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Featured unexplained fish losses

Discussion in 'Help and Advice' started by mikeandrach, May 26, 2013.

  1. mikeandrach

    mikeandrach Registered

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    i've lost a few fish recently but cant work out why!

    my tank is a 3x2x2 with live rock that is over a year old and nothing has been touched movement wise in over 6 months. i have 4 powerheads creating good surface movement and a skimmer that is massively overreated for the tank a deltec sc1455.

    i know my tank is densely stocked before anyone says anything. my phosphates are at 0.25, my nitrates are high at approx 50 (both salifert), 0 nitrites and 0 ammonia. phosophate and nitrate are getting lower. i have a lotof hermits and snails, 3 cleaner shrimp, 2 blood shrimp, a pistol shrimp paired with a watchman goby. i have 2 big fihs, a blue throat trigger and a sailfin, both are medium sized but will be moved on if/when necessary. i have/had 5 anthias, can now only see 2, and found 1 dead this morning so 2 unaccounted for. i have 2 pygmy angels, breeding pair and no way i want to lose these, 2 yellow gobys, again have been seen spawning, a citron goby, an algae blenny, a yellow wrasse, a red wrasse i cant rememebr the species of and 6 green chromis. last addition was a fuzzy dwarf lionfish but it is tiny, and i mean tiny. i have lost 2 common clowns, both under 1cm long, in addition to the 1 or possibly 3 anthias (my rockscape has hundreds of hding holes so they could be hiding but seems unlikely) and a v small regal tang died within a week of being added.

    there are no aerosols etc in the room and no signs of disease on any of the fish. all fish eat flake and frozen. what could be causing these deaths?

    coral wise i have a small frag of soemthign ic ant remmeber which is groiwng ok, a toadstool, a stunning lobophyllia which is thriving depsite the params, approx 12" across with v long tentacles and a long tentacled anemone. the nem has never settled in one place and is wandering the tank a lot but seems healthy otherwise.

    grateful for any help
     
  2. StarfishEnterprise

    StarfishEnterprise Registered

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    What type of Nem do you have?

    What size do you call a "tiny" dwarf lionfish?

    loosing clowns under 1cm long, heck that's small easy lionfish diner.

    Nothing wrong with params to suggest there at fault for the death of the fish. But if you could get an LFS or local reefer or spare test kit to double check your tests that will help to determine if the tests kits are reading right.

    Pistol shrimp are known to prey on fish over night a small sleeping fish would be an easy target?
     
  3. mikeandrach

    mikeandrach Registered

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    yea the clowns could have fallen victim i guess but dont think its likely, the fuzzy dwarf has a mouth about 5mm across when open i would guess, its the smalls i have ever seen and is happily eating flake already. the anthia i saw dead was a good 3" long he was the male, the 2 missing are approx 2" long all very fat so way beyond the reach of the fuzzy dwarf. i will get the water double checked but have just retested phosphate as i swapped my rowaphos for phos ban yesterday and phosphate has already dropped slightly it was definitely a lighter shade of blue so i think the test kits are probably accurate. i have heard the pistol click so its possible but its not a big one so would be doing well to take anything at all. also notcied a few empty crab/snail shells, maybe i have a predator? the rock came from a friends tank before mine and he never had any losses so i guess thats less likely. he had it about 18 monthsm ive had it about 7-8 months with no issue until now
     
  4. diver 807

    diver 807 Registered

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    you haven't posted you sg or ph.te lion fish will take small fish,and I think you are were over stocked
     
  5. StarfishEnterprise

    StarfishEnterprise Registered

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    Unless the predator was there all along but took several months to grow?

    If it was a predator though i would not expect to find a body and if you did you would expect to see damage to the body/bite marks.
     
  6. mikeandrach

    mikeandrach Registered

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    there was damage to the fins but i also saw 2 hermits on it so i think this definitely is down to them. will try and get a photo of the fuzzy dwarf. yes im heavily stocke dbut the tank has been totally peaceful, water quality has suffered yes but not to a dangerous level and is getting better. none of my fish have ever scrapped/battled or had any territory issues.
     
  7. mikeandrach

    mikeandrach Registered

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    sorry just re-read i dont have a ph test kit basic error i guess but will check salinity asap
     
  8. StarfishEnterprise

    StarfishEnterprise Registered

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    personally i dont think your over stocked iv seen and heard of a lot more fish in a tank and it/them do perfectly well. Most of your fish are small as you say and you are prepared to move the larger species on which shows you understand the the well being of the fish.
     
  9. mikeandrach

    mikeandrach Registered

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    yea the fish always come first and would be moved on as/when necessary. i have 2 fish traps always available so i can catch them easily when needed. desperately dont want to lose the pygmy angels as they are a true breeding pair, never seen them before and hope they remain healthy etc
     
  10. StarfishEnterprise

    StarfishEnterprise Registered

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    Ph would not be an issue, i dont know anyone who tests Ph.
    Sg again if that was responsible pretty much everything would be dead and your hermits etc would be effected first. Worth posting the result up though.
     
  11. diver 807

    diver 807 Registered

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    hermit crabs will not take live fish,they prey on the dead,and I think you should do a thorough check on your params and post them so we can see what's what
     
  12. mikeandrach

    mikeandrach Registered

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    put my params in 1st post only tested yesterday. wil retest them all today just incase
     
  13. mikeandrach

    mikeandrach Registered

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    salinity 1.024, recalibrated refractometer and still 1.024 using red sea coral pro salt. the nem (long tentacled nem is only name i have known it by) is currently shrivelled up and looks like its doing a poo for want of a better phrase. i gguessed it wasnt settling due to the phosphates so am working to lower the phosphates which is happening gradually
     
  14. diver 807

    diver 807 Registered

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    you should raise it to 1.026 gradually and get the po4 to 0.what lighting have you got and how long do you run them
     
  15. pieater

    pieater Registered

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    What? 23 fish in a 3x2x2?!?!?!

    So have I, but only in tins.
     
  16. mikeandrach

    mikeandrach Registered

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    twin t5 single metal halide, all bulbs under 6 months old, lighting wouldnt affect fish though surely? most lfs in this area adivse 1.024 for salinity?
     
  17. diver 807

    diver 807 Registered

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    the fish won't suffer but the anemone will
     
  18. diver 807

    diver 807 Registered

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    when you say twin t5 metal halide do you mean twin t5s and metal halide
     
  19. StarfishEnterprise

    StarfishEnterprise Registered

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    Its a twin T5 and a single metal halide

    Anemone will be fine, they can be kept under T8's

    No lighting is fine, bulbs will be due a change around now upto the 8 months marl

    23 fish - did you see the list of dead, theres not 23 left and i doubt tiny chromis and anthias really count as huge bioload!

    Why? 1.024 is with in acceptable range. 1.021-1.025 being average aquarium and 1.026/1.027 for full reef.

    Mike was refering to the fin damage on the dead fish.
     
  20. StarfishEnterprise

    StarfishEnterprise Registered

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