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We ask that, before submitting a query, you refer to Neale Monk's: Before You Write; A Checklist of Common Problems with Freshwater Aquaria, Bettas, Goldfish, and Freshwater Turtles (Terrapins), Tips on Asking Questions, Ask the WWM Crew a Question, FAQs on FAQs. EDFP, TBPFWFAQs, Last Few Days Accrued FAQs, Subscribe to the Daily Pics

Astronotus ocellatus (Agassiz 1831), the Oscar. To seventeen inches (45.7 cm). South America: Rio Amazonas basin in Peru, Colombia, Brazil, Northern Paraguay and French Guiana. Freshwater: pH range: 6.0 - 8.0; dH range: 5.0 - 19.0, temp. 22 - 25°C. Wild type at  the Shedd Aq. 2015 
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Freshwater FAQs

Updated 3/25/2017
Other Specialized Daily FAQs Blogs: General, Planted Tanks, Ponds, Brackish, Last Few Days Accrued FAQs,
Daily Q&A replies/input from the WWM crew: Darrel Barton,
Neale Monks, Marco Lichtenberger, Bob Fenner, are posted here. Moved about, re-organized daily Current Crew Bios., Not so current Crew Bios
____________________________________________________________

New Print and eBook on Amazon

Betta Success
Doing what it takes to keep Bettas healthy long-term

by Robert (Bob) Fenner

Note: RMF is out diving 3/25-4/2; hence the dailies postings may be erratic.

Re: Indian Flapshell turtle shell      3/25/17
HI!
<HIya, Darrel here>
his wound seems to have gotten worse his scab fell off today leaving the open wound worse, is there anything I can do to make it heal at all?
Thank you in advance!
<Wounds of this type are very difficult to heal. They take time and patience. First thing of course, is that he needs to be dry-docked ... which is to say that he needs to be kept in a warm dry place while his skin heals. As long as he/she doesn't move around too much to the point where he wears the scab off, he can be left to roam inside whatever small container you use. If he's very active, frantically trying to get out and won't settle down after a day or so, then you will have to bandage the wound so he can't damage it as he moves. Another alternative is to
confine him to a small container ... so small that he literally can't move ... for 5 to 7 days until the wound starts to heal.>
<Warm & dry. Betadine (Iodine of some variety) every day. Perhaps a good wash with Hydrogen Peroxide first and again once a week. Read here:
http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/treating%20RES%20Dis%20DarrelB.htm>

Would you settle an argument and maybe save a Black Ghost Knifefish's Life; filtr.      3/25/17
<Sure>
I have a friend who has a 72 bow front. It is completely empty and he wants to get a BGK to be the solitary fish in the tank. His set up is perfect (according to what I've read on these fish, I've never owned one) except for one thing - filtration. I've repeatedly shown him the WWM postings that state that these fish need a high water flow - as much as 8 - 10 times tank capacity every hour, but he insists that is only for adults; that a juvenile will do fine in the 72 with his Cascade 1000 (I think the gph for that model is around 267 gallons per hour) until it has matured. He believes that a higher gph rate would leave a juvenile plastered up against the side of the tank. He has agreed to abide by your response to this post.
<The Cascade won't do... the ratings for power filters are generally way off in terms of what they really deliver. He'd need three-four of these hang-ons to move enough water, provide biological filtration. Perhaps adding a large canister filter in addition. Bob Fenner>
*Renee *

My fish's tail... Lernaea?     3/24/17
So I have attached the best picture I could take of my fish's tail. It is clear, but as you can see there's a white line on it, she never had this before, I've had her for about a week and saw she had it today. What is it?
<Can't be absolutely sure as your large pic file is blurry, but this appears to be an "Anchorworm"; crustacean parasite... common in imported livebearers and goldfish raised in ponds.>
And are my other fish at risk?
<Mmm; yes... There are a few approaches to treatment... Please read here:
http://www.wetwebmedia.com/fwsubwebindex/anchorwrmfaqs.htm
and write back if your path is not clear. Bob Fenner>

