shrimpthebetta

New Member
Joined
Jul 9, 2018
Messages
5
Reaction score
0
I recently was given two new pea puffers. A friend of mine thought they'd be fine in a 2 gallon tank so he bought them last week thinking they were cute. He soon realized after a day or two they were too much work, and handed them over to me. I had an empty 10 gal, but it wasn't cycled upon receiving the fish. I know it's irresponsible to not cycle your tank especially with sensitive fish, but I knew they'd be better in a filtered, heated 10 gal (he couldn't return them to the store). So I figured I'd do a fishless cycle, with 25% water changes every day.
So now I've had them since Monday and everything seemed okay. I was checking my ammonia levels, feeding them, etc. Yesterday I did not have a chance to make the daily water change, and when I got home I noticed that the male pea puffer was lying lifeless on the ground, and the female pea puffer was lying lifeless in the plants. I tried to tap the glass to get a reaction, but nothing. Fearing the worst, I grabbed a net and reached in for the female first. She jumped up alive, and swam around like normal. I then went to my male, and he sprung up too. My female is fine now, but my male is acting so weird. He is in a zombie like state- he'll be right side up against a plant and once I tap him with a net he will swim around for a bit, then go back to that zombie like state. He is super lethargic and acting so strange- it literally looks like he died and came back to life as a zombie fish. Prior to yesterday everything was fine- both puffers ate a lot, there wasn't any aggression (the female is a lot bigger than the male though). I'm just wondering what could have happened since the female is doing better and more active, but the male is like a zombie.
I called in the fish store at which my friend bought the puffers and they told me it was a new shipment and they arrived in very bright blue colored water- medicine to get rid of parasites. Their bellies are not concave, both are super round and fat. There are kind of weird white dots on the sick puffer, but I don't know if that is sand grits or stuff from my plant tabs (I have the tabs that put in nutrients in the substrate)
I did a water change today. Ammonia was at 0.25, temperature is 78. 10 gal tank, there are only the two puffers in there. I also have filter bio material from my other established tank put in the new one to help with bacteria. I know it isn't a smart idea to do a fish cycle, but I was desperate. Any help is appreciated
 

seangee

Fish Aficionado
Joined
Feb 16, 2008
Messages
4,512
Reaction score
3,651
Location
Berks
As you say they are sensitive to water quality so consider a 50-75% daily water change until the cycle is established. (Oh and they are notoriously messy).

What are you feeding them? Most pea puffers won't touch anything but live food. The usual advice to underfeed tropical fish during a "fish-in" cycle does not apply here as they can easily starve to death. If you have access to small snails it may be worth throwing a handful in every now and then as well as live food (living not frozen or freeze dried). Live food will have a small impact on the bio load but on the plus side it won't decay until it is eaten.

BTW: Malaysian trumpet snails are not recommended as they are too hard and can damage the puffers' beaks).
 
OP
OP
S

shrimpthebetta

New Member
Joined
Jul 9, 2018
Messages
5
Reaction score
0
As you say they are sensitive to water quality so consider a 50-75% daily water change until the cycle is established. (Oh and they are notoriously messy).

What are you feeding them? Most pea puffers won't touch anything but live food. The usual advice to underfeed tropical fish during a "fish-in" cycle does not apply here as they can easily starve to death. If you have access to small snails it may be worth throwing a handful in every now and then as well as live food (living not frozen or freeze dried). Live food will have a small impact on the bio load but on the plus side it won't decay until it is eaten.

BTW: Malaysian trumpet snails are not recommended as they are too hard and can damage the puffers' beaks).

I am feeding them frozen blood worms and they were eating them, luckily. When I first got them I threw in a few snails. Just got home and my male was dead- I had to give him the royal flush. But the weird thing is my female is now lifeless at the bottom of the tank but I think she's sleeping... When I looked at her though, she had these really weird whispy white things on her. Do you know what this could be?
 

Attachments

  • IMG_0095.JPG
    IMG_0095.JPG
    653.4 KB · Views: 278
  • IMG_0096.JPG
    IMG_0096.JPG
    681.6 KB · Views: 250
  • IMG_0099.JPG
    IMG_0099.JPG
    591.1 KB · Views: 378

Colin_T

Fish Guru
Joined
Jan 26, 2008
Messages
36,203
Reaction score
20,669
Location
Perth, WA
The fish is producing excess mucous because it is stressed, probably by the water. Do a 90% water change and gravel clean the substrate now, and then do a 75% water change and gravel clean the substrate each day for a week.
Make sure the new water is free of chlorine/ chloramine before it is added to the tank.

Add some Activate Carbon or Highly Activated Carbon to the filter.

Reduce feeding to two times a week and change 75% of the water 4-8 hours after feeding.

Most blowfish, pufferfish, boxfish can release toxins into the water when they are stressed or dying, and if a fish dies it will produce ammonia in the tank. You need to do some really big water changes to dilute these chemicals or the other fish will die.

You should also check the water for nitrite & pH as well as ammonia.
 

NickAu

Fish Connoisseur
Tank of the Month!
Joined
Jan 14, 2015
Messages
5,113
Reaction score
1,222
Location
AU
What water conditioner are you using? I also think you should do 75% water changes.

I do not keep Puffers but I do keep Bumblebee Gobies and know how quickly uneaten frozen food can spoil the water.



Also feeding just blood worm all the time is not good for the fish but we can talk about this later if you like. Part of the reason fish that only eat live or frozen food are hard to keep is keeping them well fed and that means having live food on hand all the time.
 

Most reactions

trending

Staff online

Members online

Top