Thursday, July 5, 2012

Tales from the Tank #24

Today's post contains material that may not be suitable for all readers.

We will begin with the definition of the word FISHKILL. From Mass death of many fish, usually in a restricted area.

Well, the restricted area is a 40 gallon fish tank positioned in the corner of our living room.  I can't say that it's been a "mass" death although we've lost about six or seven fish total.

Apparently, when you don't stay on track with regular water changes (ie: become LAZY) - your tank may become "unbalanced" where the nitrates are too high and the Ph is too low. This can cause the death of your fish. We've lost about six of our Kenyi African cichlids (see photo), one electric yellow and we're pretty sure an Auratus, because we can't find her.

Last Sunday we finally cleaned the tanks (yes all the tanks), and then Tuesday we found another dead Kenyi.  Then on the morning of the 4th, we found a dead electric yellow cichlid - and a carcass (you know part head with a little bit of skin left). So I called the pet store and they were open (for a little bit) - so we hopped on the motorcycle and took a water sample out to the pet store (which is how we found out about the unbalanced tank).  It was recommended to us to do another 50% water change and add some organic coral (which is a natural Ph balancer) to the rock bed.

We were told to rinse it really good, because no matter what it will turn your water milky. (Which is a complete understatement). When we got home we emptied the tank of all the decor, and then Terry added the coral.  We then had to work in the dark (I mean milk) to place the decor back in the tank and then wait for the filter to do it's job in clearing the excess stuff.

So far so more dead fish.

Oh I forgot - we have a pleco in the tank but you can never see him. So when we emptied the tank we shook all the decor to see if he would come out and he never did.  When we got back from the pet store- he was in the bottom of a the 5 gallon bucket (in about a 1/2 of water) - so at least he didn't die.  I have figured out that even though the fish are fun to look at (peaceful and serene) - there is just not the same emotional attachment to them like you have with a cat or dog.

After all, you can't flush your dog.