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Fish dying of disease

Irkrts

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Had a tank disaster last week and tank leaked 50% of its water. One was dead (pineapple sword) at that time unsure if related. Looked normal.

Fish had a quick move with their remaining water and filter and then another move the day after into new tank. So that would be very stressful. They had about an 80% water change in that 2 day period.

Since then I had:
Death of rosy tetra
Death of phantom tetra

Now I have a harlequin tetra with rotten fins, white patch on body and becoming very thin. One other has small area of white on another fin.

I don’t have antibiotics because I’m in U.K.

I have interpet anti bacterial and anti fin rot.

What do you think is the cause? Stress plus bacteria is what I was thinking?

Tank didn’t lose its cycle
 

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Byron

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Can you post water parameters (GH and pH especially here), and any test numbers for ammonia, nitrite and nitrate?

I cannot tell if it is the background or actual plants...do you have live plants in this tank?

Any additives aside from conditioner in this new setup? How did you cycle it?
 
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Irkrts

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Thank you. Apologies am out so don’t have recorded numbers.

It’s a 130L tall tank with fluval 307. Has been running for perhaps 2.5 months.

It was seeded with half of the filter media from my other cycled tank (also flu all similar pump is a 306- this had four compartments of ceramic media that was old ie few years old and two were moved over and replaced with new ones in the old tank) and fish were added slowly from two other tanks I was closing over that time (started with 4 Buenos Aires tetras and 4 harlequins).

I don’t have ammonia testing but have never measure nitrites in test strips. Nitrates appear around 25 and my tap water contains not far off that amount. So I am hopeful it has been cycled adequately and with nitrites always having been zero with testing regularly hopefully this isn’t the culprit.

I normally change 30% per week or more and use stress coat water conditioner.

The pH is 7.4 and the tank has several large anubias which are growing well, two large pieces of bogwood and rounded small gravel.

The water is pretty hard here - can add numbers later afraid I am out and don’t have records, it is between the second highest and highest groupings on hardness. All the fish have been in this water with no additives except conditioner for their whole time with me (and nearly all were second hand local from other tanks being closed down) not from fish shops.



I thought they had fin rot so today had third day of a course (half dose due to corys) of that treatment. Between the morning and now the harlequin looked very sick and now I was thinking it was bacterial.



Update:
Have moved both harlequins into quarantine which had all other fish I was suspicious of the appearance of: two cardinals which were bloated (actually long-standing for 2 months but I wanted to treat them with antibacterials so they only went into quarantine yesterday from a black 130L tank) and one Buenos Aires tetra (been in quarantine for 2.5 weeks - she came from the tank above which has been having the problems).
This tank received dose 1 of antibacterial which seems to be mainly formaldehyde yesterday.

So currently have:
Black 130L tank that had two bloated cardinal tetras and rest healthy occupants
Silver 130L tank with all the deaths
12L newborn fry tank
60L shrimp tank - 4 Amano shrimp and some live and floating plants I’m trying to grow since ramshorn snails ate most of them.

Any advice / guidance / thoughts appreciated
 

Byron

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It could be bacterial; ammonia can cause similar appearance. I posted previously just to get things going with necessary data, hoping that those with much more experience with disease issues than I have will be able to offer advice. I do not guess when it comes to disease issues. I'll alert @Deanasue, @Colin_T.

One thing I would suggest is to increase the volume of your weekly water changes. At least 50% but 60-70% is better, always. Provided the parameters (GH, pH, temperature) are close between tap and tank water, this will greatly benefit. I have even "cured" unknown problems just by a couple of large water changes, so that wouldn't hurt here now as well.

For the future, I would not use Stress Coat. It contains aloe vera, and studies have now indicated that over time this might well harm fish gills. It really has no benefit anyway, regardless of what API may tell us. When it comes to conditioner, the one that does only what you need and no more is always the best option. All these chemicals get inside the fish (anything added to the water does) and at the very least it may weaken the fish with stress, but some can be far worse. I use API's Tap Water Conditioner; it is more expensive but it is the most highly concentrated conditioner so you use very little which is always a plus for the fish.
 

Deanasue

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Gosh, they’ve been moved so much already that I believe a lot is stress related. I would give them time to settle down and please, get the water tested ASAP. I seeded a new tank and it took four days to cycle but a week to fully be stable. 30% water changes are too small. As Colin_T would say, that leaves 70% of polluted water in your tank. If this were my tank, I would do 75% water changes daily for 7 days and see if that helps. If so, continue for another several days. Normally, I would add some aquarium salt too but tetras don’t do well with it. Colin_T may have some other ideas. Please keep us posted. Then, after this clears up, please start doing 75% water changes weekly. @Byron, do you still have the article on Stress Coat? I’d love to read it. I recently began using it and it has helped my bettas tail rot remarkably. I certainly don’t want to harm them though.
 

