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ermidontknow

Do Fish "play" Dead?

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yesterday i was siphoning my tank and my smallest goldie looked like he was dying all of a sudden, laying on his side on the bottom of the tank and i found it weird, because he was completely fine before i siphoned the tank, and then after i siphoned it and put the water back in the tank, he was fine again! he seems perfectly healthy now, but it just doesnt seem like a good sign that he was laying on his side at all lol

could goldies do that for no reason?

and one of my bettas has done the same thing, he'll be floating at the top of the tank one minute, then the next hes swimming around like hes fine :blink:

Edited by ermidontknow
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i dont realy know wot it is but my betta also did the same thing ?? :blink:

maybe some1 else will know

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ermidontknow:

Since it happened while you were siphoning your tank, I would guess that when you disturbed the gravel, a "cloud" of toxic gas/bacteria was released and that is what made your fish "play dead". It is not normal for this to happen.

I have heard stories of fish actually dying from this. How much gravel do you have in your tank (how deep) and how well/often do you vacuum it?

Laura

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one possibility could be that as you were doing a gravel vac, you disturbed some anaerobic bacteria in the gravel, and your fish swam through it, which knocked him out a bit.

bw

cupoftea

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I second, or should I say third the idea that it could be anaerobic bacteria in the tank. If you have gravel, you should really try to clean it well.

However, I would remove the fish from the tank when you do it. Drain some of their water into a tub or bucket and put them in whilst you are doing the cleaning. I would probably wait a few hours before I put them back in.

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ohh i had no idea that could happen! :blink: its my 55 gal tank that this happened in and i think we used 30 lbs of gravel to fill it, although its only a little over an inch deep (just enough to hold down the live plants). and i generally siphon it every 2 weeks. sometimes i take out all my ornaments and siphon it really well, but yesterday i just worked around the ornaments and plants, so it wasnt a complete siphon

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:o I didnt know that siphoning the gravel while the fish were in there could be harmful for them :( My poor darlings, I'm due for a sihpon tonight so I'm going to take them out from now on
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i dont think that the siphoning is the dangerous part, it how much waste is in the gravel, siphoning often will keep the gravel much cleaner and also having just a small covering just enough to cover the bottom is better for me,lots easier to clean. :D

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You will probably stress fish even more if you move them in and out of the tank everytime you siphon.

What happened to your fish, if it was caused by toxic gas, is quite rare. Just try to keep them away from the siphone when vacuuming. If they are persistant try sprinking flake food on the top to distract them.

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When I posted that the fish should be removed from the tank for the thorough cleaning, I should have been more specific.

I wouldn't recommend taking the fish from the tank for every gravel siphoning, however, in this case, since the poster was having trouble with her fish "playing dead" after a gravel siphon, I thought it would be a wise precaution, since she would be stirring things up quite a bit.

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Oh, I get it.

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That's a relief :) I dont like taking my fish out. I feel so sorry for them wigglying around in the net and then staying in the bucket. I only take them out once a month when I have to take out plants, clean filters and do the big 50% water change. Otherwise a just do a breif siphon around everything on a weekly basis and change 15-20% of the water

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