Just when I think I am starting to get a handle on this hobby something always seems to happen to convince me I'm still an amature.
Here is the scenario in full detail. Early spring I caught four local Darters here in KY. Kept them in a 75g native fish tank along with other native fish until recently when I decided I wanted to redo my 75g into a high tech planted tank at my office. I decided I would keep the four darters for the tank since I enjoyed watching their behaivor so much.
For the interim I kept them in my 10g quarintine with a pitbull pleco. They were in the 10g for a month, no problems. Last Saturday I picked up three otocinclus from Incredipet, planning to put them in my 75g once it had cycled. I also ordered 12 more otocinclus to be picked up on the next Tuesday (yesterday). I took the three otocinclus home and placed them in the 10g along with the four darters and single pitbull pleco. I lost one oto the next day, no surprises here as he looked the worst of the three.
Fast foward to last night. My wife picked up the 12 otos from incredipet, and brought them home. I drip acclimated them, and then put them into the 10g with the other fish, with plans to move everything to the 75g sometime this week. I also attached two pieces of peeled and blanched zucchini to a piece of granite for the otos to munch on. Went to bed last night, otos happily munching on zucchini.
Woke up this morning the water looked like skim milk. All four darters dead, everything else behaving normal. I did a 75% water change and went to work. So where did I screw this up? At first I thought maybe the otos brought something in that the darters couldn't handle, or maybe the added fish caused a mini cycle, or maybe it was the zucchini? Any advice or opinions on this would be much appreciated.
Here is the offending tank this morning after water changes.