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skrtchsr

Cause of death investigation

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skrtchsr

Just walked in the house to see my Coral Beauty dead in the tank. 1f641.png😞 Started checking everyone else. All looking good. My corals are all doing great, anemone doing great, clowns, puffer, goby, blenny, starfish. Aaand, my other yellow angel is nowhere to be found.

I took the coral beauty out and started testing everything.

 

Temp 77.8

Specific Gravity 1.026

Ph 8.0

Ammonia 0

Nitrite 0

Nitrate 0

Calcium 420

DKH 7

Phosphates 0

 

Everything looks perfect besides the two dead angels. I assume the yellow angel is also dead since it's not in the tank and they can't breathe air.

If it was just one fish, I'd say its just a fluke, but two and the fact that they're both angels seems strange. They were about a year old or so.

 

Thoughts?

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WV Reefer
13 minutes ago, skrtchsr said:

Just walked in the house to see my Coral Beauty dead in the tank. 1f641.png😞 Started checking everyone else. All looking good. My corals are all doing great, anemone doing great, clowns, puffer, goby, blenny, starfish. Aaand, my other yellow angel is nowhere to be found.

I took the coral beauty out and started testing everything.

 

Temp 77.8

Specific Gravity 1.026

Ph 8.0

Ammonia 0

Nitrite 0

Nitrate 0

Calcium 420

DKH 7

Phosphates 0

 

Everything looks perfect besides the two dead angels. I assume the yellow angel is also dead since it's not in the tank and they can't breathe air.

If it was just one fish, I'd say its just a fluke, but two and the fact that they're both angels seems strange. They were about a year old or so.

 

Thoughts?

Death battle?

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skrtchsr

Could it be?  They've each had their own little houses for a long while now.  The only thing that recently changed was a moved my icecap from center horizontal on back of tank to vertical in the back corner swirling the flow around all the rock.

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WV Reefer
1 minute ago, skrtchsr said:

Could it be?  They've each had their own little houses for a long while now.  The only thing that recently changed was a moved my icecap from center horizontal on back of tank to vertical in the back corner swirling the flow around all the rock.

Angels are weird. I’ve been rearranging things a bit in my large tank and it’s causing my Flame to be especially aggressive. 
 

It’s just the first thing that came to mind since everyone else is fine in your tank. 

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mcarroll
On 1/26/2020 at 6:41 PM, skrtchsr said:

Could it be?  They've each had their own little houses for a long while now.  The only thing that recently changed was a moved my icecap from center horizontal on back of tank to vertical in the back corner swirling the flow around all the rock.

That could disrupt their sleeping situation.  It's only a little stretch to imagine them fighting over new sleeping spots, which might be more limited now.

 

However I don't think one angel ate the other one...

 

What do you have in the tank for scavengers?  (e.g. hermits, serpent stars) 

 

In fact, can you list the rest of the tank's inhabitants as far as you're aware?

 

How did the angel look before you removed him?  (fins, apparent bite marks, etc)

 

It's possible that doing a gil examination (at least) could have given you some insight.

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mcarroll
On 1/26/2020 at 6:24 PM, skrtchsr said:

Temp 77.8

Specific Gravity 1.026

Ph 8.0

Nitrate 0

Calcium 420

DKH 7

Phosphates 0

Any chance the powerhead move was related to poor coral performance?

 

Be careful keeping your po4 and no3 that low -- especially po4.  I would take some kind of action to fix that.  Reduce or remove filtration first....if that's not enough, increase nutrients by feeding or dosing.

 

Also your alk is a bit low vs calcium....8.26 dKH would be considered "balanced" with 420 ppm calcium. 

 

Considering your s.g. is on the higher side (1.026) alk is very low....what salt mix are you using.  And are you dosing anything for ca/alk?

 

With alk as low as it is, I'm a little surprised your pH is as high as it is...most folks who report their pH seem to hover just under 8 even with higher alk levels.  Are you doing anything to "force" higher pH?

 

 

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skrtchsr

All, thanks for the input!  To answer some of the questions:

 

The other angel turned up shortly after but very much eaten by someone in the tank.  I don't want to be too morbid but it was basically just a white chunk in the shape of a fish 2 days later.  I have a sand sifting star, a purple pincushion, a bunch of small hermit crabs, a bta, some snails and an emerald crab I haven't seen in ages.

 

The coral beauty looked completely normal when I removed it.

 

 

As for tank params.

 

I moved the powerhead for aesthetics which I sort of kick myself for.

I have no idea why my Phosphates and Nitrates are so low, I am only running a small canister filter with a bit of purigen and some filter floss and a hang on back with only filter floss.

 

I use instant oceans reef crystals.  

