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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I did a small 10% WC last night on the 55gal. This morning all the fry I had in a breeder net were dead. About an hour later, one of my peacocks started going into seizures, mouth stuck open, all fins erect, and violently shaking. This lasted around 10 seconds, then he'd just roll over and sink to the bottom. We were in the middle of breakfast, I was in no hurry to flush him. I just took him out and placed him in the hospital tank, he sat there pale and motionless for about 5 minutes then was back to normal. After breakfast I did a 50%WC and added carbon. Soon after an acei had an "attack", 5 minutes later he was fine. Then another peacock, but instead of just shaking he slammed into the sand, buried his head. Then another acei did it and jumped out of the tank. Followed by my venustus who managed to slam into the glass and knocked a rock over. I think she may not make it, but the rest recovered in less than 10 minutes. Straight to the 10gal as I saw them, I'm sure some more did it while I was elsewhere. Most fish were hiding behind the rocks, no heavy breathing, no discolored gills. PH 8.2, no ammonia or nitrites, nitrates were around 25.
I changed the house filter, it was covered in red gunk, and ruptured. While I was at it I decided to drain the water heater. Since we moved in we've had rusty water, why I got the filter. But the water heater was full of crud, took 2 hours to clean it out. Mostly rust, and some Iron bacteria I think. And a few white particles, not sure what this was.
While draining and flushing the heater I did a few more WC's using cold filtered water mixed with boiling water, 5 gallons at a time. After 3 of these, the fish began coming out and acting normal again.
The well water has no odor. Could it be manganese or just a buildup of something in the water heater? When the filter tore did I just happen to get a big rush of contamination?

Has anyone experienced these "seizures", could it be from heavy metals? Is there something specific I should get it tested for?
 

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I read a post somewhere recently that someone found one of their fish dead, head first down in the sand. Makes me wonder what's going on. Did you check you aquarium heater? Could there be some electrical current in the water? Sounds like they might have got shocked. Just a suggestion, I really don't know.
 

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I would take a water sample to the health department and get it analyzed. It may not give you answers to what happened with your fish, but at least it will give you peace of mind regarding the water for other uses.

What you are describing certainly sounds like a reaction to the water.

Did you happen to check the ph of the tank just before the water change?

Kim
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Picked up some start right codnditioner, says it neutralizes metals. Going to pick up a finer carbon filter for the house. Didn't check just before, usually stays around 8-8.2. Everything seemed fine this morning. The venustus died last night, the rest recovered. Tested for stray voltage and found nothing, heard different opinions on ground probes, but tempted to use one just in case.
 

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The white particles from your water heater might be from the sacrificial anode in the tank. If they are, you will have to replace the anode. It will also plug up your faucet aerators & shower head if that is what it is.

Sorry to hear of your fish losses. I also have well water & try to keep up with testing especially around the season changes & extreme weather changes.
 

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you should replace the water heater. rusty water is a good indicator that the inner, protective glass sleeve is damaged/cracked allowing the water to contact (and rust) the inside of the tank wall.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
The water comes from the well a rusty color at times, lot's of red clay around here. Before I added the filter we were getting dirt and particles from the cold water also. I figured it was just from the new house and plumbing, well has been here about 15 years but hardly used. I think the heater got a bunch of those particles in it from then. I've drained it before but not as thoroughly as yesterday. I will pull the anode tomorrow, this white stuff looked like a brittle ceramic or sandstone. Oxidized aluminum is white, magnesium too, right? We've been here 4 years, Almost time to change it out anyway. Hopefully it's not broken or totally gone.
Wife had me out all day today, just got home and the 2 aceis had died, they looked fine this morning. Again checked water, no ammonia or nitrites. Nitrate about 20, ph had dropped to 8.0. Added the "start right", not sure if it will do anything. But will use it for future water changes, instead of the python method or jugs. Checking into getting the water tested.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Just got the 5 micron instead of the carbon impregnated one. Going to go replace that in a few. Got the anode out, it's salvageable, but needs a good cleaning.


This WAS the "crud" that I drained out :thumb: Could it be toxic?
 

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That anode rod should be replaced! It's only a few bucks to replace it. It'll probably just disintegrate soon.

I usually use a 20 micron filter in my whole house filter. When I switched it to a 5 micron one, it plugged up in 2 weeks. So I switched back to 20 micron. I have mostly sand & iron particles in my well water.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I'll change it this weekend. Drained the tank yesterday and washed the sand, rearranged everything. kept the media from the filters and added some cycle. Fish have returned to their normal ravenous behaviour. Trying to spawn and eat everything, and following me when I walk by.
Guess it was just lack of household maintenance.
If these 5 microns clog before a month, I'll get an undersink filter. Even the coffee tastes better now, the filter must've been ruptured for a week, I usually change them when the flow slows down, but it still had good pressure, so I didn't worry about it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
just an update, changed out the anode, must have spent 4 hours, draining, flushing, shaking, kicking and draining that water heater.
All has been fine since.
Thanks for the help guys.
Maybe it was from that anode, if some chunks did fall off the day I did my WC, that's alot of crud to dump in a tank. Combined with the paper filter rupturing...
I'm paranoid of my house filter and the water heater now. I only add cold water when I can and change that filter every 2-3 weeks whether it needs it or not!
 
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