New fish owner, help! Important 

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Noob_You_Ate_My_Taco

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Ok, so I have a pretty small tank ( 10 gallon :-\ ) with fish that are going to get really big. I don't know the temperature or the ph or anything like that, and I know I need to. I just started taking care of fish about a month ago and still have no idea on how to properly take care of them. I thought it would be easy..but no, I was wrong...really wrong.

So anyway, the only fish I have right now are a common pleco, a snail, and a silver tip shark. I was not aware that the shark was a brackish fish and would eventually need to be in a full marine tank, it was sold as a fresh water fish. They are beautiful fish, but it is a shame that most are not properly taken care of, and they are definetly a fish that should NOT be sold to just anyone. Oh well, what's done is done and now that I have my little shark ( his name is shishio ) I want to take real good care of him.

But last week I went on vacation to the grand canyon for the whole week, and I left my boyfriend ( the one who got me into fish ) to take care of him. When I got back and watched my fish I noticed poor shishio had these white dots all over him and I didnt know what they were at first. Now I know that he has Ick and I'm trying my best to treat him, I hope it's not too late. yesterday I went to petsmart and got ick guard and some aquarium salt, what I forgot to do was take out the carbon from the filter ( I did that a few hours later, but I'm afraid because of that it wasn't very effective ) I put some salt in there too and today at 6 I'm going to change 25% of the water like it says and then put it in. ( the carbon is still out of the filter )

I would also like to raise the temperature to kill the ick but I don't have a heater or a thermomiter ( sorry I can't spell lol and I think that's what u need right? ) My pleco hasnt shown any signs but for all I know he may have it too I think the reason my shark has ick may be that 1. he's not in brackish water 2. I may not have the right levels of everything or temperature and he may be stressed 3. the rocks in the tank are from my boyfriends best friend, and I didnt know it then but hes had fish in the past who have had ick. the silver tip he gave my boyfriend like maybe 2 months ago had ick and died, and my boyfriend has gotten other fish from him after his best friend moved but none of them seem sick. maybe because they were immune?

but yeah, I know I need to upgrade a lot to take care of my shark and pleco but I need a lot of help x.x what would be a good size tank for my shark? I am planning on moving him to a tank by himself so I can raise the salt for him. I know that I've written a lot but any suggestions?? I really like these guys

Good morning, I have edited your post to create paragraphs for easier reading.
Thanks!

Ken
 

jetajockey

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Welcome to FL!

Just my 2 cents, I believe that the issues that the fish is facing are likely stress related. Whether it be from poor water conditions or just cramped living quarters, a high enough stress level will make a fish susceptible to all kinds of illnesses.

here's the profile for more info on your shark
https://www.fishlore.com/profile-columbianshark.htm

The common pleco , full grown, will be the size of the 10 gallon tank, length wise. I suggest you rehome both of them, or definitely move up to a much larger tank. Assuming I was planning for a silver tip shark to get 15-20 inches or larger, I'd go with a 75 gallon+ personally.

One thing that will help immediately is to start doing daily water changes 25% is good, or 50% every other day. Make sure you use conditioned water ( I suggest Prime or Amquel+) and make sure the temperature of the fresh water is the same as the water in the tank.

I cannot advise on how to treat ICH as I don't have much experience with it, but at this point I think its best to get the basics covered.

Also look into getting a good liquid test kit, walmart has the best deal on these, about 10 dollars cheaper than most LFS.

Best of luck, if you have any other questions feel free to ask!
Take care!
 
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ryanr

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HI there, welcome to fishlore

As a general rule, salt is not recommended in any freshwater tank.

Regarding Ick, well rest assured most of us have battled it, so you're not alone.

Without a test kit, a heater and a thermometer it is really hard to identify the best course of action.

Ick more often than not appears as a result of stress in your fish, and I don't think it is necessarily due to him not being in brackish water.

More than likely, it's a result of your water parameters which we do not know

I would suggest getting yourself a liquid test kit such as the API Master Kit, and a glass thermometer and a good reliable heater.

I believe the shark you have is most likely Silver-tipped Shark aka Shark Catfish aka Tete Sea Catfish (Hexanematichthys seemanni)

Does he look like the attached :
488.jpg


These guys can get to 60cm (24"), meaning they ideally need a tank at least 6ft x 4ft.

Also, if you have common pleco (as opposed to a bristlenose), 10 gallon is not going to be large enough for him either.

