What's new

Dead tropical fish

🐠 March TOTM Starts Now! 🐠
FishForums.net Tank of the Month!
Click here to enter!

Peterxr

New Member
Joined
Jul 20, 2021
Messages
8
Reaction score
4
Location
Yorkshire
Hi, i am joining this forum as I humbly ask and beg your help.
I had a very successful tropical did tank for several years. I would just do a routine water and filter change and swordtails bred well and I never needed to buy extra fish nor do any troubleshooting. Then last year, they all died quickly, sending me into a spiral of frustration and confusion. In the last year I’ve stripped and cleaned the tank, done a multitude of water changes added all the recommended additives , cleared the ammonia removed the new fish that died after hours or days.
today I checked a water sample with the local pet store and added 12 fish only for them to die within 2 hours. There is no ammonia nor nitrate in the water and other test are negative. Now I notice the once healthy plants ar stating to die. Please help. What am I missing?
Thanks for your help . Peter
 
Hello and welcome :)
This may be a cycling problem, could you answer these questions please:
What 'recommended additives' did you add?
What do you mean by 'cleared the ammonia'?
Do you have a test kit? Can you post up to date readings?
Also what is the tank size?

The plant problem is probably a separate issue. Can you post photos?
 
Hello and welcome :)
This may be a cycling problem, could you answer these questions please:
What 'recommended additives' did you add?
What do you mean by 'cleared the ammonia'?
Do you have a test kit? Can you post up to date readings?
Also what is the tank size?

The plant problem is probably a separate issue. Can you post photos?
Thanks for reply. I will answer tomo
 
Thanks for helping. Current readings pH 6 , Ammonia 0, nitrate and nitrite 0, KH 0, GH 180 . It is a 200litre tank. See plant photos the plants look even worse today they were ok when last batch of fish were healthy. Additives used include water conditioner. Ammonia and nitrate remover, Aqua pure balls, fluvall water control and water cycle treatment. Aqua plus water treatment. Not all at once of course but over the course of this year. I am aware of new tank syndrome and have left it to settle down many times and will buy fish when ammonia is at 0. But this time they still died! Thanks.
4337665B-3BAE-4A8D-A4F2-69E2EA67E7E7.jpeg
152A0E93-9CCC-4988-8B64-0518AF287895.jpeg
A00C56E0-D9E6-478C-AC72-6A3C25BBF31B.jpeg
 
Hi, i am joining this forum as I humbly ask and beg your help.
I had a very successful tropical did tank for several years. I would just do a routine water and filter change and swordtails bred well and I never needed to buy extra fish nor do any troubleshooting. Then last year, they all died quickly, sending me into a spiral of frustration and confusion. In the last year I’ve stripped and cleaned the tank, done a multitude of water changes added all the recommended additives , cleared the ammonia removed the new fish that died after hours or days.
today I checked a water sample with the local pet store and added 12 fish only for them to die within 2 hours. There is no ammonia nor nitrate in the water and other test are negative. Now I notice the once healthy plants ar stating to die. Please help. What am I missing?
Thanks for your help . Peter
I'd guess this is what's happening:

Your old fish died suddenly due to wild PH swings with KH-O
Your new fish dies due to stress of being kept in store at much lower GH and higher PH then your tank; then not given enough time to acclimate.
Your plants don't like high-ish GH?
 
Thanks for helping. Current readings pH 6 , Ammonia 0, nitrate and nitrite 0, KH 0, GH 180 . It is a 200litre tank. See plant photos the plants look even worse today they were ok when last batch of fish were healthy. Additives used include water conditioner. Ammonia and nitrate remover, Aqua pure balls, fluvall water control and water cycle treatment. Aqua plus water treatment. Not all at once of course but over the course of this year. I am aware of new tank syndrome and have left it to settle down many times and will buy fish when ammonia is at 0. But this time they still died! Thanks. View attachment 140191View attachment 140192View attachment 140193
I'd also add:
I had lots of problem with livebearers (like Swords) dying soon after hitting my tank.
That is until I found out they are addicted to salt and go cold turkey when they don't have any. (the ones in stores around me come from Asia; are bread in brackish water and shops add salt to keep them alive until sold and keep disease spreading/acting slower)
I had to add salt to acclimate them, then slowly lower it with water changes. (not all plants like salt).
But then I just went with adding salt to tank and replacing sensitive plants with Anubias and Java Fern. Even fish that aren't livebearers seem to thrive and do much better with some salt in the water.

P.S. If you are going to keep swordtails:
I'd suggest raising your KH and PH, planting anubias, Java Fern, plants that aren't too sensitive and adding some salt. They'll do much better in that environment, be less disease prone and make your life a lot easier. If my experience is anything to go by.

