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Everything posted by Caryl

  1. You are most likely correct in thinking it is just him and not water conditions or all the fish would be showing problems. This is not an unusual situation for him to be in and he has possibly been permanently damaged too. Easiest way to separate him is to float him in the tank in a plastic container eg ice cream container. I sometimes pegged mine to the side so it didn't float around and get stuck under the water return in the days I used HOB (hang on the back) filters. Only give him enough water at first to stay upright. This allows him to rest easily on the bottom of the container. You will need to do partial water changes daily in the container. I used to use a turkey baster to do this as I had one on hand and it was less stressful to the fish. Easier to lift the container out, tip half the water out (without losing the fish down the drain) and top it up with tank water. A 2L ice cream container is better than a clear one as he can't see out and she can't see in. Do note though - if you use a white container, the fish will turn very pale as they try to match their surroundings. A dark blue, or black, one would be better. Feed him tiny amounts and fingers crossed he improves. In the meantime, try and add more plants, live ones preferably, so he has plenty of places to hide. Out of sight, out of mind, works with fish. Water sprite or Indian fern (Ceratopteris) is good for this. Java fern (Microsorium pteropus) is very hardy and a good beginner's plant. It attaches itself to rocks or driftwood. Tie a few of the roots to a rock, or jam them into a split in the driftwood, and it will grow from there. No need to plant the roots into gravel. Both these plants reproduce by forming baby plants along the parent plant so you just pick them off and plant them. Sprite is also interesting as it will grow above the water surface and, when it does, its leaves look totally different! Fish can damage themselves on fake plants, depending on whether they are plastic or silk stuff and live plants are better for both fish and aquarium nutrient balance. Please let me know how you get on!
  2. Hi there and sorry you are having trouble and didn't get good advice from your pet shop. Have you read about cycling an aquarium? This is very important. It is the biological process that makes the water safe for fish. The cycling would have started when you added the fish but when you scrubbed everything and replaced the gravel, it upset the cycle. 1. Do not add any more fish. The mollies will grow, or reproduce and your tank is not big enough for many more as mollies are a medium sized fish. 2. Get some live plants in there as this will help the nutrient balance correcting. It will also give the male somewhere to hide. 3. Look up all about cycling an aquarium. I always did it this way...set up the tank and make sure the temp has stabilised. For a 2ft (old measurements here from an old lady) tank I would add 4 hardy neon sized fish. After 1 month, if all was well, I would add another 4 of the same and repeat this process until stocking level had been reached. This naturally starts the process without adding ammonia or other chemicals to artificially start the cycle. For a 3ft tank I would start with 6 neon sized fish and so on. 4. A good ratio for mollies is 1 male for 2 or 3 females. A group of all males will be aggressive. 5 Your fella will be stressed and could recover on his own, without the addition of chemicals or tonics, if the cause of his stress is fixed - good water conditions and places to hide. 6. Do daily water changes of about 10 - 20% but don't clean anything in the tank, including the gravel, for at least 1 month to help correct the cycle. Good luck and feel free to ask more questions 🙂
  3. It might help if you give your location.
  4. Anyone want some Java moss? It posts well in a ziplog bag within an envelope so you would get however much I could fit in a business envelope. It squishes well so you can get a good handful. $5.00
  5. This is a common problem with stem plants like this and ambulia is good at it. Most likely lack of light as the bushy tops cut off the light to the bottom half. Try thinning it out a bit, if it is too thick.
  6. Here's hoping you have more luck with Raindrop.
  7. Fish are opportunist feeders so would eat anything that came their way. NZ brown trout feed on all sorts of arthropods like koura (native crayfish) as well as small fish, frogs and even mice if the opportunity arises.
  8. If you have successfully kept your current fish alive and healthy for 12 months and you haven't got an algae outbreak, and your water test results are excellent, then you are ready to try a more difficult species. Difficult doesn't always mean hard though as it may mean something like the fish has specific requirements not able to be given in a community aquarium.
