View Full Version : My fish has...; my tank has...; and how to fix it.

09/12/2017, 10:47 AM
Those of us who help out in this forum meet these posts a lot.

'My fish has spots. My fish has stringy poop. My fish is flashing [scraping] on the sand.' The answer is simple. Buy the fattest and healthiest from a healthy tank. Do not buy where one or more don't look good. Then qt to protect your tank sandbed and rock, where parasites go for part of their life cycle. Use a bare qt, and I'm not fond of sponges, where parasites can, SFAIK, also lodge and wait. My recommendation for most species is TTM, qv, in the stickies atop this forum, and that means tossing the filter media AND sponges and going to a new tank daily. You need two small containers for this.

"My tank has algae..." Common. So is bacterial cyano. Algae is a plant. Cyano is an archaic creature neither animal nor plant. Both are common in new tanks. So is bubble, which often follows them. Treatment: for algae---use GFO or NoPoX---ie, get rid of the phosphate. This can take time. Your rock and sand may come in with Phosphate. So may your water if you didn't use ro/di. So can green food. It happens. And if it's coming from the rocks, it can leach out slowly as you remove some of it---more arrives. This is why getting rid of algae can take time, and why a failing ro/di cylinder may give you another round. Change your GFO medium once a month until you see victory. Cyano can be beaten with a lights-out treatment (3 day dark, one day blues) once a month WITH A DECENT SKIMMER!!!!---water changes can help during the treatment, but not as much as a good skimmer.

"My tank has...[various other problems] but my water is ok." Not enough. OK is not a test result. A test result reads, eg: salinity 1.025, temp 79, alkalinity 8.3, magnesium 1350, and calcium 420. If you re close to these numbers you are pretty well off in the water department---and your corals will do well IF your light is good. if you have coral problems and maintain these numbers, next thing to look at is light. Starting a query with 'my numbers are---'[those'] and my coral is bailing' will get you a straightforward---'what's your photoperiod and what lighting?'

These are the two aspects you need to get a firm grip on for success in the hobby. 'Sorta pink' is not a helpful test result. Go for numbers. And if it's algaelike it's treatable, but don't mistake cyano for algae or vice versa. Google some pix. GFO can't treat cyano, and a lights-out can't do much for algae. KNOW YOUR NUMBERS and keep them steady: an ATO (autotopoff) is just about mandatory unless you're willing to top off a LOT.

09/12/2017, 01:44 PM
Plan to sticky this Sk8r?

09/12/2017, 02:11 PM
We can only have a certain number of stickies at a time, but I repeat the essentials now and again to try to catch the new folk.