Major die off after 40% water change + flourish excel double dose
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Old 07-30-2011, 12:42 AM   #1
nesopheus
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Major die off after 40% water change + flourish excel double dose


120gal low tech planted 2month old
PH 6.8
Ammonia 1 or less
Nitrite 1.2 mg/l
Nitrate 20 mg/l
GH 40
KH 40 mg/l

Dead11 glass catfish, 4 pepper cory, 2 simensis flying fox
Survivors 3 gold gouramis, 4 dwarf gouramis, 2 powder blue gouramis, 1 pepper cory(last legs), 1 green cory, 4 kuhli loaches(some may be dead), 2 rope fish(1 confirmed), 1 large Plec, 2 oto cats.

I've kept fish for 20 years and I've never killed so many fish, uterly devastated. All levels read the same as usual except Nitrate and Nitrite. They were never so high. Doing a 30% water change now.
I appretiate any thing you might have to tell me, I will now curl up into a ball and cry.
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Old 07-30-2011, 12:49 AM   #2
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Ouch! I'd check and see if there's been a sudden shift in water parameters for the public water supply, or if they changed the chemical treatment.

You mentioned double dosing with Excel. Have you been doing that regularly, and exactly how much did you use?

Did you violently stir up the substrate? The fact that there is any readable level of ammonia or nitrite means either that an excess of ammonia was suddenly released into the water column, or you had a mass die-off of beneficial bacteria. Or your test kit is screwey.
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Old 07-30-2011, 12:53 AM   #3
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Yup, unless you tank is still cycling, you shouldn't have any ammonia or nitrites at all.
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Old 07-30-2011, 01:03 AM   #4
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It's definitely that ammonia/nitrite reading, I'd get some prime in there stat or some other ammonia neutralizer and yeah, lots of water changes. Sorry to hear about your losses I hope the rest make it.
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Old 07-30-2011, 03:25 AM   #5
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We've all been there, I would suggest a more heavily planted tank. Your catfish/loaches are also even more sensitive with high hardness.
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Old 07-30-2011, 03:35 AM   #6
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nesopheus

I have posted this in other forums it is very simple to fill in


By filling in all or as much as you can, this will help us to get back to you with a helpful answer and this should help you in solving your problem.
Remember the longer the delay in getting a reply back the worse you problem will get

Tank size in Cm L W H


Filtration (brand name/model number & LPH) =
How do you clean the filter media, and how often =
What filter media is in the filter =

Do you have Carbon in the Filter =
How long has the Carbon been in Filter=
Do you wash & reuse the Carbon =
How often do you change the water =
What percentage do you change=
How do you do it =
Do you use a gravel siphon =
How do you dechlorinate the water =

Do you store the water, Y or N?
What chemicals/additives do you put in the tank, plant fertilizers, for water or diseases =
UV sterilizer (Yes/No & what wattage) =
Heater (what setting) =
Chiller (if applicable) =

Go to a good LFS and get a FULL water test done and post actual results. NOT OK
Ammonia =
Nitrite =
Nitrate =
pH =
kH =
gH =

How long has the tank been running =
Was your tank cycled correctly = Y or N

Recent changes to your tank
Inhabitants
http://www.aqadvisor.com/
This will also help you reason being your fish might not be compatible or the tank is over loaded
Visible symptoms of your fish/s
Physical symptoms:
What you feed and how often
Recent changes to your tank


Gravel (type i.e. standard inert gravel or plant substrate, or DIY)
how deep gravel.


Driftwood, what type, and where did you get it, was it properly sanitized and treated
Ornaments (what are they and how many) =

Plants (real / fake how many) =

a photo if possible: if you do not know how to post a photo say so


Keith
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Old 07-30-2011, 04:07 AM   #7
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Did you change out your filter media? I agree with checking with your local water source too see if something has changed lately.
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Old 07-30-2011, 08:13 PM   #8
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Tank size L 183cm W 46cm H 53cm


