• Hello guest! Are you an Apistogramma enthusiast? If so we invite you to join our community and see what it has to offer. Our site is specifically designed for you and it's a great place for Apisto enthusiasts to meet online. Once you join you'll be able to post messages, upload pictures of your fish and tanks and have a great time with other Apisto enthusiasts. Sign up today!

Worried about my dude

HypnobongInspector

New Member
Messages
7
Hey all, brand new here. Brought home my agassizii on Thursday afternoon. Very slowly eased him into my new tank which was dark started for three weeks. No ammonia, and did a full fresh water change after planting, all parameters look good.

IMG_2242.jpeg


Guys at the shop told me he really liked a particular pellet and didn’t like flake. I looked at their pellets and they were cornstarch for a main ingredient. That didn’t sit well with me so I bought some frozen BBS, frozen plankton, and xtreme peewee pellets.

I first found this forum because I was googling his eating behavior. He was picking up the brine shrimp, chewing it (it appeared) and then filtering it through his gills or spitting it back out. He did this for a while. Next feeding I tried the plankton and it was the same behavior. I found an old thread of someone saying very similar things and then his apisto died.

Trying to get ahead of this!

This morning he was hiding in the back of the tank and overall has not moved around much. He really inspected the whole tank (32 flex) when the lights went off on the first night but I have been surprised at how underactive he’s been.

Now I see a stringy white poop hanging from him and it feels like this is exactly what the previous poster went through. What should I do?

IMG_2253.jpeg
 

MacZ

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,119
Location
Germany
First of all: It's an A. cacatuoides. That tells you how much you can rely on that shopkeeper's advise.
Please fill out the template. We'll see what we can do.


The fish is likely still eating. When chewing the stuff they do filter out a lot more than you think. Probably the fish is just not yet hungry enough to fully feed on unknown foods.

Still, answering the questions will be helpful.
 

HypnobongInspector

New Member
Messages
7
First of all: It's an A. cacatuoides. That tells you how much you can rely on that shopkeeper's advise.
Please fill out the template. We'll see what we can do.


The fish is likely still eating. When chewing the stuff they do filter out a lot more than you think. Probably the fish is just not yet hungry enough to fully feed on unknown foods.

Still, answering the questions will be helpful.
Interesting that it’s a cacatuoides, I found quite a few others that said Agassizii double red also. Can you tell me the details you see to properly identify? I was definitely not impressed with one of the two shop keepers but they do quarantine all of their fish before putting them in sales tanks so I felt good about the purchase overall. Thanks for educating me.

Which animal is affected? Species, sex, age? (If age unknown: How long have you had the fish?)

Cacatuoides (per above input) male, unknown age. Today is Saturday, he came home Thursday. Found a cave, was pretty subdued until the lights went off the first night but has been basically hiding all Saturday morning.

What are the symptoms? Any changes in look, behaviour, bearing, buoyancy, fecies?

Underactive (per my expectations), and now has a stringy white substance hanging from him.

How long has the problem been going on? (Timeline?)

I was concerned about filtering food and not eating on Friday, his behavior Saturday morning has concerned me (as well as finding a similar post of concerns from 2010 here)

What's the full stocking list?
9 neon tetras, 10 cherry barbs

Any changes in the behaviour of the other fish?
Other fish are good

What size is the tank? (Preferrably dimensions, not volume!)

Fluval 32Flex

32.5″ L x 15.35″ W x 15.75″ H
82 x 39 x 40 cm


How long is the tank running?

Dark start with aquasoil and hardscape for three weeks. Planted Wednesday, stocked Thursday

Have there been any changes in the past 2 months? New animals, plants, decoration?

What food are the fish fed? How much, how often?
Neons and barbs were given flake. Tried frozen bbs for Cheeto (cacatuoides) first day, then frozen plankton second day. He did munch a peewee pellet but I did notice fine dust coming from his gills.

What is the temperature?

75°

What are the water parameters? (Please note all known tank and source water parameters in numbers! Not "good", "optimal" or "perfect"!)
pH: 7.0
GH: 75
KH: 40
EC/TDS: unknown
NO3: 0
NO2: unknown
NH3/4: 0

What test kit did you use? (liquid, strips, store service?)

Strips and liquid ammonia test

Are you using water conditioners or any other additives? (e.g. dechlorinators, humic/blackwater extracts, fertilizers)

Dechlorinator on tap water for initial fill, no fertz yet. Tank heavily planted and running light c02

What filter are you using? (Canister, sponge, internal, mattenfilter?)

