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Genny
12-24-2009, 11:55 PM
I wanted to ask something about our parrot fish. We have 5 of them. We've had them about a year now and they're all growing and getting bigger and seem very healthy. Each one of them had some black on it when we first got them, but as they grew and got older the black went away and I figured it was the chlorine doing it. But, ever so often one of them will get some black coloring come up on their tail/face. It's strange...and then a week or so later it'll fade away...and then it will usually happen again within a month or so. Is that normal?

IRescue452
01-01-2010, 12:34 AM
A lot of fish species get black spots that indicate healing from ammonia burns. Its likely your ammonia spiked to toxic levels and then straightened out naturally over time. You should keep good track of your ammonia levels and increase your water changes. If you see these black marks often, its likely your tank is too small to control the ammonia produced by the amount of fish you have. They will continue to get burns if you don't fix the problem.

Genny
01-02-2010, 05:58 PM
Hmmm....we clean it out regularly. It's a 55 gallon.. We've got the 5 parrot fish, 3 silver dollars, 1 platty, 5 of the corrydorras (sp?) 2 small sharks and one of the big sucker fish, 1 paradise fish (she's kinda like a cichlid, but she's super sweet, we've had her for like 2 years) and 2 rope fish..and another kind of fish..she favors the parrots a lot, but she's a different kind..can't remember what she's called for sure....all of our fish seem to get along really great and nobody ever bites anyone... actually tho our tank could probably use some fresh water about now. I'll add some tonight.

Christmas_Hamster
01-03-2010, 08:24 AM
Do you have a test kit? If so, test the water before you add some clean water and see what the ammonia, nitrIte & nitrAte readings are. If you don't then take it to a pet store they should be able to test it either for free or for a small charge. With a tank that only gets partial water changes (meaning it will be cycled, creating an ecosystem of good and bad bacterias) you should have a test kit (preferably a drip test kit as they are far more accurate then test strip tests) so that you know when best to do water changes.

I agree with Irescue452, it sounds like ammonia burns.

IRescue452
01-03-2010, 12:31 PM
Do you have pics for fish identification? Unfortunately, I can tell you already that your tank is overstocked, which would explain why it may not be able to keep up on ammonia. You should definately get a liquid test kit if you don't already have one. Test strips are ineffective because once you open the package and expose them to oxygen they start to break down. The meters that go into the water are also ineffective because they don't distinguish between treated ammonia and untreated.

Adding water is never a good idea unless you take water out. When water evaporates, it concentrates the metals and chemicals in the water. If you keep adding, you're just putting more chemical load into the tank. Taking water out before adding new water helps keep the dissolved chemicals at a managable level.

Genny
01-03-2010, 05:59 PM
Do you have pics for fish identification? Unfortunately, I can tell you already that your tank is overstocked, which would explain why it may not be able to keep up on ammonia. You should definately get a liquid test kit if you don't already have one. Test strips are ineffective because once you open the package and expose them to oxygen they start to break down. The meters that go into the water are also ineffective because they don't distinguish between treated ammonia and untreated.

Adding water is never a good idea unless you take water out. When water evaporates, it concentrates the metals and chemicals in the water. If you keep adding, you're just putting more chemical load into the tank. Taking water out before adding new water helps keep the dissolved chemicals at a managable level.


No, I dont have pics of them...and I did take some water out before I put in fresh water ;]

king2005
01-05-2010, 04:03 PM
Do you have pics for fish identification? Unfortunately, I can tell you already that your tank is overstocked, which would explain why it may not be able to keep up on ammonia. You should definately get a liquid test kit if you don't already have one. Test strips are ineffective because once you open the package and expose them to oxygen they start to break down. The meters that go into the water are also ineffective because they don't distinguish between treated ammonia and untreated.

Adding water is never a good idea unless you take water out. When water evaporates, it concentrates the metals and chemicals in the water. If you keep adding, you're just putting more chemical load into the tank. Taking water out before adding new water helps keep the dissolved chemicals at a managable level.

