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Apistogramma flabellicauda breathing heavily

Bramgroet

Member
Messages
182
Hello,

I recently got two apistogramma flabellicauda one certain male and a what looked like a female. But yesterday I saw the female breathing heavely in a corner and today she passed away. The male breathes heavily but doesn't act weird he eats good he flinches when I come to the tank etc. I don't know the cause but I think that my cardinals are breathing a bit heavily to. I do a waterchange once a week with 100% RO. The tank is 100 x 40 x 50cm and I do a 70l waterchange every week. The pH is 5,8; TDS 15 ppm, No2 0 mg/l, no3 and Po4 are normal I don't know the exact paramaters of No3 and Po4. I did add some small oak logs these might be taking to much O2? I added the logs a few months ago tho and not a single fish has died. Couldn't it be the floating plants that cause a bad gas exchange with the water? Otherwise I don't know. Does anyone have an idea?

Thanks!
 

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MacZ

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,187
Location
Germany
First of all: The parameters of interest are NH3/4, NO2, O2, pH, temperature and conductivity. Phosphates and Nitrates don't matter unless very high.
As the logs have been added a while ago, they are out as a reason.
I'd add an airstone and see what happens.
 

Bramgroet

Member
Messages
182
My apistogramma came from Ernst van Genne a hobbyist in the Netherlands so I did not quarantine. But the other fish seem fine. I will keep to take a close look at them.

No2 and NH3 and 4 are 0, temperature about 25°c so nothing wrong there.

But if the O2 parameter is to low wouldn’t the fish be trying to get air from the surface cause I am not seeing a single fish do that. Same for No2 and NH3/4 right?
 

Jacobus

Member
Messages
32
One dead fish may be bad luck, but all fish in the tank grasping for 'air' is unlikely to be a matter of bad luck only.
 

Bramgroet

Member
Messages
182
They aren’t grasping for air certainly not. I would say that the male is breathing heavily but nothing more than that. But they might be breathing faster dan usual. But especially with the cardinals it’s hard to see if they breathe heavily because of their smaller size. But you are right it could be not bad luck and that something might be wrong so I am trying to get that sorted out. Also the other fish are doing great eating good etc. Also the fish are not trying to get air from the surface if you mean that by grasping for air.
 

Jacobus

Member
Messages
32
Grasping for air was meant as a matter of speech, but is inaccurate of course. Heavy breathing, as you call it, is equally worrisome I would say. Too much carbondioxide or too little oxygen?
Aeration can be tried.
Did you put a lot of dead wood and leaves at once in the tank?
 

Bramgroet

Member
Messages
182
Too much carbondioxide or too little oxygen?
Aeration can be tried.
Did you put a lot of dead wood and leaves at once in the tank?
I add about 15 leaves a month throughout the weeks in a 200 L tank so not to much. I wouldn’t know what it is I could try to take a video and see if y’all would think that the fish are breathing heavily.
 

MacZ

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,187
Location
Germany
I would appreciate a video.

And 15 leaves a month is barely anything.

What I find most problematic: It sound s like the "classic" phenomenon. Heavy breathing, loss of appetite, siting in the corner, death. You see that all the time with most species and there's still no real explanation, let alone a cure.
 

Bramgroet

Member
Messages
182
Well I do not know the loss of appetite with the female since she was only in the tank for a week so she wasn’t eating big time from the start. But otherwise the other fish eat good.
 

MacZ

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,187
Location
Germany
Oh, I'm talking of a phenomenon specifically seen in dwarf cichlids. The loss of appetite is negligible in cases that are happening quickly.
 

Bramgroet

Member
Messages
182
Now that I am looking at the male I don't think that he is breathing too heavily I will sent a video to make sure but I guess these kind of things can happen when adding new fish and dwarf chiclids might be even more vulnerable for this. I will keep a close eye on them.
 

Bramgroet

Member
Messages
182
Now the male is going to die too I think. Hadn’t seen him in days then just now I saw him. Breathing really heavily and I think I can see some fungi not sure. But I am really worried the other fish might get the fungi for now they seem to do just fine. I’ll try and make a picture. But I am certain I did not see any fungi on the female when she died.
 

Bramgroet

Member
Messages
182
Male died cardinals are doing fine. I looked at the male I couldn’t see anything on the oudside of the male.
 

Jacobus

Member
Messages
32
Sorry to hear that. Perhaps choose a less delicate dwarf cichlid?
Good that the cardinals are keeping well.
 

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