Dying fish please help

Discussion in 'Introductions' started by pdpond, May 22, 2013.

  1. pdpond

    pdpond Banned

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    billy, I honestly don't want to jump forums back and forth, I figured there would be enough experienced ponders here to give me the answers I was looking for but thanks for the information,

    Dieselpower, when I picked up last bunch of fish there was about a dozen of them, I took them home in water from the pond they were in, then I changed up there water in the same container over a week adding some dechlorinator, to keep them healthy, when I did put them into my pond, I took about 25% of my pond water and added it to the container they were in, then again in another couple hrs did the same thing, so I don't feel I shocked the fish with water temperature changes, plus that was 3 weeks ago I picked them up, then 2 weeks ago I put them in my pond, they have only been dying over the last week, but its pretty much every one of those fish that I picked up last, that's what confuses me,
    where they in bad shape already because they were in an unfiltered still water very very dirty pond?
     
    pdpond, May 23, 2013
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  2. pdpond

    dieselplower

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    Did you treat the other batch of fish for parasites etc? I wonder if they may have given the bigger fish something that is killing them...
     
    dieselplower, May 23, 2013
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  3. pdpond

    pdpond Banned

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    I only treated all of them together on Tuesday for the first time, but they still have been dying even 1 this morning
     
    pdpond, May 23, 2013
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  4. pdpond

    sissy sissy

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    I come from NJ and they have lots of sod farms and they do fertilize sod a lot to get a healthy root system
     
    sissy, May 23, 2013
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  5. pdpond

    fishin4cars True friends just call me Larkin Moderator

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    PD, I would like to see if you can take a pic of one of the sick fish so I can get a look at it. Ich is a parasite, It has an appearance of salt being sprinkled on a fish. You mentioned milky slim, To me that puts a red flag up either chemical reaction, or bacterial infection. I think Billy is on a great track of things to be concerned with and easy cheap and pro-active ways to assist your pond. KH seems low to me, Low ph and low KH can mean a unstable environment for the fish. The more stable the environment the less stressed a fish will be and therefore the more chance it has to fight infections on it's own. KH can be raised slowly with oyster shells, but it can be also raised quicker and more precise using regular baking soda. I would recommend adding several table spoons at a time. About a hour after adding check your KH until you reach a reading of between 120-160. at this time you should see the PH become more neutral or slightly alkaline (7.0-8.0) this is a better range for PH, but PH isn't particularly important as long as it's stable. KH is what makes PH more stable.
    From what I'm reading I would also be concerned about chemical reaction. Do you know if your water being put in the pond has Chlorine, chloramine, none (Well Water) ettc. and are you treating the water according to your source water. I have seen more than one hobbyist treat their water and use a declorinating product when they actually had chloramine, the chlorine neautralizer didn't bind the left over ammonia and it ends up leaving a fish with a almost burned effect. (White slimy skin coming off)
    Now for the Oxygen questions. Under normal circumstances I think you probably have plenty of oxygen in your water, but in times of stress, more oxygen just make it again easier for fish to fight off stress related issues. so adding more surface water movement or adding air stones is simply helping and not hurting anything. Fish lying on the bottom just before dying tells me stress, but if they were needing oxygen they would probably be gulping for air. so for now I don't think lack of oxygen is a primary concern but again, never hurts to add air.
    Have you added any salt? many have mixed opinions on using salt, But from experience, when having questionable problems and there is a skin issue, salt can help a fish build slim coating. So adding 1# of salt per 1000 gallons will not hurt anything and may help some. At least might buy some time until we can figure out what exactly is going on. your pond is a very young pond, maybe cycled but not balanced as far as fish load to filtration factor is concerned. That could still take several months to become completely stable. On your size pond I wouldn't have added but about 10-12 fish for the first 2-4 months then only would have added one or two a month until I reached a balance between what appealed to me and what the filtration system could handle. Throw the rule of 1 inch of fish per ten gallons of water rule out the window. I do not agree with this statement at all. It depends on what YOUR filtration can handle not how many inches per gallon. I have seen way to many ponds fail with 10 fish of 10" in 1000 gallons than I can count, WHY, they simply didn't have enough filtration to handle that kind of load. But on the other hand I have seen 4-24" koi live in perfect harmony in a 2000 gallon pond, One that had a way to remove waste, had plenty of oxygen, stable temp, minimal ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate, and the water kept up with.
    On your test kits, Strip tests are really not the best choice for a novice, they simply are not that accurate and can give false readings to an inexperienced eye. Liquid drop test kits are far more accurate and far better to learn from. American Pharmaceuticals Inc sells a good master kit that has everything you need in it except for the KH and GH test kits, API also makes them too but they are sold separately. The master kit can be purchased for around $30 the KH kit about $7 GH is about the same but really not needed as much as KH. Learning how to adjust water and why, and also learning what is good water and what is GREAT water is very important to fish keepers, Koi can and are very easy to stress in water that is less than ideal. But Keeping ideal water does not have to be hard, you just have to take the time to learn how to keep water, then fish keeping starts to become easy. LOL
    Sorry to hear about your losses, and I hope we can help get you back under control and stop losing fish. But keep in mind, The pond is new, there is/was a pretty good load of fish in the pond during start up. your not the first nor will you be the last to go through what we experienced keepers call new pond syndrome. the most important thing is to keep trying to learn as much as you can and it will get better. BTW, on water tests, I recommend new pond keepers to start testing twice a day, once in the morning once in the evening. this will help find what PH swings your experiencing, then go to once a day, this helps establish what the Ammonia, nitrite and nitrate are doing, then test at least twice a week one your going, this gives you a chance to spot a problem before it becomes a problem to the fish. Also, Keep a journal, That way if there is a problem you can post for others to see and you remove that water quality problem out of the way and can see what's going on for your self, and gives those with more experience a better chance at diagnosing a problem from what else it MAY be?
     