Filtration (brand name/model number & LPH) = 2/Fluval 304
How do you clean the filter media, and how often =1 side every month (rinse or replace as needed)
What filter media is in the filter =foam, pre filter, clear max/ carbon/ peat pellets, bio max/ fine filter pad.
Do you have Carbon in the Filter =just in one side
How long has the Carbon been in Filter=about 1.5 months old
Do you wash & reuse the Carbon =rinsed once
How often do you change the water =30-40% Tank is 2 months old last change 2 weeks ago, more frequent previously.
What percentage do you change=30-40%
How do you do it =siphon 10 gallons the rest with garden hose.
Do you use a gravel siphon =large gravel syphon
How do you dechlorinate the water =Nutrafin Aqua Plus
Do you store the water, Y or N?n
What chemicals/additives do you put in the tank, plant fertilizers, for water or diseases =Nutrafin Tropical Extracts 20ml
UV sterilizer (Yes/No & what wattage) =n
Chiller (if applicable) =n/a
Go to a good LFS and get a FULL water test done and post actual results. NOT OK
Ammonia =less than 0.6 this morning
Nitrite =1.2mg/L
Nitrate =20mg/L
pH =6.8 steady
kH =30 mg/L
gH =50
How long has the tank been running =2.5 months water in, 1.5 months plants in, 1.25 months fish in.
Was your tank cycled correctly = no, did what I know to do, not been in communication with other aquarium keepers before, not sure on term.
Recent changes to your tank = tank is new all recent changes. moved a 30gal into the 120gal
Old Inhabitants
15" Pleco
2 rope fish
3 cory
2 Kuhli loaches

New inhabitants
3 gold gouramis
4 dwarf gouramis
2 powder blue gouramis
3 cory
2 Kuhli loaches
2 oto cats
2 simensis
11 glass cats ( most recent 1 week)
http://www.aqadvisor.com/
This will also help you reason being your fish might not be compatible or the tank is over loaded
Visible symptoms of your fish/s
Physical symptoms: red veins on cory, no other warning.
What you feed and how often = shrimp pellets 6 bidaily, fat pinch tropical flake bi, sinking carnavore evening, blood worms lights out.
Recent changes to your tank, plant addition steady

Gravel (type i.e. standard inert gravel or plant substrate, or DIY)
how deep gravel.
1-2" pond soil
1-2" river and beach gravel + little beach sand rinsed

Driftwood, what type, and where did you get it, was it properly sanitized and treated = LFS bogwood, washed after removal from package.
Ornaments (what are they and how many) = local creek rock many
Plants (real / fake how many) =
Red Wendtii, Ozelot sword, Echinodorus 'Vesuvius', Anubias nana, Glossostigma elatinoides, red dwarf lily, Green Cabomba, Cryptocoryne undulata, Echinodorus 'KLEINER BAR', Vallisneria Americana, +unidentified 4 NO FAKES, Blek.
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Old 07-30-2011, 11:17 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nesopheus View Post
Was your tank cycled correctly = no, did what I know to do, not been in communication with other aquarium keepers before, not sure on term.
...And what is it exactly that you know to do?

I noticed that your tank has only been up and running for two months. Did you add your fish gradually? Were you testing your water the whole time?
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Old 07-31-2011, 12:02 AM   #10
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sounds like tank wasnt cycled...especially with a soil based substrate ...they take longer to cycle for some reason

Amm. and nitrIte should be negligible before adding fish honestly...and fish should be added gradually
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Old 07-31-2011, 12:56 AM   #11
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Soil and gravel sat in the tank for a month before I started adding plants. The plants were in for a week before I added the fish. I've had fish in the tank for 6 weeks, although I had a bunch of Petco dwarf gouramis die, my fish, and my params were stable. I monitor quite a lot untill I become confidant a tank is stable. Half my fish came from a 30gal low tech I ran for 8 years, the last 3 years without a fatality. I am not familiar with your meaning as to cycling but this is what I know.

Does excel posibly kill off biological filtrations microorganisms? should have eased into the excel a little slower.

"Of course the plants don't die anymore, but I cannot count the number of times I mistook the amount of water to add, or put in to much CO2 and awoke the next morning to find all the fishes floating dead at the surface. But my intuition grew."
Takashi Amano, Nature Aquarium World book one
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Old 07-31-2011, 03:28 AM   #12
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When you say double dose of Excel, what exactly do you mean? How much was each individual dose of the Excel?

Also when doing a "soil" substrate, you should let us know what is the exact soil you are using, because when using most "soil" based first layer then capped with the main substrate, it's common for the "soil" to actually leak out trace amounts of ammonia into the water.