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but I think you really need to reconsider the fish you have, or make some serious plans to re-home them into a suitably sized tank.
 
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Noob_You_Ate_My_Taco

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Well, as for the tank I am hoping to get a 125 gallon for the shark soon and I'm getting a heater and thermometer to go with it. plus one of those things, I forget what theyre called..umm something around hydrometer? I think. I wish I knew more about this kind of stuff :/ but I will learn in time. I think with a good heater and everything set right for my shark, his ich will clear up hopefully. I'm not to good with water changes but I will try to do that as well, and I plan on getting a vacuum and vaccuming the gravel once every week ( I wonder if that would help? ) I'm afraid that even if I do get a 125 gallon for the shark and even if he's all by himself that it will still be too small. I heard that some people put them in ponds? I think they would enjoy the room but I think it would be alittle odd to have a marine pond? x.x idk. but I think a pond is alittle beyond me at this point in time. I'm thinking about getting one tank for marine and the other strictly fresh water. but I am definetly not getting anymore fish unless I know and have everything I need to take care of them properly! oh and thank you for the warm welcomes everyone!
 

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As a general rule, salt is not recommended in any freshwater tank.
That is not exactly true. Pure aquarium salt is recommended at appx 1/10 gram per liter (0.01%) to reduce nitrate toxicity, unless the fish in question are extremely sensitive to salt. It is also useful at 1 gram per liter to support healing in fish showing physical damage (like in a hospital tank). This level is also beneficial for brackish fish like mollies.

Per Manual of Fish Health pp 194-5.
 
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Noob_You_Ate_My_Taco

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yeah, I have some aquarium salt that I put in my tank yesterday. It's supposed to make them feel better I believe.
 
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Lucy

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HI welcome to FishLore!!
I'm pretty sure plecos don't do well in salt. It would be a really good idea to separate these fish as they have different requirements.
By adding salt to help one, you'll be hurting another.

Ick can be treated with raised temperatures.
Increase the temp to 86F, leave it there for 2 weeks. Increase aeration to make up for less oxygen in warmer water. Do frequent water changes and gravel vacs to pick up any ich spores.

I'm sorry to say either you need two very large tanks or one very large tank and return at least one of the fish.

Good luck with whatever you decide to do.
 
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Noob_You_Ate_My_Taco

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Yeah, I don't have a very good choice in tankmates...sigh. Well I'm getting a heater later today to deal with the ick, and I have a good air pump that will supply plenty of air. Still need a vacuum, but I think since I don't have one at the moment I might just replace the gravel with new gravel.

It sucks that I have to separate them they were getting along really well. I know salt is bad for the pleco, but I had just put in a tiny amount of aquarium salt which shouldnt hurt him. Getting one large tank is expensive enough...but two? I'm not very experienced in taking care of fish so I'm not sure I can even cure shishio's ick but I am trying really hard...I actually like the silver tip sharks a lot and would like to become an expert in them ^_^
 

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Hi. It says in your profile that you don't know about the nitrogen cycle. Here is a link that will help you: https://www.fishlore.com/NitrogenCycle.htm

It also says you don't know what pH is. pH is how acidic or base a solution (aquarium water) is. Some fish like high pH some like low pH.

Other members have mentioned it but a good water tester would be API Master Test Kit. Get the liquid one not the strips because the strips don't work.

Did you cycle your tank before introducing fish?
 

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HI there, and welcome to Fish Lore! I'm so sorry you're overstocked. :console: Fishkeeping is a really fun hobby, but it can be kinda overwhelming when you jump in then realize how deep the water is! This is a great website, the people here really helped me when I joined. You're getting great advice! I hope you get past the "oh dear, what else don't I know?" stage, and into the "wow! this is so much fun!" stage really soon!
 

ppate1977

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I like your enthusiasm about keeping your fish healthy. I need not say again the fish you have will get HUGE. I'm glad you enjoy the hobby.....but wow, you got thrown into a tough start. Good luck
 

claudicles

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Wow Noob, you have really gotten yourself in for a challenge. Two big tanks with two big fish is a huge commitment. If it were me I'd be taking the fish back and getting something more suitable. I know you are attached to them but you will get attached to your new fish very quicky too. After fishless cycling your 10 gallon that is.
 