Origin of the name cichlid.    3/23/17
Hello, crew, hope you're doing well.
<Yes; thank you Roberto>
I am writing to you today not for a problem with my fishkeeping, but rather, more on the scholar side of the hobby.
Here in El Salvador
<Ahh; will be flying back, forth through the capital enroute and returning from Roatan, 3/25, 4/2>
we have a small club of freshwater aquarists, where we share basic, proper fishkeeping practices to novice, intermediate and even advanced hobbyists.
<Outstanding>
Even though our country is well behind in equipment, practices and knowledge, we, as a club (and me as one of the administrators) strive to share the passion for the hobby and make fishkeeping enjoyable to all.
<Great>
This month's meeting will be the first about a series of expositions about cichlids, starting with our native central American cichlids. However, we have not found any information regarding what the word cichlid (or its Latin family name Cichlidae) stand for.
<Actually, derived from a Greek word>
So, my question is, why are cichlids, called cichlids? So far we have the fact they all share the single lower bone structure whereas other fish families have it divided into two right?
<Correct>
Yet there is no real conclusive linking of the word cichlid to a specific characteristic. Could you share some knowledge with us? it would be nice to start of the first club meeting on cichlids with some basic technical stuff.
Regards.
Roberto Mejia
<Lifted from Fishbase.org: Etymology: Greek, kichle = a kind of fish ( Ref. 45335). http://www.fishbase.us/summary/FamilySummary.php?ID=349
Bob Fenner>

Spiny Eel Compatibility       3/21/17
Good Evening WWM Crew! I have read the WWM page regarding Spiny Eel compatibility, and while the page was very informative, I did not find the answer to my question. I have a 75 gallon tank with three Rope Fish in
it. The tank has been up and cycled for 4 years now and is filtered by 2 Cascade 1000 canister filters (I'm all for over-filtering), and is set up for the Rope Fish. I use pool filter sand for substrate, RO/DI water with Equilibrium to replace minerals, Alkaline Buffer to boost kH, Acid Buffer to maintain a pH of 6.6 - 6.8, and Stability to keep my biological filter fully charged. I also have a tank cover that is both grated and smooth to prevent escapes. Haven't lost a rope fish yet.
<Good; they are escape artists>
The tank is fairly heavily planted (java fern, wisteria, and Rotala) with two large ceramic caves on opposite ends of the tank. But I recently read an article on Peacock Eels (Macrognathus siamensis) and was completely charmed by such a beautiful fish. So what I was trying to find on the WWM page regarding this fish is whether it would make a good tankmate for three Rope Fish.
<This Mastacembelid would be fine here>
Also, if it would work, would a Peacock Eel be happy as the only one of its species with the three Rope Fish or does it need others of its own kind.
<Is fine either solo or in a group>
I ask because although I have plans to move them up to a bigger tank, its at least 6 months away, and with the potential size of these species, I want to be careful not to overstock - even with the big filters. Your opinion would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!
<Welcome! Bob Fenner>
--
*Life is not about how fast you run or how high you climb, but how well you bounce. ~Vivian Komori*
*Renee *
Re: Spiny Eel Compatibility        3/22/17

Thanks again!
<Welcome. BobF>

angelfish swims weird      3/19/17
Hi,
<Hello Olivia>
I have had my angelfish for over a year and she seems perfectly healthy. I have her in a 20 gal tall tank (which I know is on the small side but I didn't know better when I got her and I can't get a bigger tank right now)
and I do a 20% water change twice a week. The temperature stays around 78.
I feed a variety of flakes, bloodworms, and shrimp. She lives with some cherry barbs. I was just wondering if it is normal behavior for angelfish to swim backwards and upside down.
<Not upside down, no>

She will usually swim normally, but sometimes she will swim kind of on her back or swim backwards slowly
around the tank. She is very friendly and comes right up for food and gets along great with the cherry barbs! The only thing is the weird directions of her swimming and is that normal?
<Not; and the issue here may be mostly genetic. Freshwater angels are tremendously inbred for most stocks. However, the flake food itself may be influential; I would substitute a fine grade pelleted food for the flake>
Thank you!
Olivia
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>

