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Angler issues

Discussion in 'Fish' started by fiji4118, Apr 2, 2017.

  1. fiji4118

    fiji4118 Cuttle Fish M.A.S.C Club Member

    Hey all,

    Looking to see if anyone has some insight on a problem I'm having. The last 2 anglers I have purchased (DD) have died. First in less than 24 hours. Second in 4 days. Water parameters are 0 ammonia, nitrite, nitrate. 1.023. 77 degrees. The first one I chalk up to a possible transport issue but this second one was fine. Ate Friday. 2 small mollies. Was active in the tank after settling in. Then this am dead. I have successfully kept anglers and seahorses in this tank previously. And I have been watching the water a lot more closely as I have introduced some zoas, a small hammer and a goni. The only other difference from previous angler or seahorses is the I have caulerpa in the back chamber. Love some thoughts
  2. TheRealChrisBrown

    TheRealChrisBrown Barracuda M.A.S.C Club Member M.A.S.C. B.O.D. B.O.D. Member-at-Large

    Sorry to hear this news! Did it show any signs of "gasping" for air or actually gong to the surface and swallowing air? Where did you get the angler from, LFS, online, MASC member? What kind of Angler was it? My initial thought would be what you have already hinted at, transport issues. I feel like Anglers are tough fish to move around a bunch, I got mine from Vince at Great White Aquatics in Ft. Collins and he had it in the shop for 6 months. He sort of became the shop mascot, but I was able to see him eat and hear how they were feeding it and how often. In some ways it was like he was "pre-conditioned" for me, and was a proven eater. If you ordered it online that history and training is tough to get.

    FWIW - I feed once every 3 to 5 days, and only 1 Molly per feed. I try to remember that these are really sedentary fish, they aren't swimming all day long like a wrasse or something. I'm not saying feeding it 2 fish in one sitting was a bad thing, I've totally fed a large meal to new fish because you often don't know when it last ate.
  3. Fitz19d

    Fitz19d Sardine M.A.S.C Club Member

    I greatly doubt it's the issue, but calibrated with known solution your refract/hydro? I have the digital big green $100 refractometer and with both the bottle of pure distilled water and the known 1.025 verified it as being accurate.

    I've often had to acclimate new stuff from people that is off by as much as 4pts. (Ie something that's supposed to be 23 coming in at 27) FWIW my sole liveaquaria shipment did come in at 1.019 as folk online say. So this in total leads me to believe many peoples devices are off by a fair bit.

    So I was wondering if your 23 might actually be like sub 19 or possibly in the high 20's.

    I'd think the fish could tolerate those but maybe not?
  4. fiji4118

    fiji4118 Cuttle Fish M.A.S.C Club Member

    No gasping. Hung out in 3 or 4 different places at the bottom and seemed perfectly comfortable. Mollies were small (>1") but I suppose that could be it. Typically fed 1X a week. Both fish were from Diver's Den.
  5. fiji4118

    fiji4118 Cuttle Fish M.A.S.C Club Member

    Good thought! I just calibrated for the first time in years. 1.026 calibration fluid looks to be 1.027-28. So reasonbly close if not a touch high. That would make the water 24 to 25. Not enough to hurt anything I don't think? I acclimated him for an hour (drip) to make sure.
  6. Ambrosio Aquatics

    Ambrosio Aquatics Barracuda Platinum Sponsor M.A.S.C Club Member

    did you test the water he arrived in or did it have a strong odor ? if the shipping water was heavy with ammonia or nitrites he could have ammonia/nitrites poisoning which would kill him with no signs.
    Balz3352 likes this.
  7. fiji4118

    fiji4118 Cuttle Fish M.A.S.C Club Member

    No I didn't and didn't notice an odor. Think I might pick up a damsel or something to have it try out the tank again for a while. Then I can add a angler and he'll have a meal waiting.

    Sent from my SM-G935V using Tapatalk
  8. Balz3352

    Balz3352 Marlin M.A.S.C Club Member

    Ammonia poisoning usually happens during shipping not in home aquaria.... Usually.
  9. Ambrosio Aquatics

    Ambrosio Aquatics Barracuda Platinum Sponsor M.A.S.C Club Member

    correct but it can take several days to kill the animal, so if it was poisoned it might have seemed fine for 3-4 days then boom dead fish
  10. Fitz19d

    Fitz19d Sardine M.A.S.C Club Member

    One of the reasons I've seen too for faster fish acclimations unless you are coming from much lower salinity. (handy to have a quarantine tank that can be at 1.019 for anything from LA for example) or drop main tank 1-2 pts to like 23 so if something comes at 21 or 22 ish a more rapid acclimation in the 15min to 30min tops range seems to be fine from what I read.

