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leeg10 leeg10
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  • Posted on: 15/1/2013 13:21
Flukes #1
Hello,
I've had an issue with my pond for a few weeks now, so far, I've lost 12 goldfish, I have koi in there but thus far they've been OK.

Having had the water tested and testing it myself, there is no issue with PH, Nitrate or Ammonia.

However, I took one of the dead fish to my local Koi farm who found an anchor worm on the fish, but from what I've read this is not likely to kill any fish.

I've noticed the activity of one of the fish is to swim quite fast, to the top of the water and splash out at the top, before swimming back down. From what I've read, this is a sign of flukes.

Does anyone know what I can do to stop these flukes killing my fish in these low temperatures as I'm worried I'm going to lose all of them.

Thanks

Lee
Fishlady Fishlady
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  • Posted on: 15/1/2013 14:18
Re: Flukes #2
If the problem is flukes, Fluke Solve should work, but jumping out of the water isn't typical for flukes and if they were the cause you would expect all fish to be affected. The most likely causes of this behaviour are low oxygen levels or pollutants/irritants in the water.

Flukes (and other parasites) will usually cause the fish to "flash" - rubbing themselves on hard surfaces in the pond to relive irritation, gulp as though they are yawning or exhibit laboured breathing. If flukes have been present for some time, the fish will usually have increased slime coat, sore patches or ulcers and become lethargic, spending a lot of time sitting at the bottom of the pond.

Can you post the actual test results you have for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate and pH please?
leeg10 leeg10
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  • Posted on: 15/1/2013 15:58
Re: Flukes #3
Hi Fishlady,
I don't have the results to hand right now as I'm at work but will post them later.

The pond I have is 4.2 meters by 3 meters and is 80 cm deep.

I'm running an Oase Aquamax Eco 12000 Pond Pump which I believe should be easily enough to oxygenate the water.

Gradually, the fish have started lying on their sides, floating around the top and eventually die.

I've lost 12 goldfish so far and have around 15 left (including 6 Koi).

Out of all the fish that have died, only one had any marks on it and that was that it's fins looked as though they had been nibbled on, no other fish have had that.

I know my current filter isn't going to be good enough once spring kicks in but I do have a much better filter on order so that will go in asap.

The garden centre who looked over one of my dead fish commented that it had a very firm stomach.

currently, I have no fish who look like they're unwell, just the one who is slashing at the top before swimming off again quite quickly.

What I've read so far has lead me to believe there is a parasite and I'm desperately hoping it's not flukes as I've also read it's very hard to do much about at this time of year due to the cold temperatures outside.

Water results to follow a bit later

Thanks

Lee
Fishlady Fishlady
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  • Posted on: 15/1/2013 16:07
Re: Flukes #4
If it is flukes, Flukesolve still works at temps down to 3c, so if you use it, watch the weather forecast and treat when we have a few slightly warmer days.
leeg10 leeg10
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  • Posted on: 15/1/2013 18:08
Re: Flukes #5
Pond test results were as follows:

PH High Range - 8.2

Ammonia - between 0 and 0.25

Nitrate - 0ppm

Nitrate N03 0ppm
Fishlady Fishlady
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  • Posted on: 15/1/2013 18:37
Re: Flukes #6
OK, those readings are worrying.

Firstly, ammonia should always be 0 and if the cycle is running correctly there ought to be a nitrate reading. The filter bacteria convert ammonia to nitrite and nitrite to nitrate. Nitrate can be used to some extent by plants and algae, but you should still see some in the pond, especially as this is a new pond and there hasn't been time for plant-life to establish well enough yet.

Secondly, the pH is higher than is ideal for the fish, and because it's high that makes the ammonia in the water a lot more toxic.

Those two things may well account for the fishes' problems.
Just to make sure we know what we're dealing with could you post back and tell us which test kit you're using. Can you also please test the pH of your tap water supply and at the same time run a cup full of cold water and leave it to stand for 24 hours then test the pH of that too.
leeg10 leeg10
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  • Posted on: 15/1/2013 19:59
Re: Flukes #7
The test kit I used was API Freshwater Master test kit.

The ammonia level was much closer to 0 than 0.25 as it's a colour chart and you have to judge, based on the colours, I'd say it was at 0.10.

I have one plant in my pond which is a Japanese purple iris, it's pretty small though.

I wil test the tap water and leave a cup standing for 24 hours as you mention, then test that too

Thanks

Lee
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  • Posted on: 15/1/2013 20:31
Re: Flukes #8
Just to add a little bit on about the nitrate being 0. Make sure you give the second test bottle a very good shake I find that I don't get an accurate reading unless I shake the bottle upside down and bang the bottom at the same time. Give that a try and make sure you follow the time guidelines . give the first bottle a shake in the water and wait a good five minutes that should return a nitrate reading. If not then the cycling may need to be looked into further!
leeg10 leeg10
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  • Posted on: 27/1/2013 17:04
Re: Flukes #9
Hello,
Apologies for not replying sooner, my 2 year Son has been poorly and it's been difficult finding enough time.

Well, as the cold snap kicked in again, I noticed a few fish lying at the bottom, apparently quite common with cold weather and goldfish in ponds with a sudden temperature drop.

Yesterday I did another water test, results are as follows:

PH - 7.6

PH High Range - 8.2

Ammonia - 0

Nitrite - 0

Nitrate - 0

From what I've read in the advice in the test kit, these readings are seen as perfectly OK, would anyone agree?

Today I notice another dead fish floating at the top of the water, at first I thought it was as a shock of tyhe cold which has now warmed significantly but on closer inspection, it had a number of scales missing and it's fin and tail were very jagged

Please someone point me in the right direction?

I will google this as much as possible too as I'm desperate to sort this issue out, my poor fish are being wiped out, it's depressing :(

Thanks for any help

Lee
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  • Posted on: 27/1/2013 17:21
Re: Flukes #10
Usually there should be some nitrate reading as Fishlady said. Plants will reduce nitrates but you only have one plant so that doesn't make much sense. Unless the nitrates are really high I don't think this would be an issue though. The koi farmer would probably have a good idea.
Are there any beetles that might have attacked the fish? Do you see any bullying from other fish?
So far some sort of parasite sounds possible.. I don't know enough.
Hopefully one of the advisers will be along shortly.
TK