Question Pleco Dying/sick

Evee

Active Member
Member
Messages
90
Reaction score
34
Location
USA, CT
Experience
Just started
EB2E382C-6978-4EFB-9D98-3EB68BF645D6.jpeg
27544019-9936-4BA4-B6A3-10AFEC444C21.jpeg
HI Guys,

So I have a 29 gallon tank. In January I got a betta fish (BlueBlue) and in February I got a clown pleco. I have been cleaning the tank by doing water changes every 2 weeks. I use stress coat from API and whenever I need to,I use the ph up, never had a problem. So one day I read that plecos need driftwood, so I got two pieces of driftwood in the tank. After that I started getting brown algae, and no matter how many water changes I did... still coming back.. and fast. Well, my dumb self decided that I was going to replace the gravel and do a complete cleaning of the tank. Went to petsmart and bought new gravel (colored one) pink, blue, purple and green.Also, I got something call “ceramic rings? Fluval brand.. first time using it. Well, this morning I woke up with my betta fish dead in the bottom of the tank and my pleco has something white covering its eyes, he is not eating and doesn’t seem to be acting normal and his belly looks kind of big. Also, not sure if its the dye of the gravel, but it looks like it has some red on its fins? I'm sorry for the long post , but I'm very upset and not sure what else to do. I feel so guilty. Including pics.
 

nikm128

Fishlore VIP
Member
Messages
7,672
Reaction score
4,218
Location
Your Imagination
Experience
5 years
So you completely got rid of your old filter media? That would mean you have to cycle the tank again, and you probably have ammonia and nitrites that killed the betta. I'm not sure what could be causing the red fins on your pleco, but it could be mild ammonia burns
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #3
OP
Evee

Evee

Active Member
Member
Messages
90
Reaction score
34
Location
USA, CT
Experience
Just started
nikm128 said:
So you completely got rid of your old filter media? That would mean you have to cycle the tank again, and you probably have ammonia and nitrites that killed the betta. I'm not sure what could be causing the red fins on your pleco, but it could be mild ammonia burns
I did . They test the water in PetSmart and they said it was okay, but not sure if they check the ammonia levels. I didn’t know they can get ammonia burns, I feel terrible.
 

Skavatar

Well Known
Member
Messages
3,971
Reaction score
2,670
Location
Houston, TX
Experience
2 years
do you have an API Freshwater Master Test kit to test the water parameters?

what filter are you using? if you threw away the old filter media while adding the new ceramic rings, you lost most of your beneficial bacteria.

you also lost some beneficial bacteria that was living in the substrate when you changed the gravel. did you rinse out the gravel?

you should start doing daily 50% water changes until you get the tank cycled. Seachem Prime is a life saver when doing fish in cycle.
 

nikm128

Fishlore VIP
Member
Messages
7,672
Reaction score
4,218
Location
Your Imagination
Experience
5 years
Do you have anything to test your water with? How long after the betta died did you have them test the water, and did you do a water change before taking a sample?
I see on your profile it says you aren't familiar with cycling, click these blue words: nitrogen cycle
I can clarify anything you're unsure about after you read it
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #6
OP
Evee

Evee

Active Member
Member
Messages
90
Reaction score
34
Location
USA, CT
Experience
Just started
Skavatar said:
do you have an API Freshwater Master Test kit to test the water parameters?

what filter are you using? if you threw away the old filter media while adding the new ceramic rings, you lost most of your beneficial bacteria.

you also lost some beneficial bacteria that was living in the substrate when you changed the gravel. did you rinse out the gravel?

you should start doing daily 50% water changes until you get the tank cycled. Seachem Prime is a life saver when doing fish in cycle.
I did rinse it out, and I replaced the filter also (I know so stupid of me) I bought something called “bacteria starter?”, but I will look for the Seachem prime tomorrow and do the water changes. Also, I do not have the master test kit, I only have the regular one. It tests 5 different things, but I am not sure if that’s enough?
 