 

It's funny you mention the PH because I am in a constant struggle to keep my PH up.  I usually dose seachems 8.4.  I would rather not but nothing I have tried has increased my PH.  

I dosed kalkwasser for a few days once but my calcium was up to 500 so I stopped that.

 

Insight into how to get my parameters a little more in check would be awesome.  Nobody has been able to help me determine why my PH drops so low though.

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Smurf

Address your PH first above all things. Sorry to say - but I would want to worry about who is alive right now and get into the investigating a little later.

 

Have you taken any actions to raise it?

-How long have you ran your canister filter? 

-How constant are your water changes and how much do you change?

 

If you have time, go through this article:

http://reefkeeping.com/issues/2005-03/rhf/index.htm

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Tamberav
46 minutes ago, skrtchsr said:

All, thanks for the input!  To answer some of the questions:

 

The other angel turned up shortly after but very much eaten by someone in the tank.  I don't want to be too morbid but it was basically just a white chunk in the shape of a fish 2 days later.  I have a sand sifting star, a purple pincushion, a bunch of small hermit crabs, a bta, some snails and an emerald crab I haven't seen in ages.

 

The coral beauty looked completely normal when I removed it.

 

 

As for tank params.

 

I moved the powerhead for aesthetics which I sort of kick myself for.

I have no idea why my Phosphates and Nitrates are so low, I am only running a small canister filter with a bit of purigen and some filter floss and a hang on back with only filter floss.

 

I use instant oceans reef crystals.  

 

It's funny you mention the PH because I am in a constant struggle to keep my PH up.  I usually dose seachems 8.4.  I would rather not but nothing I have tried has increased my PH.  

I dosed kalkwasser for a few days once but my calcium was up to 500 so I stopped that.

 

Insight into how to get my parameters a little more in check would be awesome.  Nobody has been able to help me determine why my PH drops so low though.

whooooooa... 

 

why are you chasing pH? How low does it get that you feel the need to dose it up? 

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Tired

Your nitrates need to be higher than 0 or your corals and beneficial algaes will slowly starve. Start feeding more. The sand sifting star is going to starve unless you have a very large tank. 

 

Sounds like your angels may have killed each other, and then one got eaten by scavengers. What size tank? 

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Smurf

Also, what is your source of water? 

 

Low ph could stem from a water source. Like having excess limescale in the water.

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Smurf

How much Surface agitation  do you have? Or how about oxygen exchange?

 

This could also be an issue of an excess of carbon dioxide 

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skrtchsr

I'm using a brs 5stage for the tank so all RODI water.  

 

I've had my PH drop as low as 7.6-7.8 in the early morning before lights come on.

I dose seachems 8.4

 

I do water changes about every week, 5 gallons each time, tank is 37 gallons.

 

I've only been running the canister for 1 month now, but that is likely whats causing 0 nitrates because before it was around 5-10ppm

 

I'm only running filter floss and a bit of purigen so I don't know how the tank is so clean.  I feel like I feed a lot.

 

I'm not sure if it's related but I also have a ton of nitrogen bubbles developing in the sand bed and on live rock these days.  It's not bubble algae, as they're just loose bubbles on the rocks, powerheads, heater, and under the sand.

 

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skrtchsr

I'm removing the canister filter and going back to just my HOB as I type this.  I'm also doing a larger water change, 10 gallons.  I'm considering moving the icekap back to the top center.  It had more surface agitation and seemed to give better flow there.  It's just a bit unsightly but I'd rather have a healthy tank than a pretty tank.

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Tamberav

What are you testing pH with?

 

Honestly my pH ran as low as 7.6-7.8 for a long time and I never did a thing about it. It never seemed to cause any problems. I am concerned about dosing that buffer all the time though... I am not sure if all the ingredients are truly safe to be dosed that often?

 

It says it contains borate salts as one of the ingredients, I can tell you that while boron is a needed nutrient, it is also toxic at higher levels and can kill fish.

 

pH is supposed to be lower in the morning and higher in the day hours. A low of 7.8 is definitely normal for some tanks. 

 

Generally we say, never chase pH. At least not with additives as they pretty much always cause more harm than good. 

 

One of my old graphs to show how pH changes throughout the day.

 

image.thumb.png.d7284b4e9a2be3f61e06fcbe08580192.png

 

 

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skrtchsr

I agree.  I only dose 8.4 when I'm really concerned.  Ultimately my tank has just not felt right for a month or so now.  Honestly I think since the addition of this canister filter.  You read a lot about them being nitrate factories but with me keeping it nice and clean I think it cleaned my tank too well.  I'm surprised because it's just a ton of filter floss and some purigen but who knows.  I'm going back to the basics, hang on back with only filter floss, water changes every week.  We'll see what that gets me.

 

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