Help! Tossed the fish out with the waste-water - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-07-2014, 10:39 PM Thread Starter
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Help! Tossed the fish out with the waste-water

So, one of my gobies did another one of his disappearing acts. He vanished last night, but I saw some sand displaced around some of the plants, so I figured he was back to his tunnel-digging ways. Well, I cleaned the HOB during a water change this evening, not thinking that he may have snuck in there somehow (probably chasing the algae on the output right into the reservoir. SIGH!) I didn't see him at all, not even when I dumped the waste water down the toilet. I come back to flush and guess who's swimming around in the bowl??

This is a first. I tried to grab him with the net but he swam away and towards the drain. Tried waiting him out, then pouring more water slowly into the bowl so he'd have more room to swim around. Now I don't see him at all. I suppose he swam down the drain? Why on earth would any fish do that, though? Has this ever happened to anyone else? I only have two gobies, and they are my favorite fish in the tank. Hate to lose him this way.
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-07-2014, 11:11 PM
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in my sink i have a little drain catcher that has holes in it to alow water thorugh but not fish or other bigger materials like fish or shrimp.
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-07-2014, 11:22 PM
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Sorry to hear that! Could you try siphoning the toilet water out to see if the goby is still in there? The siphon might pull it out if it's hiding in the curve of a pipe.

Good luck!
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-07-2014, 11:44 PM
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Negative on getting him back at this point. The opportunity was lost when the water was added. The stool has a puddle of water before going over a "hill" at the back. when the water was added it raised the level enough that the fish went over the hill and down the pipe. Most of the time it is at least a foot or more down so at this point it has either gone way down or been laying in the dry pipe.
My wife and I did add a fairly large fish to the stool at one point but a hand is really about the only way to retrieve one. It was a female Protomelas and I did not want to lose her so dipped her out and she is still in my tank now.
Seems to get real nervous when she hears the stool flush, though.
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-08-2014, 01:45 AM Thread Starter
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He's safe!

Welp, I got him out and he's alive, for the time being. I decided to give him a little time alone in the bowl with the lights out while I went to the gym. When I returned, he was nowhere to be seen, so I dejectedly depressed the lever. Fortunately, the flush scared him (her? Are the females smaller and more "adventurous", I wonder?) out of the hiding place. By this time I had already sterilized the net, so I made a mad-dash for the bowl with my bare hands, ran to the tank, and released. Poor fish is looking skinny and shocked, obviously. Praying he/she makes it through the night. Is there anything I should be doing for it during this time?

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Seems to get real nervous when she hears the stool flush, though.
Tee-hee! That's funny, PlantedRich. In any case, I don't think I'll be dumping waste water down the toilet from here on out.
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-08-2014, 02:34 AM
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You got lucky. As PlantedRich stated, once water is added, the p-trap releases over the hill (wier) of the toilet. You can flush a toilet, without flushing a toilet. Example. Go get a gallon of water and pour it in the toilet, the water will drain because as water is added, it reaches the wier and it siphons out which is why once you do this, the water level is very low. It won't raise unless more water is added. A healthy fish can fight this siphon and swim against the suction. This is more than likely the case.

The fish was shocked more than likely because of the difference in its tank vs the toilet's water. If you use tap water without adding anything beside dechlorinator to your tank, then the toilet water supply is the same. Now because its a toilet, there could be other bacteria present.

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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-08-2014, 02:49 AM
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You are not the only one!!! I did this once too, and felt terrible. I think my fish died of the choramine though, or the temp shock of going from a 84 deg discus tank to a 50-60 deg toilet. I never saw it again

I'm really glad you got your fish back!

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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-08-2014, 12:38 PM Thread Starter
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Update

I checked on my little adventurer this morning and he's back to his old fishy ways. Like nothing even happened, save my own trauma.

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You can flush a toilet, without flushing a toilet. Example.
I'm familiar with this concept since I've been tossing about 3 gallons full of tank waste water down the toilet for years now. The toilet was essentially already flushed when I found him, making it much more difficult to reach him with a net or my hands. The little 1/2 cup I added to raise the level wouldn't have had the velocity to flush him back down. And if so, he could have easily fought the current. What a brave/stupid fish I own.

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I'm really glad you got your fish back!
Thanks! He seems happy to be back.
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-08-2014, 01:23 PM
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-08-2014, 04:01 PM Thread Starter
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So, after observing the tank for a on and off this morning to make sure the goby is really ok (aside from a red spot on his side which could have been my handwork when I retrieved him from the bowl), I noticed the both of them like to hang on out the HOB and the intake. Toilet-goby even began chilling on the rim of the output, which made me quite nervous. I mean, really, did he learn NOTHING?? This isn't the first time a fish hopped into the HOB; I lost a kuhli loach that way years ago. However, shouldn't the flow from the output ideally discourage that sort of thing? This recent episode along with the ever-present BGA in my tank has me wondering if the HOB isn't turning over the water as it should be. I only have a 10 gallon tank and the filter is designed for 20 gallons... maybe it's time to upgrade? Only, I haven't had it that long. Any thoughts?
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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-08-2014, 09:40 PM
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Some gobies like water flow, I think. What kind do you have?
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-09-2014, 10:25 AM
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Originally Posted by thepresidentsdaughter View Post
Now I don't see him at all. I suppose he swam down the drain? Why on earth would any fish do that, though?

Fish don't know that they're in a toilet. It would have been frightened of you when you tried to grab it, so it tried to escape down what it thought might lead to somewhere. No need to wrack your brain for answers.


edit: Ah... I see you got it back.


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Last edited by Dan110024; 11-09-2014 at 10:27 AM. Reason: .
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-09-2014, 10:38 AM
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I did something like this YEARS AGO with a Betta, but mine involved the Betta and the sinks garage disposal...
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-09-2014, 05:38 PM
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I did something like this YEARS AGO with a Betta, but mine involved the Betta and the sinks garage disposal...
Wow. Gruesome.

Anyways, I'm glad you got your goby back.


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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-11-2014, 02:33 AM Thread Starter
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Some gobies like water flow, I think. What kind do you have?
The rainbow stiphodon variety. I think you're right, though. I've recently added an circulation pump to help combat the algae. I'm hoping the gobies will prefer that current to the one beneath the filter output.

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Anyways, I'm glad you got your goby back.
Thank you. Me, too.
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