Question and pictures moor and 1 other goldfish      3/19/17
Alison; please re-size your images (90 some percent) and re-send. We can't accept large file sizes (yours are taking up more than half of our mail server space). Bob Fenner
Question and pictures moor and 1 other goldfish      3/19/17

Omg of course Bob, I'm so sorry, I am not so great with that stuff. Okay so for now here is the black moor. I added a pic of him about a week or so ago too so you can see him then and also the resized pics of what he looked like when I found him dead last night. :( he has this large black spot on him but of course I never noticed before because he was so black .
<Hard to know precisely what this is from the photo, but my money would be on an ammonia burn. The fish also seems to have a damaged cornea. In this situation I would suggest optimising water conditions (zero ammonia and nitrite, of course) and raising the hardness a little if your water is soft (Goldfish prefer hard water, so a teaspoon of sodium bicarbonate per 5-10 gallons can help a lot). Avoid very cold conditions when keeping fancy
Goldfish; Moors are fairly robust, but even they don't like water colder than, say, 18 C/64 F, particularly if they're sick or damaged. Certainly, don't expose fancy varieties to frosty, overwintering conditions outdoors.
Cheers, Neale.>

Re: Question and pictures moor and 1 other goldfish      3/19/17
Here is the other fancy fish that is now a weird tiny red spotted sick looking fish with a white sick hue to him. I hope you can see the pics? He is amazingly still alive after I took out the dead black telescope friend and put him in this different tank. He used to be a shiny silver grey color? His fin keeps clamping down he swims around all crazy. I'm so sad I don't know how to help!?
<Again, the red colouration of the fins suggests irritation (just as it would with humans) so I'd be looking at environmental conditions before anything else -- see my previous email. I'd also treat with an antibacterial or antibiotic as per Finrot just in case. Not Melafix or salt, but something more reliable, such as Kanaplex or eSHa 2000. By the way, that green-grey is the natural colour of Goldfish; they're all born that colour, and as they mature, they develop the colours we've bred into them. Some never quite change, which sometimes gives you interesting bronzy or brassy coloured fish that might not be as colourful as standard Goldfish but gives them an understated charm of their own. Cheers, Neale.>

Diff. Ram species not getting along     3/17/17
I have 2 male 1 female Bolivian Rams and a male German Blue ram in the same tank it seams the German Blue ram is being aggressive towards the Bolivian Rams any advice what to do
<I'd remove the Blue Ram to elsewhere. UNLESS you have enough room here, there will be only further trouble. Bob Fenner>

White Cloud swollen belly, still      3/17/17
Hello again Fish Gurus:
<Hey Tracey>
I am still struggling with an intermittently sickly White Cloud Mountain Minnow. I did my best to get a couple of pictures of her (attached). What do you think is up with her belly?
<Well; is distended... but from what (cause?); trapped gas (happens sometimes from flake food..), a tumor, egg et al. binding? Some lumenal parasite or infectious agent?>
It does not look like a normal, healthy rounded belly to me. I have treated with PraziPro in the past so I don't
think it's worms. I'm starting to think maybe it's constipation, but I have been feeding peas once a week for ages. This fish is definitely up and down - sometimes active and swimming and eating with the crowd, sometimes
isolated and hovering with a bit of a wobble.
Any insight you might have would be most appreciated.
[Note: Further to your advice below, I couldn't get most of the meds you mentioned, other than Paraguard. All three fish had a round in the hospital tank with Paraguard and Epsom salts. They all recovered and got their appetites back. After a month of no issues, I restocked with 6 WCMM from another supplier. So far, all is good after 2 weeks - other than the one original fish this week as referred to above.)
Thanks from snowy Canada,
Tracey
<I'd re-try simple Epsom Salt here. Please read Neale's piece re:
http://www.wetwebmedia.com/fwsubwebindex/SaltUseFWArtNeale.htm
And do write back if you're not clear re. Bob Fenner>

Re: White Cloud swollen belly     3/18/17
Thanks Bob. I also have 2 Nerite snails. Can they tolerate the Epsom salt?
<At low concentration they should be fine. Some species are "salty". Bob Fenner>
Re: White Cloud swollen belly      3/18/17

