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That picture of the bump on the Rasboras I think is the best picture for a diagnosis. Do you have a quaratine tank or a big tub or bucket you can throw these guys into for treatment. I had to set up a quarantine tank last week. It was a lot of work. But now that it's set up the fish is getting the care that it needs and will probably recover. It has regained its appetite and is exhibiting typical Cichlid attitude. But you have to do the work and set something up and find a diagnosis and get the medications to help them. You will need to put in a heater and provide some aeration and do water changes. I hope I'm not being pedantical. And yes I know you came here for help. But what I'm saying is you have do something because so far we haven't been able to save any of your fish. I just spent an half hour googling a diagnosis based on the picture of the Rasboras but didn't find anything. It could be parasites but it could also be internal bacterial. I can't tell. Keep going. Don't quit. It's up to you. Time is short.
 

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Three months isn’t a long time to develop stability in a tank, particularly on the assumption that the fish have only been added in the last two months, or less. Normally, we recommend quarantining fish for a month to watch for problems, before adding to a display tank. CO2-driven pH changes won’t kill your fish and neither will your ferts or Excel.

I doubt that it is O2. If it was, you should be seeing your fish hanging around the surface, even gulping for air if it’s low enough. Same thing if CO2 is too high. In any case, if you want to increase O2, rippling the surface with a pump is better than an air stone. The bubbles from an air stone don’t put O2 into water, they just cause a little rippling at the surface, which is how you get gas exchange. Use a pump or filter to create rippling. Another excellent way to add O2 is with a cheap surface skimmer.

Keep checking your ammonia. There may still be some cycling/organics issues. Is your filter setup correctly? Tell us about it.
 

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A pH drop from CO2 is very different from fluctuating pH from other reasons. In a non CO2 tank, fluctuating pH is usually causes by changing Gh or Kh, which will kill fish. A pH drop from CO2 is not changing the hardness of the water, so it won't affect the fish. Many on here (myself included) run a daily pH drop of up to 1.5 with no ill effect on the fish.

Without knowing more, I would guess 1 of 2 things happened.

1.) you introduced a pathogen into the tank when you added fish.
2.) when the lights go out, your plants begin to consume O2, as opposed to producing it. You need adequate surface agitation to ensure full O2 saturation, especially at night. I would bet that if you add an airstone an hour before lights off, you'll stop seeing fish die at night.

As far as turning the CO2 on and off during the day, this defeats the entire purpose of CO2. It takes a while to build up in the water column enough to benefit plants, and having it turn on and off will be a waste.

It's also good to know that CO2 and O2 are not mutually exclusive. An increase in CO2 does not mean a decrease in O2. It's very possible, and desirable, to have both high O2 and high CO2.
 

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Discussion Starter · #28 ·
What if I leave my powerhead pointing to the surface at night also? Would that do or will I need the airstone also

And whats the best way to hide it all? As mentioned above it I have a powerhead pointing to the surface is that enough or would I need the airstone anyways?
 

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Powerhead aimed at the surface will work as long as the surface is agitated. An airstone isn't necessary it's just been easier for me in certain situations (still water settings, tanks I keep floaters in) to just add an airstone at night, that way I can just remove it in the morning.
 

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Discussion Starter · #30 ·
Will buy the air stone today and see how it goes.. It will add me flow in a stagnant area so should be a win win.. The Powerhead does create surface agitation but maybe not enough. Should I keep them both on at night?
 

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You can. I, honestly, have kept powerheads in larger walstads using airstones overnight in "dead zones", same as what you mentioned. Maybe it was overkill, I don't know- I do know I didn't lose any fish, though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #32 ·
You can. I, honestly, have kept powerheads in larger walstads using airstones overnight in "dead zones", same as what you mentioned. Maybe it was overkill, I don't know- I do know I didn't lose any fish, though.
Were you losing fish before you added the airstone?
 

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Discussion Starter · #34 ·
TBH never had fish gasping for air but will add this and see how it goes.. So will let you know. Can you ever overdose it with too much air?
 

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Discussion Starter · #36 ·
Not sure if this is a hint but all my fish are swimming on one side.. coincidentally co2 just turned off

Not with just an airstone and powerheads 😉
Should the powerhead be left on overnight with the airstone? And should airstone go off in the morning or before co2 goes on as it's quite noisy...
 

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You can definitely pull the airstone. I'd leave the powerhead on, but that's me- I like a bit of surface agitation/ flow at all times.
 

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Discussion Starter · #38 ·
So i can turn off the airstone in the morning and keep powerhead on yeah? As not sure I understood you.. main idea is for fish to survive the night. Will let you know how it goes in the morning...
 

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You can definitely pull the airstone. I'd leave the powerhead on, but that's me- I like a bit of surface agitation/ flow at all times.
Does it really bother you? Is the air-pump not stable and-- making a hum or vibration-- because it needs to be put on a piece of styrofoam or other stabilizing surface? I have air pumps in all 4 of my fish-tanks in my den and can barely hear them.

Edit: I meant to attach this to OP's post but, it tagged you instead @Plinkploop. Obviously this question is for @Bent17 :)
 
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