    fishin4cars, May 24, 2013
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  6. pdpond

    Dave 54

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    Hi PD so you've got yourself ito a bit od a bine at the moment, ok so lets take a look at things for you I have a 1,000 gallon Imperial pond much smaller than yours but with large and medium koi in it who are all as happy as Larry .
    Like yours ours are in direct sunlight from Midday onwards our water is clean yours is green so where are you going wrong ???
    Ok for starters you didn't QT your goldfish (It should take about a month) this gives any Parasite time to show itself prior to new fish going in the pond ow you suspect ich .
    Your pond is one huge lung at the moment in the day time its producing Oxygen but at night it starts producing CO2 starving your fish of Oxygen are you starting to get a picture now ?
    When you filled the pond what happened prior to you getting green water, did it first go milky white ?
    Very Imporyant, how much did you feed your fish, did your dip sticks show a major spike in Ammonia and Nitrite, if not why not i;e didnt you test the water .
    Next for your size pond I doubt you have enough filtration for the pond and its wieght in fish so it may help to add a larger one,
    I also suggest you buy a Large Airpump one with a multi gang socket and add air to both your filters and your pond ( they can have up to twelve sockts in one gang).....
    Shade for your pond , may we suggest you look into shading your pond a little weve done this by use of a large Sunshade but you can buy sails to give shade too.
    Buy yourself a Pond test kit either made by API or Tetra they are both very good the dip stick tests are notoriously unsound in their readings , test weekly ,
    You have to look at the pond this way first you must get the waters right otherwise you cannot support life as you are now finding
    Please do yourself a favour I can garentee will tturn you around and get you to understanding things buy a good book on fish and how to treat them and read it this way you will gain great insite as yo what you should do .
    The book we recomend is the The Interpet Manuel of Fish Health by Dr Chris Andrews Adryan Exell and Dr Neville Carrington ISBN 1842860674 its the book that turned it all around for us , now 27 years later we try and help folk undertand our hobby so as they dont get to loose anymore fish and who in turn can pass on that knowledge in years to come.
    Read it I promise you you'll see the light .


    rgrds


    Dave
     
    Dave 54, May 24, 2013
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  7. pdpond

    pdpond Banned

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    Wow that's a lot of info all at once, thank you guys

    here is an update
    2 days ago I did a major water exchange and hooked up a UV light (55W 4400gph flow rate) when I was doing the water exchange I noticed that one of the fish was gasping for air at the surface, so I figured he was on his way out, yesterday as I suspected he turned up dead, but was at the bottom of the pond so I scooped him out (yesterday being the first day in weeks I could actually see past the first foot of water), today I went out for my morning check up on the pond, everything seems better, no dead fish, the water is so clear I can see a maple key sitting on the filter box
    Soooo, from the little I have learned and what you guys are teaching me, I have a feeling correct me if I'm wrong but I think I had so much single cell algae, that through the night the fish were starving for oxygen and dying off, only once have I found a dead fish throughout the day, the other 10 or so have died over night,
    the temperature dropped 20* here for the last couple of days and I stopped feeding them, even cleaning the loose garbage off the shallow end of the pond when I did the water exchange
     
    pdpond, May 24, 2013
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  8. pdpond

