All times are UTC + 8 hours




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 9 posts ] 
Author Message
PostPosted: Oct 19th, '13, 21:03 
Offline

Joined: Oct 19th, '13, 20:37
Posts: 5
Gender: Male
Are you human?: YES
Location: United States
The problem I'm having is that about 8 of my guppies (I have 12) have started spending a lot of time just floating at the top or sitting on the bottom.

The guppies look to be in great health. Their gills are a little pink but they've been that way since I got them, and they've never exhibited signs of ammonia poisoning or oxygen deprivation or anything.

They have no discoloration on their bodies, they have no spots, no visible swelling, streaking, or bleeding of any kind. This has been happening for about 3 days, but none of them have gotten any worse, no fish have died, and no symptoms have changed.

Here you can see a few of the females lying on the gravel together: Image

Note: I've considered the possibility of them being pregnant and this causing them to be tired / want to conserve energy, etc. However one of my males has been doing it too.

The only thing that's changed recently is that I started letting my tap water sit in a container filled with peat moss for 24 hours before conditioning it and then putting it into the system. I started doing this in an attempt to gradually change pH as well as reduce hardness. This is only 10 gallons of water out of 70, so the pH swings (if any) were very mild upon addition of the new water. There were, however, a lot of suspended solids from the peat moss. This dust settled out within 6 hours.

Another possibility I've considered is phosphate buildup. I don't have a way to test phosphate, but the high pH of my water has led to phosphate being largely unavailable. The water pH used to be 8.5, and I've since gotten it down to 8.0, where the plants have started growing much more quickly and no longer look deficient. However, perhaps if phosphate is still being used too slowly, it's been building up in my system?

Water Parameters:
  • pH: 8.0
  • Temperature: 75F
  • Ammonia: 0ppm
  • Nitrite: 0ppm
  • Nitrate: 0ppm
  • TDS: 500ppm (hard water)
  • System Volume: 70 gallons

  • Grow Bed: 20 gallon, 10 inch deep, "grow stones" as substrate, constant flood

Picture: Image

As you can see, I have a very small aquaponics system, and it's far from ideal (combination of planted tank and aquaponics isn't exactly efficient, and the hard water and pH are stunting the plants).

That being said, my plants grow quickly anyway, and keep my nitrate level undetectable with an API test kit.


If anyone has any ideas how what else could be wrong with my water, I'd be extremely grateful. For now, I've been changing 25 gallons of water per day.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
    Advertisement
 
PostPosted: Oct 20th, '13, 00:14 
Offline
Moderator
Moderator
User avatar

Joined: Nov 6th, '11, 10:04
Posts: 5100
Gender: Male
Are you human?: Humans err, I Arrr!
Location: Chula Vista, CA, USA
I would be mostly concerned with the gravel in the fish tank. It could lead to anaerobic conditions. To be candid, I do not know enough about guppies to know if that behavior is in fact strange.

_________________
What answers I can question for you?

My Patio System

My Indoor System

No single drop of rain believes it is responsible for the flood.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Oct 20th, '13, 01:05 
Offline

Joined: Oct 19th, '13, 20:37
Posts: 5
Gender: Male
Are you human?: YES
Location: United States
The vast majority of non-aquaponics fish tanks have gravel in the bottom. I vacuum it once a month or so but what exactly would be the problem with a small anaerobic layer in the gravel? It doesn't hurt in peoples' aquariums.

Edit: I don't mean for this to come across as aggressive. I am legitimately asking what the negative effects of this are, because I have not been able to find any conclusive information online.

A lot of people intentionally utilize anaerobic layers in their substrate to reduce nitrate if they aren't doing aquaponics. I was always curious about this because I thought that there were some negative byproducts in that process. However, every aquarium-keeper I know has a lot of gravel on the bottom of their tank, and when they "vacuum" it they only apply suction to the top of the gravel, so as to avoid disturbing the gravel all that much. Clearly there will be an anaerobic layer in their tanks then.

Do you have any information on the byproducts of anaerobic denitrification ?