I agree with you 100%. That tank is way overstocked. Parrot fish can get quite large as they are typically part Red Devil (gives them the orange).. depending on the breeder there could also be some flowerhorn or Jack Dempsey in them. All 3 of those fish are large fish (the Jack being the smaller one, but not always by much.. depends if it's pure or mixed with Jewel <-so I've heard)...

1 Red Devil needs a BEAR min of 55gallons & that includes no other fish. 75gal is a much better min and you can have some cleaner type fish in there, but a Red Devil would eat them (one of the most aggressive fish you can buy.. mine was psycho & I couldn't put my hands in the water as he would have shredded my skin to pieces) lol. Awesome fish though!

So 5 Parrots in a 55gal with a whole whack of other fish will give you
1. out of control toxins
2. not enough growing space/fish = premature fish death (fish do NOT grow to their environments.. they die young in too small of tanks).
3. Hole In The Head will more then likely infect your fish (hard to cure & is known to be deadly), not to mention defiguring (sp?) & terribly painful.

The the amount of fish you have you'd have to do 25% water changes every day to try to keep the toxins under control, but the tank is so over stocked I'm not sure if that is even enough.

My advice is to return/rehome all the fish & keep 1 Parrot, or return all parrots & all Silver Dollars & I "think" the others will be fine in the tank.

I hope I don't sound rude or anything, but I'm a serious fish owner & fish rescuer. Too many fish are neglected every day due to ignorance (I was once too).

Here is some info on Parrot fish
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blood_parrot_cichlid
http://freshaquarium.about.com/cs/cichlids1/a/bloodparrot.htm
http://www.petfish.net/kb/entry/376/

IRescue452
01-06-2010, 12:10 PM
King: you forgot the sharks and the sucker fish. If the sharks are balas they will grow huge. If the suckerfish is a common pleco who knows how many feet it could get to in a proper setting. The rope fish get about 3' as well and even though they are skinny they need bigger than 55 gallons. The best stocking I think would be keeping the silver dollars, the corys, the platty, and the gourami (I'm assuming the paradise fish is a gourami). I still wonder what the mystery fish is.

Genny
01-06-2010, 07:57 PM
Hey ya'll, I don't think you're being rude...it's cool. You just care about fish. I love our fish. They're all sweet. We've had all these fish though for like atleast several years except the parrots...we've only had them about 1 year. But none of them have died... We've had some fish die this past year and stuff, but they were all from my brother's tank. He has cichlids and they're all mean and aggressive w/ each other...

The Paradise fish isn't a type of gourami (sp?) I don't think. I'll try going to a few websites and find a pic. of one...

Genny
01-06-2010, 08:01 PM
I went to lots of websites trying to find a picture that looks like her, but I couldn't find one ;[ Maybe she isn't a paradise fish...she doesn't look like the ones that came up when I typed that...she may be some other kind...who knows? ;-/

king2005
01-06-2010, 08:55 PM
King: you forgot the sharks and the sucker fish. If the sharks are balas they will grow huge. If the suckerfish is a common pleco who knows how many feet it could get to in a proper setting. The rope fish get about 3' as well and even though they are skinny they need bigger than 55 gallons. The best stocking I think would be keeping the silver dollars, the corys, the platty, and the gourami (I'm assuming the paradise fish is a gourami). I still wonder what the mystery fish is.

Very right!
I was more focused on the Parrots & Silver Dollars as they are Large fish. My old Silver Dollars grew to a good 3" in dia within 6 months. THey were lovely fish! Sadly Sharkey disagreed & killed them.. He went crazy killing random fish. It was weird.. then he went suicidal. died 3 times. His last suicidal attempt screwed up his head pretty bad & he was mentally challenged + angry. I put him down after he showed no change after 2 weeks. He was a lovely fish & he had a new home to go to, so I was really sad to put him down :(

Pleco's are big buggers & regardless of size they produce a lot of toxins for their size.