    Dave 54

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    Yes but it was the algea acting as a whole that depleted the Oxygen each night .
    Remember when doing a water change always take the ponds temperature over that of your tap water.
    There is a trick of trickling in water at a very slow rate where the ambient temperature of the pond will take up the water and warm it to pond temperature .
    buy your self a dechlorination unit it'll last for tens thousands of gallons over that of the dechlorination fluid .just google it in for ideas,
    The U/V-C is it a double or single bulb , if its single change once a year every year if a double bulb change once every two years.


    rgrds

    Dave
     
    Dave 54, May 24, 2013
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  9. pdpond

    pdpond Banned

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    Hey I did something right lol, I actually trickled the water in, I think it took 4 hrs to fill 40% of the pond, I did concider the water temp and figured it would be a shock to the fish if I just went wide open on my 3/4" water line (it took just over an hour for the initial filling of the pond a couple months ago)

    The UV bulb is a double bulb, but the company still recommended once a year change of it, which I'm ok with

    I will look into the dechlorinator unit right now

    Don
     
    pdpond, May 24, 2013
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  10. pdpond

    Dave 54

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    Don who's U/V-C is it, is it Tetra, Aqua Pond. or one of the others.
    I think your being mis quoted there a double bulb which we have in ours and is is 36 watts.
    It is recomended to be changed every two years.
    Is it an Interpet make perhaps ?


    rgrds


    Dave
     
    Dave 54, May 24, 2013
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  11. pdpond

    pdpond Banned

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    I'm pretty sure its a Chinese brand its call Jebao, but I couldn't find any bad reviews for it, I bought it off of Fleabay at a reasonable price, so I thought what the hey, it can't hurt at this point
     
    pdpond, May 24, 2013
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  12. pdpond

    pdpond Banned

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    fishin4cars

    I would take a picture of the sick fish but I can't, they only pop up dead the next morning there was only one fish in the beginning that seemed to have white spots on it, that's why we assumed ich, the fish that pop up dead lately have no signs of stress whatsoever, the odd one may have a couple scales missing but that's it, no fin rott, no gill rott, nothing that's why I'm baffled, well I was, I'm starting to believe from the good folks on here it was an algae problem starving the fish for oxygen
     
    pdpond, May 24, 2013
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  13. pdpond

    Mmathis TurtleMommy

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    Pd, I'm so happy to see that things are turning around for you :) :).
     
    Mmathis, May 24, 2013
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  14. pdpond

    BlueOrca

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    pdpond, as with all the other information you have been given (algae bloom oxygen depletion, new pond syndrome etc.) the major swing in temperatures for us (I'm near Windsor) can cause thermal kill in fish, especially in a new pond where they are stressed (85 degrees 2 days ago, 41 degrees today). I am in a similar situation as you, new 2500 gallon pond, 3100 gph pump, 12 new fish (3 inchers), plants in but not growing much and lots of bloomin' algae. I lost one of my small koi, with no signs of stress, disease or damage. There are so many variables I am learning, biggest of which seem to be "bad" water and stressing the fish. My pond has just started to clear up as well with the quilt batting method. (I also have raccoon tracks in my backyard I have recently learned, and great blue herons in the area!)
     
    BlueOrca, May 24, 2013
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  15. pdpond

    Mmathis TurtleMommy

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    And often it's not necessarily any ONE thing, but a combination of things or events.

    At least (as far as we know) we don't have predator problems (knock on wood!)! Geesh, it's enough just keeping up with the pond stuff and would hate having to add preds. to the equation :)
     
    Mmathis, May 24, 2013
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  16. pdpond

    Litzi1964

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    I agree that the pond is overcrowded and the nitrates are high. I suggest adding an ammonia chlorine nitrate remover. The water is also mildly acidic. Try adding some calcium carbonate or baking soda. Also, there's no such thing as an over-aerated pond. I suggest getting an additional 350 or 400 gph pump and attaching a fountainhead. I also suggest a source of beneficial bacteria and barley extract to help the nitrogen cycle. What you might also do as an emergency measure is get a little kiddie pool from walmart or target. Get a pump for aeration and put some of the fish in there to lessen the load on your pond. Don't forget dechlorinator! My thoughts are with you.
     
