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Old 05-29-2011, 07:30 PM   #1 
DarkMoon17's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: MA and MO
Bad Water?

Ok guys, it has to be the water. Every time I put fish in the spawn tanks they become lethargic and "not themselves" by the end of the 1st day. I just separated Anakin and Kuki because they both appeared lethargic and were just hanging out on opposite sides of the tank (no injuries, just not acting right). Senshi's spawn was lost for no apparent reason, Senshi also became extremely lethargic for no apparent reason and had to be removed early. Anakin is lethargic but ok, Kuki was all clamped up but was fine this morning with some clean, salted water.

All breeders have been conditioned for at least a month and are healthy and active in their normal homes. I use the same water and additives in all my tanks. The only obvious difference is that the spawn tanks are not filtered.

I tested my tap, spawn tanks and long term homes at Petco today. Apparently, my water is "soft" and in the ideal range for fish, which is a surprise. There was a low reading of ammonia in the spawn tank sample but it was otherwise clean.

The only thing that stood out was that the pH is 7.5-8. Would that be enough to prevent spawning? Would IAL or Betta Spa (atison's product) be enough to fix it?

There is also protein scum in the spawn tanks (no filter). Would that prevent them from spawning and/or kill fry? I typically have a sponge filter in my spawning tanks, this is the first time I have not used one. Would that be worth a try?

How the water/tank is prepared:
1) 5 gallons of aged tap water (we use well water)
2) Stress Coat added (no chlorines but possible heavy metals)
3) Heavily Planted, bare bottom, regular 10 gal tank
4) Heated, 82*F
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Old 05-30-2011, 11:58 AM   #2 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: USA
What kind of plants are you using, I would lower the water temp to 80F, how far in advance do you set the spawning tanks up...its odd that you are showing ammonia in the spawning tank...pH is fine, however, I would add the IAL anyway...but be sure and have them in the IAL water in their regular tanks are you acclimating them to the spawning tanks......other than the ammonia......its not uncommon for them to clamp up as a response to a new tank or other fish in the tank with them...but it shouldn't last for more than an hour or so.....another thing that stick out....especially since you use all the same stuff in all the tanks....its the tank itself......maybe it was contaminated in some way......try a different tank all together for spawning and see if this makes a difference.....
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Old 05-30-2011, 02:46 PM   #3 
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Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Salyersville Ky
I could be wrong, but from what I observed... temporary clamping of the fins appears to be a submissive gesture in response to other fish.

Is this accurate? or way off?
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Old 05-30-2011, 08:09 PM   #4 
DarkMoon17's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: MA and MO
Thanks OFL
Let's see...
The tanks should be safe since 3 weeks ago they were housing happy/healthy adult bettas. They were just drained and refilled. I don't have other small tanks to try out so I'll PP them. I put the water in the tanks 36-48 hours ahead of time and allowed the water to age and get to the right temp. I have no idea why there was ammonia in the tanks, the fish had only been in it for 2 days and it isn't in the tap water.

Plants: Anarachis, ludwigia, pennywort, 1 broad leafed plant I can't remember name, amazon sword, java fern, java moss

I typically allow the betta to adjust to new tanks for at least 15 minutes, sometimes longer and I mix the water occasionally. She was so clamped up I thought she was dead. I jarred her so she could destress, she is fine now.
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