As for using Nutrifin dechlorinator, I recommend switching to Tetra AquaSafe, I only use AquaSafe for all of my tanks for the past 5 years and haven't lost a single fish. As for the high Nitrates, they are commonly caused by excessive feeding, as well as using certain substrate types.

I would recommend using an actual planted substrate, use SeaChem Flourite or FloraMax if you want least expensive, but if your not a "cheap skate" I would recommend using AQUARIUMPLANTS.com Amazon Based planted substrate. Then you can cap it with 1/2" of pool filter sand or regular aquarium gravel. I would also recommend either purchasing a nice quality co2 system (regulator, bubble counter, etc...) or again if money is not an issue checking into AQUARIUMPLANTS.com CarbonDoser Electronic co2 regulator. Or at least setting up a couple DIY (do-it-yourself) co2 system using the yeast method.

Also I would advise you to get a Rubber Maid container, like 15-30gallon available space. and then hook up an air pump with diffuser and then fill the rubber maid container with water that's treated with the Tetra AquaSafe dechlorinator and let the water sit with the air diffuser running for 2-3 weeks, this is a good way to age your water to use for water changes.

Also instead of rinsing your carbon then putting it back into your filters, simply dump the old carbon into a separate container and refill your filters with new carbon. A secret most aquarist don't know, is that activated carbon can be reactivated by simply heating it up to 400*F for 30 minutes, however it only eliminates any organic compounds from it, but not any metal compounds.

I've been in this hobby for 20 years now, so hopefully my bit of advice works out for you.
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Old 07-31-2011, 05:01 AM   #13
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Thank you for answering all those questions it certainly helps.
Quote:
How do you clean the filter media, and how often =1 side every month (rinse or replace as needed
It should all be washed once a month using the old tank water.
Quote:
What filter media is in the filter =foam, pre filter, clear max/ carbon/ peat pellets, bio max/ fine filter pad.
Do you have Carbon in the Filter =just in one side
How long has the Carbon been in Filter=about 1.5 months old
Do you wash & reuse the Carbon =rinsed once
Carbon is an excellent product for collecting chemicals in a tank. BUT and a huge but it not only collects them it also stores them and when its full it slowly releases a cocktail back into the tank.

It is perfect to use after medications then only for 2-3 days then its a TOSS OUT.

It is not necessary in a tank unless you have just finished using medications.

It also absorbs plant additives.
Quote:
How often do you change the water =30-40% Tank is 2 months old last change 2 weeks ago, more frequent previously.
What percentage do you change=30-40%
Now we have several concerns here.

It looks like the tank is cycling and does not require a water change during that process unless using special plant media. Then a minimum of 30% weekly.

I prefer to do 2 30% weekly.
Quote:
How do you do it =siphon 10 gallons the rest with garden hose.
Do you use a gravel siphon =large gravel syphon
Because you are syphoning you are disturbing the good bacteria in the substrate while it is still Cycling.
Quote:
What chemicals/additives do you put in the tank, plant fertilizers, for water or diseases =Nutrafin Tropical Extracts 20ml
That should not be a problem But the carbon could be removing it.

Quote:
Ammonia =less than 0.6 this morning
Nitrite =1.2mg/L
Nitrate =20mg/L
pH =6.8 steady
kH =30 mg/L
gH =50
How long has the tank been running =2.5 months water in, 1.5 months plants in, 1.25 months fish in.
Was your tank cycled correctly = no, did what I know to do, not been in communication with other aquarium keepers before, not sure on term.
Recent changes to your tank = tank is new all recent changes. moved a 30gal into the 120gal
It is obviously still cycling

Nitrite should be "0"

Nitrate Should be below "10"

Have you run that program its most important?

If not or you have please post all the results.

I can see some problems there.

http://www.aqadvisor.com/

This will also help you reason being your fish might not be compatible or the tank is over loaded
Quote:
Visible symptoms of your fish/s
Physical symptoms: red veins on cory, no other warning.
Warning signs of "Cycling"
Quote:
1-2" pond soil 1-2" river and beach gravel + little beach sand rinsed
I hate to say it but what a mix who advised you to use all that.

In 45+years of fish keeping I have never heard or seen such a mix.

