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  1. Sorry for the late response, I have been doing daily water changes and just haven't had the motivation to actually check my mail. It is a quarantine tank that I didn't have set up for long (roughly 2-3 weeks before getting fish). I had placed an extra sponge filter (which was running in my cycled 10gal) in it to bring over beneficial bacteria, but that does not make the tank automatically "cycled" from what I've read, it just helps it along, and I should have read more on that. I'll keep bacterial infections in mind. And I did read about kuhli loaches preferring softer water - the only reason I decided to give it a try is because I've heard that others have kept them in very hard water and they just kept the acclimation process very gradual. From what I've read for those who have done this, they have better luck doing so with captive bred kuhlis. I checked with the store where I got them, and they did state that the kuhlis I got were captive bred. Still, although it may have worked for others, maybe it's just not meant to be for me. I added some floating plants from my 10gal and a catappa leaf. Those additions, along with water changes, seem to be doing the trick for now. Thank you for sharing your knowledge and experience with me. I'll be sure to take this as a definite (if unfortunate) learning experience and read up more on any other fish I intend to get. I'll also be making sure to not rush things and take it slow with the whole process of acquiring them.
  2. I feel like an idiot. Of course, that's one of the first and main things you check for. I ended up doing another water change like you said but had to run to the store for an ammonia test kit (I should have had it on hand). If it was ammonia, the water change solved it - I should have kept a sample of the water I changed out to check. That one little guy didn't make it before the water change, unfortunately, but the other fish seem to be doing okay for now. I'm going to be religiously testing the water from now on and keeping an eye out for any more of that kind of behavior. If I see those behaviors again, I'm going to follow your advice. Thank you for helping me out. I feel so dumb about the ammonia, but I won't be making that mistake again.
  3. So the rest of my fish weren't displaying any abnormalities since that one kuhli died, but today I noticed one of my other kuhlis swimming frantically to the point of tiring himself out and sinking to the bottom to rest before doing it all over again. It looks like he is trying to launch himself out of the tank, which is never a good sign, so I checked my water parameters but everything is exactly the same as when I initially posted. When he's on the ground and staying still, I can tell that he's breathing rapidly, and his gills do look pretty red. The other surviving kuhli and hillstream loach are hiding in their little cave and aren't doing any of this, so I don't know what's going on. I ended up doing a partial water change out of paranoia, but it doesn't seem to have helped and he's still swimming around like that. It's breaking my heart because I don't know what to do for him. Everything I find online keeps saying to check the water parameters, which I've done, and nothing seems out of the ordinary.
  4. Ooh, I didn't even think about that possibility. I turned up the settings on my air pump to max to make sure there's enough oxygen, and I am monitoring the other fish. So far they seem to be okay, but I'll be keeping a close eye on them.
  5. Hello all, I'm just going to start with water parameters: Temp: 77°F pH: 7.6-8.0ish Nitrates: 0ppm Nitrites: 0ppm GH: 300ppm KH: 80-120ppm Chlorine: 0ppm For the pH, Aquarium Coop's test strips don't have a reading between those 2 so it might not be exact, and the GH is a lighter purple than what's on the label (I'll include a picture for those who don't have Aq. Coop strips in case they're different), but we do have very hard water here. Now I'd set up a clear tote for quarantining new fish for a 29gal I finished cycling just recently and then got 3 kuhli loaches and 1 hillstream on Sat, 7/15 from a local pet store (local being an hour drive). I floated them for about 30min, opened the bag and tested the water they came from, plus my own, and drip acclimated them as well. After releasing them into the QT tank, I left them alone for the rest of the weekend to give them a bit to settle down. I didn't notice any overt signs of illness when I got them. I began preventative treatment following Aq. Coop's recommended med trio (Ich-X, Fritz Paracleanse, and Maracyne) on Mon, 7/17. Everything seemed to be going well for the past couple days, but today I got home from work and found one of the loaches had died. To be honest, this is my first time keeping kuhlis and I don't necessarily know what to look for. I didn't see any white spots so no ich, but the belly has some teeny tiny red spots and there's that redness toward the upper length of the body (by the head) and a white tendril. Is that a parasite? I haven't dealt with too much fish sickness since I started the hobby about 3 years ago, so any insight would be appreciated.
  6. That's a huge relief. Thanks. I'll still monitor it for now to make sure it doesn't end up being something else, but at least I won't be anxious about it anymore.
  7. Hey everyone, I wasn't sure exactly where to post this, but since it's something growing, I decided to post it here. I have a 10-gallon cycled tank with 2 nerites and just added some pygmy cories. Temp - 76 F, nitrate - 10ppm, nitrite - 0, GH - 300 (it's a very light purple with AC test strips, so idk if I'm reading it 100% accurate since the bottle's indicator is a darker purple), KH - 40, pH - 6.8 This white stuff appeared in my tank after I added a banquet block for my nerite snails. It is localized in that one spot between the moss balls where I had the banquet block. I hadn't had fish in a while, so my tank currently has an abundant population of seed shrimp and detritus worms. I can't tell if this white stuff is baby worms (it doesn't seem to be moving as far as I can tell, but it's tiny tiny, so it's hard to see) or some kind of fungus or parasite. Most of it is in tiny starlike clusters that look like little hairs sticking up from the surface they're attached to. Any help in figuring out what this is is appreciated. Thanks.
  8. Okay, that's fascinating. Thanks a lot, I think that might be what's going on! I'll still observe for a while to make sure, but I'm less worried now!
