High Nitrates and swim bladder - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-26-2019, 12:39 AM Thread Starter
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High Nitrates and swim bladder

Question, I have a 3 year old angel fish in my 40B tank. This afternoon I see he developed swim bladder disease. I did a 10% water change, applied melafix. I did a nitrate test and it shows 160 ppm for nitrates. (Test kit is actually expired).

I did add two new plants to the tank on 2 days ago. What are my options?
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-26-2019, 12:54 AM
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Get the nitrates down-- your tank is severally neglected to get nitrates so high. Because it is, you will need to lower this number ( nitrates) over a period of time to not shock the fish.
Do 25% water changes for the next few days or as long as it takes to bring nitrates down to 20ppm. Vacuum a bit of the gravel each day- sectioning the entirety of the substrate off in quadrants, and cleaning these quadrants well over the next several days.

Evaluate your tank size and amount of fish. Is the bioload of fish too large for bio-filter? Or, is the nitrate level strictly an indication of lack of regular maintenance: water changes, gravel cleanings, regular filter maintenance?


The most common internal bacterial infection that will affect swim bladder in aquarium fish is aeromonus bacteria. This is a secondary bacterial infection that is contracted by the fish primarily in tanks that are not given routine maintenance and care: high nitrates, high dissolved solids, high bacterial load. \

Deal with water quality first. No amount of meds will work if water quality remains the same.
Melafix ( melallucca oil) is for superficial scrapes, fin damage, minor issues. There is nothing in active ingredients to deal with internal issues.
Aeromonus bacteria is gram negative, so need a antibiotic that treats gram-negative bacteria ( and internal bacteria). I would use kanamycin.
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-26-2019, 09:23 PM Thread Starter
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Itís been over a day, the angelfish is still alive and Iíve done another water change. Iíll wait another day Incase it is constipation.

He is still hanging in there. Anything wrong from what more experienced people can see from is appearance?

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Last edited by Darkblade48; 08-27-2019 at 03:33 AM. Reason: Please use the edit function for back to back posts to keep threads cleaner
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 09-19-2019, 10:22 PM Thread Starter
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At any rate, the fish is still alive, just has the bladder issue and is still eating. Peas didn’t do anything to solve it. Nitrates are down
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old Yesterday, 05:37 PM
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If your test kit is expired it's time for a new one as the results will be off.

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