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JessicaandMarshall

If Your Bored, You Can Help Me Sort This Out

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First of all, none of my fish are *really* sick. However, I do get the feeling something is not right. They are just not themselves, you know?

Here are the details.

Ammonia 0

nitrite 0

nitrate 1ppm (it has never gone over 5!)

pH pretty much 8

pH out of the tap, same thing, pretty much 8.

It's a 44 gallon tank, and has been running for 1 year, and 3 months.

It has an aquaclear 300 on it. That is the biggest HOB that will fit on the hood. I also have a small sponge filter, I'm not sure how much it actually does though. And I have a 14" airstone.

This tank gets a weekly gravel vac, and the amount changed depends on the condition of the tank that week, usually 30-40%. Sometimes I change water (no gravel vac) during the week, usually 10 gallons, maybe 15, but only if the mood strikes me.

I use Aqua Plus for water conditioner. I have Aqua safe, but the fish don't seem to like that stuff.

No meds in the tank, there was a bit of salt, but it should be long gone by now. There are 4 fish. Their sizes INCLUDE tails =o) Whitie Snowflake she is about 6-7" but her body is only about 3-4" heehee. Shy Starlight a lionhead 4" and Woogie probably close to 6" with his tail, he's an Oranda. Plus my weather loach who is not very big 4-4.5" maybe?

No new fish to the tank.

They eat all kinds of things, Hikari Lionhead mostly, peas, homemade gel food (another mostly) freeze dried brine shrimp, Hikari Gold, and sometimes some cheap Wardly type pellets, soaked with the air squeezed out. Oranges, pees etc. Woogie only gets peas, gel food and oranges now.

Unusual behaviour. A couple of months ago, maybe longer, Woogie suddenly decided he was going to be a floater. He was never a floater before. I've had him over a year. He doesn't flip right over, he just floats at the top, he *can* swim to the bottom, but he has to swim hard, and he is completely vertical. When he is swimming mid level, his bottom floats up to the top, so he doesn't swim normally.

His problem started after eating. So I switched him to gel food. This worked for a bit, he wasn't floatie, but now he is floatie after he eats anything at all.

It's no wonder. His entire head comes out of the water, and he gasps air, even his eyes are out of the water. He eats bubbles too, I think, to try to relieve his problem.

His tail has some splits and frays in it. They are clean cuts, not like fin rot. They seem to be minor, but they are there, all the same.

His gills look great! Bright Cherry red. His stomach is completely mushy to the touch. Horribly mushy, I couldn't believe it.

Shystarlight and the weather loach are acting normal.

Whitie Snowflake is a bit off too. She just sort of hangs around in the middle of the tank. She tail stands, but is not completely vertical. It could be a bit of a bouyancy problem? She is very fat, like a tennis ball. She has a couple of white spots on her dorsal fin, and used to have some on her tail, they come and go. Greasy white looking spots. Bigger than ich. She has been going to the surface more than normal too.

She is not what I would call hanging out at the surface, I thought maybe she was looking for food, but she hung out there too long, and gasped a bit with Woogie. She mostly sits mid level with her dorsal fin at half mast. She used to swim all over.

Her gills look great too! Her belly feels great, but she is a little extra slimey! Not a lot, but more than usual.

I did a scrape and looked under the scope, and didn't find anything in regards to Whitie. But A) at the time I didn't know what I was looking for, and B) I"ve had this scope for ages, and it is really outdated compared to what I was using at school.

I am going to call my vets (whom I am SURE do not do fish) and just ask them if I can bring my fish in, and use their microscope. They know me, the owners wife was head of the vet tech unit at school. I really think (hope) they will let me come in.

So do you have any suggestions as to what I am looking for, or should be looking for? I am going to look at those links Toothless posted below, the videos of parasites.

I guess you can't really help me out much, unless I find something, right? *sigh* it just made me feel a bit better to write this all out.

Thanks guys :listen:

Jessica

Edited by JessicaandMarshall

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One sounds like air bladder problems, but the white waxy looking spots coming and going sound suspiciously like carp pox. I'll steer you over to some articles over at koivet.com. , they also do a great deal with fancy goldies. I know there is several articles there for swim bladder & carp pox etc. Look to the left side header and go to articles.

Sometimes internal infections are hard to diagnose, though I think its good your doing a scrape & scope regardless.

