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Old 01-24-2011, 11:58 AM   #1
began1
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All fish suddenly died overnight


I'm new hear and in need of some help. I have a 55 gallon saltwater tank that has been set up for aroun 4 months or so. Everything was going great, my fish were active eating like pigs etc... I have/had around 75lbs of live rock with various different soft corals, a large maxim clam, a medussa worm, fire shrimp, peppermint shrinp, 15 hermits, 10 snails, a large anemone, 2 clownfish and 3 blennies. All were doing great! I went to bed last night around 10pm, turned off all their lights etc. and woke up at 5:30am to ALL of the fish dead. Everything else seems to be doing okay (shrimp, corals, etc.) oh and the Medussa worm was only about an inch long compared to his normal 12 inches.... I immediately checked the nitrite, nitrate, PH, ammonia, temp, everything checked out fine. The only thing I can think of is that the day before, I had replaced the carbon and the sponge material in the cannister filter. I had rinsed all of it out before putting it back into the cannister etc... I have heard before that Medussa worms can replease toxins when they die and even though he wasn't dead (still sucking his arm things in and out of his mouth) something was obviously wrong with him since he was only an inch long so I removed him as well when I removed the dead fish. Do you have any ideas what could have caused all the fish to die but not kill off the shrimp, crabs, etc???
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Old 01-24-2011, 12:21 PM   #2
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Welcome to TRT! thats alot (load) for such a young(cycled) tank.Please post all your water parameter readings.
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Old 01-24-2011, 12:25 PM   #3
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Other question was what did you use to clean the cannister with and what did you rinse the sponge and carbon with?
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Old 01-24-2011, 12:37 PM   #4
began1
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I only poured out the cannister and rinsed the sponge and carbon with tap water.

Ammonia - .25
Nitrite - .0
Nitrate - .0
PH - 8.2
Temp - 77

I was thinking it was possibly something with the carbon or the medussa worm?
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Old 01-24-2011, 12:43 PM   #5
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Sorry to hear of your loss.

Well ammonium is high, so i would guess 1 of 2 things going on. Either all the dead fish started this new ammonium spike or your tank hasn't had enough time to cycle to that large of a biolode.

It does seem fishy that all the inverts are fine since shrimp typically are the first to go. What were your water parameters last week or the last time you tested? was there ammonium present then as well?
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Old 01-24-2011, 12:44 PM   #6
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Yikes! .25 is high and is why they died!
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Old 01-24-2011, 12:44 PM   #7
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Carbon is designed to help alleviate the toxic battles between corals and something would have had to damage and/or kill the medusa worm, so what caused that....something else was likely wrong. The Ammonia puts up a red flag. Was that measured after you removed everything or before? If it was after everything died, then that is somewhat expected. If it was before, then ammonia in the system may have been what killed the fish off, though that amount looks low to have killed off everything in one night.
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Old 01-24-2011, 12:54 PM   #8
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The ammonia level has always been at .0 I tested the water as soon as I found all the fish dead, so that could have been what raised it some. It just seems very odd to me that all of the fish died at the same time, yet the shrimp and crabs are fine..? I have had the shrimps and medussa worm in there since the very beginning, they were the 1st things I added other than a couple of damsels during cycling. Does anyone have any experience with medussa worms and their poisons they can release(can they release poisons even if they aren't dead?)? Or is there any type of tests anyone knows about that can check for poisons in the water?

Also, what should be my next step, water change etc...?

Oh, and the fire shrimp also, molted last night as well...
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Old 01-24-2011, 12:58 PM   #9
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I have to agree that's a lot of load for a new tank. ANY measurable amount of Ammonia or Nitrite is TOO MUCH.

Keep an eye on the inverts for a few days. How is the nem doing? Is it moving around or is it stationary?(stationary......meaning it hasn't moved in weeks).
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Old 01-24-2011, 01:01 PM   #10
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Here is a link. http://www.thereeftank.com/forums/f6...orm-12076.html
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Old 01-24-2011, 01:03 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by began1 View Post

Also, what should be my next step, water change etc...?
99 out of 100 times the best advice would be do a 10% water change, run some activated carbon and just wait and see what happens.


We want everything to be so perfect that sometimes when we try to help, we make matters worse.
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Old 01-24-2011, 01:05 PM   #12
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Yes a waterchange is in order!
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Old 01-24-2011, 01:05 PM   #13
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.25,I'd do more then 10%.
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Old 01-24-2011, 01:06 PM   #14
began1
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The anemone, although it is beautiful is kind fo a pain. When I first got it, it found a spot and stayed there for a while and then when I bought new High output lighting for the tank he decided to move. He then had stayed in that spot for quite a while, only moved 1 time after that and then ended up going back to the 2nd spot and has been there ever since. He looked fine this morning when I found the dead fish and the clownfish loved the anemone, and were always either near or in the anemone. He seemed to open up more when the fish were in him and close up a little when they fish were eating etc.. this morning when the fish were not in him, he was a little more closed but still looked healthy he wasn't droopy looking or anything.
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Old 01-24-2011, 01:06 PM   #15
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What are you using on the bottom? sand substrate, bare bottom?

if it's sand, have you ever vacuumed it?
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