I don't know enough about the other fish to really comment on them.



Hey ya'll, I don't think you're being rude...it's cool. You just care about fish. I love our fish. They're all sweet. We've had all these fish though for like atleast several years except the parrots...we've only had them about 1 year. But none of them have died... We've had some fish die this past year and stuff, but they were all from my brother's tank. He has cichlids and they're all mean and aggressive w/ each other...

The Paradise fish isn't a type of gourami (sp?) I don't think. I'll try going to a few websites and find a pic. of one...

Regardless if you think the fish are happy or not, they are being poisoned daily. Ammonia poisoning hurts & it burns the body. The fish will never get to a healthy age due to their poor living conditions. The Parrots should get to a healthy age of 10+. Same with the Plecos.

I currently have an 8yr old Brissle Nose Pleco & a corry cat. a 6yr old corry cat & 2-3yr old corry cat. They all came from the same owner who asked if I could take them on, as they would like to take the tank down, but they loved the fish & didn't want them to go to just anyone. I've had them for 2yrs now & I'm hoping they reach the ripe old age of 10-15+.

I have another 8yr old corry cat, but he was a gift after Mango was killed by a so called friend *cries*. I've also had him for 2yrs & I hope he reaches a ripe old age of 10-15+.

Many fish like Cichlids & catfish should live 10-20yrs if not more. Anything below 8 (closer to 5) in my opinion more then likely died due to poor living conditions. Many pet shops are to blame for most of the fish & reptile neglect as they don't give a darn about the animal. THey want it to die young so you'll come back to buy more. It can be a sick & cruel world we live in.

Here is a story about a Man I bumped into at an Asian fish store I use to go to. He was looking at the turtles & just happened to strike a convo with me about them. He told me he use to have an Ally snapper but it died after 2yrs. I asked him how he was caring for it. Well he told me what the store told him their care was... Ya, I didn't know how to nicely put it that he killed the turtle due to neglect. I did anyways. the poor man was nearly in tears as he felt horrible about being the cause of his pets death. he said he loved the turtle & was hoping to have it around for many many many years. Basically he killed it by over feeding (he was feeding it what I feed my snapper in 1 month every day to his snapper), poor food selection/diet & poor water conditions.

Clear water does NOT mean clean. Many toxins are clear & odorless, but that doesn't make them any less deadly.

I'd type more but I gotta run

Genny
01-06-2010, 09:53 PM
What do you mean by you put your fish down?

I have a corry-her name is Jane...she's one of the gray ones...she's really big and she's about 6 years old now...she's one of my favorites...

king2005
01-06-2010, 10:04 PM
What do you mean by you put your fish down?

I have a corry-her name is Jane...she's one of the gray ones...she's really big and she's about 6 years old now...she's one of my favorites...

To put down an animal down, means to kill it.

Genny
01-07-2010, 12:28 AM
Well-I figured that much, but how? I know you carry a dog or a cat to the vet when you have it put down....what do you do with a fish?

IRescue452
01-07-2010, 12:27 PM
A lot of people use clove oil to euthanize fish. A small amount basically puts them out like anestesia and then you add more. A lot of people freeze them or use some other method to make sure they are really dead and not just unconscious.

Christmas_Hamster
01-07-2010, 03:10 PM
This topic talks more about euthanasia with fish: http://www.ultimatebettas.com/index.php?showtopic=15737

Basically you have to do it yourself. It can be hard, I'm sure.

king2005
01-07-2010, 05:29 PM
I use The Blunt Force method as its the only quick & painless way. I don't trust the Clove oil method, I fear the fish wont die fast enough & it still feels pain, but cannot move.

The method I use is pain free to my pet, but very painful to me. It takes me a LONG time to actually do it & i prefer to be along before, during & well after the event. I do a lot of crying as I DON'T want to do it, but I know I have to as my pet is suffering & I love him, so it must be done. If it was legal for me to shoot him that would be my preferred method as nothing is faster & more destructive to the area then a bullet, or shot at close (but safe) range. But it's not legal so I have to use my hands.