Be patient with forum at Koivet though, the server was hacked into and things are sluggish, if you post there, the post sometimes takes several moments to get posted up and its frustrating. On the upside, they are getting a new server set up that the good Dr. bought and things will be lots better when its up and running. :D

Hopefully this will be usefull info for you!

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Hi Jess :)

Well, Has the temperature changed in your tanks lately?

I'm not completely convinced that woogie and whitie are being affected by the same set of variables. Woogie sounds like a normal fancy goldfish that has floaty problems (damaged swim bladder?).

Whitie, on the other hand, might be feeling a bit under the weather from bacterial (possibly parasitic?) related problems as indicated by the white spots on her tail and dorsal.

Wen woogie was doing better, did you still have a salt solution in their water? If so, maybe running the salt indefinitely would be a good idea. It should definitely help with the excess slimeyness on whitie. Maybe even more.

As for your scope: If you can still see pretty clearly through the lenses and youve got slides, It should suffice just fine. If you saw the scope i was using, you'd laugh and point at me! :lol1 Indeed, check out those links i've provided and youll get a very good idea of what to look out for. Trichodina might be a little difficult to diagnose but, costia and chilodonella and flukes will be easy because they'll be moving. And you'll only ned to use the scope between 100X and 400X magnification.

Post back soon! :unsure:

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Ok here's an update.

(No the temperature hasn't changed at all, well not more than a degree either way ;o) )

The day after I posted this, Woogie was completely fine for the first time in months. No floatiness whatsoever. Go figure eh. He was fine the day after too! 2 whole days.

Today, I fed him a pea, and while he has his mouth full, I drop some presoaked hikari pellets to the other fish. The other fish eat the pellets before Woogies mouth is empty normally. Usually they get gel food, and I drop some pellets for the weather loach, because he thinks the gel food is yucky.

Well today Woogie must have found a hidden pellet, or pellets that landed under an ornament or plant, because he was floating completely upside down this afternoon. He's never done that before =o(

I've thawed gel food out, and I"ll feed him day after tomorrow.

I checked Woogie and Whitie under the microscope and saw nothing =o(

Well nothing of importance. I saw air bubbles, slime coat, and some debris that I can't identify. Thank goodness for that website with all the pictures and videos! But I didn't see parasites, not even one! I read on that website that it would be normal to find a couple, but I didn't even find that. In a warped way, it was almost disappointing not to find even one. And I even got called a nerd by hubby LOL.

Whitie seems to be fine as well. I think she is sleeping when she does the tail standing, with her dorsal fin half folded. She used to sleep on the bottom under a plant, but I've noticed she doesn't do that anymore. Sometimes I think I over anaylize these poor fish.

Thanks =o)

Jessica

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Jess, how old is your nitrate test? It almost sounds like my fish when the nitrates get high. Are you sure it's a good test? :blink:

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Errrika, thanks! It's new, but I doubled checked the date anyway. I've gone through a billion tests since I set this tank up, I think the nitrates may have gone up to a whopping 10 while cycling. But since then, never over 5, usually pretty much barely there. =o) Because of that, I had a lot of problems getting this tank to finally cycle. I had 0.1 nitrites for months, before I finally got everything figured out. But for the past year or so, it's been good ;o)

With the second tank I ever set up, the nitrates where off the chart! But after the tank cycled, they quickly dropped to 0. I never had a nitrate reading in that tank at all! I posted about it before, but no one really had any ideas why.

With the test I have now, it read high nitrates on another tank when it was cycling. This tank that I am talking about with Woogie and Whitie was my first *real* tank and I seeded it from a 10 gallon I had.

I have no idea why the nitrates never go up! I do have a lot of algea if that makes a difference. Although I do scrape it off the front of the tank =oP

Jessica

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You know what, out of curiosity, I'm going to buy the dipstick type nitrate kit and see what it has to say, because I've often wondered about this, because it sounds like high nitrates to me too =o)

The test I have now, is a hagan one. You add 5 drops of #1 5 drops of #2, shake, shake #3 and add 3 drops of it, and wait 5 minutes....or longer, and shake heehee.

It has two sides on the booklet to compare results. One for saltwater and one for freshwater. The test starts at 5ppm. The salt water side is a lighter colour, and my results are way lighter than the 5ppm on the salt water side.

If that kit lied to me, I'm suing Hagan. Just kidding.

