Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

Fish and fish tank help!?!!!

We just got a fish tank for the kids a few days ago. We followed all the instructions on the the tank, set it up and set the filter up and put the stablizer and stuff in the water and let it run for a while before we went to get the fish. We got 5 glofish. This was Friday and by now 3 of them have died. The water loooks awful and murky and has a really strong smell. I have never seen water get like this in just 2 days! My sons fish died and he is so upset. I want to try to save the last two. What can I do to fix the tank? What do I do with them while I clean it? Please help! I had fish all the time growing up and I remember helping to take care of them and never had this kind of problems.

Answer Question

Asked by Cass052005 at 2:42 PM on May. 1, 2011 in Pets

Level 6 (126 Credits)
Answers (11)
  • Goldfish are very hardy fish and can live through quite a bit. If you did everything as you should have with the initial set up, it seems that either that tank was too small for that many fish, something was wrong with the fish, or there's something in your water.

    I'd take those two remaining fish out and rinse everything thoroughly. Then I'd reset up the tank using Spring water (approx $1/gallon at any store).

    Answer by AllAboutKeeley at 2:47 PM on May. 1, 2011

  • Take a sample of your water to your local pet store for analyzing.

    Answer by twinsplus2more at 2:50 PM on May. 1, 2011

  • Thanks! They are actually glofish, not goldfish. They are are a type of zebrafish that have a gene in them to make them glow. They are supposed to be very hardy fish but I have had nothing but bad luck with them! Everything I have read with the tank says to use tap water, will bottled water or spring water be ok to use?

    Comment by Cass052005 (original poster) at 2:50 PM on May. 1, 2011

  • Are you sure the filter is working right? Like allabout said, take the other fish out, even if it's in a bucket or something then redo the tank. See if the water stays clear for a while before putting the existing fish back in. Sounds like the filter is working properly.


    Answer by anichols1 at 2:53 PM on May. 1, 2011

  • Will they be ok for a little while in a cup of tap water or bottled water long enough for me to clean the tank? Or do I need to treat that water and stuff too before I take them out?

    Comment by Cass052005 (original poster) at 3:04 PM on May. 1, 2011

  • When you bring those dead fish in for a refund or replacement, bring a water sample. Most places will test for free. I have a tropical tank and I don't take my fish out when I'm cleaning it and the most water you should replace at a time is about half because fish need enough bacteria and junk in the water to stay healthy, which might be your problem since it's a new tank. Get your water tested. GL

    Answer by Lornamay at 3:09 PM on May. 1, 2011

  • We set up our tank and followed directions to put Nutrafin Cycle in the water along with a few other things, and let it run with filter for a full week before adding fish, then add no more than 4 fish at a time. The nutrafin cycle will get the tank ready. I would thoroughly wash everything in the tank, then go buy some of that, You can add your fish back in the same day, but they may have trouble due to it being a 100% water change. There's also some kind of medicine tabs you can get to drop in the tank that will kill any fungus, ich, etc. They are a bit expensive though! I have a 55 gallon tank and spent $30 to treat my tank for the full 5 days needed.

    Answer by AprilDJC at 3:11 PM on May. 1, 2011

  • You are wanting a balance between good bacteria and the bad bacteria that comes from the fish and any uneaten food. Until you actually put the fish in the tank there is nothing for the good bacteria to eat. Therefore you get a build up of the bad bacteria which creates too much nitrogen in the water. To counter this do not overfeed your fish or overcrowd your tank. You can do partial water changes until the water clears up. You can do this while the fish are still in the tank. Just remove 1/4 of the water and replace with treated tap water that is close to the same temperature. Do this everyday until the water clears up. Never put fish in untreated tap water. The clorine in the water will kill them. Do use tap water just treat it first. Could someone have put a lot of food in the tank? That would cause the water to foul so quickly.

    Answer by Keksie at 6:56 PM on May. 1, 2011

  • Just an addition to what everyone else said, I know when I had red claw crabs they needed live plants to help keep the nitrogen levels down. You may want to try getting some plants for your tank. You can google plants that will work with your breed of fish, ask an employee at the pet store or look at what plants they have in the tank at the pet store.

    Answer by MamaStuart at 8:29 PM on May. 1, 2011

  • you should use tap water, what the right temperature should be.

    Answer by MKSers at 10:36 PM on May. 1, 2011

Join CafeMom now to contribute your answer and become part of our community. It's free and takes just a minute.