Oops, I meant to say 1 tsp per 10 gallons
<Ah yes. Understood as such. B>

Help us please... FW Ray dis./losses; no info.   3/14/17
Hi, I have eight black diamonds stingray and some question about their
diseases.
<Yeeikes>
Now l lost four of them on two weeks ,and i didn't know about its treatment.
The sign of them stress ,breathing very fast,somthing like flukes on tail and loose appetite in final they live in 2600 l .
Thanks for your response
<Need more information Amir. What re filtration, water quality tests?
Foods/feeding/nutrition? Are there other livestock present? What? The history of this set up please. Have you read on WWM Re? Start HERE: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/fwsubwebindex/fwraydisfaqs.htm
AND the linked files at top there. Bob Fenner>
re: Help us please... FW Rays... rdg., using WWM      3/15/17

Hi Bob
Thanks for your response.
<Welcome Amir>
I saw than link you mention before . I think it is better to give you more information that you guide me better.
<Yes!>
I use volcanic media in aquarium sump
<Mmm; I wouldn't. Please read here re:

http://www.wetwebmedia.com/fwsubwebindex/fwstingrays.htm
and here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/fwsubwebindex/fwraysysfaqs.htm
and i have gold Arowana with them and they grazes Tilapia every day .
<Need more than this>

At least we change the water twice a week around 30% . By the way ,i think its relate to bacterial or maybe fungal diseases . Please give me a remedy to treatment .
<? Did you read where I referred you?>

Thanks in advance for your response
<Can't help you if you won't read.
BobF>

Kuhli Loach Question       3/14/17
Good Afternoon WWM Crew:
<Lor/Fuzzi>
Your help in the past has been invaluable, and I've had no issues since my last correspondence in November, but now have a question about an injured Kuhli loach.
I'm attaching a photo of one of my Kuhlis (I have 3-5).
<I see your excellent pic and ouch!>
I have a 29 gallon freshwater setup, heavily planted with Java fern, Java moss, and Anubias. I have white aquarium sand as a substrate.
Most of my fish have been in the tank for 1-2 years, with the exception of 2 Corys, 2 Albino BNP, 5 Nerite snails, and one Glowlight tetra that I added in November 2016, and Red Cherry shrimp added in December.
On Saturday I did a 20%+ water change, routine, no issues, didn't dig in the sand with the siphon, but I did pick up a plastic cave ornament to siphon underneath, and seeing no fish underneath, put it back down and wiggled it a little to settle it into the sand, just a bit, nothing really hard or forceful.
The next day, on Sunday evening (about 24 hours later) I noticed one of my Kuhlis lying against the side of the tank, which is unusual, as they usually hide in the plants. Upon closer inspection, I saw what appears to be a bite or gouge on her side, see photo.
<Yes; a physical trauma>
Two other Kuhlis were lying "in the open" very close to her, laying against the outside of the "cave". They appeared to be fine, so I thought maybe they were staying by their friend. This morning she was in a similar position, but the other Kuhlis were not in view.
The tank mates in my 29g are as follows:
3-5 Kuhli loaches (I released 5, never see more than 3, they keep hidden)
4 Albino Corys
5 Glowlight tetras
5 Nerite snails
2 Albino Bristlenose Plecos (young, about 2-3" long)
1 Red Cherry shrimp (might be more, I released 4)
I have not read that Bristlenose Plecos are aggressive, but cannot imagine any other fish in the aquarium biting my Kuhli. I added the BNP in November, and have had no problems.
<Usually Ancistrus species aren't aggressive...>
I fear that I might have injured my Kuhli while cleaning yesterday.
<Possibly>
The tank is heavily planted, and removing the Kuhli for treatment is probably not an option. I know adding salt is not an option, either, due to the tank mates.
I keep the water clean (1 Eheim canister, 1 Aquaball, & 1 Marineland 200), pH 7.0-7.2, Ammonia 0, Nitrites 0, Nitrates 20-40 (it's usually at 30-40 when I do a water change, every 3-4 days). Water temp is 74-76F.
I'd appreciate your input on what you think might be the cause of this injury. I'm hoping my Kuhli survives, but if not, I want to prevent the others from a similar injury.
Thank you.
Lor, aka Fuzzi
<If this were me, my system, fishes, I would leave all as is (not treat, not move the fish...). Just maintain the system as you've been doing; and hope this fish heals given time, good maintenance and nutrition.
Bob Fenner>

