What's gone wrong with my tank!!!!

GaryE

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About 15 minutes ago, Iooked into my Bororas maculatus tank. These "dwarf Rasbora" have been in there for a long time, to the point where it appears from sizes that some of them began their lives in the tank. I can't do an exact count in their heavily planted tank. They generally never stay still.
I saw no fish. I waited about 30 seconds, and a few came out, looking healthy but pale. You know that feeling that something is wrong, but you can't say what?
So I just did a 40% water change. Out came the hose and the dechlorinator, and in went fresh water. It's been 6 days since the last change, but I never wait for a schedule or waste time with test kits. Experience has taught me to act quickly, and stop problems before they develop. Posting a question, reading a kit - they are just stalling on what you'll end up doing most of the time anyway.

Now what? I have time to observe, and see if anything develops that I have to deal with. Most of the time, a quick water change is the best answer. I doubt things will develop, but I don't doubt they would have if I had waited til tomorrow. I'll look for signs of the softwater Oodinium parasites that could be lurking, but I expect and hope I will see nothing. Whatever was off, they are now front and centre in the tank.

If I looked into that tank without what I saw earlier, I wouldn't have a worry in the world (at least about that tank!). I've had fish for a long time, and have learned the best 'first responder' move always involves the water quality. And now that I pulled out the water changing gear, I'll do a few more tanks, just in case.

I can vacuum the carpet and wash the kitchen floor after I'm done. I have never had a floor die on me because I was slow to clean it, but I sure can't say the same about fish.
 

Byron

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I have had similar experiences over the years, and a major water change was always my first action and (so far) always solved the problem with no subsequent recurrence. Maybe the fish just figured out how to coerce me into a major water change!
 

AdoraBelle Dearheart

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Crossing fingers that it's nothing serious, and that the water change nipped it in the bud!
 

AdoraBelle Dearheart

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Whenever there's an emergency thread, 90% of the time, a large water change is the first aid step recommended. Should probably have a pinned comment that says as much. Because even if the problem turns out to be something like ich, the clean fresh water helps boost a fish's immune system and helps buy some time while the problem is figured out, so it certainly never hurts.
 

wasmewasntit

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Might not have been a water issue.

Fish are very sensitive to changing weather conditions, some more so than others

My Harlequins vanish everytime there is a thunderstorm outside......the Cardinals vanish when its very windy outside

Co-incidence?

Perhaps

But its well known that fish will pick up and react to barometric pressure changes....and bearing in mind the bad weather being experienced in your neck of the woods @GaryE which is unusual for the region, it would be quite understandable that certain fish might be more sensitive to it than others.
 
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GaryE

GaryE

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It could have been bad weather for sure. But the problem is finding out. It's a hassle to do a water change when you haven't set aside time for it and you're busy. It's a hassle to take my old dog on on a cold morning when I still haven't had my coffee, but that's pet care. We do it. The benefits far outweight the hassles.

If the behaviour was from low pressure or hurricane effects, the fish got the rainstorm their instincts were expecting. If I see them spawning this morning, that'll tell me.

But I looked in this morning and the males are coloured up and the behaviour is normal. Would it have been normal without the water change. Possibly. But the water change does no harm, quite the contrary. We have slightly more medical resources than a medieval peasant, when it comes to our fish. We're almost at prayer or slaughter a chicken while dancing around the tank. With few effective medications, and almost no diagnostic tools and options, speed of response with what little we have is about all of it.

If you see something is off and you are a test kit person, scoop some water out for testing and start a siphon. You can test while acting. If the test is good, no problem. If the test shows trouble, the problem's already being attacked.

You can always post the numbers here after that. I don't like the advice that says pull out the test kit when you see a problem. Change water, then pull out the kits. It's way better to learn your reading could have been trouble than to read they are. I like my troubles in the past conditional tense!

If it is Ich, or a problem water can't help, meds work better in cleaner water anyway, so you're ahead. Just be sure your water changing gear doesn't come into contact with other tanks and spread the problem.
 

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