  9. Huh. I haven't actually sexed them to be honest. But the white spot is on his face between his eyes. Is that normally where the eggs would come out?
  10. Hey, so I just saw my nerite snail with this white spot on his flesh. It's on skin that's normally pulled up under his shell, but since he was feeding at a funny angle, I noticed it and took pictures right away. I don't know if this is something that's normal to be there or if he's got some kind of sickness/parasite/sore. Also, he does have that pit in his shell, but I will be picking up some calcium blocks for him this week. I just noticed the white spot and if I need to get something else to treat it I'd prefer to do it in one trip as it's a bit of a drive to the pet store.
  11. I will try that. I'll have to pick some up tomorrow. Thank you!
  12. Would you treat with kanaplex and aquarium salt at the same time or alternate somehow?
  13. 10 gallon planted with 2 sponge filters. Water parameters: Temp - 78F Nitrate - 0 (I know, I need to feed my plants, I've been worried more about the fish lately) Nitrite - 0 GH (ppm) - 300 (I think - aquarium coop test kit, light lavender) KH (ppm) - 80 pH - 7.2 Chlorine - 0 Ammonia - 0 Okay guys, I don't know what I'm doing. I'm still fairly new to the hobby, but I've been trying my best to care for my betta, Mushi. I got him 8/31/21, so I haven't had him long, but he's already been scaring me to death this month. I feed him Hikari freeze dried daphnia, Hikari betta bio-gold, and frozen spirulina brine shrimp. I only ever accidentally overfed him once at the beginning of this month (with the brine shrimp), and I think that's where all this started. I fasted him for 2-3 days after overfeeding (he had gotten bloated), and his bloat did decrease significantly to where he was either back to normal or close enough to it that my untrained eyes couldn't tell. I fasted one more day just to be sure. The next day I couldn't find him anywhere and was really starting to worry when I found him hiding/cornering between two floating plants. He had no appetite despite the several day fast and had actually bloated up again. Water parameters were similar to what I outlined above; only difference was probably nitrates but still within acceptable range. I did a 10% WC anyway and added a catappa leaf. The day after he was still hiding and had severe pineconing. I did a 5% WC just because, but was pretty much panicking so I started medicating with Fritz Maracyn. I did a full course treatment (5 days, no WC). He got his appetite back on day 2, energy back day 3, and bloat was down day 4 but the pineconing was still pretty severe on his left side (whitish at the base and looked like some scales were going to fall off). On day 5 his pineconing was significantly reduced, but there was a circular white area with what looked like a singular stringy white strand right behind his left pectoral fin where the pineconing (and bloat) had been the worst. I think he did lose some scales and this was the result. The stringy bit was gone the day after and the sore or whatever it was rapidly healed. I also did a 25% WC. Also, that's not ich or a sore on his face, he swam past some detritus caught in a floater's roots. Again, to be safe, I rested him a couple days like the package says and then did another round of treatment (1 packet/5 days). The last day for that was 11/14, and I still saw slight pineconing. Nowhere near as bad as before, but I think any is bad. I also did a 25% WC on the 15th and did a 10% WC today (will probably do 10% every other day unless someone gives me different advice). The rest of the photos are from today (11/17/21). He also still looks slightly bloated, though not as bad as before, and I've been feeding him every other day. I'd say I'm even feeding him incredibly sparingly, just one meal a day, no bigger than his eyeball. So all that to ask, do I treat him with Maracyn again? Do I just keep treating him until he stops pineconing? He's already been through 2 full courses of treatment so I don't know if that's the right move. Should I try an Epsom salt soak for 15 minutes like I've heard? I'd have to pick it up tomorrow. And not only all that, but I'm wondering if I should be concerned about the state of his poop? I know it can be an indicator of health issues and, well, he's pooping in the pic so I guess you can tell me if I need to change up his diet. I don't know what to do guys and I'm feeling really discouraged. I'd appreciate any help.
  14. Did you have any luck? My betta just started pineconing today. He'd also had a large belly for a few days, so I'd been fasting him since I initially thought it was due to constipation, but his energy levels were still up. Then he didn't come out much yesterday (but wasn't pineconing), and today I checked on him and he's pineconing pretty severely on one side. I've been consistent with water changes and parameters have been normal. I did a few smaller, extra water changes when I noticed his bloated belly too.
  15. Wow, lots of good info and suggestions! I tend to overthink things so getting input from others helps me out a lot - thanks! I am leaning more toward bringing him with me since he is my fish and my hobby and I don't think any of my family members would be willing to take care of him for the whole time I'm gone. They like watching him and don't mind occasionally looking after him when I've been gone for a couple days, but they'd probably consider it more of a hassle after a few weeks passed. On the other hand, I have a friend in the city where I'm going to school who has kept a betta before and I could leave him with her during breaks. I did think about the plywood idea but it's nice to have some confirmation on that - thanks! I didn't think of putting him in a cup, but that's a good suggestion. I did briefly think of getting a 5 gallon, but I decided that I don't really want to downsize and I'm willing to put the work in for him to keep his space. Just because I'll be in a smaller space doesn't mean he has to. 🙂 I'm actually returning to school after taking a break to work and save up for it, so I think I'll be able to get a routine down for dedicating time to him pretty well, but that's definitely something to keep in mind. Also, I like to stay in and don't really party, so he'll definitely be used as an excuse for that, lol.
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