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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Does anyone have any experience with sporadic hyperventilation of the gills and rapid fin movement, while the body is stationary? One fish seems fine most of the time, and then randomly appears to be in serious stress, relatively unresponsive to my presence. I'll come back 5 minutes later and it's completely fine. Any ideas?
 

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Does anyone have any experience with sporadic hyperventilation of the gills and rapid fin movement, while the body is stationary? One fish seems fine most of the time, and then randomly appears to be in serious stress. Any ideas?
just a single fish? Mine tend to do that when i've been on holidays for a few weeks and couldnt do water changes ..

What fish? any possible triggers? Some more details could help
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Male and female bonded GBR pair in a 10 gallon w/ pool filter sand substrate.

pH continues to shift from tap ph of 7.6 up to 7.8+. Not sure why. I thought this might be the reason. I bought driftwood today and that should lower it in the following days (at least it did and still does in my other tank).

I did a water change again today, ~3 gal of their 10 gal tank, which is really a ~40% change given substrate, rocks, etc. This was from my main, established tank. I have many breeding shrimp and glass cats in that tank. They're all doing great, so I assume water quality is the same. I didn't want to add conditioned tap water in fear of the dechlorinator reacting negatively with any trace copper remaining from a recent Cupramine dosage. A recent quarantine was pretty hard on them. I've changed out practically 100% of the water now

About 5 mins after adding the water, they went into this "shocked" state again: rapid fin fluttering, rapid gill movement, motionless in the water column. They came in and out of it to court, however. The only thing I could think of was that the substrate (pool filter sand) being stirred up somehow releasing trapped, toxic-state meds (Cu 1+). Before this last water change, however, they were also sporadically showing this behavior.

About 4 hours post-water change they spawned. Immediately after the 30 min spawning process, they exhibited the same shock/stress. Not sure how long.

Right now they are guarding the eggs and are showing relaxed, sleepy behavior. Lights are off. Phew.

It seems that when they are courting, mating, or eating, gill rate and fin fluttering is normal. But then, sometimes, they kind of "zone out" in this stressed state and don't respond to normal, behavioral cues: me getting close to the tank, they being close to each other, looking for food, etc.
 
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