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Thread: GoldFish in crisis! Help! Count down to apolcayse....

  1. #1
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    Unhappy GoldFish in crisis! Help! Count down to apolcayse....

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    I got a new 4x2x2ft tank. Had sterilise the tank with concentrated salt water for 2 days before draining out the entire tank and replace it with fresh water + anti-chlorine. Water looks slightly cloudy but I still migrate my fish over. After 3 days, the cloudiness becomes much worse, fish become stoned to the bottom. From the look, it seems like ammonia poisoning is taking place. I do not have any test kits to confirm that though. Seeing this, I change 50% of the water and the condition did improve a little but I don't know how long it will last. Without any bacteria in my new sump filter to break down those ammonia, the ammonia level will rise again in another couple of days and my 20 fishes might not sustain a second round of poisoning. What should I do? I've transfer some of the old filter media from my old tank, hoping to speed up the cycling process, but I know it will take at least a month but that's going to take too long.

    Right now, I'am thinking of buying the OceanFree Battle Bacteria 8000 bacteria culture to further speed up the cycling process. Will that work? How can I prevent a complete wipeout of my fishes? Oh my, I'am stressed out right now!


    The clock is ticking...

  2. #2
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    Looks like you know quite well where you went wrong.

    Keep temperatures down (turn off whatever unessential electrical appliances on the tank like lights), and pH down too (within limits of your fishes tolerance). This will help reduce the toxic ammonia to non-toxic ammonium ratio.

    Add salt (again within tolerance limits of your fishes). It helps against ammonia poisoning. Search the web for more info on this.

    Aerate the tank vigourously. Ammonia poisoning basically affect the fish gills which then reduces their ability to breathe. So oxygenate the tank.

    Add whatever bacteria additives you want to get.

    If possible get some used media from another member's tank... enough to replace half your current media.

    Change water daily... if the fishes seem affected. Remember chlorine from new water can kill the filter bacteria, so as much as possible try to avoid water change. Remember to use anti-chlorine. Best if you can collect a few pails of water, add anti-chlorine/chlormaine and let the water age at least 24 hours before you use them to change your tank water.

    Stop feeding... the fish can last without food for quiet a while. No food = no waste = less ammonia.

    Last of all, if you can prevent your gold fish from eating them, add lots of floating plants... they are instant ammonia consumers. Water hyacinth, Water lettuce, Frog bits, etc. You can try partitioning off half of your tank and dump plants on the side without fish. Add LOTS of plants. Make sure the window shades, curtains, etc are open to give the plants as much light as possible.

    You can also consider getting floating breeding nets and put the plants in them.

    If you partition, make sure the circulation is good... you don't want the partition to make things worse by restricting the flow on one side of the tank. Best if the inlet is in one side of the partition and the outlet on the other.

    Dada-da-daaa-da, dada-da-daaa-da, dada-da-daaa-da, dada-da-da... (Flight of the Valkerie, for people who remember/know Apocalypse Now)
    Last edited by vinz; 5th Aug 2005 at 11:14.
    Vincent - AQ is for everyone, but not for 'u' and 'mi'.
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    Oh yah... plants will not help with nitrite poisoning. But if the plants can reduce the amount of free ammonia for the bacteria to consume, the nitrite should not peak high enough to kill your fish.

    The plants will help to save your fish but will also slow down the build up of bacteria in your filter because of competition for ammonia and lowered production of nitrite. Start reducing plants after 2 weeks... remove 20% per week.
    Vincent - AQ is for everyone, but not for 'u' and 'mi'.
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    oh, thank you so much! I'am at work right now and can't do anything...I'll try out your suggestion tonite. Hopefully it helps....

    The clock is still ticking...

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    Oh yes... you can also try products that will lock up the ammonia AND nitrite into harmless forms. Make sure the product claims that the biofilter can remove them else your filter bacteria cannot grow due to lack of ammonia.

    Take a look at Seachem's Prime, Safe, and AmGuard here. You should be able to get them at any well stocked LFS. Read the instructions carefully to see if any of the steps I proposed originally will neutralise the products... like salt, temp and pH.

    In this case, you probably do not need the plants.

    Good luck, dude!
    Vincent - AQ is for everyone, but not for 'u' and 'mi'.
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    Well, actually I do prefer your plants suggestion as I'am not so inclined to use too much chemicals. Currently, I only add salt and anti-chlorine as I felt that these 2 are essential to prevent disease.

    In fact, I wanted to put plants like Hornwart at my sump tank itself and not in the main tank as the purpose is just to remove ammonia and not for decorative purposes. I've already setup the lightning at the sump tank level. Though it's just a single tubing 2ft light, I believe it is enough for a fast growing and reslient plant like Hornwart to flourish.

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    If you intend to put plants in your sump, I suggest that you use floating plants, like those I listed above. They are exposed to air, from which they can get a good supply of CO2. Being submersed, hornwort's growth and hence uptake of ammonia and nitrates, will be limited by the far lesser amount of CO2 available in water. You can also consider Money plant which are very hardy. Let their roots dangle into the sump water.

    My suggestion to use chemicals to deal with ammonia is only to tide you over until the bacteria colony is established.
    Vincent - AQ is for everyone, but not for 'u' and 'mi'.
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    Hmmm...what does Money plant look like?
    Is it very big?
    Is there any other type of similar plants?
    My sump tank is 3x1.5x1.5ft.

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    Vincent - AQ is for everyone, but not for 'u' and 'mi'.
    Why use punctuation? See what a difference it makes:
    A woman, without her man, is nothing.
    A woman: without her, man is nothing.

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    I would like to suggest not to use the money plant. It can leach toxic from it's own stem if it is cut or some part of the stem began to rot. Do use floating plants for better results.

    If it is possible, add a light source for your sump area for the floating plants own photosynthesis consumption. No need for branded stuff.

    But onto another theory currently playing in my cpu ( brain ). Could the fast flow of the water be the source of the ammonia? My thinking is that the water flow is too fast for your filtration to take effect, hence the bacteria could not have sufficient time to breed and consume whatever it is needed.
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