Cory catfish turned white, confusing about water changes

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mooch4056

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Original poster
Feb 1, 2008
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My cory catfish turned white....pretty much just lays at the bottom He's alive and moves if you tap him. My reeadings in the tank are ammonia zero nitrite, 1.0 and nitrate 20.00 -- in a 55 gal tank.


I put him in a 2.5 gallon tank with fresh clean water -- mini air filter and heater. so I hope he can recover.

The tank he WAS in is a 55 gal and its cycling for the last 3 weeks. With, 4 zebra danios, 2 black mollies, 2 red gourami dwarfs, a golden mystery snail, and now one cory cat -- like i said the other cory is now in a 2.5 gallon tank holefully recovering. The other cory apears to be fine and is busy doin his thing eat frantically off the bottom liek there is no tomorrow.

My first question is does anyone know why he turned white and is sick and what it is?

My second question has to do with water changes.

Some people on here have said water changes water changes water changes!!!!!!! Don't let nitries every get above .25 ... while others - including 2 pet stores whose specialty is fish ... have told me at first when the tank is cycling don't do the water changes, make sure you have hardy fish and let the tank cycle becuase every water change takes out bacteria you need to cycle and the tank never gets cycled.

Sigh..... so I dunno why is there conflict with this. I guess it makes sense.... that water changes would never bring the tank to a cycle ... t

hen again the other argument of keeping your fish healthy through water changes is better and that from what i read on here people are claiming that your just changing water that the real bacteria growing in the filter and decor isnt being changed so do the water changs.

I am confused and just don't know which one to believe.

can someone set me straight? i am trying to do this right as i really do love the hobby.


Paul
 
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lucy42083

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Jan 20, 2008
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Well, first off a fishy cycle is really not ideal, you are almost certainly bound to lose some fish no matter what you do. Secondly, if you must do a fishy cycle, you should use hardy fish like danios - Corys are definitely not in the category of hardy. You can (and must if doing fishy cycle) do water changes while cycling, the bacteria is not so much in the water, it is mostly in the filter media and also in the gravel and decor of the tank. You should do partial water changes to keep nitrites under .25, and it should not have any effect on the bacteria (I would refrain from gravel vaccing during cycle though). I am almost certain that it is your nitrites that are the reason your cory is sick.
 

krytan

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Sep 2, 2007
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Sorry i don't know what is wrong with your corry. They are not a good fish to cycle with but no fish is, fishless cycles are much better and quicker.

My second question has to do with water changes.

Some people on here have said water changes water changes water changes!!!!!!! Don't let nitries every get above .25 ... while others - including 2 pet stores whose specialty is fish ... have told me at first when the tank is cycling don't do the water changes, make sure you have hardy fish and let the tank cycle becuase every water change takes out bacteria you need to cycle and the tank never gets cycled.
Water changes are a must, doing a fishy cycle will require daily water changes. Removing water will NOT effect your bactreia as the good bactreia attaches it's self to any surface and not be free roaming in your water.
 

Visualeyes2

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Nov 4, 2000
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White, GA
the pet store folks are only partly right in the information they are giving you. doing water changes isn't necesarrily a bad thing when you're cycling a tank. the way cycling works is the nitrfying bacteria need something to feed on. they are arguing that the bacteria will increase because there is more for them to feed on if you don't do water changes....that is true....but the other side of that is that if there is too much of that stuff in the water, your fish will die/get sick. so it is a double edged sword: yes, you are taking out good bacteria with the water changes; but you are also taking out bad stuff too, and if there is too much bad stuff, it is best to do the water changes. the nitrifying bacteria will eventually catch up with the bad stuff anyway. it's a delicate balance when cycling with fish; thus, the other posters to this thread are arguing to do a "Fishless cycling". I am not opposed to fishless cycling; however, the inconvenience of it would steer me to making a friend of another hobbyist in your area who has established tank(s) who would be happy to give you some gravel that has been cycled or something else that has been cycled (filter media, etc.). that way you can make a friend, test water less, and be assured that all is well at the same time. you could also strengthen your relationship with your lfs by asking them for some gravel if you don't know of any other hobbyists nearby at the moment.
 
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ct-death

Fish & Visitors Smell in 3 Days...
Feb 27, 2007
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Without Water Changes to (at a least) keep your Ammonia and nitrItes below 0.25ppm or less, you will in effect be doing a fishless-cycle as your fish die... :(

NitrItes at 1.0ppm is lethal to most fish over time.

Secondly, perfmoring water changes will NOT adversely affect your Cycling -Period. If the fish die, you'll loose what bacterias have grown and you will be right back at square one anyways.

Third, your Cory is diing. He is most likely suffering from ammonia/nitrIte poisoning, and at best his life-expectency has been dramatically compromised. ANY amount of ammonia/nitrIte causes damage, perminenatly. The degree to which is based on the fish, its health, the concentration(toxicty) and duration of exposure.

In the end, if doing a fish-cycle, you will need to test your water frequently (every 10-12 hours during it's ammonia and nitrIte spikes) and do water changes as needed to keep your ppm below 0.25. 0.25ppm is the max, not the level to maintain at.

Now please allow me to address the Pet stores (which are differnt to me than LFSs). Their job is to sell fish, not care for them. In other words, they advocate that we "Cycle" our tanks with hardy fish, like platys, mollies, guppies, etc. They also know that they will die in most cases, but they will get your tank cycled...eventually. This in turn brings you back for more fish, and 'will eventually get your tank up'.