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@Byron, do you still have the article on Stress Coat? I’d love to read it. I recently began using it and it has helped my bettas tail rot remarkably. I certainly don’t want to harm them though.
Yes, it took me some digging but I found it. Another member here alerted me to this article some time back. Here is the relevant text, and I will cite the article below.

Water additives that form a protective ‘‘slime layer’’ will contain a polymer (often PVP or carboxymethyl cellulose [CMC]) or colloid (Table 2). Some additives contain aloe extract from leaves of the Aloe vera plant. Manufacturers of these products claim that the Aloe vera extract promotes healing of damaged tissue. One potential drawback to water additives that contain Aloe vera extract or CMC is the addition of organic waste load that can reduce the water quality and oxygen levels in a closed system. This may not be an issue, depending on the density of fish, length of time fish are held, and oxygen content of the water. However, the effects of these substances on gill tissue are unclear. Taiwo et al. (2005) tested the survival and behavior of tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) exposed to different concentrations of aqueous extract of A. vera for up to 96 h. One hundred percent of tilapia exposed to 50 ppm A. vera died within the duration of the experiment. Fish used in this experiment exhibited severe depigmentation and destruction of organs (including gills). The evidence of the toxic effects of A. vera on fish solidifies the need to empirically test water conditioners, and their chemical components, for potential negative effects on fish.​

Harnish, Ryan A., Alison H. Colotelo and Richard S. Brown (2011), "A review of polymer-based water conditioners for reduction of handling-related injury," Reviews in Fish Biology and Fisheries (2011), volume 21, pp. 43–49 .
Abstract:

Paper:
 

Deanasue

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Yes, it took me some digging but I found it. Another member here alerted me to this article some time back. Here is the relevant text, and I will cite the article below.

Water additives that form a protective ‘‘slime layer’’ will contain a polymer (often PVP or carboxymethyl cellulose [CMC]) or colloid (Table 2). Some additives contain aloe extract from leaves of the Aloe vera plant. Manufacturers of these products claim that the Aloe vera extract promotes healing of damaged tissue. One potential drawback to water additives that contain Aloe vera extract or CMC is the addition of organic waste load that can reduce the water quality and oxygen levels in a closed system. This may not be an issue, depending on the density of fish, length of time fish are held, and oxygen content of the water. However, the effects of these substances on gill tissue are unclear. Taiwo et al. (2005) tested the survival and behavior of tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) exposed to different concentrations of aqueous extract of A. vera for up to 96 h. One hundred percent of tilapia exposed to 50 ppm A. vera died within the duration of the experiment. Fish used in this experiment exhibited severe depigmentation and destruction of organs (including gills). The evidence of the toxic effects of A. vera on fish solidifies the need to empirically test water conditioners, and their chemical components, for potential negative effects on fish.​

Harnish, Ryan A., Alison H. Colotelo and Richard S. Brown (2011), "A review of polymer-based water conditioners for reduction of handling-related injury," Reviews in Fish Biology and Fisheries (2011), volume 21, pp. 43–49 .
Abstract:

Paper:
Thanks, Byron. I really appreciate this. Will definitely sit and read it all.
 
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Irkrts

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Dear All,

Thanks for all the advice. Unfortunately a harlequin (the less fin rot one) jumped out the tiny quarantine tank as I was doing the water change :( had left the top off while I changed their old tank and I found it dead on the floor when I counted the fish at the end (or so I thought, I didn’t know then you could put them back in and they might survive).

Will post test strip parameters later but API test kit won’t arrive for some time unfortunately.

Will provide further update later how everyone is doing.
 

Deanasue

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Dear All,

Thanks for all the advice. Unfortunately a harlequin (the less fin rot one) jumped out the tiny quarantine tank as I was doing the water change :( had left the top off while I changed their old tank and I found it dead on the floor when I counted the fish at the end (or so I thought, I didn’t know then you could put them back in and they might survive).

Will post test strip parameters later but API test kit won’t arrive for some time unfortunately.

Will provide further update later how everyone is doing.
So sorry to hear of your loss. With fish, it so one thing after another.
 
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Irkrts

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The more sick harlequin appeared dead yesterday - lying upside down and fins completely rotted away, so I put it down with clove oil.

Nobody else in the tank yet has any symptoms so I’ll carry on with water changes and hope that’s it!

I’m keen to rehome the Buenos Aires tetra and the two lone Harlequin tetras - I was thinking four weeks quarantine then relocate them?

In better news a swordtail has given birth and I managed to retrieve seven fry which are in a tank with snails only so hopefully some will survive to adulthood :)
 
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