New small oranda hanging out at the top almost all the time

moogie21

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hi all, i'm new to fish keeping and to forum.

i have a total of 4 small orandas (no other fish). i recently bought 2 of them and added to the tank. while 1 guy behaves normally, the other one constantly swims and gulps at the top most of the time.

tank setup:

40 gallon
aquaclear 50 filter
2 air stones
gravel, rocks, and decor

water info:

ammonia - 0.50 ppm
nitrite: 2-5.0 ppm
nitrate: 5-10.0 ppm
temp: ~70 F
ph: 7.7


i've been doing water changes the past few days (every other day), however the nitrite level is almost the same, not much improvements. i've also added api quick start, which made the water cloudy. additionally, some aquarium salt.

here's a quick 48s video

thanks for any advice.
 

Colin_T

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Reduce feeding to every couple of days until the filter has finished developing.

Do a 75% water change and gravel clean the substrate every day until the ammonia and nitrite levels are 0ppm, and the nitrate is less than 20ppm.
Make sure any new water is free of chlorine/ chloramine before it is added to the tank.

Do not clean the filter or replace any of the media/ materials until 2 weeks after the filter has established (around 2 months after it has been set up). When you do start cleaning the filter, do it at least once a month and wash the filter materials/ media in a bucket of tank water and re-use them. Tip the bucket of dirty water on the garden/ lawn.
 
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moogie21

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thanks colin_t.

do you think the gravel/decor is contributing to the nitrite levels?

is having 2 air stones too much for a 40 gallon?
 

Colin_T

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Gravel and ornaments do not normally cause ammonia or nitrite problems. These are usually caused by a new filter or a filter that has had its media/ material replaced recently. It can also be caused by uneaten food rotting in the tank.

You can have two airstones in a tank. As long as the fish aren't being blown around it is fine.
 
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moogie21

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thanks for the clarifications.

what could possibly cause the 1 oranda continuously swimming/gulping at the top?

some thinks it may be gill flukes? swim bladder? something else?
 

mrsjoannh13

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what could possibly cause the 1 oranda continuously swimming/gulping at the top?
Based on your water parameters I'm guessing water quality issues. You note you are doing water changes every other day. If you are only doing water changes every other day with that level of nitrites and ammonia in your tank that is probably causing your fish's distress.
 
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moogie21

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so the swimming at the top indicates a sign of distress, which is possibly cause by high nitrite/ammonia level, wouldn't this affect all inhabitants, not just 1?
 
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