View Full Version : New Fish Deaths
02/01/2006, 02:29 PM
Need some advice, please
I have a 46 gallon acrylic bowfront with about 45 pnds of live rock,
live sand, Backpack CPR skimmer, maxi jet power head. The tank has been up and running since October 2005. Live rock from an old tank helped it cycle. I currently have a domino damsel and a lawnmower blenny that I have had for about a year in my old tank as well as a tomato clown and a royal gramma who I have had for about a month. Also have a couple of hermit crabs, two feather dusters, and a cleaner shrimp. All are doing fine. My problem is about a month and a half ago I added a pair of true percula clowns. One was significantly smaller than the other and died about three days after adding them. He looked fine, eating swimming doing great. Then about two days after that the larger one died. I waited a month (to see how the remaining fish do)and tried adding a yellow angel fish. he too was fine, swimming around and eating. About a week after I bought him he just died. No appearant signs of disease?? The water is fine, Nitrites, Amonia=0, PH is a little low=8.0, Nitrates=10, salinity = 1.025, temp= 76-78. Is there a reason why the newcommers are dying? Bad choice of fish for a newly established tank? Any suggestions would be much appreciated!
02/01/2006, 03:03 PM
did you acclimate your clowns before placing in tank?
02/01/2006, 03:29 PM
couple of questions right back..
As warren4066 asked, did you acclimate them to the tank and if so what was your procedure?
Second, are these new fish from a different store than you have been getting livestock from in the past?
The fact that your first clown died in 3 days makes me think that the quality that you started from may not have been the best.
The only other thing is some sort of toxin in the water, and maybe run some carbon for a while.
Just adding in .02
02/01/2006, 03:48 PM
Thanks for the quick replies. As far as acclimating goes, unfortunately I don't have a Quarantine Tank up and running (i Know it is critical) so I did the old float the bag in the water routine for about 15 minutes and then I put the clowns in and turned the lights off to help them settle in.
And I bought the angel from a different store than the clowns. I was thinking I should try somewhere different. The guy at the store said they had the angel for about a week...
02/01/2006, 03:52 PM
Here's my $.02
True Percs aren't the hardiest fish. I had two die on me before I gave up and got some false percs.
Tomato clowns are one of the meanest clowns. Damsels are not friendly either. Actually clowns and damsels are in the same family.
Are you sure your tomato didn't kill your new clowns after lights out?
Mixing clowns can be done in large tanks, but I don't think in your 46 you have room for two different types of clowns.
Here's the clownfish forum. You'll get better answers about mixing clowns there.
02/01/2006, 03:56 PM
Are any of the existing fish agressive towards the new additions?
I'm not sure if a percs and the tomato would necessarily get along, and grammas can be a bit agressive sometimes.
Just trying to think is stress was a contibuting factor.
Yeah...what aquaman said...:)
I actually have to get rid of my maroon clown because he is SO agressive that he beats up any new addition.
02/01/2006, 04:22 PM
Yeah I knew the tomato might be a problem but he is actual very calm. I have never seen him go after any other fish. He just hangs out in his own little area. Same as for the damsel. The royal gramma was purchased after I lost the clowns. Do you think it is because I don't quarantine first???
02/01/2006, 05:07 PM
If you were going to have a problem by not Qing your fish, I would suspect you'd get ich. (little white spots)
I don't Q my new fish either, (shhhh, don't tell anyone) so I don't think that's it.
You might want to leave well enough alone for a while and let things settle down.
02/01/2006, 05:44 PM
Yeah I think I will hold off for a while before trying to add anything new.
Thanks for the advice!!
02/06/2006, 01:50 AM
When you acclimated your new additions, did you add any of the tank water to the bag before putting them in it? The salinity, etc, may have been different, and caused them to go into shock....
Float them first for about 15min. Then open the bag, I use a chip clip to hold it to the edge of the tank and add just a little, maybe half-cup of water to the bag every 5-10minutes for at least a half hour, longer if necessary. When bag is full dump half of it out, and start again til the recommended time is met...
02/06/2006, 06:52 AM
I drip acclimate all my fish, inverts, and corals before adding them. Up to 2 hours depending on how sensitive they are.
02/06/2006, 09:13 AM
this may be way off base but are you sure you're royal gramma is a royal gramma? a bi color dottyback looks almost identical to one and they are extremely aggressive. i had one kill 4 fish including a dwarf angel. the dottyback's mouth is shaped different and you can see teeth.
02/06/2006, 01:43 PM
Do you have any idea of the salinity of the water the fish were in prior to you putting them in your tank? I think moggyhill was on the right track...
Most LFS and warehouse type places keep their salinity low for disease and cost reasons. .14-.15 is not uncommon at all. It is best to drip (or shot glass) acclimate the fish at the rate of 1-2 points per hour. That is if your water is .20 and the LFS water is .15 it should be a 2.5 hour acclimation for a touchy species. Some people even claim to do .1 per hour but I find that overkill.
Also, once you get salinity equal in the water by drip and pour off method you then need to fast drip to acclimate temperature between tank and water. (if you have not bag floated or similar)
QT is a biggie to keep disease out of your tank but we are past that juncture now... Unless you are intimately familiar with the LFS and they agree to do the QT for you in a separate system (almost NONE do) you want a QT. If you think you can't afford a tank for QT think of the cost of replacement livestock and it looks cheaper. Do some searches on this site or wetwebmedia on QT....
All that said, too fast acclimation usually kills within 24 hrs so perhaps it was another stresser.... Did you ever observe any conflict between fish. Not necessarily any injury, just someone being chased incessantly by another for instance.
When you found the fish dead what did their bodies look like? Was their evidence of them being torn up by tankmates or more shock type death (no visible injury)?
I know this is left field....but do you have/ever had a mantis shrimp in there? I've heard of them hitch-hiking in on liverock sometimes and they can do a number on smaller fish.
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