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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
On Monday I added 3 new adult peacocks to my 220. I removed 1 male peacock as I didnt want em in with the new girls. Its mainly an all male hap and mbuna tank, but I had a lone male peackock. The group I added was a trio of bi-colors and again I removed the one male lawanda I had.
Yesterday I noticed my intermedius was breathing a bit heavy. I removed the new trio I added and noticed a bit of agression with a couple of the mbunas that, the type of aggression I dont ever see in my tank.
So I removed one of them. Today not only is the intermedius breathing even heavier, but the entire tank is now doing it.
I checked the tank and everything is normal, its a well established tank. I am running an fx5 and have a HOB as well for some top of water movement.
Only thing I see that is abnormal is my temp is up about 4-5 degrees to nearly 82. I am guessing with the weather change and all, so I did turn heater down. I made a water change yesterday, nothing abnormal, typical change.

I am tempted to pull them and toss everyone into a different tank, and move a small group from a tank into it and see what happens.

On a side note, everyone is eating and swimming fine. The eating seems hard for them as its like they cant get food to stay in mouth.
Any inuput ?

Jeff
 

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It's strange that it occured after the water change and after adding new fish.

Are you sure you didn't forget your dechlorinator? (I have to ask, I've done it myself... :oops: )

The temp could be affecting them, as well.

Any chance of adding an aerator for extra water movement?

You could also be dealing with stress from the changes that have been made. It's crazy how adding or removing fish can throw the entire harmonic balance of the tank off.

Or, depending on the ages of the fish, you could have a troublemaker reaching sexual maturity and showing you his true colours.

Let me clarify...I'm a bit confused...

Did you initially add a trio (male and two female) BiColours to an all male tank? If so, this could have initiated the stress. BiColours are one of the more docile of peacocks IME, and wouldn't be a good idea to put in with aggressive mbuna. Male mbuna would easily claim the females as theirs and spawn with them.

But, you removed them, right?

Did you put the Lwanda back in?

That could have stirred things up, but let's look at the other things as well.

Kim
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Kim,

The tank mates are as follows. And this has worked well for a couple years and all fish are pretty large and I get no battles ever. Large tank and not too many fish.

Auartus Male (who had a fem and spawned often but she got to friendly with a powerhead a lil while back)

2 labs
1 borleyi redfin
1 intermedius
1 lawanda (been moved out and is still out)
2 male red top Hongis
2 male gresheki

I have had great success with this tank. My auratus spawned nearly every month and I had not lost a fish in like 2 years, till she went to close to new powerhead.

I added the trio 1m/2f of the bi colors and just before I did, I removed the lawanda due to cross breeding.
I then saw that the intermedius a half day or so later was breathing hard. So I watched for a bit and decided to pull the bi's out. I then pulled one of the two greshekis cause they were chasing one another and they NEVER do that.

So.................. as of now they all started breathing hard.

I am thinking you may be on that I may have done something to whole dinamic of it all, by adding and removing.
Even taking the lawanda out. These fish have not seen a new fish in like year and half and it was the lawanda.

So as you, I am baffled.

Jeff
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I am considering pulling them and tossing them all into a 75 and see if it settles them down. Would anyone suggest that or leave them and watch for a while ? I may shoot video and upload it.

Jeff
 

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On a side note, everyone is eating and swimming fine. The eating seems hard for them as its like they cant get food to stay in mouth.
I agree that it may be that the aggression has escalated due to the changes you've made but what exactly do you mean that they can't get food to stay in thier mouths? Gasping, (breathing hard) and spitting out food are one of the first signs of bloat. Have you noticed what kind of feces any of them are passing?

I would also check your filters to make sure there's a good strong flow coming out of the return tube(s).

What are your water parameters?

Robin
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
As far as the food, it just seemd like they had hard time keeping it mouths. NLS pellets. I think was just from the heavy breathing. I just pulled every fish and placed them into the 90 that I had placed the trip of bicolors in.
I put the bicolors back in the 220 alone. The fish that were moved, all seemed to have slowed way down on breathing. The 90 had no heater and is at around 70 degrees. The bicolors are breathing heavy now. Very strange. I did check the return from the fx5 and I barely have any pressure.
So looks like I have to something with that. Also going to check the thermo and make sure its working right.

Good grief its enough to scare someone. I will keep observing but they seem much better in the 90 thus far. Again its a 12 degree temp change.