Kuhli Loach Question /Neale      3/15/17
Good Afternoon WWM Crew:
<Hello,>
Your help in the past has been invaluable, and I've had no issues since my last correspondence in November, but now have a question about an injured Kuhli loach.
<Indeed! Quite the wound.>
I'm attaching a photo of one of my Kuhlis (I have 3-5). I have a 29 gallon freshwater setup, heavily planted with Java fern, Java moss, and Anubias. I have white aquarium sand as a substrate.
<All sounds good.>
Most of my fish have been in the tank for 1-2 years, with the exception of 2 Corys, 2 Albino BNP, 5 Nerite snails, and one Glowlight tetra that I added in November 2016, and Red Cherry shrimp added in December.
<Understood. Nothing here sounds risky.>
On Saturday I did a 20%+ water change, routine, no issues, didn't dig in the sand with the siphon, but I did pick up a plastic cave ornament to siphon underneath, and seeing no fish underneath, put it back down and wiggled it a little to settle it into the sand, just a bit, nothing really hard or forceful.
The next day, on Sunday evening (about 24 hours later) I noticed one of my Kuhlis lying against the side of the tank, which is unusual, as they usually hide in the plants. Upon closer inspection, I saw what appears to be a bite or gouge on her side, see photo.
<Indeed. Looks like an ulcer, could be caused by the physical damage, could be something else entirely coincidental with your tank cleaning exercise.>
Two other Kuhlis were lying "in the open" very close to her, laying against the outside of the "cave". They appeared to be fine, so I thought maybe they were staying by their friend. This morning she was in a similar position, but the other Kuhlis were not in view.
The tank mates in my 29g are as follows:
3-5 Kuhli loaches (I released 5, never see more than 3, they keep hidden)
4 Albino Corys
5 Glowlight tetras
5 Nerite snails
2 Albino Bristlenose Plecos (young, about 2-3" long)
<Do watch these don't rasp on the sore; while Ancistrus are normally pretty good, many Plecs will, given the chance, graze on wounded fish.>
1 Red Cherry shrimp (might be more, I released 4)
I have not read that Bristlenose Plecos are aggressive, but cannot imagine any other fish in the aquarium biting my Kuhli. I added the BNP in November, and have had no problems. I fear that I might have injured my Kuhli while cleaning yesterday.
<See above.>
The tank is heavily planted, and removing the Kuhli for treatment is probably not an option. I know adding salt is not an option, either, due to the tank mates.
<Unlikely salt would make a huge difference anyway.>
I keep the water clean (1 Eheim canister, 1 Aquaball, & 1 Marineland 200), pH 7.0-7.2, Ammonia 0, Nitrites 0, Nitrates 20-40 (it's usually at 30-40 when I do a water change, every 3-4 days). Water temp is 74-76F.
I'd appreciate your input on what you think might be the cause of this injury. I'm hoping my Kuhli survives, but if not, I want to prevent the others from a similar injury.
Thank you.
Lor, aka Fuzzi
<I'd be optimising water quality and using a good antibiotic or antibacterial until such time as the wound was obviously healing over. Fish *can* recover from flesh wounds like this rather well, all else being good.
So I'd be quite optimistic. Cheers, Neale.>

