge filter, it’s a biological hang on back filter. The filter instructs that it should be cleaned monthly so I take it apart monthly and clean off the parts but leave the biological media untouched. There is a sponge in it that I rinse out as well. I do 30% water changes every 2 weeks, which seems to not be enough by the indications above. I read online that too many water changes can be bad, so that’s why I wasn’t doing weekly 50%. There’s a lot of conflicting information online. Anyway, every time I do a water change I vacuum the gravel and pick up any loose debris. I have only had to scrub the walls of the tank once, because like I said the water is clear and I don’t get much algae. There are a couple of plants in the tank. I attempted to plant more but a few of them didn’t take. There are 3 large rocks in the tank as well as a couple smaller scattered rocks. The rocks tend to get a little bit of brown algae on them over time so I take them out when visibly dirty and clean them. Based on a lot of the stuff I’ve read online and seen through youtubers I can’t really figure out what is going wrong. I know I’m not doing enough water changes I guess.
 
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Jacob54

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JamieLu said:
Well the nitrites reading isn't great, u want it to b 0 so ur prob going thro a minI cycle. U def need to b doing more than 30% water change every 2 weeks especially cuz theyre sick. Plecos alone produce a lot of waste. Most people here, myself included do 50% every week. I don't know that id treat with meds right now since u have nitrites in the tank cuz that alone tanks a toll on fish, then ur adding meds which also can cause more harm then good. Try to start with frequent water changes, if u can get seachem prime its the best dechlorinator out there and helps detox ammonia and nitrites til u get thro that.
Alright, I’ll begin doing a lot more water changes. I don’t know why, but some sources online have said that doing too many water changes and changing too much of the water can be a negative. Am I okay to put the water in the tank through a siphon and treat the tank while doing so, or should I start putting the water into buckets, treating it, then put it in the tank. My water at home isn’t very heavily chlorinated. I will try to get that seachem prime to better treat the water regardless.
 

Dechi

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Jacob54 said:
Alright, I’ll begin doing a lot more water changes. I don’t know why, but some sources online have said that doing too many water changes and changing too much of the water can be a negative. Am I okay to put the water in the tank through a siphon and treat the tank while doing so, or should I start putting the water into buckets, treating it, then put it in the tank.
Yes, advice is conflicting on water changes. I had an aquarium when you weren’t supposed to change water much, and I have one now that gets 50% WC weekly. My tank is much better with 50% WC.

Think about fish in the ocean, they get 100% water change every minute ! Our fishes live in a glass box for our convenience, with almost none. The least we can do is change their water. People who breed will change water every day, that’s what the fish like in order to breed.

You can use a syphon and pour the water conditioner directly in your tank as the tank is filling. That’s what I do. Just treat the whole tank, even if you’re only changing 50%.
 

JamieLu

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Just make sure u turn off the filter if u use the siphon to fill the tank. With my 75 gal I turn off the filter, add enough dechlorinator for the WHOLE tank and begin refilling it. If u leave the filter on before u dechlorinate it could kill some beneficial bacteria and thay wouldnt b good. And ya tons of conflicting info online, I like to go by experience from others on here cuz I feel like its a lot better advice! Good luck!
 
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Jacob54

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I wanted to post a follow-up to this thread. I began changing the water a lot more and stopped medicating the fish. It actually helped for a while until the one GouramI started bullying the other again. It bullied the other one to death, despite my best efforts. The fish even began looking a lot more healthy and recovering, so that was a big disappointment. The bully ended up living healthy up until a couple days ago when I came home and found the fish mysteriously dead on the bottom of the tank. I took water readings and everything seemed normal. I took water to my local fish store and they said they couldn’t figure out what had gone wrong, so it was probably an internal disease.

Safe to say I’ve learned my lesson about dwarf gouramis. Make sure you have females or you’ll have aggression issues. They might be susceptible to internal diseases as well.
 

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