Trust me, putting a fish down is a million times worse then putting your mammal down, as Vets do the "killing" for you

Genny
01-07-2010, 05:46 PM
Trust me, putting a fish down is a million times worse then putting your mammal down, as Vets do the "killing" for you


I don't see how it could ever be 'a million times worse' killing a fish than it would be having your dog/cat, your best friend, put to sleep. I'm sure it's hard to do to a fish-it sounds sad... I couldn't ever do it..but I know that I'd rather do that than have my dog pts anyday.

king2005
01-07-2010, 06:29 PM
I don't see how it could ever be 'a million times worse' killing a fish than it would be having your dog/cat, your best friend, put to sleep. I'm sure it's hard to do to a fish-it sounds sad... I couldn't ever do it..but I know that I'd rather do that than have my dog pts anyday.

I love my fish like family. They greet me when I come home & they like to chase my finger, they like to nibble my finger tip & when my hand is in the water, many of them come up & swim near my fingers, watch when I'm doing or nibble on my arm & tickle me. Many have names & many have outlived my RIP mammals. So I'm bonded with my fishy friends & there isn't anything worse then to have your friends blood on your hands, pants, shirt, & sometimes your face while your killing them. After you've killed them, you then have to look at their bloody mangled body, and have to clean up... Trust me, it's worse.

Genny
01-07-2010, 09:32 PM
I love my fish like family. They greet me when I come home & they like to chase my finger, they like to nibble my finger tip & when my hand is in the water, many of them come up & swim near my fingers, watch when I'm doing or nibble on my arm & tickle me. Many have names & many have outlived my RIP mammals. So I'm bonded with my fishy friends & there isn't anything worse then to have your friends blood on your hands, pants, shirt, & sometimes your face while your killing them. After you've killed them, you then have to look at their bloody mangled body, and have to clean up... Trust me, it's worse.

It sounds like you butcher the fish.

king2005
01-07-2010, 10:07 PM
It sounds like you butcher the fish.

ummmm I assumed you read the site that was posted on how to put a fish down... Blunt Force is messy, but it's the quickest way to put a fish down with no pain... & to do it right means a LOT of force... a lot of force means a lot of head trauma.. a lot of head trauma means a lot of blood. Now add speed to the mix (you need speed & power) & you get blood spray. It's not a whole lot like a murder scene, but it is enough to make a little pool in your hands (if collected)

Little fish don't make much of a mess, but the sizes of fish I typically have are large fish.

I tried using bags but they got in the way & made the process too slow. My goal is to get the fish out of the tank & have it dead within seconds of being removed from the tank. I do my darnest to prevent min stress to the fish.. Basically the only stress it really gets to experience is me trying to catch it in a net, & before the fish realizes its out of water its dead.

Christmas_Hamster
01-08-2010, 09:36 PM
Clove oil is usually used with alcohol. You overdose on the clove oil and then to be sure that the fish is dead you add alcohol. So they are unconscious when you add the alcohol. I could never bring myself to use the blunt force method, it would be too hard. I understand where your coming from with it being harder. I do see that. And yes losing a dog might be harder but putting them to sleep is often only a decision when it comes to mammals, with fish you do it with your yourself.

king2005
01-08-2010, 10:46 PM
Clove oil is usually used with alcohol. You overdose on the clove oil and then to be sure that the fish is dead you add alcohol. So they are unconscious when you add the alcohol. I could never bring myself to use the blunt force method, it would be too hard. I understand where your coming from with it being harder. I do see that. And yes losing a dog might be harder but putting them to sleep is often only a decision when it comes to mammals, with fish you do it with your yourself.