  9. When I had Java fern the leaves were often edged in black.
  10. Possibly the start of black beard algae (BBA) and common on slow growing plants like Java fern. Very difficult to get rid of. It may be caused by too much light, and/or water pollutants. It could have already been on the plant when it was bought. Bear in mind, Java ferns also reproduce by growing tiny plantlets off the edges of the wide leaves. Sometimes this makes the edges look weird. Make sure you have plenty of water movement and excellent water conditions. The internet has plenty of detailed info on BBA.
  11. If they are pellets designed specifically for Bettas - yes. You can also feed frozen blood worms etc but be very careful handling the blood worms as many (me included) get an allergic reaction to them. Wear gloves or use utensils so you don't actually touch them.
  12. A Betta only lives 2 - 3 years so if you choose the biggest in the display, it is also possibly the oldest and may already be 12 months or more old. How do you know it was over-feeding that killed the last one? Bettas need a diet high in protein so live food is good or specially formulated fish food for bettas. Here is a really good article about how much to feed your betta that should help you... https://www.myaquariumclub.com/skinny-bettas-underfeeding-might-be-worse-than-overfeeding-19292.html
  13. Easily. When you consider most of the fish is only fins there is not much body. 3 bristlenoses could easily eat all the evidence overnight. They are nocturnal so do their food foraging at night. Sorry you lost the fish but, as said in the other post, have you been testing your aquarium water?
  14. Sorry to hear that but without more detail, it is not easy to offer suggestions. One of the first things you should always do is test the water for ammonia, nitrites and nitrates, along with pH. Betta are very sensitive to water conditions and need top quality water.
  15. Unless a male Betta has something to compete against (another male or to impress a female) they tend to hang about like this. Try putting a mirror in there and see if you get a reaction.
  16. Do you have a test kit? Frankly, if there was anything wrong with the water quality, the betta would get sick first 😉
  17. Stop looking so hard at the fish! She looks fine and their fins look different depending on how much they have flared them. They can get a bit roughed up by the males or from scraping them as they zip into their hidey holes. Unless she develops red streaks down her fins she is likely fine. The landscaping of your tank looks fine and there isn't anything particularly sharp that could damage the fishes too mush. More important is to check the water parameters - nitrates, nitrites, ammonia and pH. Do you have any other fish in the tank apart from the 2 bristlenoses and the Betta?
  18. Hard to tell from the photos but I suspect nothing is wrong with him. Their natural colouring is brown and, depending on genetics, it may be a result of him reverting, or partially so, to his natural colour - like goldfish change colour as they age. It may stay like that or the dark colour may spread. If there is no redness or extra raggedness to the fin I would say he's fine. Their pectorals can get a bit tatty anyway as they dart in and out of tight places. I am interested in the wide red patch on top. One of mine has that too and I figured it was a result of him ramming himself into a tight hole and scaping the top of his body but perhaps it is normal. It comes and goes on mine and doesn't seem to affect him health-wise anyway.
  19. Are there any fish clubs in your area? Members may be able to help you re-home your fish.
  20. It is a hard way to learn but you will have learned a lot and are unlikely to repeat the mistake again. I think many of us have gone through mysterious deaths while we try frantically to figure out the problem and wonder why we took up fish keeping! Onwards and upwards and good luck for the future!
  21. Personally I think it would be over-stock but I prefer lightly stocked aquariums to start with. You have a larger margin for error if something goes wrong and it is a lot easier to keep the water parameters at their best. I was looking up blue phantoms, as I know nothing about them, but the article I read says they prefer a fast flowing water oxygen-rich environment to do well and fast flow does not suit discus. Phantoms also need a mature aquarium so couldn't be added straight away anyway. They also prefer a lower temperature than discus, which are better at higher temps.
  22. Good to know you figured out the source of the problem.
  23. As time goes by and the tank continues to cycle, you may be fine as it balances. The nitrites and nitrates are more important than the pH. Good luck with your fish keeping and don't hesitate to ask questions 🙂
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