Angelfish with ammonia poisoning       3/14/17
Good morning crew! I hope you can help me. I have several fish tanks. I just love my fishies! I have custom made 82 gallon with 4 angels. They paired up but not breeding. The boss is Triggered and his mate Curly. They are biggest angels in there. Also 2 Bala sharks,
<Yikes; will get much larger!>
4 Bavarian rams, black ghost knife, 2 blood parrots,
<And these>
1 pain in the butt male Betta and 2 Plecos.
<Tambien>
Everything is still pretty small except Triggered, Curly and 2 Plecos. As soon as my 150 gallon cycles most will be moved. Not the rams or Betta but everything else will be moved to 150 gallon tank.
<Ah, good>
Well my daughter was having a problem with dominate angelfish in her tank and we have tried this angelfish in about 9 different tanks here with him beating every fish up or terrorizing them. We made arrangements with pet
store to take him but we couldn't take him till morning. I wish I would of thought about putting her angelfish in the bucket with the heater before I put him in my tank for the night as well as 2 small angels because they were beating up on a tiny angelfish in her tank. Well Triggered flipped out and not only went after the big angelfish of my daughters but he went after everything in the tank, shredding everyone in his way.
<Sounds/reads like a rogue>
The newest fish is the Betta, All the other fish grew up together and get along well. The Betta is kind of a bully. I decided to move Triggered and Curly to 55 gallon for the night. Or I might of woke up to dead fish. The 55 has 2 blood parrots and 2 angelfish aggressive green Severums. I moved Severums to 5 gallon bucket with heater. Put angels in tank, In the morning I seen Triggered was dying. I quickly tested water and discover ammonia was
threw <sic> the roof. Higher the 6.0 ppm and nitrites 200 ppm.
<?!!!>

My filter was not working, not sure how long it was off. Ugh. I took water from 82 gallon and put into bucket, netted the 2 angels and 2 parrots putting them in the bucket. Tank temps are the same. I took them to 82 gallon and released them. Curly and 2 blood parrots were struggling but you wouldn't know it now. They are fine! Triggered was down, gasping for air, breathing hard. I took daughter's larger angel out and put in bucket, moved the other mated pair of angels to daughters tank so the wouldn't stress Triggered anymore then he already was. I seen Pleco's going near him and decided he would be safer in a container. His fins are a wreck, his eyes were fogged. He had about every symptom of ammonia poisoning. I put triggered into 2 gallon clear container floating on surface of tank, so his water could stay warm. I didn't want to cook him with my 5 gallon heater and didn't want the cat to fish him out of the bucket. I put air stone in, prime, aquarium salt, and Mela fix, I has been 4 days, His breathing is almost normal, I clean 40% of his water daily and been dosing with Mela fix. He is showing improvement. His eyes are clear, fins are no worse. On day 3 he tried to get up and swim, I think he is still weak. Today he is staying up little longer than yesterday but still can't stay upright. He gets up but can not stay up right for more than few seconds. He is trying so hard to survive and he is my favorite angelfish so I'm not giving up on him. I read fish can survive this, He doesn't have the red streaks or red blotches which would mean internal bleeding. My question is am I doing the right thing?
<Yes; just needs clean, stable water conditions>

I seem to be spinning my wheels. When using Mela fix <Am not a fan of this plant extract. You can scan/search WWM re>
I'm not suppose to do water changes but he seems to be more active and really tries to get up and moving afterwards. His water in bucket has registered .5 ammonia. This is reason I'm doing water changes. I'm not sure
how, I have not tried to feed him. The 82 gallon has 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, 0 nitrate. Could ammonia be leaching out of his scales?
<Mmm; no; but out of gills and wastes/vent; yes>
How soon can I let him outta the container once he can stay a float?
<Whenever you want; elect to do so>
Should I continue using Mela fix?
<I wouldn't. Of no use; and may be worsening the issue/s here>

I was worried about secondary infection and fin rot. Last question, The other mated pair of angels (Sponge Bob and Sandy) Should I put them back into tank before I release Triggered?
<Yes I would>
Not sure he will let them back in once he is out of the container and back in his tank. They been raised together and they squabble once in a while but the tank is peaceful except for the Betta who is somewhat of a trouble maker. lol He defends his spot in tank and will flare and follow whoever entered his territory. He and Triggered squabble a lot but no damage is done. Their territories are next to each other.
<... Bob Fenner>
Re: Angelfish with ammonia poisoning     3/15/17

