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Hi folks,

I'm with cichlids for over 5yrs and have an all male hap/peacock tank 180g for over 1.5yrs (and I'm, no actually I was proud of my tanks).

Unfortunately just recently two days back after water change, next morning I found most of the big 5-7" (and my favs) fish are dead, small ones are surviving better. I did water change for 3 more tanks at the same time, 55g, 40g and 20g, they have no prob till now.

It's my fault. Currently I'm too busy, with >16hrs at work I can't spend much time for them.

I don't know the reason, but guess heater, as the tank felt little warm by touch on next morning, temp showing 84. I have 2 300w heaters, one at 80 and other at 76, is that too much? I did water change again to cool down the tank to 78. Never had any issues with these heaters before. I've used Nova aqua plus water conditioner from a new container just opened though. Can that be a prob? At present second heater is unplugged, some of the fishes (which were easy to catch) are transferred to other tank, remaining 7-8 fishes look stressed but okay. Coming to the front for food.

Two questions:

What is the best reliable heater for my 180g tank? I'm gonna buy ASAP as I don't wanna see this mass killing again.

Do you guess any other reason for this?

Thanks in advance
 

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Although 84 is a little high, I would be surprised if that was the cause of the mass killing. In the summer it's not uncommon for my 180 hap/peacock tank to get around 83 degrees or so if my A/C is set too high. It's a pretty warm room. Did you test your water parameters such as PH, ammonia, nitrite and nitrates? I would start with those before assuming it's your heater.
 

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Sorry for your losses sus. Can ask why you set one at 80 and one at 76? How old are the heaters? The reason I ask is you said you have had cichlids for 5 years , if your heaters are 5 years old as well I would suggest replacing both. If you set your temperatures at different degrees I would think they are not going to be able to sync . One is gonna get to 80 and the other is never gonna help the other maintain unless it gets really cold. Either way I would recommend setting them to the same temp to extend the life of the heater. If you want 78 then set them both to 78.
 

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I don't think the temperature at 84 killed the fish. Many people run the temperature that high when fighting ich. It is possible that the higher temperature may have led to reduced oxygen in the water and that may have killed the larger ones. Warm water holds less O2 andit can be critical if the surface of the water is not moving so that new water is exposed to the air. You don't mention a temperature reading other than the settings on the heaters. It is very important that you have a thermometer. The readings on heaters are often useless. I don't use them at all as many are not reliable. A temperature a bit high and water with ammonia, nitrite or high nitrate can combine to kill fish. All need to be measured and watched.
 

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yea, im gonna go with the temperature not being the cause. my 72gallon was running at about 82-83F constant for awhile because i didnt adjust for room temperature during the change of seaosons.... im curious as to what your water parameters are...
 

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Yes need to know ph ammonia nitrite and nitrate I expect I problem with one of those
 

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Sorry about your loss...

Given your detailed description, I would think it is one of these possibilities:

-Lack of available oxygen
-Trace amounts of chlorine
-Nitrate levels too high (80ppm+)
-Poisonous gases emitted from gravel

possible causes:
-Gravel not cleaned or churned recently
-More than 25% water changed at once, using RO water
-Insufficient or ineffective water conditioner added

One (very unlikely) cause (but still possible) is a breach in one of your heaters. I would put the percentile chance of it happening at under 2%, but it is still a chance, especially if they are 5 years old.

Good luck finding the cause, I think a thorough water test + Occums Razor will get you your answer, and would hazard a guess at it being possibility #3.

:cool:
 
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