I'll I'm saying is look at the source (ie. why do lotion companies sell lotion with alchohol as the leading ingredient?). The next time your in, ask how many fish are okay for 55G tank, or what fish will work togther, or ask about introducing a fish like a Pleco or Oscar... I wish I could say you would be impressed by their knowledge and willingness ot stear you clear of many of these choices, but I would be lying...
 
Last edited:

mooch4056

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Original poster
Feb 1, 2008
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Without Water Changes to (at a least) keep your Ammonia and nitrItes below 0.25ppm or less, you will in effect be doing a fishless-cycle as your fish die... :(

NitrItes at 1.0ppm is lethal to most fish over time.

Secondly, perfmoring water changes will NOT adversely affect your Cycling -Period. If the fish die, you'll loose what bacterias have grown and you will be right back at square one anyways.

Third, your Cory is diing. He is most likely suffering from ammonia/nitrIte poisoning, and at best his life-expectency has been dramatically compromised. ANY amount of ammonia/nitrIte causes damage, perminenatly. The degree to which is based on the fish, its health, the concentration(toxicty) and duration of exposure.

In the end, if doing a fish-cycle, you will need to test your water frequently (every 10-12 hours during it's ammonia and nitrIte spikes) and do water changes as needed to keep your ppm below 0.25. 0.25ppm is the max, not the level to maintain at.

Now please allow me to address the Pet stores (which are differnt to me than LFSs). Their job is to sell fish, not care for them. In other words, they advocate that we "Cycle" our tanks with hardy fish, like platys, mollies, guppies, etc. They also know that they will die in most cases, but they will get your tank cycled...eventually. This in turn brings you back for more fish, and 'will eventually get your tank up'.

I'll I'm saying is look at the source (ie. why do lotion companies sell lotion with alchohol as the leading ingredient?). The next time your in, ask how many fish are okay for 55G tank, or what fish will work togther, or ask about introducing a fish like a Pleco or Oscar... I wish I could say you would be impressed by their knowledge and willingness ot stear you clear of many of these choices, but I would be lying...
Cory seems to be doing much better........ He's moving around in the 2.5 gal tank i put him in and has gotton his color back. My Girlfrined said she noticed the day I brought home the corey he was pretty inactive and hiding......suggesting perhaps he was all ready sick

As far as everything else you stated.. I know... I 've heard it all before and read and read about it...... i am pretty smart -- have a masters degree - can read and write and everything -- I am amazing like that .........

I know better than to listen to people at petco and petsmart and chain stores.... and i am taking my time doing this.. and ive started with this hobby just last october -- 2007 -- havnt lost one fish due to cycling -- of course i've lost a couple of zebra danios through the filter and a snail through the filter getting sucked out of his shell while climbing the intake..... I put a pre-filter on the intake whcih took care of that problem -- but have not lost a fish due directly through cycling....


What i was trying to ask was why are there two sides to "how many water changes should be done and when"....... which "Visualeyes" pretty much answered ....

the "tone" of your response did get somewhat better AFTER you edited it though --- but still........

whatever!
 

mooch4056

AC Members
Original poster
Feb 1, 2008
183
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0
the pet store folks are only partly right in the information they are giving you. doing water changes isn't necesarrily a bad thing when you're cycling a tank. the way cycling works is the nitrfying bacteria need something to feed on. they are arguing that the bacteria will increase because there is more for them to feed on if you don't do water changes....that is true....but the other side of that is that if there is too much of that stuff in the water, your fish will die/get sick. so it is a double edged sword: yes, you are taking out good bacteria with the water changes; but you are also taking out bad stuff too, and if there is too much bad stuff, it is best to do the water changes. the nitrifying bacteria will eventually catch up with the bad stuff anyway. it's a delicate balance when cycling with fish; thus, the other posters to this thread are arguing to do a "Fishless cycling". I am not opposed to fishless cycling; however, the inconvenience of it would steer me to making a friend of another hobbyist in your area who has established tank(s) who would be happy to give you some gravel that has been cycled or something else that has been cycled (filter media, etc.). that way you can make a friend, test water less, and be assured that all is well at the same time. you could also strengthen your relationship with your lfs by asking them for some gravel if you don't know of any other hobbyists nearby at the moment.

Thanx Visual.....!!
 

ct-death

Fish & Visitors Smell in 3 Days...
Feb 27, 2007
2,043
0
36
New Hampshire
the "tone" of your response did get somewhat better AFTER you edited it though --- but still........

whatever!
Sorry you took it the wrong way. Oftentimes it is hard to know exactly what the problem is from lack of detailed posts, so I try to cover the bases without know the "Back Ground" of the poster.

I'm glad to hear you Cory is doing better however!
 

Canail Siren

Registered Member
Feb 20, 2017
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I too have a sick bandit cory.
45 gallon tank
set up for approximately two months and has not being cycled before fish were added
half water change every week since then
I have
5 neon tetra
3 molly
3 bandit cory
a clown pleco
and 5 zebra danio

I had another cory die the same way before. It became pale and unable to move. I tried to change water but it just got sicker, I added more stress zyme and prime. But there is o difference. Is there something I can do to make my cory better?
 

fishorama

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Jun 28, 2006
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SF Bay area, CA
Could you newbies start your own thread? I'd like to help but I'm confused...Canail Siren, what water tests? What results? 2 months is not unexpected to have some issues but maybe 2 x water changes or more per week might be needed.... Tell us more...everything you can!
 
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