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Noob_You_Ate_My_Taco

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Wow, thank you everyone for your help and comments! ^__^ sadly enough my poor shishio died awhile back...sigh... But the good news is today I got my new 55 gallon tank and got it set up! I now have 3 snails, ( 1 blue mystery snail, another baby mystery snail, and one spiral snail ) A female Bichir fish, ( my bf has 3 and 2 of them are males. we are going to try to breed them soon, any suggestions? ) A Pleco, and a fire eel. I'm so excited! <3 Oh and for all of you that gave me advice on my sick shark ( thank you for the help) I recently have just learned my lesson....LFS sucks :/ After close examination and talking to the employers I have found out that almost all of their silver tips have ich. poor babys! So I assume that my shark had already had it He lived a lot longer thanks to everyone here but in the end it wasn't enough. These sharks are still my favorite fish and I really would love to be an expert on them, they are so beautiful The sad thing is that I cannot buy another shark until I can find a store who sells them healthy ( any suggestions? ) I also would need another tank for them of course ( I heard they like being in groups, so I plan on getting 3 ) So once again, I would like to ask you all for help on setting up this much larger tank ( 10 gal to 55 woohooo! ) for I am still a beginner. ^^ oh yes and any tank mate suggestions? thanks.
 

Deeqadri

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Noob_You_Ate_My_Taco said:
Wow, thank you everyone for your help and comments! ^__^ sadly enough my poor shishio died awhile back...sigh... But the good news is today I got my new 55 gallon tank and got it set up! I now have 3 snails, ( 1 blue mystery snail, another baby mystery snail, and one spiral snail ) A female Bichir fish, ( my bf has 3 and 2 of them are males. we are going to try to breed them soon, any suggestions? ) A Pleco, and a fire eel. I'm so excited! <3 Oh and for all of you that gave me advice on my sick shark ( thank you for the help) I recently have just learned my lesson....LFS sucks :/ After close examination and talking to the employers I have found out that almost all of their silver tips have ich. poor babys! So I assume that my shark had already had it He lived a lot longer thanks to everyone here but in the end it wasn't enough. These sharks are still my favorite fish and I really would love to be an expert on them, they are so beautiful The sad thing is that I cannot buy another shark until I can find a store who sells them healthy ( any suggestions? ) I also would need another tank for them of course ( I heard they like being in groups, so I plan on getting 3 ) So once again, I would like to ask you all for help on setting up this much larger tank ( 10 gal to 55 woohooo! ) for I am still a beginner. ^^ oh yes and any tank mate suggestions? thanks.
Hi
Welcome to Fish lore, You already got the best advice from fish lore members , well my question is do you actually know about nitrogen cycle??? I hope you haven't made the same mistake with your new 55 gallon, this tank need to be cycled before you put any fish in ,I'm not the expert but TSS might help!
 
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Noob_You_Ate_My_Taco

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No, I'm not a 100% sure what that is yet :/ but don't worry the fish are not yet in the new tank. Here is what I did : once I got this bigger tank in its new spot I began filling the tank by filling up my aquarium pail with tub water and pouring the water from that into the aquarium. ( not all the way to the top because I still need the new gravel ) Then when I was done with that I put the appropriate amount of water conditioner in the tank and let it sit for 2 hours ( I already had the new double filter up and running by the time that was finished ) After the 2 hour wait I put in the bacteria needed into the tank. Now I am waiting for another day or 2 before I actually put the fish in. Is there anything else I need to do? And what would be the best way to transfer these fish to the new tank? I know I can't just plop them in there, what do I do???
 

ivan.tsary

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With a 55 gallon tank if you are going with a fishless cycle you need a few weeks to let the bacteria grow unless you have a TON of used media and gravel and decos from the old tank. My tanks been going almost a week and I don't even have a nitrite spike, and mines just 29 gallons.

If you are using fish to cycle, then just add 2-3 small hardy fish for a couple weeks. Everyone has their particular cycle fish. Some use goldfish, others mollies or platys etc. Just don't get attached to any fish you add at the beginning as they may not have long on this earth.

Awesome on the Fire Eel!
 
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Noob_You_Ate_My_Taco

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Thanks! I am soon going to get my test kit and such and I will be watching the levels of everything, I just read up on this stuff a bit more on this site and how to properly cycle fish so it should be all good! I just have to be patient I guess. I still have a few more questions though. 1: Ik how to do the float bag method but how do I transfer the fish from my 10 gal to my 55 gal? 2: Anyone familiar with breeding senegal bichirs?
 

ayelie

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HI and welcome to fishlore
 
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