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Joan, Fish-expert
Category: General
Satisfied Customers: 17311
Experience:  Veterinary Technician Fish Keeper for 50 years
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I had 3 Discus in a 55gal tank and were doing well 2 months.

Customer Question

I had 3 Discus in a 55gal tank and were doing well for about 2 months. Over the weekend I bought 2 more. That same day I did about a 30% water change and changed all the filter pads (8 of them, I have 2 penquin 350 power filters going). Since then one of the discus I got first started to look bad. His fins are layed back, he lost a little color and a little while ago I found him floating completely horizontal. He is still alive and has since staightened up but sticks to the corner. When I fed them this morning he did not eat.
Submitted: 3 months ago.
Category: Fish
Expert:  Joan replied 3 months ago.


My name is ***** ***** I have been a Vet tech for 30+ years and a fish keeper over 40 years.

Have you checked the water parameters?

What is the Ammonia, Nitrites, Nitrates and Ph?

What type of test kit are you using?


Customer: replied 3 months ago.

I do not have a test kit. I usually take a water sample to fhe local aquarium to be tested. The last time I did it was fine. Plus like I said I just did a major water change.

Expert:  Joan replied 3 months ago.

Major water changes can cause new tank syndrome and start the nitrogen cycle over causing ammonia spikes. 5 discus is a 55 is a lot and I suspect you are having a water quality problem. I suggest getting an API master test kit to check the water. We need the Ammonia at 0, the Nitrites at 0, the Nitrates at 20ppm or less and the PH at 7.0. Any time we add fish that will change the water parameters. It is so important to use a good test kit like the API master test kit to get a good reading the strip type can be off. Right now to try and save the fish he should be in a hospital tank until you can get teh water parameters regulated. Start with a 25% water change and add one teaspoon full of aquarium salt per gallon of water. This will work as a tonic in the tank. Do this one time and when doing changes only add enough aquarium salt for the amount of water taken out to go back in. I think if we can get the water parameter correct, it will make a huge difference in the tank and the fishes health.