Dying Fish?

Xious

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Hello!

I'm relatively new to the hobby, about a year in. I have a 155g tank with 2 Oscars, 2 catfish, and 2 goldfish (that the oscars didn't eat and have grown).
I also have a 55g planted tank that's cycled and houses an army of Cherry Shrimp, plants, and 5 snails. Recently i've added guppies to the 55 tank (ordered online, maybe important).
Within 1-2 days of arriving the guppies keep dying 1 by 1. I'm noticing the guppies look fine then start breathing heavily, stay at the top gasping, then die.
Now I'm down to 7 females, 1 is about to go. Several were pregnant and have had their fry which are swimming about fine, haven't seen any of them dead yet.
My theory is the stress of shipping is the cause but I don't know enough to be sure. I live in Pennsylvania USA and it's bitter cold, the fish have been shipped from across the country and the bags showed up cold with 1 or 2 dead fish but everyone else looked fine. They're too small for me to notice anything abnormal on their gills.

Ammonia 0
Nitrite 0
Nitrate 150s
PH 7
No recent water changes.
Shimp and snails have lived there for months/a year.
Filtration: 2 Sponge filters on either end with air stones inside.

Perhaps someone more experienced can help? Tell me what to look for? I can post pics, surely will have a fresh body soon ;-; No I don't have a quarantine tank (sadly)

Thanks in advance!
 
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Xious

Xious

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Do you have an air stone in the tank? It might be that there is not enough oxygen.
Mystery snails, brown, black, blue, yellow, and I forget the 5th because he's always hiding!

The tank has 2 sponge filters with airstones at the center :L
 

PlasticGalaxy

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I would personally avoid shipping across the country in winter and other cold seasons, like @StripySnailGirl04 has said. The long shipping can stress fish, and the cold can result in death even with heat packs.

The nitrate level is pretty high with that stocking (which is considerably low for the tank size). Do you do water changes for your tank? This is imperative for removing excess nitrates in your tank - as well as removing fish waste, uneaten food particles, plant debris, e.t.c. Most recommend 30%-50% per week depending on what fish you keep and how heavily it is stocked.

Are you having troubles with your 155g at all? If possible, could you get some pictures of the catfish to help identify them?
Oscars shouldn't generally be housed with goldfish or other smaller fish; oscars are tropical fish and require a temperature between 74-80F (22-27C), which doesn't align with the optimal temperature range of most goldfish (they are subtropical fish, and prefer 64-74F (or around 20-23C). On top of this, oscars are notably territorial and aggressive. I assume you've realised this by now considering your note about the goldfish your oscars had eaten.

Hope this is helpful, please let me know if you need any clarifications because my writing does tend to get difficult to follow lol

Edit: High nitrates can result in stress for fish, thus leaving them more vulnerable to disease. Fry (which is seemingly an inevitability if it's female guppies you're keeping) are especially at risk, and can lead to them growing improperly and dying off. In addition, food waste; fish waste; and plant matter can create an increase in ammonia, thus leading to higher nitrite, thus higher nitrate.
 

StripySnailGirl04

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I would personally avoid shipping across the country in winter and other cold seasons, like @StripySnailGirl04 has said. The long shipping can stress fish, and the cold can result in death even with heat packs.

The nitrate level is pretty high with that stocking (which is considerably low for the tank size).
All agreed๐Ÿ‘

@Xious Could we have pictures of your tank?
 
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Xious

Xious

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I would personally avoid shipping across the country in winter and other cold seasons, like @StripySnailGirl04 has said. The long shipping can stress fish, and the cold can result in death even with heat packs.

The nitrate level is pretty high with that stocking (which is considerably low for the tank size). Do you do water changes for your tank? This is imperative for removing excess nitrates in your tank - as well as removing fish waste, uneaten food particles, plant debris, e.t.c. Most recommend 30%-50% per week depending on what fish you keep and how heavily it is stocked.

Are you having troubles with your 155g at all? If possible, could you get some pictures of the catfish to help identify them?
Oscars shouldn't generally be housed with goldfish or other smaller fish; oscars are tropical fish and require a temperature between 74-80F (22-27C), which doesn't align with the optimal temperature range of most goldfish (they are subtropical fish, and prefer 64-74F (or around 20-23C). On top of this, oscars are notably territorial and aggressive. I assume you've realised this by now considering your note about the goldfish your oscars had eaten.

Hope this is helpful, please let me know if you need any clarifications because my writing does tend to get difficult to follow lol

Edit: High nitrates can result in stress for fish, thus leaving them more vulnerable to disease. Fry (which is seemingly an inevitability if it's female guppies you're keeping) are especially at risk, and can lead to them growing improperly and dying off. In addition, food waste; fish waste; and plant matter can create an increase in ammonia, thus leading to higher nitrite, thus higher nitrate.
Yes I can send pictures. No I don't do water changes because of the baby shrimp that have recently spawned. I don't want to suck them out lol

Top tank isn't an issue, it's setup for the oscars, the goldfish live there by the oscar's good graces lol idk what to do with the goldfish at this point. They seem to get along though. The catfish are Pleco and they live in the 150 with the oscars. btw the goldfish have grown big enough that the oscars can't eat them anymore :L goldfish were purchased as food but the oscars got sick of them and let 2 of them live. . .
 

Naughts

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The lack of water changes and extremely high nitrate is the problem but take care! You are probably dealing with 'old tank syndrome' so a large water change now could be disastrous.
Do 10% water change each day for a week. Keep an eye on ammonia, nitrite and pH and post here if any of them rise. Then do the same for a week at 20% per day. Then move on to more substantial water changes if everything is OK.
 

StripySnailGirl04

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Yes I can send pictures. No I don't do water changes because of the baby shrimp that have recently spawned. I don't want to suck them out lol

Top tank isn't an issue, it's setup for the oscars, the goldfish live there by the oscar's good graces lol idk what to do with the goldfish at this point. They seem to get along though. The catfish are Pleco and they live in the 150 with the oscars. btw the goldfish have grown big enough that the oscars can't eat them anymore :L goldfish were purchased as food but the oscars got sick of them and let 2 of them live. . .
Are the snails like this:
 

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Xious

Xious

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The lack of water changes and extremely high nitrate is the problem but take care! You are probably dealing with 'old tank syndrome' so a large water change now could be disastrous.
Do 10% water change each day for a week. Keep an eye on ammonia, nitrite and pH and post here if any of them rise. Then do the same for a week at 20% per day. Then move on to more substantial water changes if everything is OK.
Will do, thank you! I didn't realize those nitrates were high. Kinda figured the 400s is where I would worry :(
Are the snails like this:
Min are much less interesting
 

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Xious

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They need to be below 20ppm.
There is a danger that improving the conditions will raise the pH and cause harmless ammonium to convert to toxic ammonia so keep testing the water conditions every day.
Oh, wow lol ok got a fun week ahead!
All snails are beautiful in their own way. Yours remind me of soft cotton. I'd suggest to add more plants to the tank.
Definitely! Once the guppies are settled I'll add more plants! Any you'd suggest? Perhaps something that likes to eat nitrates if that's a thing? xD
 

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