Internal Fluval, ran for three weeks dark, was given quickstart twice during 3 week process

What's the maintenance regimen? (Waterchange volume and frequency, thorough cleaning of filters/substrate?)

None yet

Have there been any chemicals used around the tank? (Cleaning agents, room sprays, wall paint, adhesives...)

No

Have there been any pesticides, fungicides or herbicides used around the tank?

No

Are there any unknown animals in the tank?

No

What has been done already? (Timeline!)

Nothing

If so, what meds have been used? (Timeline!)

Please provide pictures/videos of the fish AND tank in question!
 

Attachments

  • IMG_2239.jpeg
    IMG_2239.jpeg
    1.7 MB · Views: 107
  • IMG_2242.jpeg
    IMG_2242.jpeg
    1.8 MB · Views: 98
  • IMG_2250.jpeg
    IMG_2250.jpeg
    1.2 MB · Views: 89
  • IMG_2253.jpeg
    IMG_2253.jpeg
    1.3 MB · Views: 106

MacZ

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,119
Location
Germany
Can you tell me the details you see to properly identify?
The big mouth, the lyre-tail (agassizii have spade-tails), the very high "mohawk" dorsal (agassizii have a more stream line dorsal that starts low), the overall high build (agassizii are more torpedo shaped) and the cluster of thin stripes on the stomach (which agassizii lack).

Ok, after reading your answers and seeing the tank and the timeline:

- White fecies can mean parasites BUT a fish that hasn't eaten in some days may shed mucus from its intestines, causing the same looking strings.

- the fish isn't in your tank for very long, the tank is also quite brightly lit (is the picture accurate or is it more subdued or brighter in person?)

- Good you decided for a single male and not a pair or a group. The tank is not decorated (read: structured) well for that.

- The substrate is not ideal. Fine sand is preferred.

Give the fish some time to settle in, add leaf litter and a good amount (2/3 of the surface area) of floating plants to shade the tank. It will reduce the stress.

If the fish doesn't eat by next Friday, read here:



Also, heavily planted... no offence. Not yet. Once the plants have grown in, maybe. Right now... no.
 

HypnobongInspector

New Member
Messages
7
The big mouth, the lyre-tail (agassizii have spade-tails), the very high "mohawk" dorsal (agassizii have a more stream line dorsal that starts low), the overall high build (agassizii are more torpedo shaped) and the cluster of thin stripes on the stomach (which agassizii lack).

Ok, after reading your answers and seeing the tank and the timeline:

- White fecies can mean parasites BUT a fish that hasn't eaten in some days may shed mucus from its intestines, causing the same looking strings.

- the fish isn't in your tank for very long, the tank is also quite brightly lit (is the picture accurate or is it more subdued or brighter in person?)

- Good you decided for a single male and not a pair or a group. The tank is not decorated (read: structured) well for that.

- The substrate is not ideal. Fine sand is preferred.

Give the fish some time to settle in, add leaf litter and a good amount (2/3 of the surface area) of floating plants to shade the tank. It will reduce the stress.

If the fish doesn't eat by next Friday, read here:



Also, heavily planted... no offence. Not yet. Once the plants have grown in, maybe. Right now... no.

The lights are at 60%, I was planning to increase it over a period of weeks so the plants and fish could adjust. The lights ease in at sunrise over two hours and ease into sunset also over two hours.

Obviously the carpet hasnt had a chance to grow in yet but there are still a lot of plants. I know they love sand but I’ve also heard they like plants so that was the route I chose.

Just to be clear on the feeding, would you recommend I still try to feed him daily? He went after the frozen brine shrimp and frozen plankton a lot and for a long period of time, I just wasnt sure how much he was absorbing.

Any thoughts on the cornstarch pellets he was eating? Am I right to avoid that? Appreciate the insight and you taking the time to look through all this.
 

anewbie

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,424
Vaguely that substrate looks like one of the plant substrates that has a lot of ammonia in it - is that correct ? While ammonia is great for jump starting plants fishes kind of react badly to it if it is too new.

As for your question on species; double red is a colour morph that can apply to many different species of fishes and is often an arbitrary name assigned by the seller to describe the colour. It has little to do with the actual species of fish.
 

HypnobongInspector

New Member
Messages
7
Vaguely that substrate looks like one of the plant substrates that has a lot of ammonia in it - is that correct ? While ammonia is great for jump starting plants fishes kind of react badly to it if it is too new.

