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Why did my Pacu and Pleco die??

Discussion in 'Fish and Aquarium - all types' started by fishy_chick, Apr 14, 2004.

  1. fishy_chick

    fishy_chick New Member

    I recently moved my Red Bellied Pacu from a 65 gallon tank to a 90 gallon. The move was pretty rough on him, he went completely limp once out of the tank and into a bucket of water and I thought he was dead, but then he went crazy once he was in the new tank. My 3 year old pleco found the move very easy though, not much bothers him.

    I put all of the water from the 67 gallon tank into the new one, and topped it off with new water. About 24 hours of being in the new tank, my sister found my Pacu upside down. We thought he was dying, but then he flipped himself over and was fine.

    Both fish were doing quite well and were eating regularly, but today I came back from school and both fish were dead. There was a white philm on the water surface and the tank smelled horrible (although that could be the dead fish). I checked the pH level and it was just below 7.0 and the water temp. was fine. Does anyone know why my fish died and now I can prevent further death in my future fish?
  2. t_chelle16

    t_chelle16 New Member

    Did you move the filter from the 65 to the 90? What were the ammonia, nitrIte, and nitrAte readings of the 90 at the time of death?

  3. t_h_e_s_a_c_k

    t_h_e_s_a_c_k New Member

    Sorry for your loss, always sucks to lose fish.

    We need more information in order to help you out. Like Chelle said, what were your other water parameters at the time of death?
  4. fishy_chick

    fishy_chick New Member

    I dont know what the ammonia, nitrate, or nitrite levels in the tank were. I don't have a test kit for that (I should probably get one) and didnt think to cycle the new tank because most of the water was from the old tank. And yes, I did get a new filter for the 90 gallon.
  5. t_h_e_s_a_c_k

    t_h_e_s_a_c_k New Member

    Correct me if I'm wrong Chelle.

    The water itself in the tank is not what contains most of the bacteria, it's the filter media.
  6. Fish Addict

    Fish Addict New Member

    thats true
  7. t_chelle16

    t_chelle16 New Member

    Yup, the tank wasn't cycled and the fish probably died of ammonia poisoning.

    Here is a really good article on how to do a proper fishless cycle:

    I would do that before getting any new fish for the tank.

    And for future reference, don't get any more pacus. They can get anywhere from 2 - 3+ feet long, almost as tall, and need a 400 - 600 gallon aquarium for one fish.

  8. fishy_chick

    fishy_chick New Member

    Ya, I bought 2 Pacus about a year ago and was told at the petstore that they'd stay small (just goes to show that you need to do your own research before buying any fish). But then they kept on growing so I looked into it and found out that they get huge. They did pretty well in the tank that I had, but I'm glad they died before they got any bigger; there's no way I could have afforded any tank bigger than 100 gallons. Thanks for your help.

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