Issue with Clown Loach "Open Mouthed"

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Issue with Clown Loach "Open Mouthed"

Post by paws » Tue Jul 21, 2015 2:27 pm

Hi folks,

Have been reading up and following this site for some time now as a source of info for me to gain a deeper understanding of my clown loaches, and appreciate that not all issues are the same even though the symptoms maybe similar. SO, that being said here is my issue .......

Have bought a new larger tank and unit for it to sit on after my previous smaller one started leaking, the new tank is 1.5mtr wide and holds approx 350 litres and has a new external filter system, had no choice but to move the fish into the new tank as no other means available to ensure their safety, so put as much water into it from the old tank as possible and topped up with fresh water (conditioned) so was similar to a 60% water change and was hopeful that the old water would go some ways to aiding in the new filter system to get cycled faster.

After 1 week my largest of 3 clown loaches (approx 9" long) started breathing hard with his mouth wide open so looked like was gasping, after taking water readings, the ammonia and nitrite levels were off the chart, so did instant water changes and kept changing more or less every day for the next 4 weeks monitoring the levels and the loaches behavior at the same time and waiting for the new filter to kick in and start doing its work, at week 3 the loach was breathing normally again and seemed happy once more, having done fresh readings was able to monitor the entire cycling of the tank to date and now have the following:

ammonia = 0
nitrite = 0
nitrate is between 20ppm & 40ppm (i find it hard to distinguish the colour diff on the API kit chart)
PH = 7.6 approx
water temp = 26c / 79f
2x airstones on a dual pump

Tank stock:
3 clown loaches (6", 8", 9")
1 ruby shark
1 pleco (16"-17")
1 bristlenose plec (6")
1 catfish (9")

After the largest loach took to hiding in his favourite cave for 3 days i now i have got the largest clown breathing hard again and open mouthed as before but cannot understand as to why, it has been over a month now since moving them all into the new tank (which seems to have cycled now) so don't think it is pure stress related. Have gone and bought a new powerhead/wavemaker so that the tank gets some decent "flow" and current to try and ensure that the hiding places are "flushed" with normal conditioned water as best as possible as well, am now just lost as to what could be causing him to go back to the rapid breathing and gasping effect again now so any help from some of you experts would be greatly appreciated as i realy don't want to lose my fav loach (the other two loaches are perfectly fine btw)

Many thanks in advance


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