As for your question on species; double red is a colour morph that can apply to many different species of fishes and is often an arbitrary name assigned by the seller to describe the colour. It has little to do with the actual species of fish.

Yes it is aquasoil, but that is why I did a dark start for three weeks. The ammonia all leached out and was broken down by the bacteria in the filter. There was no ammonia before plants and no ammonia when the fish were placed in the tank.
 

MacZ

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,119
Location
Germany
The lights are at 60%,
And I'd keep it at that.

Obviously the carpet hasnt had a chance to grow in yet but there are still a lot of plants. I know they love sand but I’ve also heard they like plants so that was the route I chose.
If you had sand substrate they should have access to it due to their preferred feeding (chewing sand and picking detritus). A plant carpet in my opinion is the worst for Apistogramma and many other geophagine cichlids.
In their habitats you mostly find floating plants, lotus and the occasional stem plant and waterweed.

Just to be clear on the feeding, would you recommend I still try to feed him daily? He went after the frozen brine shrimp and frozen plankton a lot and for a long period of time, I just wasnt sure how much he was absorbing.
I usually feed every other day.

Any thoughts on the cornstarch pellets he was eating? Am I right to avoid that? Appreciate the insight and you taking the time to look through all this.
Most often it's wheat flour, but yes, In my opinion carbs and grains do not belong in food for cichlids.
 

HypnobongInspector

New Member
Messages
7
I think he’s in a bad way. He looks discolored (reddish stripe under and behind his dorsal fin) and labored breathing. Any suggestions for what I should do?

Video attached
 

Attachments

  • IMG_2256.jpeg
    IMG_2256.jpeg
    1.3 MB · Views: 104

HypnobongInspector

New Member
Messages
7
Welp, he’s dead. RIP Cheeto. Wish I knew what was wrong or if I did anything wrong but I may never know. Thought I gave him a good place to live.

Let it be a lesson to anyone who has suspicions about filtering food through the gills and finds this previous post from 2010:


Our instincts were right and the turn happened fast. Good luck to all. Thanks to MacZ for trying to help.
 

MacZ

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,119
Location
Germany
Sorry for your loss, but I see no parallels to that decade old thread. The fish surely didn't starve we can't rule out parasites and you had it for less than a week. It is almost impossible to find the exact cause of death in hindsight.

But my advise: Maybe setup a tank designed for dwarf cichlids before getting another one. And don't buy from that store again.
 

Gamegurl

New Member
Messages
18
Location
Santa Rosa, California
I'm sorry for your loss as well.
I no expert with apisto's but am surprised no one mentioned the length of time your tank has been going.
Are you sure it's cycled after 3 weeks?
Best of luck
 

MacZ

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,119
Location
Germany
Are you sure it's cycled after 3 weeks?
It's irrelevant in this case, as only one fish died, showing no signs of Ammonia oder Nitrite poisoning. If that was the reason the other fish would be affected aswell. And probably there'd be more casualties.

Also... cycling is... how do I say this... overrated and works almost completely different in the softwater tanks most here are running.

Nevertheless, Apistos in a freshly setup tank... not the best idea.
 

dw1305

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Messages
2,783
Location
Wiltshire UK
Hi all,
I'm sorry for your loss as well.
I no expert with apisto's but am surprised no one mentioned the length of time your tank has been going.
Are you sure it's cycled after 3 weeks?
Best of luck
My thought as well. I don't like "cycled" as a concept, it isn't useful because it suggests a switch from unsafe to safe and that doesn't reflect the microbial reality. I'm away from home at the moment, but search for "Seasoned Tank Time" and that will give you some more discussion.

Cheers Darrel
 

dw1305

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Messages
2,783
Location
Wiltshire UK
Hi all,
I'm away from home at the moment, but search for "Seasoned Tank Time" and that will give you some more discussion.
I've got access to a PC, so I'll link in some threads on UKAPS.
cheers Darrel
 

Members online

No members online now.

Forum statistics

Threads
18,014
Messages
117,027
Members
13,111
Latest member
Marakely

Latest profile posts

jloponte wrote on hongyj's profile.
Please send me info regarding cuipeua. Thx, Joe.
jloponte wrote on hongyj's profile.
Where are you located?
Josh wrote on anewbie's profile.
Testing
EDO
Longtime fish enthusiast for over 70years......keen on Apistos now. How do I post videos?
Looking for some help with fighting electric blue rams :(
Top