GL
 
Last edited:
Although you are aware of new tank syndrome I still think the tank is uncycled. The fact that nitrate is 0 suggests this and I am guessing the LFS have been encouraging you to buy the various water conditioners and treatments? The problem is that adding bottled bacteria to the water doesn't instantly make for a cycled tank, despite what the LFS say.
The link in post #2 is a lot of reading so this video might be useful

But the instant demise of all the fish suggests there is more to this. You don't mention the fish species for your restock but if they were also swordtails, your water is not suitable. The pH, KH and also your location suggest you have very soft water and swordtails are hard water fish. However the GH180 is unusual, do you add anything to artificially raise the GH? The test strips range only goes up to 180 so the reading may be inaccurate. Can you look on your water suppliers website at the water quality report and find the GH, perhaps listed as 'hardness'?
200 litres is a great tank size and there are many many fish suited to an acidic pH so once we have pinned down the parameters we can make suggestions. It is complicated and hazardous to fish to try and alter pH, GH and KH as changing parameters kill fish and they are all linked so it is hard to maintain the desired balance. It is much easier to keep fish that are suited to the water we have.

Plants are not my forte but I have followed advise on here and have some success now. To summarise what i have learnt - keep trying different plants then stock the ones that thrive in your water. They need nutrients so do large weekly water changes then add Flourish Comprehensive the day after at half the recommended dose. Use Flourish gravel bed tabs every 3 months. Provide 6+hours light per day. Others may give more specific advise to help.
 
I'd guess this is what's happening:

Your old fish died suddenly due to wild PH swings with KH-O
Your new fish dies due to stress of being kept in store at much lower GH and higher PH then your tank; then not given enough time to acclimate.
Your plants don't like high-ish GH?
Thapnks for the advice.I have tried rising the ph with commercial products but it is always temporary then reverts back to 6. How can I permanently raise ph to say, 7? I am unsure about kh and gh. How can I regulate these?
 
Although you are aware of new tank syndrome I still think the tank is uncycled. The fact that nitrate is 0 suggests this and I am guessing the LFS have been encouraging you to buy the various water conditioners and treatments? The problem is that adding bottled bacteria to the water doesn't instantly make for a cycled tank, despite what the LFS say.
The link in post #2 is a lot of reading so this video might be useful
----------------https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PWoiCqCvJco

But the instant demise of all the fish suggests there is more to this. You don't mention the fish species for your restock but if they were also swordtails, your water is not suitable. The pH, KH and also your location suggest you have very soft water and swordtails are hard water fish. However the GH180 is unusual, do you add anything to artificially raise the GH? The test strips range only goes up to 180 so the reading may be inaccurate. Can you look on your water suppliers website at the water quality report and find the GH, perhaps listed as 'hardness'?
200 litres is a great tank size and there are many many fish suited to an acidic pH so once we have pinned down the parameters we can make suggestions. It is complicated and hazardous to fish to try and alter pH, GH and KH as changing parameters kill fish and they are all linked so it is hard to maintain the desired balance. It is much easier to keep fish that are suited to the water we have.

Plants are not my forte but I have followed advise on here and have some success now. To summarise what i have learnt - keep trying different plants then stock the ones that thrive. They need nutrients so o large weekly eater changes then add Flourish Comprehensive the day after at half the recommended dose. Use Flourish gravel bed tabs every 3 months. Provide 6+hours light per day. Others may give more specific advise to help.+
Thanks, there is a lot to take on board here. When I first set up the tank I did nothing fancy and they thrived . Now I am trying to balance many things. I will read cup on all this.
 
Even fish that aren't livebearers seem to thrive and do much better with some salt in the water.
No freshwater fish have evolved to live with salt. Some hardwater fish may seem to prefer sodium to soft water but it is not a substitute for the hardness minerals calcium and magnesium.
Soft water fish are not able to regulate the minerals in their body so living in salt will shorten their life.

The only time aquarium salt should be recommended for freshwater fish is for medicinal purposes, and then only for 2-4 weeks.
 
I'd also add:
I had lots of problem with livebearers (like Swords) dying soon after hitting my tank.
That is until I found out they are addicted to salt and go cold turkey when they don't have any. (the ones in stores around me come from Asia; are bread in brackish water and shops add salt to keep them alive until sold and keep disease spreading/acting slower)
I had to add salt to acclimate them, then slowly lower it with water changes. (not all plants like salt).
But then I just went with adding salt to tank and replacing sensitive plants with Anubias and Java Fern. Even fish that aren't livebearers seem to thrive and do much better with some salt in the water.