I understand what the Clove Oil is "suppose" to do (it should kill when given in high doses, but it doesn't in all cases <- why I wont use it), but it's mostly a guess as there are no sure tests to prove the fish feels nothing. What if the fish can feel but it's just paralyzed? Then you add the alcohol & the fish feels it's death... I personally can't do that. If people want to assume it's doing what they think it's doing, then whatever helps them sleep at night. But I can't. If there is a different chemical/liquid I can use that I can get access too that's not gonna break the bank, then I'll switch methods... I do hope someone can get scientific proof that Clove Oil does in fact work on all fish species, or at least a list.. then I'll accept that & switch right away as Brute Force sucks really really bad :(

TamanduaGirl
01-11-2010, 07:16 PM
"Metomidate solutions ≥2 mg l−1, clove oil and Aqui-S™ solutions ≥20 mg l−1 prevented plasma cortisol elevation above resting level"
Study here (http://www.sciencedirect.com/science?_ob=ArticleURL&_udi=B6T4D-4834JFY-4&_user=10&_rdoc=1&_fmt=&_orig=search&_sort=d&_docanchor=&view=c&_searchStrId=1162526639&_rerunOrigin=scholar.google&_acct=C000050221&_version=1&_urlVersion=0&_userid=10&md5=94c9a0eacb7a48f91753918def6f0e9a)

This is a measure of pain as the cortisol is released in response to pain and stress.

Edit: to be a bit clearer it's solutions meaning each solution one clove and one the name brand each tested at those levels, not one solution of both mixed.

"Because clove oil causes a reliable and rapid loss of
consciousness and induces hypoxia (critical components to
eliminating potential pain), it appears to meet the criteria
(AVMA 2000) for euthanasia. Based on these recent results,
we suggest that clove oil may be considered acceptable for
euthanasia when used at high concentrations (>400 mg/L).
As indicated by the AVMA for other chemical agents, fish
should be left in solution for at least an additional 10 min
after cessation of opercular movement."
Link to PDF file (http://dels.nas.edu/ilar_n/ilarjournal/44_4/v4404Borski.pdf)

"In addition, the stress experienced by the fish pre mortem was assessed by measuring cortisol, glucose and osmolality levels in blood plasma just after death (post mortem). Based on these physiological indicators, the results revealed that of the three methods considered, 1 mlL− 1 clove oil was the best method for stunning sole because it not only ensures a good final quality product, but also is acceptable for a direct human consumption."
ignore the part about eating them
Link (http://www.sciencedirect.com/science?_ob=ArticleURL&_udi=B6T4D-4NX2NG1-6&_user=10&_rdoc=1&_fmt=&_orig=search&_sort=d&_docanchor=&view=c&_searchStrId=1162542542&_rerunOrigin=scholar.google&_acct=C000050221&_version=1&_urlVersion=0&_userid=10&md5=95fef022bc352fc82acb9d33842e8467)

Genny
01-11-2010, 10:59 PM
So..I was just wondering...when do you believe it's the right time to kill your fish? When it's almost dead and just lying on its side? Or just when it's acting sick, but still swimming?

IRescue452
01-12-2010, 12:00 PM
If its acting what most people see as sick (fins clamped, tilted or sporatic swimming), its often just a toxin in the water like nitrites. No need to kill the fish before testing out easy treatments. It really just depends on the situation.

king2005
01-12-2010, 12:55 PM
If its acting what most people see as sick (fins clamped, tilted or sporatic swimming), its often just a toxin in the water like nitrites. No need to kill the fish before testing out easy treatments. It really just depends on the situation.

It's also a case by case situation, but medical treatment should be attempted before killing a fish, unless the illness/injury happened rapidly & the prognoses is low~non.

I have 20yrs of Fish experience so I'm fairly good at it (not a crazy pro, just good). I also know all my fish well & remember about 90% of the ones I have lost over the years.

Christmas_Hamster
01-12-2010, 03:36 PM
'When they have little or no quality of life, are not trying to survive anymore and there is nothing that can be done. And the best clue of all is if you know that it's time.