Hi Bob and crew!
<Julie>
I did typo
<?>
and wanted to clarify. The 55 gallon tank that I placed Triggered into the night he went crazy over the other angelfish that was put into his tank.
The 55 gallons filter was not working and I did not realize it when I put Triggered and Curly in there. The ammonia when I tested water that morning when I found Triggered struggling, was higher than the highest reading of
6.0 ppm. The color was darker then the 6.0 on the chart and nitrite was 200 ppm.
<Nitrate likely>
I don't remember the nitrite reading.
I was wondering what you meant Bob when you said, <Sounds/reads like a rogue>
<A rogue individual. Some particular freshwater Angelfish are REALLY MEAN! Have to be kept solo; lest they attack other life.>
after reading "I decided to move Triggered and Curly to 55 gallon for the night. Or I might of woke up to dead fish. The 55 has 2 blood parrots and 2 angelfish aggressive green Severums. I moved Severums to 5 gallon bucket with heater. Put angels in tank, In the morning
I seen Triggered was dying. I quickly tested water and discover ammonia was threw <sic> the roof. Higher the 6.0 ppm and nitrites 200 ppm.
<?!!!> <Sounds/reads like a rogue>
I had to move Severums out of the 55 gallon for the night before I put Triggered and Curly in there. Those Severums are angelfish aggressive and have torn the angels fins up before. Someone gave me the Severums and the only tank mates they don't terrorize is 2 blood parrots who live in the 55 gallon. I think because the two blood parrots are kind of bullies so they don't let the Severums push them around. Those blood parrots have never bothered the angelfish or any other fish that leaves them alone. The blood parrots however don't like other blood parrots. So I moved the Severums into the bucket because I was worried my cat would catch my angels in the bucket. The Severums are much faster and tend to stay towards bottom so I figured the cat wouldn't even really see them and certainly would not try to fish them out of bottom of 5 gallon bucket.
I wanted to say thank you for the help and taking the time to read this.
Julie
<Certainly welcome. BobF>

Musk turtle     3/13/17
Dear Crew,
<Hiya, Darrel here>
Hello, I had a question. I have a musk turtle(Hybrid) and a map turtle(Nin), both about 5-6inches(map is slightly larger not by much) now and share a 150gl aquarium with a 14inch basking area under a UV-B and Heat Lamp. Both are males, both in the same aquarium for 2 years both are fine with each other and have never bit nor snapped at each other, really they ignore one another except when basking they try to play king of the hill on each other. The musk is about 8years old now I got him as a hatchling and the map is 4 and I got him from my little step brother.
<All sounds good. As long as the relative size is the same, or favors the Map Turtle, there should not be aggression problems>
Now on to my question My musk randomly started shedding a couple months back, around the time I changed the food I don’t remember the original food(I would if I saw it I know it had dried shrimp and food pellets in it) but I changed it to zoo-med natural aquatic turtle food.
<Good stuff>
When I first noticed it I thought it was shell rot due to the discoloration(edges of scutes-hope that’s the right word)
<That is the right word>
looked almost white when he was submerged) until he scratched a piece off and underneath was, for lack of better words, shiny new and rich brown like it use to be. He had exhibited some major discoloration before I changed food(which is what prompted me to buy a food with more calcium) his shell had become a greyish brown before food switch, I clean them bi-weekly with a soft bristled toothbrush and tank is cleaned with a vac weekly with ¾ of the water changed monthly. Anyways on to the questions.
1.)Why would he suddenly start shedding?
<The technical term is to slough (pronounced "sluff") the scutes as the shell grows - this is a good thing
2.)Is it normal to be shedding for 2+months on musk turtles?
<yep>
3.)If not normal what actions need to be done?
<Keep doing what you're doing>