Sorry I would toss it all out and replace it with a good quality aquarium grade natural river stones 1-3mm at least 100mm deep this is best for healthy growing plants.
Quote:
Driftwood, what type, and where did you get it, was it properly sanitized and treated = LFS bogwood, washed after removal from package.
Ornaments (what are they and how many) = local creek rock many
Creek rocks unless you know exactly what they are they could be causing problems, I did say 'Could"

Plants real that is excellent.

BUT with that substrate dont expect them all to grow.

I also notice you are not feeding them.

You are also not using a quality Bio-Starter like Seachem Stability.

For a beginner the Aquascape is excellent.

I can see many problems its the substrate depth and placement of a few plants because of what the could grow too if given the correct TLC

I think I have covered every thing, sorry if I seemed harsh but I would rather tell you the truth than sit back and not reply to you

Keith
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Old 07-31-2011, 05:14 AM   #14
nesopheus
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xxUnRaTeDxxRkOxx View Post
When you say double dose of Excel, what exactly do you mean? How much was each individual dose of the Excel?
120ml for 120gallons, double the initial use dose.

Quote:
Originally Posted by xxUnRaTeDxxRkOxx View Post
Also when doing a "soil" substrate, you should let us know what is the exact soil you are using, because when using most "soil" based first layer then capped with the main substrate, it's common for the "soil" to actually leak out trace amounts of ammonia into the water.
Soil is a pond soil purchased from Artknapp, I've used it on my two previous 30gal low tech tanks with no problem. I'll look into Tetra Aquasafe any seconds on this product? I do over feed on purpose as per the low tech philosophy exponsed by the "Ecology of the Planted Aquarium".



Quote:
Originally Posted by xxUnRaTeDxxRkOxx View Post
I would recommend using an actual planted substrate, use SeaChem Flourite or FloraMax if you want least expensive, but if your not a "cheap skate" I would recommend using AQUARIUMPLANTS.com Amazon Based planted substrate.
I have to smile at the "cheap skate" comment. Perhaps I am poor yet still an avid aquarist, or perhaps I am a focused parent who only diverts a small portion of my money to my personal pursuits. Thankyou for the list of great products, when I create my dream aquarium I'll look into them.
I have two ladders attached two yeast canisters, plant growth is fantastic in this aquarium.

Also I would advise you to get a Rubber Maid container, like 15-30gallon available space. and then hook up an air pump with diffuser and then fill the rubber maid container with water that's treated with the Tetra AquaSafe dechlorinator and let the water sit with the air diffuser running for 2-3 weeks, this is a good way to age your water to use for water changes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by xxUnRaTeDxxRkOxx View Post
Also instead of rinsing your carbon then putting it back into your filters, simply dump the old carbon into a separate container and refill your filters with new carbon. A secret most aquarist don't know, is that activated carbon can be reactivated by simply heating it up to 400*F for 30 minutes, however it only eliminates any organic compounds from it, but not any metal compounds.
Low tech aquariums don't need carbon. I used it while waiting for the aquarium to "cycle". Again I ran two 30 gallons for 3 years low tech no carbon with no fatalities. When I start up a High tech I'm sure I'll use carbon regularly.

Quote:
Originally Posted by xxUnRaTeDxxRkOxx View Post
I've been in this hobby for 20 years now, so hopefully my bit of advice works out for you.
I really appretiate all the opinions and information available on these forums and from such a myriad of amazing aquarium hobbyists. I had my first tank in 1986, trial and error, books and books. The internet and these forums are new to me and I look forward to all the wisdom availible.
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Old 07-31-2011, 05:15 AM   #15
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Okay, a lot of info here. Take your pick, it could be a number of things. The one thing I strongly disagree with is regarding carbon. Remove your carbon media. It's useless for you unless you want to remove tannins or medications. It does no harm - at all - but takes up space that could be used for something useful.

Seriously, carbon will do nothing for you. Really. Nothing.

Regarding your problem ...well, my original thoughts haven't changed. Recheck my last post if you'd like. And if you're still not confident of anything at all, just keep testing until your ammonia and nitrites (not nitrAtes) are both zeroed out, and then add a handful of fish weekly. It'll be fine.

Oh, and re-read (and re-read again) the instructions on your Excel bottle. Many folks misinterpret the instructions for Excel, which is - no kidding - basically designed to kill every living organism it comes in contact with, given high enough doses. Again - seriously.
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