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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have an 55gal tank with 3 African cichlids and one pleco. *** had the tank since july with no issues. I had 1 male and 2 females. The largest and most aggressive died this morning. It's a long story so I'll try to make brief.
The 2 females have been taking turns holding eggs that the male evidently hasn't fertilized. So when the largest female didn't eat this past thursday I wasn't concerned. I actually look forward to her holding eggs because it makes it easier to get the other 2 fish food. On friday, the large on again did not eat. One of the other 2 fish would eat, spit it out, eat it again, spit it back out , then give up. Last night, again the large fish didn't attempt to eat, and the other two would spit out their food. About an hour later, we noticed the large fish at the bottom of the tank, on its side. It stayed like that for awhile, then would swim to the other end of the tank, and roll on its side again. When I went to bed at midnight, it was still hanging in, but this morning was dead.
I have also noticed that one of the other fish has one cloudy eye. I gave them frozen blood worms today. The one with the cloudy eye didn't bother with it and the other one picked at it and seemed to eat some. They usually consume a cube in about 25 seconds. Eventually the worms were gone and the cloudy eye had a few worms and the other one ate the rest. Here are the details:

Nitrite
Nitrate <5
Ammonia 0
PH between 8.0 and 8.2
Tank temp 82 degrees
Water changes every 2 weeks (35-40%) with well water. I add Aquarium salt and API stress coat with water changes.

The eat floating pellets every day and blood worms 5-6 times a week.

The remaining fish seem to be acting normal with the exception of the lack of appetite.

An important note is we added the pleco a month ago to get rid of the typical algae. I' wondering if he introduced a parasite into the tank. And if so, I'm surprised it got to the biggest sized, biggest eating, most aggressive fish in the tank and not the smaller weaker fish.

Browsing the net, I've found similar posts(people with fish spitting out the food and not eating) and recommendations have been to treat the tank with metronidazole as they suggested it was a parasite. I went to the pet store and the only product the had with metronidazole was jungle lab Hole-n-head guard. My fish definetly dont have that, so my question is:
1. Should I treat the tank with this?
2. Will it hurt the biological filter? I know I have to remove the carbon filters if I do
3. Will it hurt the pleco?

I did a 40% water change this morning also.
 

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Can't see the pictures because myimagespace wants to register which I do not want to do.

It is hard to say what the problem is - it could be a parasite. Hikari makes a metro product if you call around looking for another one. It is not suppose to hurt the biofilter but anytime you are treating a tank you should be prepared for water changes and test the water for ammonia and nitrite. Remove the carbon during the treatment. Pleco will be ok.

Just to cover all the bases - have you checked you salt level. I know it sounds crazy but I have had some people who add salt to their tanks end up with too much salt in the water. So you might check it or do another water change and not add salt.
 

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here is a link to the photography section of this forum that tells you how to post a picture.

http://www.cichlid-forum.com/phpBB/view ... hp?t=21085

you measure the salt with a hydrometer or refractometer but maybe save a sample for later. Right now change some water (that never hurts) and are the two remaining fish eating?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Last night, both were spitting out the food, today the one with the cloudy eye may have had a blood worm or two and he goes after the pellets but never puts them in his mouth, the other one had both worms and about 6 pellets
 

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Try using photobucket.

What african cichlids do you have? Sometimes bloodworms are not a good idea.

Also three cichlids is likely understocked in a 55G...again depending on the ID of the africans.

If you might have salt overload, do a large (75%? 90%?) water change to get it out. Match parameters carefully.

You have not posted your nitrite result?
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Sorry, the Nitrite is 0. I'm real careful about only adding the recommended tablespoon per 10 gallons added and on the few occasions I top off the tank I don't add the salt.. I have no idea what type of cichlids I have, that was the main reason for posting the pics. I will try photobucket
 

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They are Malawi mbuna and/or peacock. But I can't see the spots in the pics.
 
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