Jeff
 

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I did check the return from the fx5 and I barely have any pressure.
This could be the problem Jeff. You should check your ammonia reading. If the flow through the filter was hampered significantly then you may have had some of your beneficial bacteria die off and this would have caused an ammonia spike and the ammonia spike would cause all the fish to gasp. If it was just aggression then it's unlikely that you would see all the fish gasping.

If you're reasonably certain that there's been no changes to your water supply, (concern is that there is a toxin that is coming in with the water), then try doing a partial water change on the tank with a good quality declorinator, (one that removes ammonia), and see if there's any change in their breathing. Fresh carbon in the filter will also help to remove any ammonia.

70 is too low of a temp for these fish and 82 is not that high. If they were under some other sort of stress then a higher temp would make it worse but its unlikley that an 82 temp is going to stress them out all on its own.

Robin
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The 70 degree temp was esentially an empty tank. I was assuming that the change from 82+ down to 70 was the reason for the instant "recovery", but it could have been filter. I had the FX5 running and have had it on there alone for a long time. About 6 months back, I added a HOB, large one that just to keep the filter cycled as it came off my old 75. Being that the 220 is so large, I figured the HOB didnt add much help to the tank. I pulled the HOB off on Monday and added it to the 90. I took water from 3 diiferent tanks, some sand, rock and then the HOB and placed it all on the 90. When doing so, I apparently took only real working filtration off the 220 as the FX5 is not functioning properly. There is hardly any pressure back from the FX5, I may remove media. At this time the 220 is empty of fish and the fish are in the 90 and doing fine.
I went to test the amonia and my liquid tester seemed to have spilled in the tote it was in. Guess its time to replace it. I rarely check the paramaters cause I have had such good success with the tank.
Side note on the water, I am out in the country and have softened well water. I have been keeping tanks a while now, and this 220 is about year and half old, was a step up from the 120. This is the fist problem of any sort that I have, as I mentioned early on besides my Auratus female who got too friendly with a new powerhead, I have lost NO fish. Knock on wood.

Kim and Robin. Thank you for your time. I posted here for a reason. I was told "call a pet store" and I stated I trust the board much more than a store. You both were about spot on, on what the problem is.

Thanks again.
Jeff
 

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You're welcome, Jeff.

You were wise to have more than one filter running on the tank. Like you said, it adds water movement but it's also there as a back up in case the other filter fails. And in this case the 'extra' filter was additionally useful by providing an instantly cycled tank in the 90 when you moved it from the 220.

Hope the fish continue to do well. In a 220 gallon tank problem fish are not nearly the concern that they would be in a much smaller tank however I'll just mention something that you probably already know and that is that the Auratus can be extremely aggressive. Watch him closely in the 90. . .

Robin
 

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If the aggression continues between the two greshakei males, pull one of them.

The tank is understocked, and now that the aggression has started, it isn't likely to get better.

I would remove all double males of a species and have only one of each species, then add some more males - just make sure not to add just one at a time...He won't be overly welcomed by the other fish.

Kim
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
One closing note. I just cleaned the fx5 out. I removed some of the media to maybe help water flow. It still seems to be lacking in the power it had a couple years ago, but is working better than it was. I had an aquaclear 70 HOB laying around, so I placed it on the 220 with the media I took out of the FX5.
Going to let the tank run a few days before I place fish back in.
I do appreciate this board greatly, I am an avid reader on a daily basis and post rarely. Most of my fish come from this board as well.

Keep up the good work admin,mods and all of us readers and posters.

Jeff
 

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Jeff, if it is aggression, it's automatically going to decrease in a "non-scaped" tank. There are no territories to fight over in this tank...

When you place the fish back in the main tank, move them from least aggressive to most aggressive, and let the more passive ones settle in a bit before adding the more rambunctious ones.

Kim
 

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Going to let the tank run a few days before I place fish back in.
The tank will likely NOT be cycled when you add fish back in since an established filter must be 'fed' via fish waste, uneaten food and plant matter in order to keep the beneficial bacteria alive.

Can you take a piece of the media that's in the HOB on the 90 gallon tank and put that in the HOB filter that you just put on the 220? Do it on the same day you add the fish and then just to be on the safe side test your water for ammonia, nitrite and nitrate daily or every other day for several weeks.
Adding fish a few at a time will allow your nitrifying bacteria to grow to meet the needs of the expanding fish load and then you can also use Kim's suggestion of adding the less aggressive fish first to allow them time to get established.

All the best getting the 220 up and running healthy again.

Robin

And if you have any doubts about the FX5 I'd chuck it. A malfunctioning filter can kill your fish fast. You probably saved yours by moving them when you did. :)
 
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