nikm128

Fishlore VIP
Member
Messages
7,672
Reaction score
4,218
Location
Your Imagination
Experience
5 years
As long as you can test for Nitrates (NO3) Nitrites (NO2) and ammonia (NH3) You're set for now. (I added the chemical compounds because I don't remember what the chart you have says)
I'm pretty yours tests for all 3 of those, PH, and GH or KH
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #8
OP
Evee

Evee

Active Member
Member
Messages
90
Reaction score
34
Location
USA, CT
Experience
Just started
nikm128 said:
Do you have anything to test your water with? How long after the betta died did you have them test the water, and did you do a water change before taking a sample?
I see on your profile it says you aren't familiar with cycling, click these blue words: nitrogen cycle
I can clarify anything you're unsure about after you read it
Yes, I ran out of the strips so I couldn’t test the water after I changed it, so after I found the betta dead ; I went to Petsmart right away, but he died overnight. They told me water was okay. I did not do a water change before the taking the sample. Thank you I going to read it right now.

nikm128 said:
As long as you can test for Nitrates (NO3) Nitrites (NO2) and ammonia (NH3) You're set for now. (I added the chemical compounds because I don't remember what the chart you have says)
I'm pretty yours tests for all 3 of those, PH, and GH or KH
Not sure if you can see it, but I just tested it. Those are the strips I use.
 

Attachments

Pescado_Verde

Well Known
Member
Messages
2,192
Reaction score
2,251
Location
On the ground floor
Experience
1 year
Sorry to hear about the Betta. It's going to be some work to keep the Pleco alive just judging from his appearance, I wish you the best with that.
Hopefully frequent fresh water changes will pull him thru whatever is ailing him. It sounds like you're pretty much starting over with a fish-in cycle and that can take a good bit of time. Don't try to change much, if anything in the meantime is my only suggestion. Just keep up with the water changes adding the Prime each time you do one.
 

nikm128

Fishlore VIP
Member
Messages
7,672
Reaction score
4,218
Location
Your Imagination
Experience
5 years
Evee said:
Not sure if you can see it, but I just tested it. Those are the strips I use.
Ok, yours doesn't test for ammonia, and since there are no nitrites or nitrates in the tank, I'm going to assume there's some ammonia
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #11
OP
Evee

Evee

Active Member
Member
Messages
90
Reaction score
34
Location
USA, CT
Experience
Just started
nikm128 said:
Ok, yours doesn't test for ammonia, and since there are no nitrites or nitrates in the tank, I'm going to assume there's some ammonia
Poor Pleco he must be suffering in there. I will keep doing the water changes and I am getting the master kit to test the ammonia. It sucks. I shouldn’t have changed the water. I hope it works.

Pescado_Verde said:
Sorry to hear about the Betta. It's going to be some work to keep the Pleco alive just judging from his appearance, I wish you the best with that.
Hopefully frequent fresh water changes will pull him thru whatever is ailing him. It sounds like you're pretty much starting over with a fish-in cycle and that can take a good bit of time. Don't try to change much, if anything in the meantime is my only suggestion. Just keep up with the water changes adding the Prime each time you do one.
Yes, I will be doing the water changes and getting the prime and master kit. I hope he survives. Thank you so much!
 

miss.mikn

Active Member
Member
Messages
118
Reaction score
21
Location
Ogden, UT
Experience
Just started
Evee said:
Poor Pleco he must be suffering in there. I will keep doing the water changes and I am getting the master kit to test the ammonia. It sucks. I shouldn’t have changed the water. I hope it works.
Once you get the master test kit, test your water immediately because if there is ammonia in your tank (which I’d assume based on everything that’s happened) there’s probably quite a bit of it since it killed your Betta. Since you want to keep your ammonia as low as possible (talking 0.25 ppm or lower) you’ll want to do mass water changes. I just finished a fish in cycle after losing lots of fish to ammonia too plecos are really hardy which is good but you definitely want to start on it right away. Let me know if you have any questions about the cycle! I’m happy to help
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #13
OP
Evee