P.S. If you are going to keep swordtails:
I'd suggest raising your KH and PH, planting anubias, Java Fern, plants that aren't too sensitive and adding some salt. They'll do much better in that environment, be less disease prone and make your life a lot easier. If my experience is anything to go by.

GL
some years ago at start up, I bought a variety of fish and as the swords started to breed very well I didn't need to add any others and to be honest I never paid much attention to the water analysis as I thought successful breeding is a great barometer, so I just did the routine water changes and filter cleaning/changing.Dip stick analysis was always ok. since my rebuild, My last three fish batches have been neons, black widows and cardinals as they were cheap and I was half expecting to lose them anyway. actually, the neons have recently proved to be the hardiest! I am reluctant to buy more expensive fish at the moment until I have followed above advice. cheers.
 
Thanks, there is a lot to take on board here. When I first set up the tank I did nothing fancy and they thrived . Now I am trying to balance many things. I will read cup on all this.
Thanks for help. obvoiusly, I need to do a proper fish cycles you suggest.i have watched videos thanks. so I now need to ADD ammonia having just gotten rid of it.?! (if the shop detects it they won't sell me fish!) do I also need to get different nitrifying bacteria as I add pure aqua balls regularly anyway? What can I do about pH 6 and Gh 180? indecently, I have two fluvial u3 filers running. Perhaps I only need one running for the cycling? (200 litre tank.)
 
Yes, a fishless cycle requires adding ammonia following the method linked in post #2.
You don't need to buy bottled bacteria, there are some that believe it helps but if it is stored incorrectly the bacteria die. If you wanted to buy another, Dr Tim's One and Only or Tetra Safe Start Plus are well regarded, but they do need to have been stored correctly at the shop (kept cool and dark). Aqua balls are basically the same as bottled bacteria.
Check the pH and GH of your source water by looking at the water company's webpage for the water quality report, it may differ from your results if the test doesn't go higher than 180; or if substances in the tank are altering the levels. Then post it here and we can see what might work.
As shown in the video, bacteria will colonize all hard surfaces proportionate to the stocking levels. So it doesn't matter if you have 1,2 or more filters. The 3ppm ammonia level recommended will allow you to fully stock the tank, once cycling is complete. Cycling a tank takes about 6-8 weeks.
 
No freshwater fish have evolved to live with salt. Some hardwater fish may seem to prefer sodium to soft water but it is not a substitute for the hardness minerals calcium and magnesium.
Soft water fish are not able to regulate the minerals in their body so living in salt will shorten their life.

The only time aquarium salt should be recommended for freshwater fish is for medicinal purposes, and then only for 2-4 weeks.
Fish, like all living organisms adapt to environment they have an edge in. It doesn't mean that conditions they live in nature is the best or most suited for them; just that they have niche environment they can survive in. And that equation includes predation, food competition and so on.
Nature is a mean place that tries to kill every organism in a thousand ways, not some idyllic place where animals chose to live in the place they like the best. They live wherever they find a way for some of them to survive long enough to have offspring.

And livebearers certainly thrive a lot better in my tank with some salt then without it. So I'll take your blanket statement with some salt on account of results I experienced. Also Betta, doesn't seem to mind some salt either.
I cannot speak for all types of fish. But certainly a lot of people disagree with your statement regarding some salt being present in the freshwater tank.

As far as life shortening: some salt in water impedes various bacteria, viruses, diseases, transmission and slowing illness progress giving fish much better chance of fighting it off. Fish in water with some salt excrete more slime, making it harder for bacteria to take hold when they have injuries and so on. So, no salt shortens their life a lot more in my aquarium.
Bacon shortens my life, but I don't care.
And my fish would be long dead in nature, so I don't think they mind if they life is little shorter with increased chance of not dying from disease in their young age.

So we'll just have to agree to disagree on whether salt should be and should not be in the tank.
 
Thapnks for the advice.I have tried rising the ph with commercial products but it is always temporary then reverts back to 6. How can I permanently raise ph to say, 7? I am unsure about kh and gh. How can I regulate these?
I use Seachem Equllibrium to raise GH and KH as my tap water is very soft.
I don't know how to permanently raise PH as my tap PH is perfect for my tank. People generally use backing soda or of the shelf products with every water changes. Maybe someone else can answer that.
Most fish can tolerate wide range of PH/GH as long as you give them enough time to aclimate. Putting fish with water from the bag into bucket; then slowly adding tank water over couple/several hours into the bucket should give fish enough time to adjust for difference between shop and tank water. That worked for me.
After that: fish can tolerate PH that's not optimal (depending on sensitivity of species) But generally you want PH to be close to what fish prefers.
 

Most reactions

trending

Staff online

Back
Top