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Honey Gourami staring, not eating, died a few days later

Justin Campbell

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I had a pair of Honey Gourami in a 10 gallon tank that I was attempting to breed. Both fish seemed happy and healthy since we got them in February. They had been in this tank for 3 months. I got the male to make a bubble nest a few times, mostly whenever I fed blood worms.

About a month ago the male developed a dark orange color, which I assumed were breeding colors.

I noticed maybe 5 days ago that the male was just staring off, no personality. His tail was making a wave motion. It wouldn’t eat anything I put in the tank. Yesterday I didn’t know what to do, so I moved the female and dosed Maracyn, assuming it might be a bacteria issue.

Today I did a 50% water change because he still looked bad, and a few hours later I found him at the bottom of the tank.

I tested the water after he died and nitrates were around 40, which seems high after a 50% water change. I try to keep tanks around 20. With nothing else to go on I’m assuming water quality got too bad. I also found planaria in the tank. I should have tested the water when I first noticed him acting weird.

Ammonia 0

Nitrite 0

pH 7.4 which my tap water stays pretty solid at.

I’d like to know what happened, but more importantly I’m wondering what I should do to the female. Should I give her the med trio? Should I deworm her? I haven’t dewormed a fish yet. Her belly is big but I assumed that was from eggs. Otherwise she seems totally normal.

She’s also in a tank with 7 Panda Corys now. I’m assuming whatever I treat her with I should also treat them now.

ApologiesBD5AA103-A433-4BD0-9A70-EAC381034EB5.jpeg.1cd34374841ec27a73743f87405df10a.jpeg for the rotated picture, I’m not sure my my iPhone did that.

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Here are some pics of the female (at least I think it’s a female). She’s been acting normal, but seems bloated. I thought originally she was full of eggs, but then I read that egg-layers don’t appear much larger. I just moved her to a bare-bottom tank so I can monitor her poop. Do you think she’s egg-y, bloated, or just we’ll-fed? Should I do anything or just observe her for a few weeks? I’d like to move her to a community tank eventually.






Edited by Justin Campbell
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Oh no, I'm sorry to hear that! I've kept honey gouramis before, but I've never seen symptoms like that before. I downloaded the video and I'm not sure if her roundness is from eggs or worms, so I think you're right about trying to observe her poop to see if it's abnormal or not. Maybe someone else in the forum has some suggestions?

If the fish never went through the quarantine med trio, it might be worth putting them through it just to try to give the remaining fish a clean bill of health. Here is an article from Aquarium Co-Op about how to treat with those medications. Let us know what happens!

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@Sleepyno scales were popping out/pineconing but I suppose it could still be dropsy.

I've been reading through these trying to get a clear picture of symptoms and treatments: 


I have noticed stringy poop in the past in the community tank these came from, but I don't see it right now on this Gourami. I think I'll end up trying a medicated flake food from Angels Plus, but I'm still trying to decide what to target. I have a female guppy in another tank with stringy poop, but I'm not sure if that's related.

That was a long way of saying I'm just observing everything right now and trying to narrow it down. 😃


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