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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Today is a sad day indeed and I'm hoping my ignorance slash skill set is corrected fast.

Came home after adding a thin layer of rinsed out gravel over my existing substrate and introduction of the 4 silver dollars and 5 tiger barbs this morning to see every fish floating. Nitrate levels were somewhat high but not extreme...


Is this?

- My H.O.T. Magnum filters with no bio filters (new tank switch after setting it up with emperor 400's.

- Gravel covering the good bacteria in the substrate?

- Driftwood not properly soaked for 72 hours?

I need to learn this fast and get things under control...

p.s. fish are like 2-3 weeks old - would the store give me credit for the fish?

*sh
 

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Definately sry to hear about the loss. <sniff>

There could be many factors here by the sound of it. Question is which ones?

I take it the tank has already been established for a spell?
Where did you get the gravel and driftwood? If not store bought, could be a contaminate issue.
Are the filters new on this tank and you just swapped them out? I wouldn't suspect this on a well established tank, but, if you didn't have any established BB left, could throw the tank into a full cycle ... which would be bad.
What are/were the water parms?

This should be a start.

As for LFS giving a credit...I would doubt it. Most places only have a couple day policy. You could always check. They will more than likely ask for a water sample too.
 

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How long was this tank setup and how long were fish in it? Is this the 80g tank listed in your sig and did it have all the fish listed die overnight? Did you notice any breathing at the top or not eating over the last few days? Did you recently do a water change?

Did you test the water for Nitrite and Ammonia levels? Where did this new gravel come from?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
The tank was seemingly running well - yes 80gl and all fish in sig are gone ( a few weeks)before the driftwood, gravel and fish (4 silver dollars and 5 tiger barbs) - I added the driftwood on Friday and rinsed it pretty good but noticed after I put it in that the debris and particules where heavier - previously I put new hot mags on (Thursday) 1 day before the driftwood arrived.

I noticed slightly higher nitrates so I did a 20% water change and added the gravel which covered the existing substrate. Added "Stability" and nitrate/chlorine remover.

Gravel - PetSmart along with the fish.

Fish were gasping for oxygen last night and on top of tank - I jumped up at 3:00a.m. to do an emergency 50% water change as the nitrates were in the stress level but not harmful according to the test.

Had to be farming by 5:00a.m. so when I left they were swimming bottom to mid level like usual and the tank tested neutral...came home at 9:45 a.m.

Damn! I feel like I let them down!
 

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Did you test for ammonia and what was the nitrAte level? If less <= 40 then that wouldn't be the issue. Gasping for air tends me to lean towards an ammonia spike. Still a lot of unknowns. If you can post up your test parms...that might help.

I understand the loss. I lost my 46 with an unexplained crash.
 

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Did you transfer any media from the old filters to the Hot Mags or keep the old ones running at the same time?

How bout more info on the driftwood too?

Sry for all the ?s...just trying to piece things togther.
 

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This sounds like 1 of 3 things:

1. High ammonia

2. High nitrite (not nitrate).

3. Warmer water/less oxygen (less likely), but check your tank's temp.

Test your ammonia and nitrite level if possible. What are you using as your chlorine neutralizer? My concern is that you are using something crappy like API which removes chlorine only and converts chloramines to pure ammonia. Doing a 50% water change with this dechlorinator, would be like spiking your tank with ammonia.

I hope we can get to the bottom of this...such a tragedy in a tank this size. ;(
 

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My first guess, without any chemical testing results, is much like jim has said. You changed to a new filter without proper time to establish the new filter as a biological filter so you got high ammonia and / or nitrite due to that lack. The thing that you must learn is that you never do anything quickly with a fish tank. When you decided to replace the 400s with the HOT magnum, you moved to do so without taking the time to get the new potential filter ready. I say potential because the hardware that comes in the box is not a filter, it has the potential to become a decent filter if, and only if, you take the time to establish the proper bacterial colonies in it. In the meantime, it cannot support the processing of organic wastes that your fish will need it to do. When you then removed the old filter, there was nothing left in the tank to deal with the ammonia that fish produce at all times.
 

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Very sorry about your loss, its tragic to say the least, but trust me i can see youre already in More than capable hands, so i will just back out and again, im truely sorry. :(
 
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