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  • some hurdles at the moment- any Ideas?

    Hi all, i have run into a bit of an issue with my 75 gl Mbuna tank. Or i should say had, or wondering whether i still have or what the heck is going on. deep breath....
    OK, last night i noticed a dead Mbuna in the tank and pulled him out. this was my first death of the group of 29 i got about 16 days ago. all has been well with them til last night. checked parameters and no ammonia or nitrites and nitrates was about 5-10. so, no issues there. unfortunately i do understand that deaths will happen with Mbunas but at this age i find it tougher to deal with.
    So, i get up this morning and notice another death. this one puts me into an alert stage and i immediately do a 75% water change with Dechlor. then off i go to a Team Bowling tourney ( which we won by the way) my return about 4 hours later finds a good size group hanging around near the very top of the water. i mean very top, those that keep Mbuna know this is not right. which tells me something is still wrong within the tank.
    Soi step back and begin to look over the tank ( parameters are still fine, but at this point who really knows as because i am using Safe it renders an ammonia reading useless for a while). the 2217 eheim is running and working well, the temp of the tank is 80-82 and the powerhead is working well, BUT i notice it is not breaking the water surface very much.
    At this point, i grab 2 sponge filters (#4 size) that i have sitting in another tank ( my adult Mbunas) and immediately put them in the 75 gl ( one on each side). the next thing that happens is pleasing to my eyes. in a matter of 5 minutes the group of fish that were at the top are no longer there. all have returned toward the bottom with the rocks. this was about 3 hours ago and just now i went and checked and they seem to be back to normal, no issues and ate very well for dinner.
    I am interested to hear everyones thoughts on what happen here. Did i give them the oxygen they was lacking by having 2 sponges added and breaking the surface? or was it the extra beneficial bacteria they received from the 2 sponges? or maybe a little of both? i am not overstating the 5 minutes and back to normal thing. it was literally 5 minutes ( if that) and the issue seem to have vanished. this leads me to believe that they were lacking air. bad enough to kill 2 of them?? i guess so.
    Or, does someone think it was something comepletely different that i haven't mentioned. just looking to learn at this point.
    for the interum, the sponges will remain, but should i replace with something else?
    all thoughts on this will be appreciated.
    Tom
    -Tom

  • #2
    I would say it was probably an oxygen issue. My reason for saying this is because it doesn't take long at all for oxygen to get into the water, while it does take some time for bacteria to break down ammonia. More than 5 minutes anyway.

    I'm glad everything is back to normal. Maybe adjusting the power head toward the surface a little more with help prevent future issues.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by dlondon95 View Post
      I would say it was probably an oxygen issue. My reason for saying this is because it doesn't take long at all for oxygen to get into the water, while it does take some time for bacteria to break down ammonia. More than 5 minutes anyway.

      I'm glad everything is back to normal. Maybe adjusting the power head toward the surface a little more with help prevent future issues.
      yeah Thanks me too, thats what i was thinking as well, i didn't think the BB could make an immediate impact. i am thinknig of a second, stronger powerhead on the other side of the tank. the current powerhead was directed towards the top but, obviously not enough. the question now is when will i have enough courage to take the Sponges back out. and also, i suppose i could just replace with an airwand or something like that.
      -Tom

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      • #4
        I agree, my opinion would definitely be oxygenation issue. I wonder why it chose now, maybe the water level was a little higher than normal so not as much agitation from the powerhead?

        I would just leave one of sponges in, instant insurance against this. I have one in each of my larger tanks, I also like them because I leave them running during wc, planting or any time I have the filter off for awhile. Then I don't feel in a rush at all.
        __________________________________________________ _____
        Try not to be a man of success but a man of value. -Albert Einstein

        Wise men speak because they have something to say, fools because they have to say something. -Plato

        Say what you mean and do what you say. -Alot of people
        110G, 65G, 10, 300G Pond

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        • #5
          And I think adding an airstone or wand can't hurt any either.
          __________________________________________________ __________
          Lori

          30G, 5G

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Matt B View Post
            I agree, my opinion would definitely be oxygenation issue. I wonder why it chose now, maybe the water level was a little higher than normal so not as much agitation from the powerhead?

            I would just leave one of sponges in, instant insurance against this. I have one in each of my larger tanks, I also like them because I leave them running during wc, planting or any time I have the filter off for awhile. Then I don't feel in a rush at all.
            my thoughts as well, no real changes and for this to all the sudden come up. i had these 2 sponges then another 2 in another tank and 1 more in yet another and nothing else but the normal filtration for the 75. you would have thought with all the extra sponges i have running i would have had one in the 75 gl.
            Originally posted by oscarsbud View Post
            And I think adding an airstone or wand can't hurt any either.
            yeah, i agree, i think i will go to one sponge in and replace the other with a wand on the back wall. the 2 deaths are really bothering me. i know i am better than this. kinda disappointed with myself at this point. Airstones or wands or something, thats what we recommend all the time.
            -Tom

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            • #7
              Oh yeah - off topic but congrats on winning the tournament .
              __________________________________________________ __________
              Lori

              30G, 5G

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              • #8
                Originally posted by oscarsbud View Post
                Oh yeah - off topic but congrats on winning the tournament .
                Thanks, it was a good day with good friends and then to win was the bonus.
                -Tom

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                • #9
                  Sponges make great backups and help deal with any immediate nitrogen issues.

                  While I agree that the problem most likely was caused by a lack of oxygen, I can see why you are questioning what had changed. I have never kept mbuna, but do understand that the tank is usually overstocked. As these fish grow they will put more and more strain on the filtration systems. Maybe, and this is a big maybe, the fish have grown to the point that the filtration was starting to fall short.

                  I am sorry you lost a couple of fish in your education today. But hopefully keeping at least one sponge filter in the tank will give you the extra you need.
                  - Dena

                  All our dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them.
                  Walt Disney

                  The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing.
                  Socrates

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by catsma_97504 View Post
                    Sponges make great backups and help deal with any immediate nitrogen issues.

                    While I agree that the problem most likely was caused by a lack of oxygen, I can see why you are questioning what had changed. I have never kept mbuna, but do understand that the tank is usually overstocked. As these fish grow they will put more and more strain on the filtration systems. Maybe, and this is a big maybe, the fish have grown to the point that the filtration was starting to fall short.

                    I am sorry you lost a couple of fish in your education today. But hopefully keeping at least one sponge filter in the tank will give you the extra you need.
                    Hard lessons at times are needed to keep our focus. yes, that was definitely my other concern. I too, think it is a big maybe, but they have put on some growth in 16 days, so certainly a possibility.
                    -Tom

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                    • #11
                      So sorry to hear you lost some fish. Except for the tank with injected CO2, I like to keep an airstone or sponge filter running in all my tanks, so that I never have to worry about oxygenation. I think buying a few extra for peace of mind couldn't hurt.

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                      • #12
                        Wow well it does seem like an oxygen issue... I've always used bubble bars so I've never really dealt with an oxygen issue... Congrats on winning the bowling tourney
                        It does not matter if you are right or wrong...
                        As long as you learn and Keep Moving Forward!

                        ~Anthony

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