Evee

Active Member
Member
Messages
90
Reaction score
34
Location
USA, CT
Experience
Just started
miss.mikn said:
Once you get the master test kit, test your water immediately because if there is ammonia in your tank (which I’d assume based on everything that’s happened) there’s probably quite a bit of it since it killed your Betta. Since you want to keep your ammonia as low as possible (talking 0.25 ppm or lower) you’ll want to do mass water changes. I just finished a fish in cycle after losing lots of fish to ammonia too plecos are really hardy which is good but you definitely want to start on it right away. Let me know if you have any questions about the cycle! I’m happy to help
Thank you so much!! I really appreciate it. I'm sorry about your fish So sad!!
I know I should only be doing water changes and prime, but what do you think of “ammonia buffer?” does that work?I read it works to remove it faster lol Or I shouldn’t even try it?
 

miss.mikn

Active Member
Member
Messages
118
Reaction score
21
Location
Ogden, UT
Experience
Just started
Evee said:
Thank you so much!! I really appreciate it. I'm sorry about your fish So sad!!
I know I should only be doing water changes and prime, but what do you think of “ammonia buffer?” does that work?I read it works to remove it faster lol Or I shouldn’t even try it?
I honestly didn’t use any chemicals other than treating my water with prime. The very first day I did a water change of 80% and the next day when I tested, my ammonia was still pretty high so I just kept doing 80% water changes everyday until it was cycled. It was a very tiresome process after about a week but I haven’t lost any other fish since that first mass water change. Is your pleco the only fish in your tank right now?
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #15
OP
Evee

Evee

Active Member
Member
Messages
90
Reaction score
34
Location
USA, CT
Experience
Just started
miss.mikn said:
I honestly didn’t use any chemicals other than treating my water with prime. The very first day I did a water change of 80% and the next day when I tested, my ammonia was still pretty high so I just kept doing 80% water changes everyday until it was cycled. It was a very tiresome process after about a week but I haven’t lost any other fish since that first mass water change. Is your pleco the only fish in your tank right now?
Yes, it is the only one. I only had the betta and the pleco. Now I have to make sure the water is perfect to get other fish my pleco looks miserable. I hope the water gets good asap.
 

miss.mikn

Active Member
Member
Messages
118
Reaction score
21
Location
Ogden, UT
Experience
Just started
Evee said:
Yes, it is the only one. I only had the betta and the pleco. Now I have to make sure the water is perfect to get other fish my pleco looks miserable. I hope the water gets good asap.
Based on the pictures above, it is possible that your pleco may not live through the cycle. About how big is the pleco?
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #17
OP
Evee

Evee

Active Member
Member
Messages
90
Reaction score
34
Location
USA, CT
Experience
Just started
miss.mikn said:
Based on the pictures above, it is possible that your pleco may not live through the cycle. About how big is the pleco?
.. like around 1 inch and a half? He does look bad. His eyes are white!!
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #19
OP
Evee

Evee

Active Member
Member
Messages
90
Reaction score
34
Location
USA, CT
Experience
Just started
nikm128 said:
Have you done any water changes yet?
Yes!! I did yesterday and this morning before coming to work. After work I will get the kit to test the water.
 

miss.mikn

Active Member
Member
Messages
118
Reaction score
21
Location
Ogden, UT
Experience
Just started
Evee said:
.. like around 1 inch and a half? He does look bad. His eyes are white!!
He’s way small. Do you have the master test kit yet?
 

New Threads

Similar Threads

Follow FishLore!

FishLore on Social Media

Online statistics

Members online
258
Guests online
3,326
Total visitors
3,584

Aquarium Photo Contests

Aquarium Calculator

Top Bottom