Something not quite right with Platies        3/12/17
Hello!
<Hello Lena,>
I'm writing in regards to my 150 liter Juwel aquarium. It's been up and running for around three months now, and the tank is fully cycled. It's parameters are
0. Ammonia,
0. Nitrite,
10. Nitrate
8.2 PH.
Temperate: 25 degree Celsius
<This all sounds good.>
The surface of the water ripples from filtration, so I assume aeration is adequate.
<Should be. These are well-designed tanks, and provided you don't overstock them, the built-in filter mixes air and water very well, ensuring good water quality.>
It's moderately planted with Java Moss, Java Ferns and Anubias, (plenty of hiding spaces) and has two filters running; the inbuilt one and a secondary Eheim. The fish seem to have no issue with the water movement; I added the Eheim as the focal piece of the tank is a large piece of store bought driftwood and its shape was causing dead spots.
<Good.>
The stock list is
5 Kuhli loaches (one of which has giraffe-like print? Is this common?)
<Not uncommon. There are several species of Pangio, easily confused, and frequently jumbled up in the trade. So you could easily have a true Kuhli (Pangio kuhlii) alongside Pangio semicincta, Pangio myersi or one of the
other Pangio species in the trade.>
2 Albino Corydoras
1 Whiptail Catfish
1 Male Platy
1 Male Swordtail
4 Female Platies (2 of which are orange High-Fins)
I have no plans on adding anymore fish, I'm already concerned that it's veering on the side of overstocked.
<In 150 litres you're fine. Indeed, I'd add a few more Corydoras so you get a decent school of 5-6 specimens, and if it were me, a couple more Whiptails too, as they're fun to watch in groups. The males hold tiny territories and do their best to flirt with nearby females.>
Every day they receive either spectrum community fish pellets or flakes (I like to change it up) and also an algae tab, which vanishes over the course of 5-6 hours. I also supplement their diet with freeze-dried blood-worms
once a week (The platies/swordtail seem largely disinterested in these, but the Corydoras and whiptail cat make short work of them).
My first attempt of purchasing Platies was a nightmare; of the original five, only one remains; the female Hi-Fin in the picture, which I assume was not related to the lot that died. The ones that passed away stopped eating, sat themselves above the filter out-take, grew mossy and white and passed away within one or two days. No other fish were affected. I purchased a female Oreo platy a week later from another store, no problems.
All fish are drip-acclimatized.
A week later, (and now about a week ago) I purchased three more platys from a different shipment to the same store where I purchased the original ones (I suspected the store was at fault, now I'm suspecting the supplier). Two of the platies, (female), have settled in with no problem, but the Male platy (pictured) has begun clamping and flashing. He is strongly swimming, attempting to mate with everything and has a full appetite, but I'm concerned about a repeat event. Are there any preventative measures I can take?
<See below.>
Additionally, my pregnant looking Hi-Fin has isolated herself from the rest of the pack since the new fishes introduction. I assumed she was just going to give birth, and I have spotted a handful of grey fry in the tank, but
I'm concerned about the fact that despite all her other fins are looking good, her pelvic fins are glued to her body and she looks to be in slight distress. Her anus also looks swollen, but could this just be from her giving birth?
<Possibly.>
Why would her fins be clamped up beneath her?
<Normally, stress.>
Thank you in advance, regards, Lena
<As you've experienced, the quality of Platies is middling to poor, at least in the UK. This is a problem with livebearers across the board really. All the farmed livebearers have been inbred to the Nth degree, and on top of that, because they're "easy" to breed, and sold as cheap fish, fish farms don't put a whole lot of effort into producing good quality livestock. Bacterial infections as well as things like Camallanus worms seem to be endemic. Your best approach is to buy specimens from a local breeder, as those should be much healthier, or alternatively, skip the farmed livebearers in favour of the less inbred wild-type livebearers such as Limia nigrofasciata. In any case, I'd tend to adopt a 'wait and see' approach here. I'd also be minded to use eSHa HEXAMITA, a product sold in Europe, or alternatively in the US, Metronidazole, to treat against Hexamita infections. At low level these and similar parasites cause wasting in a variety of fish, including livebearers. They're otherwise difficult to treat using the standard medications. Do also note that Platies prefer cool, hard, alkaline water and will never do well in warm, soft or acidic water. While middling temperatures (24-25 C) and hardness (around 10 degrees dH) should suit Platies and other community fish, anything warmer or softer than that isn't going to work. Cheers, Neale.>

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