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Guppies keep dying



 
 
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  #1  
Old January 14th 05, 11:07 PM
John D. Goulden
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Default Guppies keep dying

I'm relatively new to aquaria but hopefully not so clueless as to kill my
fish from stupidity or neglect. I had ten guppies / swordtails in a
20-gallon planted, heated tank with water params always close to 0/0/0,
undergravel filter + mini biowheel, 20% water changes weekly, no weird
chemicals added. The water stays crystal clear and the fish seem happy and
healthy (as I would expect in a planted tank with such a small load).
Nevertheless, every now and then I find a dead guppy, and now I'm down to
five (three guppies, two swordtails). Pregnant females in particular seem to
have bad luck in that tank; two that appeared to be ready to pop died
instead. One had given birth twice before with no problems; one of the
current survivors is one of her offspring.

What should I be doing to figure out what is killing my fish?

--
John Goulden
mostly guppies, goldies, swordtails, and bettas


  #2  
Old January 15th 05, 01:28 AM
Billy
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Default



"John D. Goulden" wrote in message
...
| I'm relatively new to aquaria but hopefully not so clueless as to
kill my
| fish from stupidity or neglect. I had ten guppies / swordtails in a
| 20-gallon planted, heated tank with water params always close to
0/0/0,
| undergravel filter + mini biowheel, 20% water changes weekly, no
weird
| chemicals added. The water stays crystal clear and the fish seem
happy and
| healthy (as I would expect in a planted tank with such a small
load).
| Nevertheless, every now and then I find a dead guppy, and now I'm
down to
| five (three guppies, two swordtails). Pregnant females in
particular seem to
| have bad luck in that tank; two that appeared to be ready to pop
died
| instead. One had given birth twice before with no problems; one of
the
| current survivors is one of her offspring.
|
| What should I be doing to figure out what is killing my fish?
|

First, I'd point out that 10 guppies and swordtails in a 20 isn't a
particularily light load, in my opinion. Given that load, I would
seriously question a nitrate reading of zero unless you did water
changes every six hours with RO\DI water. My first step, in your
case, would be to take a couple water samples to the LFS and ask them
to test for the big three. I have a feeling you may have bum test
kits.
I would also examine the tank for dangerous matter, like metal
objects, seashells (under some conditions, these can cause problems)
or other decorations not made special for aquaria.

Got a cat? g

billy


  #3  
Old January 15th 05, 01:53 AM
Elaine T
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Posts: n/a
Default

John D. Goulden wrote:
I'm relatively new to aquaria but hopefully not so clueless as to kill my
fish from stupidity or neglect. I had ten guppies / swordtails in a
20-gallon planted, heated tank with water params always close to 0/0/0,
undergravel filter + mini biowheel, 20% water changes weekly, no weird
chemicals added. The water stays crystal clear and the fish seem happy and
healthy (as I would expect in a planted tank with such a small load).
Nevertheless, every now and then I find a dead guppy, and now I'm down to
five (three guppies, two swordtails). Pregnant females in particular seem to
have bad luck in that tank; two that appeared to be ready to pop died
instead. One had given birth twice before with no problems; one of the
current survivors is one of her offspring.

What should I be doing to figure out what is killing my fish?

I've always had better luck with livebearers with 1 tsp per gallon of
rock or aquarium salt. No table salt since it has iodine and
anti-clumping agents. Believe it or not, plants will tolerate 1 tsp per
gallon just fine; just don't go higher. Add regular water to top off
for evaporation, and add salt to your water change water to keep the
amount constant.

Another thing that helps with livebearers is to keep 2 females for every
male. Livebearer males chase the females and stress them. (Does this
sound like a familiar non-aquatic species?)

--
o __ __ o
o __' Elaine T '__ o o
  #4  
Old January 27th 05, 10:21 PM
winddancir winddancir is offline
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First recorded activity by FishkeepingBanter: Jan 2005
Location: California
Posts: 105
Red face

I've read many places that you can keep about 25-30 guppies in a 20 gal, so I wouldn't think that would have been much of a problem.
Nitrates and amonia levels are serious things to keep track of. My fish almost went belly up once because of that. Had to do a 50% change and add ACE. It was a close call.
 




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