Jessica

Jessica

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You are a total brat. I'm so jealous.... I wish my nitrates would get below 40!!! :)

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Definitely a good idea to cross-check your test kits with other brands and types. Thats why i always have both dips and liquid reagent kits on hand. Besides, isn't there ever a time you wish you could just "dip and go"? :lol:

You know, It really does sond like your kits might be lying to you, doesnt it? I know nitrates were always the reason my pearlie, Squirt, would get floaty. <_<

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Which brand do you swear by? I'll order them tonight online.

Lets just say, my new handle tomorrow may be Dr. Death.

Jessica

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:( I really hope your little fella is ok!! I wish you luck finding the source of the problem and getting them better soon!! :)

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The problem with the one I have no that is not doing well is a) he was also deformed, and B ) he was pummled by a larger fish trying to get a pea..... and now I found HIM stuck to the filter..... into the hospital tank he goes.

Why now? I was doing so great, and now....GAAAAA I just want to scream!

Jessica

Edited by JessicaandMarshall

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these are the ones ive always used and i cross check them with the dip tests by jungle and the ones by mardel. Every time, i get very similar results from each kind i use so, i can only assume they are accurate.

aqua pharm kits

By the way, following the instructions to the "T" on the nitrate kits are sooooper important to follow, otherwise, you will get a false reading. that false reading tends to be towards the 0 end of the chart too. ;)

In the meantime, i think it would be pretty safe to say that a bunch of waterchanges over the next week wont hurt anything, just in case, you know? :huh:

Let us know what you find out :)

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Jessica, I won't be able to contribute much, but I thought it's an interesting mystery to ponder....I will try and cough out things I have read about around here, if you don't mind? I hope the hurt fish will heal soon too :ill

Have you thought of checking your water supplier's info to see if they're getting a hike in any weird chemicals in the water that might be affecting them? What is the temperature of the tank like btw? My goldies do the floating/hanging at the top when they have problems with lack of oxygen, but I don't think that's your problem, of course. I also had a blind fish that does that all the time, probably just hoping for food. Is the buildup of slime (caused by the mystery X say) affecting their breathing perhaps?

I'm so confused, but I hope you'll figure it out soon. I noticed so far that when my fish are under the weather, aquarium salt perks them up, even a salt bath (Paul, you got me kind of addicted to salt baths, bad! bad! :D ). Do they both have clamped fins most of the time? (although a fish of mine before died of internal probs, mushy stomach and weird floating, without any signs of clamped fins).

Soft stomach sounds definitely internal to me (or is it female having problems with egg bounding or something). If you have medicated food....do others recommend using them, so that they can get stronger and at least handle whatever this mystery condition is with their own immune system? Rambling.... good luck and keep us updated :ill

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Kat thank you!

My tank is at 76 degrees, I don't have a heater, it's just room temperature.

The fish I started this post about, are doing fine, as of right now *knock on wood*. Woogie wasn't floatie at all today, and Whitie looks ok.

Her dorsal fin was half down when I started this thread, but they've never clamped all of their fins down.

As for the water supplier, yes there has been a hike in something, sodium content. I don't know how that would effect the fish? The water is still drinkable to people unless you have a sodium restricted diet, what do you think of that? Could that be a problem.

The fish with the mushy stomach and floatie problems (although no floating today =o) ) is a male. I can feed him medigold, if you guys think I should. I order it from The Fish Sempai.

I have wondered about lack of oxygen, how would I know for sure? I have one of those long airstones, it is 14" long, but other than that?

Thank you Paul and Kat. I am doing my daily water changes, so hopefully that will help, in a few days I'll have a new test kit, and can tell for sure! This is going to be interesting I think.

Also I do have a sick fish in the hospital tank, but he's not sick from the water, I'm not sure what his problem is. He was hit pretty hard and pinned down by a bigger fish, and then he wasn't well. He is still alive today, in nice warm water, with 0.3% salt, so we'll see how the poor little bugger does. I've only had him for a year today, it's too soon for him to die =o(

Jessica

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Well, I'm not a chemistry whiz in any aspect, but sodium + Chlorine in your city water would equal NaCl which is SALT, right? Salt makes things more bouyant in water (think, swimmin in the ocean) and I know that when i have salt in my tank my fish are more rolly-polly than usual, could that possibly be it?? Weird.

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