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Death of Fishes after fertilization.

Discussion in 'Aquatic Plant Fertilization' started by yashaswibs, Oct 29, 2009.

  1. yashaswibs

    yashaswibs Prolific Poster

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    Hello everyone,
    I understand this is a plant forum and fishes questions are likely not met with enthusiasm but this is also the place of evidence based fish and plant keeping.

    Yesterday morning I added 1/4 tsp of PMDD of Greg Watson fert dry. After 4 hours I came home to find 1 discus dying along with 2 serpe tetras dead. I removed the dead & dying fishes, performed 80% water change and chalked it up to bad luck. 16 hours later I find all 8 discus dead along with 6 serpe tetras and all neon tetra. My amano shrimp also died. I don't see my oto cats either (air breathers). 3-4 fishes now remain.
    This is a 90 gallon planted tank with Fluval FX5 filter. I just added a eheim pro 2180 with heater and added a co2 reactor AM1000 inline about 3 days ago.

    The what do you guys think happened?
    Still in a state of shock but differential diagnosis include- water vs CO2.
    Did one of the fishes die and i did not notice and it continued to leach out ammonia?
    Did the fert contain something that was not diluted despite massive water change?
    Did the co2 dissolve to a point where it was poisonous?- unlikely since the lung breathers are also gone (or maybe they are just hiding)
    Did the new filter have something to do with this?

    This is my second wipeout of discus overnight and I was not able to point out the cause last time either?
    I change water weekly 70%. I have redundancy built into heating & filtering
    SO what the f*&^% happend?
    I should have tested the water before changing it but it would not have changed the management (looking back it would have changed diagnosis)
    Help would be throughly appreciated.

    I just posted in another planted tank forum that planted discus tank is easily doable - should probably hunt that post and edit it.
     
  2. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    I dose 4-5 x that amount and have the same fish and have bred them and do weekly water changes in that same range.

    So the ferts are not likely.
    Tap changes/KH/CO2 etc more than likely, disease+ those changes etc.

    Regards,
    Tom barr
     
  3. The Rockster

    The Rockster Guru Class Expert

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    Hi,
    As Discus lover and keeper, that has recently lost two fish, we REALLY feel your pain.
    In our case, we think it was due to a combination of factors............too much Co2, poor filtration............altho we don't use EI Dosing..
    Best of Luck..................
     
  4. yashaswibs

    yashaswibs Prolific Poster

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    Thank you for your messages,
    Death is usually multifactorial but something usually starts it off and culminates in multiorgan failure with cardiopulmonary and renal failure following. Renal is usually first to go and then pulm, lastly cardio.
    I am not sure what set if off though?
    I did add the GH booster with the fert. So unless I managed to bump up the ph steeply that should not have caused it.
    I wonder if I could get a chime in from an icthiologist.
    I understand that stability of an environment is more important than the actual values- so what did I change rapidly?
     
  5. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Sounds more like you likely gassed the fish with CO2, had little to do with the small amount ferts added.

    Adjust CO2 slowly till you get a good feel for it, watch fish closely etc.
    the only thing I see that could have done this was the CO2.
    If you had not been doing water change soften, then suddenly did large ones, some fish might have died, but not this many.

    Light/filter, heater are not any of this, water changes you likely did plenty prior if you have these fish etc. So it was not neglect for general care etc, but rather, mostly likely, you did not watch the CO2 good and added too much, way too much from the sound of it.

    When you add CO2, make sure there's decent surface movement, not quite enough to break the water's surface, this makes sure there's still good O2, but you do lose a little CO2, not a big deal however.

    I typically add a little bit less than I think I'll need for plants, and then I watch fish/plants/signs of algae. I'll add bit more and then watch.
    I do not add more CO2 and then wander off for the rest of the day.

    Once I am getting nice plant growth over a few days, I just leave it.
    Fish are always watched, but never stressed this way. I can take care of algae far easier and adjust things accordingly than I can bringing the fish back to life.

    So I error on the fish side of this.
    Slow, patient and progressively adjust things.

    CO2 kills more fish than any nutrient in plant tanks.
    Excel is the runner up.


    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  6. yashaswibs

    yashaswibs Prolific Poster

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    Again thanks for the reply.

    I did both CO2 and Excel- so likely my culprits.
    At least now I know how I killed them, so now I can prevent it from happening again.
     
  7. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Now it's time to learn and focus on using those tools more effectively without harming fish. Never add more than 5mls per 10 Gal of tank per day for the Excel.
    You stay with that, you will not harm any species or plant.

    CO2, it's a bit trickier and takes more patience and slow, methodical progressive adjustments. Adjusting O2 and current will help to extend this range of adequate CO2 before any fish stress occurs. Reduced light also helps in the same way.

    But once dialed in, it is pretty stable and makes life very easy from then on.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
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