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The Case Of The Unschooled White Cloud Minnow
April 24, 2012
3:04 pm
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Liam Gallagher
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April 24, 2012
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Hey fish-men and fish-women,

this is my first post, sorry if I offend any of your well cultured fish-people rules, i lurked the forums a bit before posting so I've at least made an effort, seems like a pretty normal BBS.

Anyhow, I have a white cloud minnow that is acting strange and was wondering if anyone would be able to give some insights, his story is as such.

I got this minnow with 9 others from a good fish store in my area whose water parameters are very similar to mine. I brought them home and used the breeder box method of getting them used to thier new tank. They were the first residents so I had nothing to fear about ich or what not in the tanks. This process lasted about a half hour, when it seemed like being in the box was doing them more harm than good. Since then all of them have been doing well and eating well and so forth. Except for this one fish who has never schooled with the other fish. That was fine, but now he is eating less, and spends more of his time being still at the top of the tank. I'm worried he is sick, and would like to help him.

Tank setup and water stuff

*The tank is a 29 gallon tank with arounf 25 gallons worth of sump tank. I'm using this tank and these wonderful and hardy fish to teach my self a bit about sump tanks.
*The filtration is well beyond what these guys could ever put out, and so my ammonia and nitrite levels are at zero. I get a nitrate reading every now and then but I'm not worried about that. I test with API liquid and glass vials.
*Aeration I think is pretty good. I have a pump designed for a 40 gallon tank in the sump supplying direct oxygen to the bio balls and then right in the tank there is a sump for a 5 gallon tank to cause water distrubence. The out tank from the sump creates a fair ammount of water turbulance, and the surface area of the sump is very large and should allow for a great deal of gas exchange. Some times at night, right after the lights go out the fish do collect at the surface (I guess because the plants are getting greedy with the O2) but soon after what I assume is a sudden drop things even out and the fish go back to their business.
*The temp is just a hair above 70. I know this is on the warm side for them, but that's how warm it is in the house so that's how warm they get to be.
*I feed them twice a day with a high quality flake food that has whole salmon, halibut, black cod, herring, shrimp and krill as the top ingredients. about once a week I'll keep in some greens, and about twice a week I'll toss in two or three blanched peas. On a rare occasion they get blood worms or brine shrimp. They spend a lot of time picking at the aelge in the tank, which I make a point of only removing from the front pannel of glass.
*The tank is well planted, but not so densely as to require CO2.
*The minnows live with a new colony of cherry shrimp (6 of them), 1 male guppy and a few snails.
*The lighting is sufficent, aelge grows, but where doesn't it?
*There have been no signs of illness in any of the fish. No velvet, no swim bladder problems, no wounds, no ich. So forth.

There is one event that is perhaps important though. There used to be two male guppies, but now just one. The other one died yesterday. The two of them over the past 2 weeks have been slowing down and spending a lot of their hours (when not eating) together at the bottom and back of the tank where they are well hidden. They weren't clamping thier gills or unresponsive, and when back there, if food was added to the tank they would be out and about right away. This took place after a small ammonia spike, but given that the ammonia levels were never high enough to kill any of the dhrimp that were in the tank I'm inclined to think that they couldn't have been that hard hit.

So that's I think a pretty exhaustive account of their tank life.

Any ideas about what's bothering this little guy or his guppy friend?

any help would be super great.

Thanks

April 27, 2012
2:09 pm
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oaken
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September 15, 2008
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Hm. I think it's really hard to say, unfortunately. The good thing is that as long as the shrimp and other fish are doing fine there should be nothing wrong with your water or setup as such. If anything I think the shrimp would die/get sick long before your fish does if there was anything fundamentally wrong with your tank.

I suppose if you wanted to you could seperate the fish and try to medicate it. But I think it could be quite problematic to try to work out what kind of medication you should use.

April 27, 2012
3:28 pm
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Liam Gallagher
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Forum Posts: 2
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April 24, 2012
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QUOTE (oaken @ Apr 27 2012, 09:52 AM) < {POST_SNAPBACK}>
Hm. I think it's really hard to say, unfortunately. The good thing is that as long as the shrimp and other fish are doing fine there should be nothing wrong with your water or setup as such. If anything I think the shrimp would die/get sick long before your fish does if there was anything fundamentally wrong with your tank.

I suppose if you wanted to you could seperate the fish and try to medicate it. But I think it could be quite problematic to try to work out what kind of medication you should use.

I do have an update, and it might prove insightful.

I decided to seperate the remaining guppy from the tank, and was able to move him to water at arounf 75 degrees. Given that the shrimp and the white cloud minnows are all subtropical* I was able to lower the water temperature over the course of a few days to around 69 degrees, and on the whole everyone in the tank seems to be expressing more energetic and natural behaviours. Also the guppy seems to be recovering. Perhaps the increase in water temps has boosted the efforts of his immune system? I'm not a vet. or a biologist so I can't say for sure.

*I know claiming that cherry shrimp are subtropical might be a point of contention with some people, but their native habitat (before being bred selectivly for their colour that is) is Tiwanese mountain streams through to estuaries, so by the reading that I've done they should be able to run the gamut from warm and slightly hard with some salt content to cold and fresh and clean. Tell me if you know anything different that will kill my shrimp friends, but despite that a lot of websites say 75-80 Fº they should be perfectly comfortable at 70 Fº.

April 27, 2012
7:03 pm
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Plaamoo
Bellingham, Washington U.S.A.
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March 15, 2009
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Any idea what caused the ammonia spike?
As far as using cherry shrimp as an indicator, I wouldn't. I have a colony that has survived conditions that would likely cause serious problems for most fish. It's a ten gallon, bare bottom tank full of java moss that I just let them go crazy in. Probably 150-200 at times. I sell them as quickly as I can but can't keep up. Twice I've had events that caused the tank to crash. A shrimp or 2 die for whatever reason and set off a chain reaction, high ammonia! Still only lose a few before I catch it and do massive water changes.

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