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  1. Hello y'all, sorry for the massive post, but I need help. Throughout my life I've assisted my parents with aquariums and have owned several smaller ones growing up. Now that I'm a young adult living on my own, I decided to get into the hobby on my own. After copious amounts of research, I went ahead to my LFS and purchased a 36 gallon bowed tank, some live plants, liquid bacteria starter, and (yes I know), 4 cherry barbs to begin a fish-in cycle per their instructions. I tried my absolute hardest to keep them alive via a sponge filter that had been running in my old tank at my parents' house for over a year, the live plants, and the liquid bacteria. I was testing the water frequently, and even with a very light feeding once or twice a week I never saw any ammonia or nitrites, and the nitrates stayed in the low 5-10ppm. My hardness stayed at 8.2 throughout testing. However, no matter how carefully I monitored them, within just a day or two from getting them home I saw them flashing against the substrate. Within a day after that, I noticed a single white spot on one of the fish. I immediately went out and grabbed the med trio from my LFS, and after confirming what I saw by observing for that day, turned the temperature up to around 80 degrees (max safe temp I saw for cherry barbs online) and began dosing the following day. The spots had cleared SIGNIFICANTLY by day 2-3 (now almost a week into having them at this point), and I was doing my water changes every 24 hours (with dechlorinator) + dosing to the specifications. After about day 3-4, the progress completely halted even as I continued treatment. The spots would no longer disappear past 1-2 spots, and stayed mostly on the fish's fins. I then started noticing fin rot via discoloration on their tail fins combined with the fins being rapidly destroyed. In addition to the Ich-X, I started dosing the Maracyn as well. It was at this point, a full 2 weeks into this battle, that my first fish died. I had no signs of this about to happen, all four were still very active and wanting to eat. A day later, the second one died. Two days later, the third. I tested my water again during this period to the same result: 0 PPM ammonia/nitrite, 5-10 PPM nitrate, hardness at 8.2. I then went out and hurriedly purchased a 10 gallon tank as a quarantine for the last one (Upwards of $70 of meds at this point after a new tank setup was really starting to hurt, and I didn't want to be dosing 36 gallons worth of meds for a single juvenile cherry barb). I then set up my spare, cycled sponge filter in the quarantine tank after letting the temp rise to 80 degrees, and moved her in there. I dosed the first day of meds for the quarantine tank yesterday, and she actually came out of hiding to start swimming around which I thought to be a good sign. Cut to this morning, she was struggling to swim upright, and as I'm writing this she just passed away. I'm at a total loss. My LFS says they're unsure of what went wrong given I had treated as I was supposed to, my water parameters were fine, and even when being quizzed by them I found I had made none of the usual mistakes like forgetting dechlorinator. I'm down so much money additional money between the meds needed for 1-2 weeks of my main tank, then getting my quarantine tank and it was all for nothing because they all still died despite my best efforts. Can anyone help me pick this situation apart? I know fish-in cycle wasn't ideal, but I decided to try on my LFS's suggestion, and went to great lengths using an established sponge filter, liquid bacteria, and live plants. My LFS has no answers, and maybe I'm just trying to find blame, but there has to be SOMETHING I did wrong during all of this to cause such a massive spiral out of control. I kept reading how Ich is not a big deal, and yet now I've lost all four of them to it + fin rot making me think I'm still at fault for something I'm missing. For now, I'm simply keeping up with root tabs + fertilizer along with 8 hours of light on an automatic timer in the display tank to keep it cycled via the live plants still left in there. Am I just incredibly dumb and it was actually epistylis all along? Should I continue to treat the quarantine tank and display tank with Ich-X for awhile longer to kill it off quicker? Even if Ich-X and temperature will help kill it off, should I still wait longer than the 2-4 weeks I see people spit balling? Should I just clean out/sterilize the quarantine tank and move the seasoned sponge filter back in the main tank to preserve the beneficial bacteria on it since both tanks are infected anyway? Or should I let it sit as well for the Ich to die out and then let the bacteria on the sponge filter die out with it? Will my tank continue becoming cycled/seasoned just off of dosing ferts/root tabs + plants alone until it's fish safe again? I'm starting to see new growth from most of the plants I currently have in the tank. I'm very demoralized and just needing help on understanding what went wrong, if anything, and how to proceed from here. I don't want to give up, but I want to make sure I avoid this again. I'm quarantining every fish that comes into my home from now on for starters. Any answers or suggestions would be greatly appreciated. I will also include pictures of the two tanks, the fish, and the most recent test results for both tanks. Fish the first day of starting Ich-x: Main tank (I keep the HOB for big filter, and the left sponge filter on Aquarium co-ops air pump with battery back-up in case of power outages, the middle sponge filter was to jumpstart bacteria colony from an older tank): Main tank most recent water parameters: Quarantine Tank: Quarantine tank last test (today):
  2. What is the long white thing from my cherry Barb's mouth? Is it concerning?
  3. MTS! Yeah, another tank found its way into my home today. will be a dedicated cherry shrimp set up.
  4. Tank Parameters: pH: 6.9 Nitrates: 25ppm Hardness: 150ppm Nitrite: 0 Ammonia: 0 KH/Buffer: 40-80ppm Water Temperature: 82F Hello, I recently had a heater malfunction resulting in my tank dropping in temperature and an ick outbreak. All of my fish have recovered from ick after treating them with Ich-X. This one cherry barb seems to have developed an infection on his head and I have moved him to a quarantine tank with salt. I was wondering what specifically this infection is and what else I should be doing to treat it. His scales seems to be raising and the infection appears white. Thank you.
  5. I just created a topic yesterday about cherry barbs, and now one of mine appears to be sick. He has a bump on one side that almost appears a bit fuzzy, but it's not white at all like typical fungus. He's also having some trouble swimming and staying upright. I tried to take some pictures. Any advice? Water Parameters: pH -> 6.8 Nitrates -> 5-10 ppm Hardness -> very hard (maxes out the test strips) Nitrite -> 0 ppm Ammonia -> 0 ppm KH/Buffer -> I have a hard time reading this one, but it actually looks to be on the lower end of the color chart Water Temperature 78 degrees F
  6. I have had Cherry Barbs in my 10 gal tank and I decided to add them to my 40 gal planted breeder tank Community. I have 2/1 ratio with 9 Barbs. Now I just added a 15 school of Neons Tetra with them. I know everyone worries about Barbs but the Cherry Barbs are peaceful. Sometimes the Neon and Barbs will school together or just swim with each other. My Barb just taught the Neons how they surf off the bubbles of the Sponge Filter, mostly in the mornings. Now the Barbs do chase each other from time to time BUT that’s apart of mating court. They never chase the Neons! It’s so adorable sometimes everyone is segregated into 2 different groups and sometimes their swimming together. However I just wanted everyone to know how amazing Cherry Barbs are in terms of “not” being nippy!
  7. I have nine Cherry Barb fry that are about seven weeks old. It sure looks like they’re all female. Is there a point at which the males get their solid red coloring?
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