    I basically keep to the above faster acclimation/temp matching and my extra little bit of vodoo is when opening, I immediately drop a tiny drop of prime or two while swishing the water to mix it up and aerate. More labor intensive but I then manually pour small dosing cups of tank water in every few minutes. I do this with fish only, and never lost anything except to identified disease. Doesn't apply to inverts which do need that very gradual shift more.
  11. SynDen

    SynDen Shark Staff Member M.A.S.C Club Member M.A.S.C. B.O.D. M.A.S.C President M.A.S.C Webmaster

    Ya agree that it sounds like possible ammonia poisoning. What was your acclimation procedure?
    For any fish that that gets shipped to you, it is super important to get them out of the bag and into the fresh salt water asap. Dont acclimate them in the bag! Once you open the bag they came in, the ammonia in the bag begins to immediately react, and will become toxic with a few minutes of opening the bag. For this reason when I receive a fish via online, I float the bag to get them to temp and then they immediately get dumped into the water.
    Like Fitz said it helps to have a qt setup that is slightly low on salinity to dump them into as soon as they arrive. Once they are out of the bag, you can adjust their salinity upward as needed. But even if the water is slightly higher salinity then the water the fish came in, it is still better to get them into fresh salt water then it is to leave them to slowly acclimate in the toxic bag.
  12. fiji4118

    fiji4118 Cuttle Fish M.A.S.C Club Member

    Good last two points. I have always added EraseCL or a similar ammonia/nitrate detox to the bag when I acclimate. Perhaps this was the issue? Anglers are more prone than other fish to the ammonia poisoning even with the detoxifier in the water? Although I am second guessing if I added it on the second angler now.....for sure did it on the first one that died overnight. Really pissed if this is the reason they died. I've never had an issue with acclimating this way and I have done it with dozens of fish and these are the first I have lost. Even seahorses and I would think that they would be more fragile.
  13. Fitz19d

    Fitz19d Sardine M.A.S.C Club Member

    I may be very wrong. But one idea even if a person doesnt have a QT, is possibly have small 1-2 gallons ready of saltwater at the salinity of incoming fish if known, or possibly some salinities higher and lower than your display. This way after temp acclimating you are able to mix a fair amount of water in with the bag water to make it 50/50 I imagine would cut down on any ammo buildup on top of the drops of Prime. With mine most of the time I've added probably 20% of volume right away after the prime (to mix/aerate I figure) before doing the cups of water over 15-30mins top, always makes me wonder what matters more the prime, or just shorter acclimation and possibly more water quicker rather than just the trickle of drip acclimating.

    From reading on RC and you look at the practices of many LFS where when they get hundreds of fish it's temp acclimate then dump pretty much, I kinda mentioned it above but I think most fish can handle anything within like .002 no problem especially if from shallower water that might see more variation from freshwater runoff from land. One quote that I still remember is something about the guy saying he see's more fish die from lengthy acclimation attempts than from actual system shock deaths.

    However anglers I thought are delicate so you probably will never know for sure. I know some fish I prefer to find locally established like Mandarins because the success rate fresh from wholesaler can be rough.
  14. SkyShark

    SkyShark Tuna Staff Member M.A.S.C Club Member M.A.S.C. B.O.D. B.O.D. Member-at-Large

    Did DD give you any specific special acclimation instructions?
  15. fiji4118

    fiji4118 Cuttle Fish M.A.S.C Club Member

    Yep. Float (1/2 cup every 5 minutes) or drip method. 1 hour total time after 15 minute float for temp acclimation
  16. Fitz19d

    Fitz19d Sardine M.A.S.C Club Member

    The long drip had been conventional wisdom for a long time. The stuff about faster acclimation and understanding of in bag ammonia I've only read in the last few years like our understanding of other things in the hobby changes over time. Kind of like older reefers still in love with drip/trickle filter sumps or beliefs in various magical herbal remedy for ick. Even though they are debunked you still see the products sold. Not saying drip acclimation debunked but is some changes in thought and theory that will take a long time to get to big places like LA.

    Same goes for many things dealing with any exotic animal. Like people learning about uvb for reptiles and in turn learning it's not appropriate for some.
  17. SynDen

    SynDen Shark Staff Member M.A.S.C Club Member M.A.S.C. B.O.D. M.A.S.C President M.A.S.C Webmaster

    Personally I would only use slow drip acclimation on something I bought from a LFS. Its by far the safest way for most things, but for fish that have been shipped and held in the bag for more then 24 hrs, I would make an exception, as it is, imo, better to get them into cleaner water asap, then it is to leave them in that water for any longer then they need to be, especially after the bag has been opened.

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