Lights make fish nervous... - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-02-2011, 04:56 PM Thread Starter
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Lights make fish nervous...

Do they get used to them eventually?

I just mounted two 26W 6500K CFL floodlights to the top of my 100 gallon stock tank (about 50" x 30" and the water depth is around 18"). They are pretty close to the water- 3" maybe? I'm trying an experiment overwintering some tropical waterlilies.

My one sarassa just cowers under a lily pot when they are on, though he was cruising around and ate some pellets before they turned on.

I just responded to a RAOK for floaters and these lilies should have pads on the surface in a couple of days- is there anything else that will help? Is this an issue in higher light aquariums as well?

~June
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-02-2011, 05:25 PM
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Are you talking about the period when and just after the lights turn on? Or do your fish hide during the entire lighting period?

I think most fish get scared when the lights turn on intially. Staggering this by first turning on one half of the light (or say 25%) will help.

Not sure what a "stock tank" is... perhaps they are scared when they sense movement from above?


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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-02-2011, 05:38 PM
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It may take some getting used to, just keep the lights on a good cycle and the fish will get used to them. What kind of fish do you have?


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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-02-2011, 07:29 PM Thread Starter
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It's the entire time the lights are on. It's just a 3-4 inch sarassa comet goldfish- one that had dropsy that I was able to save, that normally lives in a pond outside, so it's used to seeing movement from above. This was one of a pair that I posted a few days ago that I'd somehow unintentionally killed his partner while transferring him to the little indoor pond!

Once he was healed (this surviving one), I didn't want to throw him into the now icy water- I didn't think he would make it. So I set up a rubbermaid stock tank in the basement and decided to try overwintering my lilies at the same time.

All that work for a $5 goldfish, LOL. But when I first started to euthanize it because of the dropsy, I just couldn't bring myself to do it. And I used to be an animal control officer- you'd think I'd be used to it! I don't know why this little fish affected me this way! But I'm glad I tried to save him and I'm glad he made it (so far)!

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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-02-2011, 07:37 PM
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Sounds like the lights too bright. Try dimming it and see what happens.
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-02-2011, 07:48 PM
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If it is used to being out side then I would guess that it is not the brightness of the lights but the fact that they look so different to the natural sunlight in that light is coming from two sources so close to the surface. They look like two big shining eye balls staringinto the tank - I may get scared too given the circumstances.
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-02-2011, 08:10 PM Thread Starter
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LOL- good point. I think plant cover will help immensely. I think I will pull a lotus leaf or two out of the pond and float it in there for now- they are still green.

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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-04-2011, 02:35 PM Thread Starter
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Plant cover isn't working yet. I have shut the lights off for now but every time I approach the tub he flips out. Water parameters are good. Now I'm thinking it isn't the lights. He was fine in the outside pond and fine in the Q tank with a glass bottom... why scared now? Hopefully it will just take time.

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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-04-2011, 09:59 PM
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Try diffusing the light by putting a few layers of window screen/mosquito netting under the bulbs or over the tank. And feed the fish some tasty food (frozen or freeze-dried bloodworms, pieces of canned tuna, etc.) three or four times a day for a week or so. He'll probably get over it.

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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-05-2011, 07:13 PM
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How long have you had this light over his tank?

I'd say be patient. When I got a new light, it had A LOT more lumens than my old light, so it was significantly brighter. My tetras hid the entire week, and would spook whenever I was around the tank, but they eventually got used to it and behaved normally.

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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-06-2011, 12:07 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gnomecatcher View Post
How long have you had this light over his tank?

I'd say be patient. When I got a new light, it had A LOT more lumens than my old light, so it was significantly brighter. My tetras hid the entire week, and would spook whenever I was around the tank, but they eventually got used to it and behaved normally.
Well, it's like a big tub rather than a tank, about hip high, so he can only see me when I walk up to it. If I put sinking pellets right in front of him, he will eat, so I'm hoping it's not illness that's making him squirrelly. And you're right- it's only been a couple of days- lights or no lights- turns out it's the tub itself, so I'm leaving the lights on because he might as well get used to everything, rather than having to start over when I start turning the lights on.

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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-08-2011, 11:09 AM Thread Starter
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Day 6 yesterday and I noticed him MUCH more relaxed, checking things out a bit last night! I had moved the lights up 6 inches a couple of days ago, just because it made me nervous having them so close to the water.

Snail is not doing much though- I don't think there is enough algae and I will probably neglect him in there so he will go out to the pond again. Luckily the weather has been in the 60's so he should overwinter just fine with the rest of them when it gets cold again.

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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-08-2011, 08:11 PM
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my rummies I used to have never got used to my metal halide. they were scared ****less the entire photoperiod for months.


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