    Litzi1964, May 24, 2013
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  17. pdpond

    Litzi1964

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    Oh you didn't mention any plants. I suggest a few water lettuces or water hyacinths to kickstart the nitrogen cycle
     
    Litzi1964, May 24, 2013
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  18. pdpond

    pdpond Banned

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    BlueOrca, I can't really contribute any deaths to the cold, its really only been cold here the last two days and that's when the fish dying stopped, but I agree the quick changes in weather can't be all that good for the fish

    Litzi1964 all the things you mentioned doing sound great but at what amounts? I do have a fountain already, and it does run on occasion, if I would have figured the fish were dying from oxygen deprivation I would have turned it on for sure over night, but now that the dying has stopped and the water is getting clearer by the day, do I really need that extra oxygen? everything was fine until the last two weeks when I got this terrible algae bloom, it was the second one but the first cleared itself up in about a week with no casualties

    I've been out at the pond a few times today and the fish are looking good, they are coming up the the surface for food and darting around the pond again, so I'm feeling good about this stage of my ponding experience being over but I wont be confident for another few days of no floating goldies

    About the plants, we have had plants before this incident, there were 3 water lettuce (which in my opion suck in direct sunlight) there were two types of underwater plants and 2 small hyacinths, yesterday we went and picked up 5 large hyacinths and 2 lillies, the water lettuce got run over by the lawnmower today, they were ugly and a waste of money, the seller mislead us completely when selling them to us, lucky we did get our money back for them
     
    pdpond, May 24, 2013
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  19. pdpond

    fishin4cars True friends just call me Larkin Moderator

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    I'm not going to say it isn't oxygen depletion from algae, But I really have a hard time believing it's all oxygen related problems that have caused all this. With a water fall and a turn over rate like your stating I just have a hard time believing it's in fact oxygen depletion, If it was I really think you would have seen more fish gasping for air at the surface. again like I posted earlier, adding oxygen isn't going to hurt anything, and may help. But with it clearing that fast, and the symptoms described I really think it could be a new pond cycling issue, a gran negative bacterial infection (Only way to know for certain is by having a scrape and scope done of a living fish to determine this and not be guessing) or a chemical reaction between the source water and the pond water or a chemical reaction by something getting in the pond, such as insecticide, fertilizer, insect spray or other aerosol type spray. It may be a blessing in disguise though. Lowering the population and asking questions at least now you have a better control on the situation and are at the right spot where you can ask and at least get some educated or experienced knowledge as to what may be happening and plans of action to take.
    Barley extract will not help the nitrogen cycle, If anything it will only help in some control of algae species at best,. Even that is of some debate. plants however could really help, they will help shade the pond, keep it cooler and more stable, help remove Nitrates, help protect the fish from possible predators, plus, they simply help bring out the natural beauty of a pond. again something that can be added that may help and should not hurt anything. AS LONG AS THEY ARE CLEANED AND NOT INTRODUCING ANOTHER PARASITE OR BACTERIA TO THE POND. RINSING ANY NEW PLANTS IN FRESH WATER OR LOW SALT SOLUTION WILL HELP PREVET THE ADDITION OF MOST PARASITES. Again, this is why Quarantine is important, isolating anything that is living and going to be added to the pond will help a lot in limiting the possibilities of adding unwanted diseases to your pond. 3-4 week QT is the minimum I recommend QTing a fish and 1-3 weeks on plants.
     
    fishin4cars, May 24, 2013
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  20. pdpond

    ALLINKDUP

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    Hi Don....I just wanted to throw a coupla things out there for you to think about....foremost do you have well water or city water...i never heard you mention dechlor when you were talking about the trickle fill-up...40% is a lot to refill w/out dechlor.....next....you have what are called, C F U's...or Colony Forming Units....imagine if you will, your fish' slime and skin..even it's insides....in that slime you have millions of organisms called cfu's, living peaceably on a healthy fish and raging war with a sick fish....I will use Ich for an example here since it was mentioned earlier in the post..in those millions of organisms, we will say your healthy fish in your pond have a cfu count of 20000 ppm's of ich on it's person and you throw your newly acquired fish in, that , let's say, has a cfu count of 5000....for the healthy fish in your pond to have a cfu of 20K means that there are obviously more way more CFU's of ich floating around in the WATER for the healthy fish to have a count of 20K, than your new fish, that hopefully had been properly qt'd wherever you got the fish from, would be able to fight off or sustain those numbers that are 4X higher than what is on the new fish...I know it sounds like a bunch of mumbo jumbo but you take in to consideration that there are dozens, even hundreds of different types of organisms in your pond and on your fish, and add that to the already stressed fish that you are introducing and you can throw their immune system and protocol right out the window and you have a crap shoot at best....it sounds like some others here are offering good bits of advice....just remember we are on the interweb here and just because it is on the web doesn't make it true...but I bet my explanation of cfu's is a lot easier to understand than the one from my biology professor neighbor...his is way too long and boring...yawn...LOL...Billy
     
    ALLINKDUP, May 25, 2013
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