Fish deaths after starting EI ?

Tony Swinney

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Evening all

I've lost a couple of fish today, and am trying to work out why. One of my SAE's died last night, and the other died this morning - each was breathing incredibly quickly prior to dying. I've now just noticed my oto has died too. All the other fish - 13 discus, 30+ rummys, botia striata, cory sterbai, golden nugget plecs, amano and mountain shrimp - all seem perfectly fine.

The only changes to the tank, are that I started dosing dry ferts, using an All In One solution 7 days ago. The week before that I was bringing the CO2 levels up gradually to get the DC to grass green. So for the last couple for weeks, the CO2 has been running, tending to be blue green in the morning and grass green by lunchtime. Water changes are done automatically at 5am, with about 15% of the water pumped out, and RO / HMA prepped water pumped back in by 6am. I've been dosing the 40ml solution at about 7.30am.

So firstly I'm wondering if the solution I made up is incorrect, so if anyone can check the formula below that would be much appreciated.

Otherwise I'm not sure what is going on. The fast breathing might have suggested too much CO2, but all the other fish are quite happy, and non have been anywhere near the surface.

One other thought - I added a 'Koralia 2' pump 3 days ago, running it for daylight hours only.

Any ideas ?

Thanks

Tony

The formula, from Nutricalc, and based on a 300l tank:

KNO3 - 5.22g 3 times a week
K2SO4 - 2.4g 3x/wk
KH2PO4 - 1.48g 3x/wk
MgSO4 - 13.53g 3x/wk
Trace - 0.91g 3x/wk


The pump doses 40ml / min so will be timed on for 1 min per day, which is the minimum the timer will allow. I've made up a 1400ml solution which should last for 35 days, so I'll replace it every month. Mixing for 35 days also means you can just multiply the above amounts by 15: (( #g x 3) / 7) x35 = #g x 15

So added to 1400ml of RO water is:

KNO3: 5.22g x 15 = 79g (rounding up)
K2SO4: 2.4 x 15 = 36g
KH2PO4: 1.48 x 15 = 23g
MgSO4: 13.53 x 15 = 203g
Trace: 0.91 x 15 = 14g
E300 Asorbic Acid: 1.4g
E202 Potassium Sorbate: 0.56g
 

samc

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sound like co2 to me but im not sure about it
i think if fish like otos wouldnt go to the surface if they had lack of oxygen i found that i had lack of oxygen yaers ago with corys and the didnt go to the suurface
 

Tony Swinney

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Hi Sam

Yep, that was my first thought - I just find it weird that non of the other fish have any symptoms, especially the discus who started breathing a bit heavily a couple of weeks back when the DC slipped in to the yellow for a couple of hours by accident. I guess some fish are more susceptible to CO2 than others ?

Tony
 

samc

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have you found that they hang around the outlet alot?
 

JamesC

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Sounds like CO2 to me as well. With optimum CO2 levels you also need good oxygen levels. Have you got some surface agitation and is you water's surface clear of any scum?

Not all fish react the same to high CO2 levels. Some hang round the surface, others gulp air at the surface whilst others appear drunk. Some have increased respiration, others not.

Those dosing amounts won't cause any problems.

James
 

Tony Swinney

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Hi James

Thanks for your reply. Both my spray bars put water in at surface level, so that creates movement on the surface (and theres no scum). I also have 2 airstones which come on after main lights go out, and stay on until midnight to inject O2.

Thanks for the reassurance on the dosing quatities :D

Tony
 

Garuf

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SAE are more prone to co2 deaths because they're river fish and are I believe from waters with much higher oxygen contents than the rest of your fish which are all amazonian fish and as such are less susceptible.
 

samc

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i hope you get it sorted out soon them discus are awsome
 

Tony Swinney

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Is CO2 poisoning degenerative / cumulative (not sure that those are the right terms ) ?

Its just that the CO2 is only on from 7.30am to 4pm, then the lights stay on for another hour, then the O2 pump kicks in for 7 hours. At 5am 50 odd litres of water are pumped out, with fresh (non Co2'd) water being added back in, so the DC is showing a very bluey-green colour in the morning and doesnt get passed grass green by 4pm. If, for example, the last couple of hours of CO2 were just a bit too much for the SAE's would they recover once the CO2 level dropped again / O2 level rose, or would the damage be done, and further damage would be done the following afternoon ?

Tony
 

Tony Swinney

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A little update....

I just renewed the 4dKH solution in the DC, which was 8 days old, and within an hour it has turned to yellow. So it looks like CO2 poisoning was the problem :( :oops: :twisted: I've now got the CO2 off and the O2 on for a couple of hours to bring it back down. I guess it just affected the SAE's ad the Otos more than the others

Is the life of the solution that short ? I have realised that the DC would have been out of the water every morning when the water change happens, so would that have reduced its lifespan ?

Tony
 

GreenNeedle

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I don't think it is the solution, more the Ph reagent. However I can't see a problem with it in 8 days. I would think that somewhere there is a crack or leak that is letting something else into the chamber???

I change my solution every 2-3 weeks

AC
 

JamesC

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It's good to hear you found the problem. I'm lazy and keep my drop checker solution for weeks and weeks before I get round to changing it. Can't say that I really notice any colour difference between the old and new. Probably is good paractice to renew the solution a lot more often than what I do though, possibly every couple of weeks I think I've seen people mention before. Could it be that yours got contaminated somehow?

James
 

Tony Swinney

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Thanks guys - the DC is new from AE and shows no signs of damage, so I'm not sure about it leaking.

I'm now thinking this:

Between 5am and 6am the DC has been out of the water, due to the water change. It would therefore go blue from the air. As the water level would fill back up it would then start to return to the colour dictated by the CO2 in the water which may take a couple of hours I guess, so when I check the DC at 7.30am it wouldnt be at the true reading.

This might explain why I've thought I've struggled to maintain a steady CO2 level.

DC is now lower in the tank.

Tony
 

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