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Oct 20th, '13, 02:56 
Offline
Moderator
Moderator
User avatar

Joined: Aug 26th, '10, 07:17
Posts: 8865
Gender: Male
Are you human?: YES
Location: Oregon, USA
bumbleshrimp wrote:
The only thing that's changed recently is that I started letting my tap water sit in a container filled with peat moss for 24 hours before conditioning it and then putting it into the system.


I found this which might be helpful.

http://www.ehow.com/how_7855301_filter-aquarium-water-sphagnum-moss.html

Based on the article, I'd rinse the moss first to remove as much of the dust as possible. The dust is an irritant for lungs and I suspect it may do the same for the gills of the fish. My guess is the fish will come around in a couple of days to a week. But stop additional dust from entering the system when you do the water treatments.

It's also possible that the moss contains a toxin in which case you might need to get a different batch or stop treatment altogether.

Hope this helps


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Oct 20th, '13, 05:00 
Offline

Joined: Oct 19th, '13, 20:37
Posts: 5
Gender: Male
Are you human?: YES
Location: United States
Scotty,

That's very helpful. For some reason I didn't even consider the possibility that the dust from the peat moss was going to bother the fish. When it first got really dusty in the tank I thought about it, and started trying to research it, but I couldn't find anything specific about it. Then the (visible) dust settled within 6 hours and the fish were acting normal, so I brushed it off as safe.

It makes sense though that it could be irritating, I feel bad about thinking otherwise now.

This is the peat moss I use:

http://www.homedepot.com/p/Premier-3-cu-ft-Peat-Moss-70976040/100626048#.UmLxnvnbPX8

It's supposedly aquarium safe, but it was very, very dusty at first. I think what I should probably do is empty my peat moss tub into another tub and let it settle for 24 hours, and then siphon that off to avoid bringing any dust with it.

Upon noticing their strange behavior, I immediately stopped using the peat moss just to be safe, so that's good. Today they've been perking up a little bit more - but I also slowed down the water flow in the tank to let them have a bit more of a restful swimming experience. I'm not sure which one, if either, is helping them, but from this point forward I'm going to make sure I rinse all dust out of anything I use before I put it in the tank. This seems like it should've been common sense.. I think I just got the notion in my head that since they come from rivers and lakes which can be muddy and dirty that they could handle some dust. I didn't think it all the way through.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Oct 20th, '13, 14:28 
Offline
Moderator
Moderator
User avatar

Joined: Aug 26th, '10, 07:17
Posts: 8865
Gender: Male
Are you human?: YES
Location: Oregon, USA
It's always a good idea to look at what's changed when you are troubleshooting. You were part way there by mentioning it. Like you I've seen fish swimming around in water you couldn't see an inch into and they wind up alright. Fish can do all right with lots of turbidity but some things are irritants or contain toxins and cause problems because of it. I'm certainly not an expert on this aspect of fish keeping so we'll have to wait and see what happens. Hopefully we've hit on the problem and things will start getting back to normal :thumbright:


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Oct 20th, '13, 23:13 
Offline

Joined: Oct 19th, '13, 20:37
Posts: 5
Gender: Male
Are you human?: YES
Location: United States
They're all behaving normally more and more often with each passing hour. I suspect you may have been right. They all seem healthy and happy again. Sorry little guys :( .

Now I just have to figure out how to get my pH to settle at 7.5 or below.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Oct 21st, '13, 01:36 
Offline
Moderator
Moderator
User avatar

Joined: Nov 6th, '11, 10:04
Posts: 5100
Gender: Male
Are you human?: Humans err, I Arrr!
Location: Chula Vista, CA, USA
The answer is simple. Treat your top up water with hydrochloric acid. The stuff it breaks down into is actually good for your fish.

_________________
What answers I can question for you?

My Patio System

My Indoor System

No single drop of rain believes it is responsible for the flood.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Oct 21st, '13, 02:42 
Offline

Joined: Oct 19th, '13, 20:37
Posts: 5
Gender: Male
Are you human?: YES
Location: United States
Thanks, I'll start doing that and see how it goes. I have a bottle of hydrochloric acid sitting around for my hydroponics so it will be easy to get started.

Thanks again!


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 9 posts ] 

All times are UTC + 8 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 8 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  

Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group
Portal by phpBB3 Portal © phpBB Türkiye
[ Time : 0.062s | 18 Queries | GZIP : Off ]